Biofuel number crunching

A roundup of alternative fuels is presented in Popular Mechanics’ May issue, with a summary of what each fuel is, the pro’s and con’s for the fuel, and the future outlook for each one of them. The alternatives for gasoline and diesel under consideration are Ethanol/E85, Methanol/M85, compressed natural gas, biodiesel, electricity, and hydrogen. Some excellent pros and cons are pointed out. For example, when growing corn, pesticides, fertilizers, heavy equipment and transport are required. While the transport, heavy equipment, fertilizer and pesticide cost are often included in detailed analysis of biofuel costs, the impact of the pesticides and fertilizers on the environment, and ultimately the quality of life, are difficult to quantify and therefore omitted from a cost/benefit analysis.  The article ends with stressing the need to pursue multiple pathways, to reduce our dependence on petroleum.

[Source: Popular Mechanics]


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