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Exxon Embracing Algae Biofuels

Exxon Mobil has announced that they're jumping into the biofuel business.  The oil giant is investing $600 million in researching algae-based biofuels that would capture CO2 and perform as well as oil-based fuels.

The company is teaming up with Synthetic Genomics Inc. to genetically engineer algae strains for testing.  If the partners are successful in developing a greenhouse gas-capturing fuel, Exxon will then invest billions on cod tramadol 180 the cialis order 5 mg production of the fuel.

The company envisions placing the algae farms near power plants and other major CO2 emitters to feed the algae and to help curb the impact of those businesses.  Exxon said they imagine a successful commercial production of an algae-based fuel could take up to a decade.

This venture isn't the company's first foray into carbon capture.  In January, they announced they were spending $170 million on carbon capture projects at their natural gas plants.  These projects are undoubtedly more financially driven than environmentally, but if the planet can benefit from their discoveries, it's worth paying attention.

via Wall Street Journal

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Biofuels Conference in San Diego
written by Andy Olds, July 29, 2009
I was at a conference yesterday in San Diego where this exact story was discussed. Synthetic Genomics Inc. is a company based in San Diego, one of many in the biofuels industry. I have a blog post on some of the details. Suffice to say, algal biodiesel has some unique advantages over some of the other biomass sources.
written by OakleighVermont Solargroupies, July 30, 2009
Please correct me if I am wrong. This plan calls for using algae to remove CO2 (photosynthesis). So far so good. Then, BURNING the algae biofuel, which produces more CO2 and H2O, both greenhouse gases. Let's stop burning hydrocarbons and producing greenhouse gases! Instead of perpetuating the generic cialis india carbon economy, put that $600 million into advancing electricity from the sun, wind and water.
written by Jeremy Rinebolt, July 30, 2009
Algal biodiesel has huge potential and it makes me happy to hear that Exxon Mobil is putting there capital behind it. Not only does the capital help but it provides a sense of legitimacy to have such a large company invest in algal biodiesel and essentially advertise for the industry.
What I do have a problem with is their desire, along with Synthetic Genomics, Inc., to make and cialis order use genetically modified organisms. I see no reason why they couldn't simply use local algaes and utilize mechanical improvements in order to increase the yield. Genetic modification just spells disaster. i.e. See: Killer bees.
To Oakleigh: As far as I know,if you made the process of viagra soft tabs uk generating fuel from algae as energy cheap as possible it wouldn't really put out much CO2 at all. It would be close to carbon neutral. I do agree with you about solar, wind, and water being the best options though. Especially, solar power.
written by Bob Wallace, July 30, 2009
Growing oil producing algae and burning it for energy does not produce any "new" carbon. If the carbon used to feed the algae comes out of the atmosphere.

What bothers me about many of these schemes is that they seem to all be nestled up against coal plants, using the we use it take viagra concentrated carbon released in the production of electricity. Do that, and what we are doing is getting a second use out of un-sequestered carbon but it's still being taken out of sequesteration.

If we go that route it might be harder to rx online viagra shut down coal plants as the argument will be made that we need to keep burning coal to feed the algae.

As for genetic engineering, damned if I can see what killer bees has to do with the issue. The idea between tweaking the genetic makeup of the algae is to get it to be a more productive oil producer.
..., Low-rated comment [Show]
killer bee's
written by Carl, July 30, 2009
Not sure exactly what the killer bee's comment is about, but in regards to genetic engineering...this genetically engineered algae would have to levitra online canada no prescription be protected from transportation devices...(wind, birds, insects,etc) otherwise you would end up introducing "genetically engineering" algae into an ecosystem where it does not belong and thus changing the biological makeup. There are a couple of lagoons in San Diego already where "invasive" foreign plants are putting a stranglehold on the native species. This is the danger that comes from this. I like this idea of a carbon nuetral fuel, but the tramadol scam necessary precauations need to be taken to make sure it doesn't produce other problems...
written by cufflinks, July 30, 2009
I really do not understand what they are intending!

They intend on using the algae to capture the CO2 but then we will be creating more CO2 and H2O when burning the fuel.

Unless they can find a method where we do not burn the algae then possibly it may help!

written by Brett, July 30, 2009
It's good to see a large corporation turning some of their gaze to alternate fuels. I do agree that wind and especially solar are the way to go, though.
written by Bob Wallace, July 30, 2009
We won't be "creating more CO2 and HO2 when burning the fuel".

The algae will "capture" already existing CO2 and HO2, use them to make oil, and then the CO2 and HO2 will be *re-released* when the oil is burned.

Growing the we choice levitra testimonial algae, burning the algae oil is carbon and water neutral.

The only issue, that I can see, is if growing algae somehow causes us to continue to wow it's great canadian pharmacy online burn coal (for the CO2 byproduct) past the time when we could otherwise stop.

The CO2 from coal is carbon that is right now sequestered.

And we need to leave it right where it is, not dig it up and stick it in our atmosphere.

written by Sean, July 30, 2009
I think the most pertinent comment to this conversation is cufflinks. While I will continually support smart bio-fuels that do not rely on food or farm acreage for production, the synthetic nature of the organisms is a bit frightening. This is not traditional husbandry but whole scale bio-engineering. The release of cialis without prescription online such organisms into aquatic eco-systems is untested and may prove more of a problem than any benefit gained.

Other than further information regarding the controls placed on the growing of these organisms, I support the effort. I also think it may be somewhat naive to believe that big coal and oil will not be some of the chief players in this field. If not from seeing the writing on tramadol fedex no prescription the wall, these could be hugely profitable licensing opportunities for the companies.
written by Andy Olds, July 30, 2009
Just following up on Bob's comment. Based on the presentation I saw, the goal is for algal biodiesel (and biofuels in general) to be both carbon neutral AND cost effective. Long-term, the goal of algal biodiesel is to replace coal, not to just sit on the back of a coal-fired power plant. However, until it is competitive in cost with hydrocarbons, there are some short-terms benefits to using it on the back of a power plant - including reduction in carbon emissions by recycling the carbon (any carbon used twice is less coal removed from the earth!).

Of course, algal biofuels may not win the cialis price race to be the first alternative fuel to be cheaper than hydrocarbons!
written by Bob Wallace, July 31, 2009
Andy, algal oil isn't aimed at replacing coal, but petroleum. I don't think anyone is purposing burning algae to make electricity.

And my "concern" about using carbon from coal plants is not a major one, only something to buy levitra online without prescription keep in mind.

Certainly using CO2 from burning coal gives us a second use for the sequestered carbon, thus increasing the amount of energy produced per ton of CO2 pumped into the atmosphere. That's a good thing.

But if we do this large scale, and do not figure out how to produce algal oil without this rich, concentrated stream of search levitra CO2, there might be some pressure to keep burning coal past the point where we do not need to simply for the electricity.
written by Fred, July 31, 2009
Exxon may have something
Better use for Algae
written by John Dickie, August 07, 2009
Here at PREL, we take the view that if you create a bio diesel fuel then you are just 'parking' the carbon until you spew it out of the tailpipe of a vehicle.

What we are going to do is use our CO2/heat and waste products from our biomass power stations to feed and grow a 'biomass fuel' for use in our gasification process thus enhancing the electrical economy. The CO2 is captured again and again - it isn't a complete closed loop but, in our view, makes more sense than squeezing out the oil content.
written by cufflink, February 15, 2011
Algae can be grown using land and water unsuitable for crop plant or food production, unlike some other first and second generation biofuel feedstocks.

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