Challenges and Benefits

Benefits

  • Biofuels are CHEAP to produce, process, or manufacture that even the cheapest fossil fuels and easily renewable than fossil fuels. (Citation 11)

  • Greenhouse gases that are released by fossil fuels are significantly diminished when using biofuels, which helps the quality of the atmosphere because currently fossil fuels are affecting the ozone in the atmosphere and causing holes in the atmosphere. (Citation 11)

  • In other countries biofuels are becoming so popular that foreign governments are offering tax incentives to their people for using biofuels in their eco-friendly cars. (Citation 11)

  • Biofuels also pack a punch, since some biofuels have the capacity to provide about 320% more energy than it took to produce the fuel itself. (Citation 2)

  • To help our economy, biofuels will help lose the addictions countries have to oil, which will possibly result in saving the huge national budget that goes to just buy oil. (Citation 11)

  • If, for some reason, there was a spill of biofuel, the impact would not be as great because biofuel is four times more biodegradable than standard diesel. (Citation 12)

  • Most importantly, biofuels are carbon neutral, which means that the amount of carbon dioxide burned by using biofuels is the same amount of carbon dioxide plants have the capacity to absorb. (Citation 11)

  • The chart below shows the statistics of different types of fuels including: fossil fuels, biodiesel, corn-derived ethanol, and cellulosic ethanol. As you can see the statistics prove that biofuels are a better alternative to fossil fuels because of the lower price, they're renewable, and the amount of greenhouse gases they emit compared to fossil fuels.

 

 

Challenges

  • One issue of burning biofuels is that the byproduct of burning it is NOx, nitrogen oxide, which can cause smog formation. The NOx emission can be reduced by using a more cooperative engine, however providing those engines across the world seems impossible. (Citation 12)

  • Solvents are used to create biofuels, mostly biodiesel, and working with these dangerous solvents can cause health issues for the employees working with these chemicals, while posing an explosion hazard. An example of chemical used in this process is Benzene, a carcinogen. Also, older cars that run on diesel cannot handle the high concentrations of biodiesel and will not function.

    (Citation 13)
  • One of the most important con to consider about using biofuels is that when our dependency on biofuels skyrockets, more land will be needed to grow all these crops to turn into oil. This could be damaging because the same land could have been used for producing food for people to consume, rather than oil. A study has been done, which states that producing high levels of biofuels can kill about 200,000 people per year that are dying in poverty and hunger already. This would start occurring because of the land we are starting to use for fuel to power our cars, instead of planting food for the needy. And if food production were to go down, there would be inflation of common foods. Also, animals could lose their natural habitats in which they thrive. (Citation 11) (Citation 14)