Friday, June 27, 2008

Fixing CO2 with algae and then making biofuel

This idea has been kicking around for a while, but the CO2 fixation part is a new wrinkle to me, and a very good area for research. I know from experience that even our essentially sterile well water, placed outside in the sun for a short while in the sheep or chicken waterers, grows algae with little additional input. Other than the CO2 from the atmosphere, it's probably getting trace elements from dust and dirt, and algal spores from the atmosphere. Does the algae also fix nitrogen? It has to come from somewhere. First Law...

Microbe economics

* John Sterlicchi, US correspondent
* Friday June 27, 2008

Forget the notion that fuel from corn or soybeans will solve the energy crisis. That bubble is deflating as quickly as the new one, involving the commercialisation of algae, is inflating.

Already in the US there are almost 20 venture capital funded start-ups that see potential in algae. Many entrepreneurs believe algae could be used commercially to produce biofuels, or burned to generate energy.


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