With the growing concern that humans will dry the earth of its limited fossil fuels, scientists are searching for an alternate energy source. One of the sources that has flown under the radar is algae. It can be used as jet fuel, biodiesel, and even biocrude. With minimal nutrient inputs, it can be grown in salt and waste water, thus leaving clean water for humans to drink. It is also carbon neutral, which means it absorbs as much carbon dioxide as it produces. Although harvesting algae on a commercial scale is currently inefficient, scientists are hopeful that algae will one day account for most of the world’s oil. Considering algae’s speedy growth and large presence throughout the world (making up 70% of the world’s biomass), its potential is enormous. Once its price is lessened from a current $8 a gallon to a more reasonable cost, you can expect to be filling up your car with algal biofuels instead of fossil fuels!
This project was fun for me because it taught me about something that is important on a larger scale. I hope to someday do research on this topic and improve on the technology used to turn algae into fuel. I want to spread awareness of algal biofuels to gain support for this amazing opportunity we have to change the world.
This infographic was created by students from Smithtown HS East in St. James, NY, as part of the U.S. Department of Energy-BioenergizeME Infographic Challenge. The BioenergizeME Infographic Challenge encourages young people to improve their foundational understanding of bioenergy, which is a broad and complex topic. The ideas expressed in these infographics reflect where students are in the learning process and do not necessarily reflect the state of knowledge of the U.S. Department of Energy or other experts in the bioenergy industry.
Learn about the amazing uses for algae as a biofuel! It’s the future of our world, and will create a cleaner and greener tomorrow! Just click on the link below to learn more.
Guest blog by Jillian Pesce with Erika Nemeth, Olivia Faulhaber and Ruisi Zhong. We are a part of the BioenergizeME Competition for the U.S. Department of Energy.