Energy Resources: Fossil Fuels To Biofuels

1236 words - 5 pages

What do you use for fuel? It is probably is gasoline or diesel. Well, there is another source of fuel, and it is renewable. Biofuels are fuel made of organic material, and where energy is produced from plants. One biofuel, ethanol, could eventually replace gasoline (petroleum). Biofuels are a cleaner energy than fossil fuels, but there are advantages and disadvantages for both biofuels and fossil fuels.
Biofuels contain carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen. Organic material like vegetable oil can be used to produce biofuel. Bioethanol is produced from things like corn, sugarcane, trees, biomass, and parts of plants, like corn stalks. Algae can also be used to make biofuels.
Biofuels are being used in North America and Europe. “Biodiesel makes up about 3% of the German market and 0.15% of the U.S. market, and about 1 billion gallons of biodiesel are produced annually”(Biofuel Facts). Ethanol is used more in North and South America, and Europeans use biodiesel more than ethanol. Most of the ethanol in the world, 87% of it, is produced by the United States and Brazil. In total the amount of Bioethanol used for fuel produced each year is more than 22 billion gallons (Biofuel Facts). Ethanol is mixed in with gas to reduce emissions, and to run a cleaner engine. Similarly, biodiesel is blended with diesel to reduce emissions and to improve the life of the engine.
Ethanol is one type of biofuel that can be used for cars. In fact, The Model T was designed to run on ethanol. In the years of 1824-1826 an inventor fro the US, Samuel Morey, creates an invention that runs on a mix of ethanol and turpentine, and in 1860 Nicholas Otto, from Germany, used ethanol to fuel one of his engines (Ethanol History). In 1862, during the Civil War, the Congress of the Union put a tax on industrial alcohol to pay for the expenses of the war, and the tax was two dollars per gallon (Ethanol History). The tax made “ethanol fall out of favor as a fuel in the U.S. Prior to 1962, ethanol was commonly used in lamps” (Ethanol History ). In 1896, Henry Ford built his first automobile, and his engine was made to run on pure ethanol. “This is naturally a very important step in ethanol car industry” (Ethanol History). In 1906, Congress did away with the tax that they had placed industrial alcohol. In the 1920s, after WWI,
gasoline, not ethanol, become the most popular fuel in the United States as well as in many other parts of the world. However, Standard Oil starts adding ethanol to gasoline to get the octane number up and reduce engine knocking. (Ethanol History).
In 1992, the Energy Policy Act of 1992 was out into action. This act required certain car companies to start buying vehicles able of running on alternative fuels (Ethanol History). There is another type of ethanol that gained popularity from ’92 and beyond. It is called E85. It is made up of a blend of 85% ethanol, and a 15% blend of unleaded gas (Ethanol History).
The more common used form of fuel for cars is petroleum. It...

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