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Re: Biofuels

Joined:
2006/9/11 11:41
From bucks cty
Posts: 997
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Quote:

PennsCreek wrote:
Not sure if you guys watch Dirty Jobs or not but a year or so ago they had an episode about biofuels. The guy used grease that he collected from restaurants and converted it into a diesel fuel. He was producing it at a cost of 50-75 cents a gallon. He was collecting the grease from a mexican fast food joint for free, pouring it through a filter to get out the solids then going through some heating and mixing in a chemical to get out the nasties. The only thing change to the diesel engine is changing the rubber fuel line to a clear plastic polyethylene tubing because the biodiesel eats through the rubber. He was running his newer model VW diesel station wagon and a mid 80's datsun truck on it. I put a couple links at the bottom for info and cost on the system. McDonalds and other places will probably give it away for free because they are currently paying someone to dispose it for them.

Here is a breakeven analysis

system = $2000
waste oil= free
current cost of diesel (3.40-3.66) average 3.50
cost per gallon, we'll be conservative with $1.00
save 2.50 per gallon
breakeven at $2000/ $2.5 saved/gallon= 800 gallons
average diesel tank ~40 gallons (truck)
#tanks to break even =800/40= 20 tanks

The time depends on vehicle mpg.


http://www.homebiodieselkits.com/hobikit.html

http://www.greasecar.com/article.cfm?aid=19



I saw that episode. The guy who processes that puts a lot of time into it that isn't factored in. And there is only so much waste food oil. So it works on a small scale but can't be a major contributor. Not sure I want to smell french fries every time I drive somewhere. I do think we should promote diesle engines in cars. it would improve overall efficiency and allow incremental use of biodiesel that is available.

Posted on: 2008/2/14 11:28


Re: Biofuels

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2006/9/10 21:53
From Greensburg, PA
Posts: 13629
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Quote:

tabasco_joe wrote:
I saw that episode. The guy who processes that puts a lot of time into it that isn't factored in. And there is only so much waste food oil. So it works on a small scale but can't be a major contributor. Not sure I want to smell french fries every time I drive somewhere. I do think we should promote diesle engines in cars. it would improve overall efficiency and allow incremental use of biodiesel that is available.


C'mon...I know a lot of guys who's cars small like french fries most of the time...

Posted on: 2008/2/14 12:37


Re: Biofuels

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2006/9/12 0:23
Posts: 310
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the net gain in co2 out put with biofuel is negative when you factor everything in. plus no one is talking about the negative impact on the environment and economy. 1st 10 time more corn must be grown to decrease oil use by 5%. that's 10 time the amount of land converted to farm land, 10 times the amount of fertilizer which uses oil to make. now consider all the nitrogen run-off into the streams, this will rend many more streams rivers and estuaries lifless. think the dead zone at the mississippi delta is bad now or the upper chesapeak. hunting land will disapear. more rain forest will be burned to grow corn. millions of tons of silt will go do rivers and clog existing dam as such. less trees and plant life to give off oxygen and recover co2. and these are just things i thought of off the top of my head without really researching it. now how is that good for the ebvironment? biofuels are only good for politicians and corp. farmers.

Posted on: 2008/2/15 11:50


Re: Biofuels

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2006/9/10 21:53
From Greensburg, PA
Posts: 13629
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The sky is falling the sky is falling!!!

There is 10 times more farmland sitting idle that could be used to grow corn instead of growing McMansions which are now being foreclosed on...

I think your mention of "without really researching it" hits the nail on the head...

Posted on: 2008/2/15 12:20


Re: Biofuels

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2006/9/12 0:23
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so tommyg you implying you are in favor of ecodestruction to supply biofuel.

at least i prefaced my remark as being off the top of my head so you can evaluate it as such. how do you preface yours? you don't, you just throw out snide, insulting remarks to someone who pointed out other dangers had not been related. and as for your research, your rebuttal, your stance, where is it? or are you just going to try and insult me again?

Posted on: 2008/2/15 13:21


Re: Biofuels

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2006/9/10 21:53
From Greensburg, PA
Posts: 13629
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Don't get your panties in a bunch..I did not insult you...I pointed out (in the short time I had then) that you just regurged all the Fox news, Bushy, conservative propaganda (if we put a negative spin on their ideas, maybe they'll just go away) that we are doing things the only way they can be done...there are better ways and we shouldn't discredit any option just because Anni Coulter, Rush Limbaugh the Guy who writes the columns in the opinion page says we should...None of these people have any real data to back up their opinions..and thats all they are opinions...

I hear RyanH (for example) quote verbatim from some of that material from time to time too but I know ryan personally and I respect his right to have his political views and I realize that mine are pretty much on the other end of the spectrum...but when we argue, debate, post...whatever, I don't think he thinks I'm insulting him.

And while we're really not supposed to be making this political on this forum, I don't know how you can avoid doing so when so many of the comments and so called facts people pull from "off the top of their heads" come directly from something heard or read directly from someone with a political agenda...

There thats my rant...the point is theres plenty of farmland out there, stop developing it and grow something on it..stop paying those land owners not to grow something on it, We don;t have a lot of rain forest here in the US to burn down for farming...fertilizer is always an issue...its an issue now and we aren't even using our farmland to its full potential...but thats a poor farming practices issue not an energy issue...you can't throw the baby out with the bathwater...every one of the concerns you had should and will be brought up in its time and place but lets not just say nothing can be done without trying first...then deal with problems as they come along in the planning process.

Posted on: 2008/2/15 13:38


Re: Biofuels

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2006/9/12 0:23
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if you say you ment no insult then i will take it as such.

as you stated we currently have issues with the way things are done. many times things are done for polical purposes and are rushed through without fully vetting it out, ie global warming caused by man. i believe the ethanol fuel issue is such. if we go down that road, there may well be a point more harm is done than good and we can not reverse the process without causeing major damage to our environment, which is fragil now, the economy and a waste of time and resources that can be used for a better technology.

as i stated i do not think there is a net gain by using biofuel at this stage. if the end result is to lessen our dependence on oil, especuailly forgein oil, then let us develop what we have here, ie ANWAR, off FL and CA coasts, and put all that subsidized money that will be going to biofuel production, and do more research into alternate fuels, building nuke plants and additional oil refinaries. this would surely drive the price of oil down amd lessen the dependence on forgein oil. we have the technology to drill without making a mess of things. all we have to do is enforce the laws and give business the insentive to do it wisely. insentives do not have to be subsidies, all they would need is a streamlines process to get the proper permits to do these things. i cuurently is impossible to get permits to build a nuke plant or an oil refinery or get a permit to drill new wells in the US.

Posted on: 2008/2/15 15:54


Re: Biofuels

Joined:
2006/9/11 11:41
From bucks cty
Posts: 997
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Tom, I did some research a while ago on corn ethanol and I don't think riz is that far off. I wish I would have saved the numbers but it's easy to recalculate.

I took the estimated acres of arable land in the US by the USDA. This is land capable of supporting crops.
I took the average corn production per acre in the US. And assumed the only crop grown in the US was corn.
I took the estimated ethanol yield for a given amount of corn (forget the exact source and volume.)
I took the annual gasoline usage in the US.
I then compared BTUs per that amount of gasoline and the amount of ethanol.
The ethanol came in tremendously lower than the gasoline energy. I even rounded everything up in favor of the ethanol. It came to something like 10% of the energy available from the gasoline. Remember, this is just gasoline, it didn't include diesel or fuel oils.

The potential energy in a given crop or fuel source is generally established science. What isn't is the cost and efficiency of processes that could yield the potential energy. So it's not hard to calculate what the potential is. It's a question of cost and scalability.

By doing this basic research one can come to thier own conclusions on the viability of a fuel source wihtout having to rely on a slanted news source. It's also an objective way to debate the subject and others can then argue the numbers instead of subjective, usually emotional, responses. (I'm not accusing you or anyone here on being emotional.)

Posted on: 2008/2/18 9:35


Re: Biofuels

Joined:
2006/9/10 21:53
From Greensburg, PA
Posts: 13629
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10 percent is a big number in my book...thats 10 percent we're not buying from middle eastern countries...its a start...there will be other alternatives down the road to add to that...but my point is that if there is any amount we can decrease our dependence on foreign oil by, we should be doing it...I'm not even disputing your facts. I'm just saying why not?

Posted on: 2008/2/18 11:33


Re: Biofuels

Joined:
2006/9/9 20:09
From Harrisburg
Posts: 2194
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Dear Board,

Biofuels are a feel good concept. They require more fossil fuels and petrochemicals to produce than they yield.

They are far from energy neutral and there is no way to overcome that deficiency. Lets not even mention the huge amounts of water that are required. Corn is perhaps the worst food we grow in terms of fuel and water usage. You'd be better off just throwing money into the wind.

It sounds good and the the stinking furriners won't be getting any of the money so people want to get behind it, but they are only thinking about half the equation and it's not even the most expensive half.

We are not equiped in any way to use ethanol as a fuel. Our entire fuel transport and storage system will have to be rebuilt to accomodate ethanol. You can have any rubber near the stuff because it destroys it. Don't believe me run 85/15 in your outboard motor for a tank or two and check back. How much savings you think there will be when we have to rebuild all the pipelines in the country?

People like to point to Brazil as a truimph of ethanol production but they forget two very important things. Their entire fuel distribution system was developed around distributing ethanol not gasoline and they are destroying the rain forests at alarming rates.

We had much more fuel efficient engines 20 years ago. Every car maker had a 40 mpg car or two in the line-up. Now they brag about fuel efficient 30 mpg cars? Bring the fuel standards up to where they were 20 years ago and well save plenty of fossil fuel. Develop more diesel cars and trucks and we'll save a lot of fuel too.

The worst part about growing fuel is that ADM and Cargill will get most of the subsidies just like they are gettinghem now and nothing will really change except the rich will get richer.

Regards,
Tim Murphy

Posted on: 2008/2/18 21:41


Re: Biofuels

Joined:
2006/10/26 23:01
From Ohio
Posts: 657
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Biodiesel seemed to be popular and economically feasible when I visited Hawaii last year. $1-$1.50 cheaper than gas a gallon.

Making energy from material than would be otherwise wasted seems to hold the most promise, both from and economical as well as ethical standpoint, not producing any more CO2 than is necessary and not wasting any edible food.

Who knows what technology will exist 5-10-20 years from now. All deserve exploration and funds for research. The free market will sort out which ones are most feasible, once the research is funded and done.

Whether or not you believe in global warming or not is irrelevent. By the time we know the answer for sure it will be too late and the stakes are too high to be wrong. The scientist in me remains skepitical, but I think a national security and economic perspective on this issue alone should be enough for almost anyone to support the exploration of alternative energy sources like biofuels.

Red meets Green.

Get 'er Done.

Bill

Posted on: 2008/2/21 17:38



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