Berkeley Ethanol Study Stirs Controversy

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Mike Ackerman

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Jun 9, 2003, 5:29:35 AM6/9/03
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The information in this story is no surprise, but it's an amusing read
for the uninitiated:
http://www.evworld.com/databases/shownews.cfm?pageid=news080603-01 .
Some excerpts: "The ethanol industry sharply rebuked a study by
University of California, Berkeley freshmen concluding it takes more
energy to produce ethanol than the amount of petroleum saved when the
additive is combined with gasoline."

"Patzek said he received two angry phone calls from Washington, D.C., on
Friday, the day after the study was released. The callers demanded to
know the source of his funding."

"The student report concludes it takes the equivalent of 4.93 gallons of
gasoline to produce an energy output of 1.74 gallons. That's a net loss
of 65 percent, the students said."

Mike Ackerman

Kyler Laird

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Jun 9, 2003, 9:23:29 AM6/9/03
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Mike Ackerman <macker...@mailpuppy.com> writes:

>The information in this story is no surprise, but it's an amusing read
>for the uninitiated:

But is the report true? I am often told that it no longer takes
more petroleum to create the equivalent amount of ethanol (in
today's economic environment). I'd like to see the report
checked by someone other than the Renewable Fuels Association.

Note that even with my assumption that it now takes more
petroleum to create ethanol than the equivalent it yields, I
still like ethanol because it *can* be created without much
(or any?) petroleum. I just want to know the truth about the
current situation.

Thank you.

--kyler

Don Lancaster

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Jun 9, 2003, 9:34:03 AM6/9/03
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Ethanol is simply an outrageous twelve billion dollar vote buying scam.
It is in no way renewable or sustainable under US farm conditions.

See http://www.tinaja.com/glib/energfun.pdf
--
Many thanks,

Don Lancaster
Synergetics 3860 West First Street Box 809 Thatcher, AZ 85552
voice: (928)428-4073 email: d...@tinaja.com fax 847-574-1462

Please visit my GURU's LAIR web site at http://www.tinaja.com

Don Lancaster

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Jun 9, 2003, 9:37:19 AM6/9/03
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Kyler Laird wrote:
> I
> still like ethanol because it *can* be created without much
> (or any?) petroleum.
>
> Thank you.
>
> --kyler

Brazil nearly bankrupted themselves over this absurd notion.

robert luis rabello

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Jun 9, 2003, 10:37:13 AM6/9/03
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Mike Ackerman wrote:

> "Patzek said he received two angry phone calls from Washington, D.C., on
> Friday, the day after the study was released. The callers demanded to
> know the source of his funding."
>
> "The student report concludes it takes the equivalent of 4.93 gallons of
> gasoline to produce an energy output of 1.74 gallons. That's a net loss
> of 65 percent, the students said."
>

Quoting Pimental, no doubt!


robert luis rabello
"The Edge of Justice"
Adventure for Your Mind
http://www.1stbooks.com/bookview/9782


Tim Worstall

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Jun 9, 2003, 12:35:16 PM6/9/03
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Mike Ackerman <macker...@mailpuppy.com> wrote in message news:<3EE4537E...@mailpuppy.com>...

I thought it was interesting....trade association meets science
almost.

However, could someone clear something up for me ?
Are the Berkely students saying it takes more gasoline to produce the
ethanol that replaqces gasoline, or are they saying that it takes more
energy to produce the ethanol than it replaces ?
It seems to vary between the two views over the piece.
If it's the first, then of course the use of ethanol is absurd (
although even then it might have use in place of lead or MTBE as an
anti knocking addition ).
If it's the second, then I'm not so sure. We don't comaplain when a
field of wheat uses more energy to grow than we can produce from
eating it......using more of one form of energy to get a smaller
amount in a more useful form isn't on the face of it absurd.

Tim Worstall

Eric Swanson

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Jun 9, 2003, 1:50:18 PM6/9/03
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In article <825e2890.03060...@posting.google.com>, t...@2xtreme.net says...

From the news article, I think they were looking strictly at energy.
That energy was probably derived from several sources, including the
natural gas to make fertilizers, oil in the form of diesel fuel and
gasoline for the farmers and coal to make electricity used at different
places in the entire process chain. Most of the primary energy sources
would appear to be fossil fuel, although some electricity might be generated
by hydro or nuclear plants.

On the other side of the coin, the report suggests that the study looked at
ethanol produced from corn. There are other plant sources available and
other intermediate processes which might produce the ethanol, however,
these are not what is contemplated with the current mandate to produce
ethanol. Don Lancaster's previous post is close to the mark on this.

I think the conclusion is that the use of corn based ethanol is NOT a way
to reduce our consumption of fossil fuels. Thus, using ethanol wouldn't
reduce the CO2 released into the atmosphere, either. This would be true
even if the numbers calculated by the students were off by a factor of 2....

David Pimentel's analysis has been around for many years.
See: http://www.unisci.com/stories/20013/0813012.htm
http://www.wired.com/news/print/0,1294,46045,00.html
And: http://www.hubbertpeak.com/pimentel/

Note that the hubbetpeak site has several articles on the coming peak of
world oil production.

--
Eric Swanson --- E-mail address: e_sw...@skybest.com :-)
--------------------------------------------------------------

Don Lancaster

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Jun 9, 2003, 2:47:43 PM6/9/03
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The primary on-the-books energy inputs to most US farm crops are water
and diesel fuel.
Water often requires pumping which also takes diesel fuel.

Avocados, for instance, are manufactured directly from diesel fuel.

Mike Ackerman

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Jun 9, 2003, 3:35:43 PM6/9/03
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Don Lancaster wrote:

> Mike Ackerman wrote:
> >
> > The information in this story is no surprise, but it's an amusing read
> > for the uninitiated:
> > http://www.evworld.com/databases/shownews.cfm?pageid=news080603-01

> Ethanol is simply an outrageous twelve billion dollar vote buying scam.


> It is in no way renewable or sustainable under US farm conditions.
>

Of course, the other big use of ethanol is as a fuel additive to reduce
pollution. But the Sierra Club now opposes Ethanol and MTBE additives:
http://www.sierraclub.org/cleanair/factsheets/mtbe.asp

"2. The Clean Air Act should be modified to remove the
current oxygenate requirement in RFG and oxy fuels.

"Discussion: In older vehicles, the addition of an oxygenate
promoted more complete combustion and lower air
emissions. Over the last twenty years substantial
improvement in combustion technology and emissions
controls have been introduced incremental phases. Since
the 1994 model year all vehicles are required to have
optimized combustion to an extent that oxygenates have
negligible effects."

Mike Ackerman

Robert Cohen

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Jun 9, 2003, 4:03:20 PM6/9/03
to
private

re: ethanol

if "they" can invent or develop or un-suppress a machine or motor or engine
for a vehicle that competitively-efficiently exploits ethanol (or any other
non-petroleum derivative), then would "they" really do so?

what i am implying in my rhetorical question is that our
financial-economic-political culture is dependent upon petroleum (the "petrol
dollar") paradigm

hydrogen is 10-20 years away

it is perceived, guessed, felt, and suspected that MASSIVE alternatives to
peteroleum have been stymied since Henry Ford's gasolene engine was lauded by
Thomas Edison who had up to then reportedly been pushing an electric engine

one suspects that alternatives have been repressed-suppressed, bought-out,
shut-down, not funded, have little political influence

one suspects that an elaborate "lie" has been
perpetuated since (perhaps) the "steamer car" was "obsoleted," "outlawed,"
"suppressed," and that we exist in a lewis carroll absurdity by becoming so
dependent on oil that we cannot get out without trashing our economic selves


Robert Cohen

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Jun 9, 2003, 5:23:47 PM6/9/03
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re: private

i meant that paranoiac booger to go to an email of an individual , but what the
hell


Iconoclast

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Jun 9, 2003, 5:38:46 PM6/9/03
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"Don Lancaster" <d...@tinaja.com> wrote in message
news:3EE4D64F...@tinaja.com...

>
> The primary on-the-books energy inputs to most US farm crops are water
> and diesel fuel.
> Water often requires pumping which also takes diesel fuel.
>
> Avocados, for instance, are manufactured directly from diesel fuel.
>
>
> --
> Many thanks,
>
> Don Lancaster
> Synergetics 3860 West First Street Box 809 Thatcher, AZ 85552
> voice: (928)428-4073 email: d...@tinaja.com fax 847-574-1462
>
> Please visit my GURU's LAIR web site at http://www.tinaja.com

Avacados have a couple of other important ingredients, beans and tortillas.
Of course the tortillas like ethanol are made from diesel.
Iconoclast


Mike Ackerman

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Jun 9, 2003, 5:43:46 PM6/9/03
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Robert Cohen wrote:

You don't need to look for technological solutions because this is not a
technological problem; it is a political problem. Induce employers to provide
affordable housing within walking distance Tax fuel as if it were a prescious
resource.

Mike Ackerman

Kyler Laird

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Jun 9, 2003, 7:23:30 PM6/9/03
to
Don Lancaster <d...@tinaja.com> writes:

>Kyler Laird wrote:
>> I
>> still like ethanol because it *can* be created without much
>> (or any?) petroleum.
>>
>> Thank you.
>>
>> --kyler

>Brazil nearly bankrupted themselves over this absurd notion.

Are you saying ethanol can't be produced without petroleum or
are you just dragging my quote along on some tangent you've
created?

--kyler

fkasner

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Jun 9, 2003, 8:07:19 PM6/9/03
to

Don Lancaster wrote:
> Kyler Laird wrote:
>
>>I
>>still like ethanol because it *can* be created without much
>>(or any?) petroleum.
>>
>>Thank you.
>>
>>--kyler
>
>
> Brazil nearly bankrupted themselves over this absurd notion.
>

Quite right, Don. They had gotten to the point where 85% of their ICE
fleet (public and private) was running on ethanol. And the economic
disaster was abundantly clear. It is just too expensive to use partially
preburned hydrocarbons as fuel.
FK

fkasner

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Jun 9, 2003, 8:11:29 PM6/9/03
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I know that you must be true because the tooth fairy vouches for you.
FK

Don Lancaster

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Jun 9, 2003, 8:07:05 PM6/9/03
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Interestingly enough, a significant cause of the demise of the steam
cars was hoof and mouth disease.

Just at the time that gas engine auto manufacturers were discovering
economics of scale of an inferior product, all of the public
horsetroughs were drained.

Steam has advantages of all power strokes, zero speed torque,
reversibility, and minimal transmission and accessory needs.

Corrosion, safety, rapid starts, and vapor recycling have yet to be
properly addressed.

Don Lancaster

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Jun 9, 2003, 8:10:28 PM6/9/03
to

It is exceptionally unlikely that ethanol can be produced without
petroleum except under bizarre subsistance conditions. Even then the
only candidate crop appears to be bagasse.

Virtually all of these programs to date are monumental failures.

Turns out the natives would rather drink the rum.

See various papers in Biomass and Bioenergy.

Don Libby

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Jun 9, 2003, 8:46:10 PM6/9/03
to
Kyler Laird wrote:
>
> Mike Ackerman <macker...@mailpuppy.com> writes:
>
> >The information in this story is no surprise, but it's an amusing read
> >for the uninitiated:
>
> But is the report true? I am often told that it no longer takes
> more petroleum to create the equivalent amount of ethanol (in
> today's economic environment). I'd like to see the report
> checked by someone other than the Renewable Fuels Association.

1) How is sunshine accounted for?
2) What enzymes are used in the conversion?
3) David Pimentel is an entomologist (bug doctor), not an
engineer: does his opinion count? (Why?)

-dl

Josh Halpern

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Jun 9, 2003, 9:35:30 PM6/9/03
to

robert luis rabello wrote:

>Mike Ackerman wrote:
>
>
>
>>"Patzek said he received two angry phone calls from Washington, D.C., on
>>Friday, the day after the study was released. The callers demanded to
>>know the source of his funding."
>>
>>"The student report concludes it takes the equivalent of 4.93 gallons of
>>gasoline to produce an energy output of 1.74 gallons. That's a net loss
>>of 65 percent, the students said."
>>
>>
> Quoting Pimental, no doubt!
>

Let's see Pimentel passed in 89......I doubt he has been giving out a
lot of quotes.

josh halpern

Ian St. John

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Jun 10, 2003, 3:12:09 AM6/10/03
to

"Mike Ackerman" <macker...@mailpuppy.com> wrote in message
news:3EE4E18E...@mailpuppy.com...

This is something of a false argument. The primary economic driver for E10
fuel is not the emissions reduction but the ability of Ethanol as an octane
booster, replacing a relatively expensive cracking and synthesis of
polycyclical aromatics that are otherwise used to get the required octane
upgrade. This takes refinery capacity that cuts down on both profits and
maximum production and it should be noted that the refinery capacity is
critical and can lead to massive increases in prices with even minor
shortfalls as every long weekend shows.

Besides, the polycylical aromatics used to upgrade base stock in the absense
of ethanol are relatively toxic and contribute to adverse health effects.


Mike Ackerman

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Jun 10, 2003, 4:19:45 AM6/10/03
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"Ian St. John" wrote:

> "Mike Ackerman" wrote


>
> > Of course, the other big use of ethanol is as a fuel additive to reduce
> > pollution. But the Sierra Club now opposes Ethanol and MTBE additives:
> > http://www.sierraclub.org/cleanair/factsheets/mtbe.asp
> >
> > "2. The Clean Air Act should be modified to remove the
> > current oxygenate requirement in RFG and oxy fuels.
> >
> > "Discussion: In older vehicles, the addition of an oxygenate
> > promoted more complete combustion and lower air
> > emissions. Over the last twenty years substantial
> > improvement in combustion technology and emissions
> > controls have been introduced incremental phases. Since
> > the 1994 model year all vehicles are required to have
> > optimized combustion to an extent that oxygenates have
> > negligible effects."
>
> This is something of a false argument. The primary economic driver for E10
> fuel is not the emissions reduction but the ability of Ethanol as an octane
> booster, replacing a relatively expensive cracking and synthesis of
> polycyclical aromatics that are otherwise used to get the required octane
> upgrade. This takes refinery capacity that cuts down on both profits and
> maximum production and it should be noted that the refinery capacity is
> critical and can lead to massive increases in prices with even minor
> shortfalls as every long weekend shows.
>
> Besides, the polycylical aromatics used to upgrade base stock in the absense
> of ethanol are relatively toxic and contribute to adverse health effects.

If Ethanol is a cheap way for refiners to boost octane, then I'm all for it.
But the US Clean Air Act's requirement that gasoline contain two percent oxygen
has nothing to do with octane.

Mike Ackerman

Ian St. John

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Jun 10, 2003, 4:20:42 AM6/10/03
to

"Mike Ackerman" <macker...@mailpuppy.com> wrote in message
news:3EE4537E...@mailpuppy.com...

I find the following reports more professional and on balance more credible.
http://www.ncga.com/ethanol/pdfs/energy_balance_report_final_R1.PDF
http://www.carbohydrateeconomy.org/library/admin/uploadedfiles/How_Much_Ener
gy_Does_it_Take_to_Make_a_Gallon_.html


Ian St. John

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Jun 10, 2003, 4:47:36 AM6/10/03
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"Mike Ackerman" <macker...@mailpuppy.com> wrote in message
news:3EE594A0...@mailpuppy.com...

> "Ian St. John" wrote:
>
> > "Mike Ackerman" wrote
<snip>

> > Besides, the polycylical aromatics used to upgrade base stock in the
absense
> > of ethanol are relatively toxic and contribute to adverse health
effects.
>
> If Ethanol is a cheap way for refiners to boost octane, then I'm all for
it.

As I said, I think that this is one advantage and the freeing up of scarce
refinery capacity for profitable output is the other.

> But the US Clean Air Act's requirement that gasoline contain two percent
oxygen
> has nothing to do with octane.

Think of it as "collateral advantage".


Steve Spence

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Jun 10, 2003, 5:44:37 AM6/10/03
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2% today, 10% in 6 years, 50% in 20, who knows, maybe in 50 years we can be
at 100% and not use oil for transport. That student should get an F for not
being able to read data points.

--
Steve Spence
www.green-trust.org
"Ian St. John" <ist...@spamcop.net> wrote in message
news:JWgFa.4940$Gm4.5...@news20.bellglobal.com...

Mike Ackerman

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Jun 10, 2003, 6:07:40 AM6/10/03
to
I finally found the report in question, and I have to admit it is seriously
screwed up. You need read no further than the abstract to find out that
they've made basic math errors. Here's the page with the abstract, and a
link to the full PDF report:
http://128.32.143.199/papers/patzek/EthanolFromCorn.htm

Have fun finding errors. But please be kind. Remember, these are college
freshmen.

Mike Ackerman

Steve Spence

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Jun 10, 2003, 6:15:19 AM6/10/03
to
And a geophysics professor who claims they are on the money, but admits
liquid fuels are not his area of expertise. No wonder education is going
down hill. It doesn't matter if you are accurate, just that you tried your
best. Here is your "A" .........

--
Steve Spence
www.green-trust.org


"Mike Ackerman" <macker...@mailpuppy.com> wrote in message

news:3EE5ADEC...@mailpuppy.com...

robert luis rabello

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Jun 10, 2003, 10:10:00 AM6/10/03
to

Josh Halpern wrote:

> > Quoting Pimental, no doubt!
> >
> Let's see Pimentel passed in 89......I doubt he has been giving out a
> lot of quotes.
>
> josh halpern

Just because somebody has died doesn't mean that his work cannot be
quoted. "I think, therefore I am" was written a LONG time ago, but I can
still quote it, right?

Pimentel relied on old technology and poor accounting in coming up with
his "ethanol consumes more energy than is created in its production" thesis.
Every few months we rehash the same old arguments about ethanol, and Brasil is
touted as a wonderful example of its failure. What I find particularly
laughable about this, is that the people who claim Brasillian ethanol "ruined"
the economy down there have never spent time in the country and know very
little about the political realities in Latin America.

Big Ethanol is no better than Big Oil.

Kyler Laird

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Jun 10, 2003, 10:23:34 AM6/10/03
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Don Lancaster <d...@tinaja.com> writes:

>> >> I
>> >> still like ethanol because it *can* be created without much
>> >> (or any?) petroleum.

>> >Brazil nearly bankrupted themselves over this absurd notion.


>>
>> Are you saying ethanol can't be produced without petroleum or
>> are you just dragging my quote along on some tangent you've
>> created?

>It is exceptionally unlikely that ethanol can be produced without


>petroleum except under bizarre subsistance conditions.

O.k., so you agree that it certainly can be created without using
any petroleum, correct?

If you want to take off on some tangent about "absurd notions" of
economic viability, please don't pretend that you're responding to
something I wrote.

--kyler

Fred B. McGalliard

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Jun 10, 2003, 10:31:17 AM6/10/03
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"Don Lancaster" <d...@tinaja.com> wrote in message
news:3EE4D64F...@tinaja.com...
...

> Avocados, for instance, are manufactured directly from diesel fuel.

Funny, mine don't taste of it. Are you sure you are getting "good" Avocados?


Fred B. McGalliard

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Jun 10, 2003, 10:36:25 AM6/10/03
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"Don Lancaster" <d...@tinaja.com> wrote in message
news:3EE52129...@tinaja.com...
...

> Steam has advantages of all power strokes, zero speed torque,
> reversibility, and minimal transmission and accessory needs.
>
> Corrosion, safety, rapid starts, and vapor recycling have yet to be
> properly addressed.

This is a strong understatement. They have all been addressed. High cost
materials do not corrode. Flame tube boilers do not have enough stored
energy to be a safety danger, and do address rapid start. Vapor recycling
requires a large radiator. When all this is combined, you get a hell of a
machine, but it is expensive, large, heavy, and relatively inefficient,
compared to it's rival.


Fred B. McGalliard

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Jun 10, 2003, 10:40:59 AM6/10/03
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"Steve Spence" <ssp...@green-trust.org> wrote in message
news:3ee5a831_3@newsfeed...

> 2% today, 10% in 6 years, 50% in 20, who knows, maybe in 50 years we can
be
> at 100% and not use oil for transport. That student should get an F for
not
> being able to read data points.

One data point I vaguely recall is that something over 10% ethanol results
in an increased tendency of the fuel to absorb water and separate. I am not
sure much increase in the mix is practical.


Don Lancaster

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Jun 10, 2003, 11:10:50 AM6/10/03
to
Kyler Laird wrote:
>
> Don Lancaster <d...@tinaja.com> writes:
>
> >It is exceptionally unlikely that ethanol can be produced without
> >petroleum except under bizarre subsistance conditions.
>
> O.k., so you agree that it certainly can be created without using
> any petroleum, correct?

>
> --kyler

No.

Steve Spence

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Jun 10, 2003, 1:06:54 PM6/10/03
to
ethanol and water are miscable. so as long as you are running E100 (no
gasoline) water is not much of an issue. We have run 160 proof alcohol with
no problems. FFV vehicles are designed for E85, and have dealt with the
water issues.

--
Steve Spence
www.green-trust.org
"Fred B. McGalliard" <frederick.b...@boeing.com> wrote in message
news:HG9ss...@news.boeing.com...

Mike Ackerman

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Jun 10, 2003, 2:26:53 PM6/10/03
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Steve Spence wrote:

Note that the US Clean Air Act requires 2% oxygen, not ethanol. And regarding
ethanol's ability to boost octane, recall that when it was leaded, "regular"
gasoline was 89 octane. Now "regular unleaded" is 87 octane, so car engines
are built with lower compression ratios and --lower efficiency--.

Mike Ackerman

Eric Swanson

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Jun 10, 2003, 3:48:19 PM6/10/03
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In article <3EE5ADEC...@mailpuppy.com>, macker...@mailpuppy.com says...

After looking thru only half of it, I can see several errors.
Like, they claim that burning the corn derived ethanol increases atmospheric
CO2, while, infact the carbon in the ethanol was gathered from the air by
teh plants, thus burning it adds no extra CO2 However, they may still be correct
about the net energy analysis, which indicates more fossil fuel used to produce
the corn than is available in the resulting ethanol fuel.

Including the solar energy inputs is correct from an energetics point of view,
but will confuse people who think the sun is a free good.....

--
Eric Swanson --- E-mail address: e_sw...@skybest.com :-)
--------------------------------------------------------------

Steve Spence

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Jun 10, 2003, 4:29:49 PM6/10/03
to
They are incorrect about a good many things, including the energy balance.
The whole thing is garbage. Good catch on the CO2 issue. Any time you burn a
organic that is replenishable as you use it, you are carbon neutral. This is
the sermon we have been preaching about vegetable oil as a replacement for
diesel fuel for years.
--
Steve Spence
www.green-trust.org
"Eric Swanson" <swanson@nospam_on.net> wrote in message
news:bc5cm3$cr5t$1...@news3.infoave.net...

Robert Cohen

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Jun 10, 2003, 4:44:38 PM6/10/03
to
re: steam engine vehicles are still a real alternative ? !

please indulge & allow a horsefly/gadfly amateur to hypothesize and speculate

regarding efficiency:

efficiency as such is not the goal in over-coming the @#$%^&*()_+ tragic
dependence upon oil

as i previously paranoically, unprivately claimed:

the catch 22 is that the world's--including our--economy goes to hell if the
demand for oil & gasolene dries-up; and, for instance, trillions in petro
dollars in bonds, securities, and banks are liquidated & withdrawn causing
discombobulation & panic

Besides the jihads, Russia & Mexico & Venezuela & Norway & maybe Britain
amongst others are dependent upon petrol revenues

but, meanwhile, between vous & moi, if a heavier, steam-powered vehicle
requires more manufacturing materials, metals, whatever--though is neither
sleek nor cute & nor aero-dynamic

but the ugly, clumsy contraption's engine itself burns relatively clean (and is
substantially less polluting than the usual gasolene & diesel engine polluting
emissions),

plus provides a fairly safe, comfortable ride, though maybe doesn't go over
50-60 miles per hour,

then as an angry, irrational dictator, i would declare that 7/24/365 assembly
lines churn the f'ing things out by the gazillions and encourage the consumers
to consume 'em with marketing propaganda, sermons, and incentives

the internal combustion engine would eventually become obsoleted

but--and this has been my point of view, for perhaps 30 years--we as a
rational, pragmatic political-economic culture are inter-dependent with the
petroleum way of life or model

an analogy would be the nuclear power & coal industries

if solar were REALLY massively implemented, then utility stocks and bonds would
become worth much less

and, therefore, via withdrawal cold turkey, our society collapses into chaos,
depression, and no telling what

IT'S ABOUT CATCH 22 & ALICE IN WONDERLAND,

DAMED IF WE CONTINUE OIL INTER-DEPENDENCE, & DAMNED IF WE DON'T


Eric Swanson

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Jun 10, 2003, 7:08:54 PM6/10/03
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In article <3ee63eaa_3@newsfeed>, ssp...@green-trust.org says...

>
>They are incorrect about a good many things, including the energy balance.
>The whole thing is garbage. Good catch on the CO2 issue. Any time you burn a
>organic that is replenishable as you use it, you are carbon neutral. This is
>the sermon we have been preaching about vegetable oil as a replacement for
>diesel fuel for years.
>--
>Steve Spence

The same would be true for home grown corn cultivated by mule and run thru a
a wood fired still. Make some 190 proof stuff, change the jets in your carb
ane away you go. Or, just pour it into your Ford dual fuel Taurus.

Your biodiesel is NOT completely free of fossil fuels.
When you add fossil fuel for cultivation, fertilizer, pesticides, herbicides,
etc, in a large scale industrial operation, things look different. In large scale,
there will still be the need for inputs from fossil sources, at least for a while,
until the entire system is revised to use ONLY biodiesel.

Now, go back and calculate the land area required to cultivate the crops for the
change to occur....

Ian St. John

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Jun 10, 2003, 11:34:11 PM6/10/03
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"Mike Ackerman" <macker...@mailpuppy.com> wrote in message
news:3EE622ED...@mailpuppy.com...
> Steve Spence wrote:
<snip>

>
> Note that the US Clean Air Act requires 2% oxygen, not ethanol. And
regarding
> ethanol's ability to boost octane, recall that when it was leaded,
"regular"
> gasoline was 89 octane. Now "regular unleaded" is 87 octane, so car
engines
> are built with lower compression ratios and --lower efficiency--.

So? They get 87 octane from 84 octane stock ( ethanol gives you about 3
octane points ). Upgrade the base gasoline stock to 86 octane and you could
just as easily get an E10 89 octane. But I think you are wrong about
'regular' being 87 octane. I think that was the step just above regular.


Steve Spence

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Jun 11, 2003, 9:39:37 AM6/11/03
to
my biodiesel comes from waste vegetable oil after the restaurants are done
frying with it. Commercial biodiesel usually comes from a combination of
used and virgin oil, and can come from plants that do not need fertilizers
and pesticides. the waste oil is sufficient to run the tractors making new
oil until the whole system is weaned off diesel. We have calculated the land
requirements, and we can make a significant dent in diesel usage (20% or
more) using existing farm land. Keep in mind that growing an oil crop does
not mean that oil is the only byproduct. food and fuel are co-products of
the same crop for many oil producing plants. corn can produce biodiesel,
ethanol, and animal feed from the same bushel.

--
Steve Spence
www.green-trust.org
"Eric Swanson" <swanson@nospam_on.net> wrote in message

news:bc5oe5$d15k$1...@news3.infoave.net...

Ian St. John

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Jun 11, 2003, 11:33:07 AM6/11/03
to

"Steve Spence" <ssp...@green-trust.org> wrote in message
news:3ee73009$1_2@newsfeed...

> my biodiesel comes from waste vegetable oil after the restaurants are done
> frying with it. Commercial biodiesel usually comes from a combination of
> used and virgin oil, and can come from plants that do not need fertilizers
> and pesticides. the waste oil is sufficient to run the tractors making new
> oil until the whole system is weaned off diesel. We have calculated the
land
> requirements, and we can make a significant dent in diesel usage (20% or
> more) using existing farm land. Keep in mind that growing an oil crop does
> not mean that oil is the only byproduct. food and fuel are co-products of
> the same crop for many oil producing plants. corn can produce biodiesel,
> ethanol, and animal feed from the same bushel.

Oil can be the majority. Oil palms, and jojoba come to mind. Jojoba can use
land that is unproductive for other purposes. The relative yields can be
examined at http://journeytoforever.org/biodiesel_yield.html Corn oil, of
course, is low as it has low oil content so it is not assessed on it's use
for ethanol production. The coproduction should be considered but the huge
variation in yield is the major point. Oil palms, for example, have five
times the output of oil seeds such as rape.

Eric Swanson

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Jun 11, 2003, 1:41:59 PM6/11/03
to
In article <3ee73009$1_2@newsfeed>, ssp...@green-trust.org says...

>
>my biodiesel comes from waste vegetable oil after the restaurants are done
>frying with it. Commercial biodiesel usually comes from a combination of
>used and virgin oil, and can come from plants that do not need fertilizers
>and pesticides. the waste oil is sufficient to run the tractors making new
>oil until the whole system is weaned off diesel. We have calculated the land
>requirements, and we can make a significant dent in diesel usage (20% or
>more) using existing farm land. Keep in mind that growing an oil crop does
>not mean that oil is the only byproduct. food and fuel are co-products of
>the same crop for many oil producing plants. corn can produce biodiesel,
>ethanol, and animal feed from the same bushel.

Diesel isn't gasoline. I think you should consider the impact of replacing
ALL the transportation fuels. You only mention replacing a small fraction
(20%) of diesel fuel with bio-diesel. And, what fraction of crop land acreage
would even this small fraction require.

I looked at an earlier post about the processing of waste fry oil and I note
that there was a considerable input of lye and methanol. Also, there is a waste
stream (glycerin, about 15% of initial quantity) after separation. Have you
included those in your calculations?

Roland Paterson-Jones

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Jun 11, 2003, 7:35:49 PM6/11/03
to
"Mike Ackerman" <macker...@mailpuppy.com> wrote in message
news:3EE622ED...@mailpuppy.com...

> Note that the US Clean Air Act requires 2% oxygen, not ethanol. And
regarding
> ethanol's ability to boost octane, recall that when it was leaded,
"regular"
> gasoline was 89 octane. Now "regular unleaded" is 87 octane, so car
engines
> are built with lower compression ratios and --lower efficiency--.

Does the US Clean Air Act really dictate the fuel?

Surely the crucial factor is the emissions?

Roland

--
Roland and Lisa Paterson-Jones
Forest Lodge, Stirrup Lane, Hout Bay
http://www.rolandpj.com/forest-lodge
mobile: +27 72 386 8045
e-mail: forest...@rolandpj.com


Roland Paterson-Jones

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Jun 11, 2003, 7:44:56 PM6/11/03
to
Also, water vapour is a tri-atomic gas. Entropy works against you.

Roland

--
Roland and Lisa Paterson-Jones
Forest Lodge, Stirrup Lane, Hout Bay
http://www.rolandpj.com/forest-lodge
mobile: +27 72 386 8045
e-mail: forest...@rolandpj.com

"Fred B. McGalliard" <frederick.b...@boeing.com> wrote in message
news:HG9sK...@news.boeing.com...

Mike Ackerman

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Jun 11, 2003, 9:45:50 PM6/11/03
to

Roland Paterson-Jones wrote:
>
> "Mike Ackerman" <macker...@mailpuppy.com> wrote in message
> news:3EE622ED...@mailpuppy.com...
>
> > Note that the US Clean Air Act requires 2% oxygen, not ethanol. And
> regarding
> > ethanol's ability to boost octane, recall that when it was leaded,
> "regular"
> > gasoline was 89 octane. Now "regular unleaded" is 87 octane, so car
> engines
> > are built with lower compression ratios and --lower efficiency--.
>
> Does the US Clean Air Act really dictate the fuel?
>
> Surely the crucial factor is the emissions?
>

Oh, you can verify the 2% oxygen figure easily. They've fiddled with it
a bit over the years.

Mike Ackerman

Mike Ackerman

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Jun 11, 2003, 9:52:19 PM6/11/03
to

I think you're right about the octane of "regular" gas, leaded or
unleaded. What I should have said was that oxygenated fuel contains
less energy than non-oxygenated fuel.

Mike Ackerman

Ian St. John

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Jun 11, 2003, 11:46:38 PM6/11/03
to

"Mike Ackerman" <macker...@mailpuppy.com> wrote in message
news:3EE7DCCC...@mailpuppy.com...

>
>
> "Ian St. John" wrote:
> >
> > "Mike Ackerman" <macker...@mailpuppy.com> wrote in message
> > news:3EE622ED...@mailpuppy.com...
<Snip>

> >
> > So? They get 87 octane from 84 octane stock ( ethanol gives you about 3
> > octane points ). Upgrade the base gasoline stock to 86 octane and you
could
> > just as easily get an E10 89 octane. But I think you are wrong about
> > 'regular' being 87 octane. I think that was the step just above regular.
>
> I think you're right about the octane of "regular" gas, leaded or
> unleaded. What I should have said was that oxygenated fuel contains
> less energy than non-oxygenated fuel.

True, to a degree. The ethanol has about 2/3rds of the energy content of
gasoline, however if you consider the 'whole package' in terms of a straight
84 octane fuel vs an E10 87 octane fuel you find that the reduction in
energy content is only about 10% of .333 or 3.3% and this is partly or fully
recovered by improving the compression ratio for the combustion. In older
engines, not optimized for the E10 you get a total loss of 2%. In more
modern engines designed for E10 87 octane, you get about equal mileage.

The ethanol is cheaper to make than the polycylohexanes that are otherwise
needed to boost the octane ratio for a standard 87 octane, and the E10 is
good for clean fuel systems. I think it makes economic sense on several
levels. This does not mean that I support a purely ethanol based fuel
system. Biofuels will develop, especially biodiesel which can often use land
that has no other commercial value ( jojoba ) with high recovery rates.
Ethanol will eventually be more developed and based on agricultural waste,
not corn.

Larry Caldwell

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Jun 12, 2003, 4:11:31 AM6/12/03
to
swanson@nospam_on.net (Eric Swanson) writes:

> Diesel isn't gasoline. I think you should consider the impact of replacing
> ALL the transportation fuels. You only mention replacing a small fraction
> (20%) of diesel fuel with bio-diesel. And, what fraction of crop land acreage
> would even this small fraction require.

If you plan to replace all transportation fuels, you need a new energy
source. Biofuels are a flexible way of making use of solar energy, but
they will never meet 100% of the energy demands of an industrial society.


> I looked at an earlier post about the processing of waste fry oil and I note
> that there was a considerable input of lye and methanol. Also, there is a waste
> stream (glycerin, about 15% of initial quantity) after separation. Have you
> included those in your calculations?

There is some lye used. The alcohol can be ethanol or methanol. In
industrial quantities, the glycerine is not waste, it is a byproduct, in
the same way that corn fermented to ethanol is not waste, it is animal
feed.

--
http://home.teleport.com/~larryc

Steve Spence

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Jun 12, 2003, 6:37:19 AM6/12/03
to
lye and methanol is only necessary if you convert the vegetable oil to
biodiesel. It is not necessary if you burn the veggie oil straight in your
diesel. chemistry vs. mechanics.

the glycerin waste stream can be used for soap production, or
biodigested/composted.

ethanol can replace a portion of our gasoline usage, veggie oil can replace
a portion of our diesel and home heating oil usage.

see http://webconx.green-trust.org/2000/biofuel/biofuel.htm


--
Steve Spence
www.green-trust.org
"Larry Caldwell" <lar...@teleport.com> wrote in message
news:MPG.1951d658b...@newstest2.earthlink.net...

Steve Spence

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Jun 12, 2003, 11:53:49 AM6/12/03
to
I covered the inputs (lye and methanol) in another post. lye and methanol
are only required for biodiesel, a fuel for non modified diesels. vegetable
oil, with no inputs, can be used in modified diesels (you have to heat the
vegetable oil). the waste stream as you call it can be turned into soap and
degreasing products. we use it for parts cleaning and hand degreaser.

Using waste and new vegetable oil, I believe we may eventually be able to
eliminate fossil diesel and home heating oil. Using ethanol and biomethane,
I believe we may eventually be able to eliminate gasoline.

solar, hydro and wind (and nuke, sigh) can be the significant sources of
electric for transportation and industry. EV's make sense for in-community
transportation, diesel or ethanol hybrids for longer voyages.

It's hard to tell, my crystal ball is cloudy today. must be smog ........

--
Steve Spence
www.green-trust.org
"Eric Swanson" <swanson@nospam_on.net> wrote in message

news:bc7pl6$e1m7$1...@news3.infoave.net...

Proton Soup

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Jun 12, 2003, 12:44:45 PM6/12/03
to
On Thu, 12 Jun 2003 06:37:19 -0400, "Steve Spence"
<ssp...@green-trust.org> wrote:

>lye and methanol is only necessary if you convert the vegetable oil to
>biodiesel. It is not necessary if you burn the veggie oil straight in your
>diesel. chemistry vs. mechanics.
>
>the glycerin waste stream can be used for soap production, or
>biodigested/composted.
>
>ethanol can replace a portion of our gasoline usage, veggie oil can replace
>a portion of our diesel and home heating oil usage.
>
>see http://webconx.green-trust.org/2000/biofuel/biofuel.htm

Do you realize how nasty a city would become after years of folks
zipping around in their fry-oil powered VW busses? You won't get a
perfect burn, and all that unburnt oil will coat buildings, signs,
everything, in a sticky slime. Yuck. That's just nasty.

It's OK to run on your farm, but whatever you do, don't come into
town.


Steve Spence

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Jun 12, 2003, 1:20:08 PM6/12/03
to
too bad you don't know anything about burning vegetable oil in a diesel. The
particulates and unburned particles are greatly reduced over dino diesel
(over 80%). No carcinogens, no black smoke, no greenhouse gases, etc.

here is an easy test. take two diesel auto's. run one on veggie oil, the
other on diesel. put your hand over the exhaust pipe for two minutes, and
tell me which one you'd rather have running in your city.

vw buses never had diesel engines. a few of the vanagons did, however.

please do some research and try again.

--
Steve Spence
www.green-trust.org
"Proton Soup" <pro...@soup.org> wrote in message
news:v5bhevo5efg8q3vdf...@4ax.com...

Proton Soup

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Jun 12, 2003, 1:28:47 PM6/12/03
to
On Thu, 12 Jun 2003 13:20:08 -0400, "Steve Spence"
<ssp...@green-trust.org> wrote:

>too bad you don't know anything about burning vegetable oil in a diesel. The
>particulates and unburned particles are greatly reduced over dino diesel
>(over 80%). No carcinogens, no black smoke, no greenhouse gases, etc.
>
>here is an easy test. take two diesel auto's. run one on veggie oil, the
>other on diesel. put your hand over the exhaust pipe for two minutes, and
>tell me which one you'd rather have running in your city.
>
>vw buses never had diesel engines. a few of the vanagons did, however.
>
>please do some research and try again.

But what is the nature of the unburnt vegetable oil emissions?
Don't you get vaporized oil in the exhaust?

Steve Spence

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Jun 12, 2003, 7:37:24 PM6/12/03
to
I've held my hand over the exhaust. the exhaust on diesel feels more oily
than the vegetable oil. may depend on your injector timing, YMMV.

--
Steve Spence
www.green-trust.org
"Proton Soup" <pro...@soup.org> wrote in message

news:0sdhevkfvaf94kvp4...@4ax.com...

Steve Spence

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Jun 12, 2003, 9:35:04 PM6/12/03
to
You never farmed in the North East. Irrigation? LOL

--
Steve Spence
www.green-trust.org


"Don Lancaster" <d...@tinaja.com> wrote in message

news:3EE4D64F...@tinaja.com...


> Tim Worstall wrote:
> >
> > Mike Ackerman <macker...@mailpuppy.com> wrote in message

news:<3EE4537E...@mailpuppy.com>...
> > > The information in this story is no surprise, but it's an amusing read
> > > for the uninitiated:
> > > http://www.evworld.com/databases/shownews.cfm?pageid=news080603-01 .
> > > Some excerpts: "The ethanol industry sharply rebuked a study by
> > > University of California, Berkeley freshmen concluding it takes more
> > > energy to produce ethanol than the amount of petroleum saved when the
> > > additive is combined with gasoline."
> > >
> > > "Patzek said he received two angry phone calls from Washington, D.C.,
on
> > > Friday, the day after the study was released. The callers demanded to
> > > know the source of his funding."
> > >
> > > "The student report concludes it takes the equivalent of 4.93 gallons
of
> > > gasoline to produce an energy output of 1.74 gallons. That's a net
loss
> > > of 65 percent, the students said."
> > >
> > > Mike Ackerman
> >
> > I thought it was interesting....trade association meets science
> > almost.
> >
> > However, could someone clear something up for me ?
> > Are the Berkely students saying it takes more gasoline to produce the
> > ethanol that replaqces gasoline, or are they saying that it takes more
> > energy to produce the ethanol than it replaces ?
> > It seems to vary between the two views over the piece.
> > If it's the first, then of course the use of ethanol is absurd (
> > although even then it might have use in place of lead or MTBE as an
> > anti knocking addition ).
> > If it's the second, then I'm not so sure. We don't comaplain when a
> > field of wheat uses more energy to grow than we can produce from
> > eating it......using more of one form of energy to get a smaller
> > amount in a more useful form isn't on the face of it absurd.
> >
> > Tim Worstall
>
> The primary on-the-books energy inputs to most US farm crops are water
> and diesel fuel.
> Water often requires pumping which also takes diesel fuel.
>
> Avocados, for instance, are manufactured directly from diesel fuel.

Tony Wesley

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Jun 12, 2003, 10:06:01 PM6/12/03
to
[quotes re-ordered]

"Steve Spence" <ssp...@green-trust.org> wrote in message

news:3ee928f1_4@newsfeed...

> "Don Lancaster" <d...@tinaja.com> wrote in message
> news:3EE4D64F...@tinaja.com...
> >

> > The primary on-the-books energy inputs to most US farm crops are water
> > and diesel fuel.
> > Water often requires pumping which also takes diesel fuel.
> >
> > Avocados, for instance, are manufactured directly from diesel fuel.

> You never farmed in the North East. Irrigation? LOL

Has *anyone* farmed avocados in the North East? Ever?


Say not the Struggle nought Availeth

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Jun 13, 2003, 12:51:28 AM6/13/03
to
avocados grow in the NE?

Eric Swanson

unread,
Jun 13, 2003, 9:26:06 AM6/13/03
to
In article <3ee8a0b1$1_1@newsfeed>, ssp...@green-trust.org says...

>
>I covered the inputs (lye and methanol) in another post. lye and methanol
>are only required for biodiesel, a fuel for non modified diesels. vegetable
>oil, with no inputs, can be used in modified diesels (you have to heat the
>vegetable oil). the waste stream as you call it can be turned into soap and
>degreasing products. we use it for parts cleaning and hand degreaser.
>
>Using waste and new vegetable oil, I believe we may eventually be able to
>eliminate fossil diesel and home heating oil. Using ethanol and biomethane,
>I believe we may eventually be able to eliminate gasoline.
>
>solar, hydro and wind (and nuke, sigh) can be the significant sources of
>electric for transportation and industry. EV's make sense for in-community
>transportation, diesel or ethanol hybrids for longer voyages.
>
>It's hard to tell, my crystal ball is cloudy today. must be smog ........

Cough, choke, clear throat from constant post nasal drip, etc.....

I think you are correct that a mix of primary energy sources would be required
in order to replace the current usage of fossil fuels.
However, "Belief" doesn't cut it in a science forum.

I would still like to see your calculation of the land area required to
produce vegetable oil(s) at some percentage replacement of fuel oil
derived from crude.

You could start with a calculation of the number of gallons of oil produced
per acre of crop, on average, then subtract the fuel required to cultivate
and harvest the crop. Then subtract the fuel equivalent of the energy required
to process the plants into oil by crushing or whatever. The resulting number
would be interesting, even though I suppose you might get a credit for the food
value of the other parts of the crop.

Don Lancaster

unread,
Jun 13, 2003, 9:34:46 AM6/13/03
to
Eric Swanson wrote:
>
>
> You could start with a calculation of the number of gallons of oil produced
> per acre of crop, on average, then subtract the fuel required to cultivate
> and harvest the crop. Then subtract the fuel equivalent of the energy required
> to process the plants into oil by crushing or whatever. The resulting number
> would be interesting, even though I suppose you might get a credit for the food
> value of the other parts of the crop.
>
> --
> Eric Swanson --- E-mail address: e_sw...@skybest.com :-)
> --------------------------------------------------------------

These numbers routinely appear in Elsevier's Biomass and Bioenergy.

Not much seems to be coming of them.

Eric Swanson

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Jun 13, 2003, 9:55:13 AM6/13/03
to
In article <3EE9D2F6...@tinaja.com>, d...@tinaja.com says...

>
>Eric Swanson wrote:
>>
>>
>> You could start with a calculation of the number of gallons of oil produced
>> per acre of crop, on average, then subtract the fuel required to cultivate
>> and harvest the crop. Then subtract the fuel equivalent of the energy required
>> to process the plants into oil by crushing or whatever. The resulting number
>> would be interesting, even though I suppose you might get a credit for the food
>> value of the other parts of the crop.

>These numbers routinely appear in Elsevier's Biomass and Bioenergy.
>
>Not much seems to be coming of them.

Uh, for those of us in the real world, could you translate that into data?
Like most people, I don't/can't routinely read your reference.
It's not even available in the 3 closest state university librarys.

Don Lancaster

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Jun 13, 2003, 10:34:33 AM6/13/03