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First And Second Generation Biomass Materials For Production Of Biofuels

1167 words - 5 pages

Fossil fuels have negatively impacted the environment causing irreversible changes. There are three fossil fuels in the world today. They are: natural gas and coal, as well as the more familiar fuels refined from crude oil including gasoline, diesel, and fuel oils. In the United States, in previous years there has been a dependence on these fuels for many purposes. When fossil fuels are burned, a chemical reaction occurs called combustion. This reaction is the cause of a major source of pollution in the environment. It causes smog, acid rain, climate change, and other negative health and economic concerns (Canada Article). According to an article from Science Daily, the burning of fossil fuels by humans is the largest source of emissions of carbon dioxide. Carbon dioxide is one of the greenhouse gases that allows radiative forcing and contributes to global warming. Greenhouse gases are gasses that trap heat. When the gases trap the heat, this causes our planet to become warmer. Daily human activities are blamable for the majority of the increase in greenhouse gases in the atmosphere over the last 150 years. The largest source of greenhouse gas emissions from human activities in the United States is from burning fossil fuels for electricity, heat, and transportation (EPA). Since 1990, U.S. greenhouse gas emissions have increased by about 8%. From year to year, emissions can rise and fall due to changes in the economy, the price of fuel, and other factors. In 2011, U.S. greenhouse gas emissions decreased compared to 2010 levels (EPA). Scientists are trying to find reliable fuel sources that are clean, cheap and sustainable.
Although biomass has been around for thousands of years, biomass has now become a more prevalent trending topic in the energy world. Scientists are constantly trying to find ways to come up with new technologies to combat adverse effects of the negative impact of burning fossil fuels in the environment. Biomass is a term used to describe organic material made from plant and animal matter that can be processed into electricity, fuel, and heat. The main energy source for biomass is derived from solar energy. Plants absorb the sun's energy by photosynthesis (Energy Article). Biomass studies are gaining widespread attention for its uses as a renewable source of energy. This is due to the fact that biomass has a remarkable composition of biochemicals. Since this fact is known, the usage could help reduce the dependence on natural gas as well as petroleum based products. There are several uses for biomass, including household cooking, and power generation for agricultural processing. Unlike fossil fuels, the use of biomass has significant benefits to the health and environment. The combustion of biomass results in lesser amounts of nitrogen and sulfur dioxide, this will cause cleaner burning emissions.
In the 1970’s, oil prices were on the rise because of supply restrictions by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries....

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