Today Obama announced $510 million will be invested in advanced ‘drop in’ biofuels, especially for the Navy. It seems true what Churchill said: "Americans can always be counted on to do the right thing…after they have exhausted all other possibilities."
"By building a national biofuels industry, we are creating construction jobs, refinery jobs and economic opportunity in rural communities throughout the country," said Secretary Vilsack. "As importantly, every gallon of biofuel consumed near where it is produced cuts transportation costs and, for the military, improves energy security."
The Pentagon and Navy had looked at biofuels before, targeting a large amount of algae beased fuel for powering it’s ships and planes.
The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency has spent $35 million to sponsor research into oil from algae and the Air Force is also looking for cleaner ways to fly and fight.
DOE Announces US $24M for Algae Research
Millions are not needed, so this is delay tactics, bribing the best minds of retracing the steps of the 70’s Aquatic Species Program
This is all very nice but really really very late. With the droughts in the primarey agricultural areas and production down 30% on average the debate on biofuels as competing with foodresources is likely, and cost and risks will be high. Looking at algae is about time, and it may save the ocean. Had this move been made in the 70’s when scientist discovered the climate problem (including adverse effects) on the oceans, we would have been in a much better shape to actually survive the fossil fuel onslaught we suffered. One may wonder what the use is of an army to protect a territory that is in dire straits because of the effects of carbon emission. It would be infinitely wiser to just give up and start building clean renewable energy sources, ones that use no gas based fertilizer.
The eternal ruse
From the Aquatic Species report this quote:
"A major conclusion from these analyses is that there is little prospect for any alternatives to the open pond designs, given the low cost equirements associated with fuel production."
And ask what modern oil production would ‘cost’ if one would have to pay for every barrel used in the production process. The cost of making fuel are zero as long as long as the end output can pay for the labour. Of course algae used to be grown using fertilizer which would be fossil fuel based and have to be payed for. This is the same mistake that is made with biofuels, also grown with fertilizer. The answer is and has been for some time to 1. grow algea in the oceans, 2. grow them using deep water nutrients.
This device is going to be important if we want to make fuel, grow fish and keep our oceans from becoming dead acidic swamps..
The problem with allowing more carbon pollution
Biofuel seaweed won’t grow in our future more acidic oceans. If we start farming them now we may keep the CO2 low.