Saturday, March 03, 2007

Ethanol from sugar cane

This should happen in Nigeria, to break away from the dependency on oil and the local bane of increasing prices and irregular supply. Brazil has signed an MOU with the US to increase ethanol production from sugar cane. Brazil is apparently talking to African nations to extend production. Nigeria has the land and the labour to more than compete globally. Carbon trading schemes could be use to fund start-up ethanol ventures. Everybody, including the planet, would win.


Moni 9:48 pm  

When I studied alternative fuels as part of a senior project in school, the most alarming thing that we discovered is that it takes more energy to produce a gallon of Ethanol than that gallon contains in energy. The Ethanol argument is a highly politicized on in the US... and based on the current state of the art, it doesn't seem to be the solution.

How about something as simple as reducing demand? That's a step nobody seems to want to discuss... and it's something that can be done right now!

keitho 12:58 am  

And a quick way to reduce demand is to enforce the speed limit on California freeways.

keitho 1:01 am  

Enforce speed limits on California freeways would quickly reduce demand. Even better, return to the 55 mph limits of Carter days.

Patrice,  3:26 am  

@Moni, I think it depends on the source of the fermented ethanol. Sugar cane, for example, is more efficient than corn. Biproducts of the whole process can be burned to produce more than enough energy to operate the sugar cane mill. Production is a self-sufficient system.

Brazil, a country virtually bankrupt throughout the 1980s, achieved energy independence last year, thanks largely to its (sugar cane) ethanol production program, born out of the oil embargo 1970s.

If Brazil can do it, why can't everyone else?

Chxta 9:30 pm  

@ Moni, how exactly do you propose to reduce demand?

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