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The biggest advantage of biomass as an energy resource is its relatively straightforward transformation into transportation fuels. Biofuels have the potential to replace as much as 75% of the petroleum fuels in use for transportation in the U.S.A. today (Worldwatch Institute 2006). This is especially important in view of the declining oil supplies worldwide. Biofuels will not require additional infrastructure development. Therefore, development of biofuels is being viewed very favorably by governments around the world. Biofuels, along with other transportation options such as electric vehicles and hydrogen, will help diversify the fuel base for future transportation. Figure 1.13 shows that global ethanol production more than doubled between 2000 and 2005. Biodiesel production grew almost fourfold, although it started from a much smaller base. In 2005, the world ethanol production had reached about 36 billion liters per year, whereas biodiesel production topped 3.5 billion liters during the same year. Table 1.7 shows the top five countries producing these fuels.

FIGURE 1.12 Worldwide distribution of solar thermal collector markets. (From ESTIF, Solar Thermal Markets in Europe—Trends and Statistics for 2004, European Solar Thermal Industry Federation, Brussels, Belgium, 2005. With permission.)

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Guide to Alternative Fuels

Guide to Alternative Fuels

Your Alternative Fuel Solution for Saving Money, Reducing Oil Dependency, and Helping the Planet. Ethanol is an alternative to gasoline. The use of ethanol has been demonstrated to reduce greenhouse emissions slightly as compared to gasoline. Through this ebook, you are going to learn what you will need to know why choosing an alternative fuel may benefit you and your future.

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