Monday December 16, 2019
Home Science & Technology Chilean Scien...

Chilean Scientists Produce Biodiesel From Microalgae which can Power Vehicles

"What is new about our process is the intent to produce this fuel from microalgae, which are microorganisms," researcher Carlos Saez told Reuters

0
//
biodiesel from microalgae
A biochemist shows different types of microalgae for the study and manufacture of a biofuel in high displacement diesel engines for reducing emissions of gases and particulate matter in Santiago, Chile. VOA
  • Experts from the Department of Chemical Engineering and Bioprocesses at Chile’s Catholic University said they had grown enough algae to fragment it and extract the oil which can be converted into biofuel.
  • Most of the world’s biodiesel, which reduces dependence on petroleum, is derived from soybean oil
  • The main challenge going forward would be to produce a sufficient volume of microalgae

Santiago, July 1, 2017: Biodiesel made from microalgae could power buses and trucks and reduce greenhouse gas emissions by as much as 80 percent, Chilean scientists said, possibly curbing pollution in contaminated cities like Santiago.

Experts from the department of Chemical Engineering and Bioprocesses at Chile’s Catholic University said they had grown enough algae to fragment it and extract the oil which, after removing moisture and debris, can be converted into biofuel.

“What is new about our process is the intent to produce this fuel from microalgae, which are microorganisms,” researcher Carlos Saez told Reuters.

ALSO READ: Traditional Breakfast Anybody? Volcanic Rock Stoves Cook Food and Protect Forests in Uganda

Most of the world’s biodiesel, which reduces dependence on petroleum, is derived from soybean oil. It can also be made from animal fat, canola or palm oil.

Saez said a main challenge going forward would be to produce a sufficient volume of microalgae. A wide variety of fresh and salt water algaes are found in Chile, a South American nation with a long Pacific coast.

The scientists are trying to improve algae growing technology to ramp up production at a low cost using limited energy, Saez said. (VOA)

Next Story

Chile to Begin Budgeting for Costs of Fighting Climate Change

Chile will begin budgeting for the costs of fighting climate change, Finance Minister Felipe Larrain announced Tuesday, as receding glaciers

0
Chile, Budgeting, Climate Change
FILE - Chile's Finance Minister Felipe Larrain attends an interview with Reuters at the OECD headquarters in Paris, France, May 31, 2018. VOA

Chile will begin budgeting for the costs of fighting climate change, Finance Minister Felipe Larrain announced Tuesday, as receding glaciers and drought put a squeeze on water and natural resources in the world’s top copper producer.

The South American nation, which is due to host the COP25 global conference on climate change in December, said it would include a new line item for “climate expenditures” in its government budgets beginning in 2020.

“Currently, we don’t know how much we’re spending in the financing of climate action. The lack of information makes it difficult to make good decisions,” Larrain told reporters.

The methodology, called the Climate Public Expenditures and Institutional Review (CPEIR), is sponsored in part by the United Nations Development Program (UNDP), and has received funding from Germany. It includes a tool that allows countries to more precisely track how much money is spent on fighting climate change.

Chile, Budgeting, Climate Change
FILE – The Codelco El Teniente copper mine, the world’s largest underground copper mine, is shown near Machali, Chile, April 11, 2019. VOA

Larrain said the tool would allow Chile to “assess … the costs of inaction, that is, incorporate the analysis of the cost of not implementing immediate and timely measures.”

A years-long drought in Chile, coupled with a growing population and a sprawling copper and lithium mining industry thirsty for water, have forced Chilean officials to look more closely at the costs of climate change.

“The lands threatened by desertification exceed 60% of the national territory. … Having an estimate of the critical investments we must make to address the issue of desertification and soil erosion can have a great impact,” he said.

Also Read- Mosquitoes Pose Threat to More Than Half the World’s Population

The CPEIR methodology is already applied in more than 30 countries, including Colombia and Ecuador. (VOA)