Approximately 17 percent of oil imported into the U.S. to be burned in vehicles could be replaced by algal fuel by 2022, according to a study conducted by the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL). That is, if the U.S. makes a commitment to reduce its dependency on foreign oil by focusing on production of algal fuels. Mark Wigmosta, lead author of the study and a PNNL hydrologist, said in a statement that:
To support President Obama's goal of reducing America's oil imports by a third by 2025, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) announced that it will accept applications for $12 million in funding for laboratory or small pilot-scale projects aimed at developing advanced biofuels. Successful projects will focus on technologies that enable biofuels to directly replace gasoline, diesel or jet fuels without modifications to vehicles or to the fueling infrastructure.
The Biofuels Finance & Investment World was recently held in London at which one of the clearest messages is that biofuels globally are completely dependent on government subsidies. For example, ethanol is energy and monetarily competitive without subsides when oil is $60 per barrel in the US, $35 per barrel in Brazil, and $115 in Europe. The EU Commission estimates that biodiesel is monetarily competitive without subsides when oil is $65 per barrel. But currently NYMEX West Texas Intermedia
If you've ever tried making biodiesel commercially you'll know that the biggest cost is by far the feedstock. This has lead to a great deal of research into more efficient alternatives to the traditional feedstocks of canola oil and soybean oil. A promising biodiesel feedstock plant being promoted in Africa, India, China and South East Asia is Jatropha Curcas which is common in hot climates and can grow in wastelands. Jatropha is already known for its huge yields; more than four times as much fu