Living The Green Revolution

There's never been a more appropriate time to realise the truth that we do not inherit the earth from our parents, rather we borrow it from our children. It is a fact that we all have to take on board to ensure we give the earth back to future generations in a state fit to inhabit. It is our responsibility to help support what I like to call the 'Green Revolution' - a time when we as individuals assume responsibility for our planet's condition and take appropriate action to fix the problems we have collectively caused.

 

Bio-Fuels - What are they?

By Stuart Gardiner

When biological matter decomposes bio-fuels are formed. Mainly derived from plants, Bio-fuels can exist in all three states of matter: as solids, liquids, or gas.

There are four types of Bio-fuel, classed as first to fourth generation.

First generation Bio-fuels are produced from vegetable fats, starch and sugar - they are mainly derived from food crops and animal fats. Bio-diesel and vegetable oil are two examples of this type of bio-fuel.

Second generation bio-fuels are generally produced from waste biomass and therefore generally regarded as more eco friendly than first generation methods. Certain types of Alcohol and diesel generated from wood fall into this category.

Third generation bio-fuels are derived from algae. Large scale farming of algae is extremely environmentally friendly as the waste products can decompose in soil without harmful side effects.

Fourth generation bio-fuels are created via mirco-organisms. These micro-organisms are raised to work with carbon dioxide to generate fuel.

The main differences between Bio-fuels and fossil fuels are significant when you consider the impact on our environment.

  • Fossil fuels take millions of years to form and take huge resources to extract, unlike Bio-Fuels that can be created in days by less costly means.
  • The Pollution caused by Fossil fuels is huge compared to the comparatively safer nature of Bio-fuels. The by products of Bio-fuels are less toxic to the environment and are far more easier to dispose of.
  • Unlike fossil fuels Bio-fuels are considered renewable energy sources.


However, all is not good news for Bio-fuels. There has been much criticism about why agricultural land is being used to generate Bio-fuels when it could just as well be used to generate food. Does it really make sense in a world of decreasing food supplies to use land for fuel generation. Also, to what extent will we go to create Bio-fuels. Will more and more land be used up in an effort to decrease our reliance on Fossil fuels? This clearly does not make sense when you consider how we cut down forests for the sake of agriculture and in doing so contribute to global warming.

The Bio-fuel/Fossil fuel argument rages on but one thing is clear. Eventually we will run out of Fossil fuels and alternative energy sources will be required, Bio-fuels or not.

The real question is, how quickly will we make the shift away from fossil fuel reliance?

 

 

Eco Friendly Warrior

Living The Green Revolution



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