Re: [oil_from_algae] Re: Potential for algae to transform the world economy
- Bruce, thanks. You may be right about 1500 ppm (ppb?) as a potentially stable CO2 level, but the problem is the speed of the change at the moment is so much faster than anything in previous geological epochs. Ecosystems previously had millions of years to adjust to changes that we are now imposing in decades. The current situation could be comparable to the great dying at the end of the Permian due to the rapidity of the change. We will have the upheaval of the flooding of all low coastal land with CO2 at the levels you mention, as well as wild changes in rainfall and temperature. Everyone in low lying parts of Bangladesh and Vietnam (for example) would have to move. I think for this reason it is a public good to try to push CO2 back below 350 ppm.On solar cells, I doubt they are scalable in the same way as algae. Solar cells need minerals, whereas algae farms could potentially make their own fabric, in order to produce oil which could replace all fossil fuels and expand to allow orders of magnitude greater sustainable energy use. If roads and buildings were made of ocean based algae that had been compressed at depth, we would potentially have an abundant low cost construction material, on top of the fuel supply.The difference now from the whale oil example is scale, and the need for enough time for market forces to kick in at scale. We need liquid fuel now that will be cost competitive and produceable at volume in the millions of tons per day. There was plenty of time in the 1800s to shift away from whale lighting, which was a big problem for whales but actually tiny compared to the modern economy. This is why I see ocean based algae production as essential, because it offers a potentially simple way to make bulk fuel with positive environmental impact, at lower unit cost than land based production.Thanks for the heads up on butanol bacteria. This might be a key processing method for algae grown in bags at sea.I don't get your point about methane. It is still a greenhouse gas when burnt, and its use contributes to increased CO2 concentration in the atmosphere.Robert
Thank-you for your questions.. I will try to get better at my English.
In fact the warmth leads the CO2 by a few thousand years .. Check out
the billion year charts. The earth is at an all time low in CO2 so it
my be hard to hold to the 388 PPM area in the long run. The 1500 ppm is
more of an average for the last 2 or 3 billion years as we have had
very few supper huge volcanoes in the last few million years. The major
problem with the volcanoes are we will have a very dark winter that
could last for 100 years before the earth is warmed again..Nothing man
has done will be near what the super volcanoes do.. Like the dark
ages.At that point Nuclear energy will get a lot of action. Today we
have noted the dimming effect on the pan evaporation rates over the last
100 years. In fact some of the best studies on the effect of sun on
algae production was done in Australia by the Renewable Energy group
that did the B.Braunii Race B ( China 1) study about 5 years ago.
As far a Methane production in the 100-200 K area of the earth.. This is
recycled carbon from H2Ca2CO3 (& Lime) from Organic growth being forsed
under the mantel. I understand much of the methane is lost in deep
water seeps ( freezes as methane Anhydride). We may have a unlimited
supply of methane.
Thank-you again.. Again the raise in CO2 levels from about 300 to 388 is
only a blip on the chart of the 3 Billion year chart.. Max numbers as I
recall was about 3,000 PPM and that was before the oil production area
of the Permian period. ( per Dr. White of the Mathematics department at
--- In email@example.com, Robert Tulip
> Bruce, thanks. You may be right about 1500 ppm as a potentially
> CO2 level, but the problem is the speed of the change at the moment isso much
> faster than anything in previous geological epochs. Ecosystemspreviously had
> millions of years to adjust to changes that we are now imposing indecades. The
> current situation could be comparable to the great dying at the end ofthe
> Permian due to the rapidity of the change. We will have the upheavalof the
> flooding of all low coastal land with CO2 at the levels you mention,as well as
> wild changes in rainfall and temperature. Everyone in low lying partsof
> Bangladesh and Vietnam (for example) would have to move. I think forthis
> reason it is a public good to try to push CO2 back below 350 ppm.Solar cells
> On solar cells, I doubt they are scalable in the same way as algae.
> need minerals, whereas algae farms could potentially make their ownfabric, in
> order to produce oil which could replace all fossil fuels and expandto allow
> orders of magnitude greater sustainable energy use. If roads andbuildings were
> made of ocean based algae that had been compressed at depth, we wouldthe fuel
> potentially have an abundant low cost construction material, on top of
> supply.for enough
> The difference now from the whale oil example is scale, and the need
> time for market forces to kick in at scale. We need liquid fuel nowthat will
> be cost competitive and produceable at volume in the millions of tonsper day.
> There was plenty of time in the 1800s to shift away from whalelighting, which
> was a big problem for whales but actually tiny compared to the moderneconomy.
> This is why I see ocean based algae production as essential, becauseit offers
> a potentially simple way to make bulk fuel with positive environmentalimpact,
> at lower unit cost than land based production.processing
> Thanks for the heads up on butanol bacteria. This might be a key
> method for algae grown in bags at sea.when burnt,
> I don't get your point about methane. It is still a greenhouse gas
> and its use contributes to increased CO2 concentration in theatmosphere.
> Robertworld economy
> From: Bruce Carroll Lendrum lendlabs@...
> To: firstname.lastname@example.org
> Sent: Sun, 1 May, 2011 3:10:51 AM
> Subject: [oil_from_algae] Re: Potential for algae to transform the
> Four things you missed about energy.
> A: Solar cells are getting up to 70% of the energy with diamond based
> systems in the lab.. same as used in space.
> B: Next Generation Biotech Bacteria is making Butanol from Cellulose
> also a bi-product of algae and corn production.
> C: Methane is a natural recycle system and is made in the area of the
> earth about 100 miles deep. Recycled CaCO3 with H2 from water..
> D: Greater CO2 will increase nature growth of many crops like sugar
> rice along with B.Braunii.. This math was done in Australia about fivepine
> years ago.. We are have a shortage of CO2 for growth of a lot of algae
> or plants.. Check out the billion year history of the earth.. At 1,500
> PPB we will have a very green world.. all we need to to better use the
> water we have.. like Rome we can ship water from the Great Lakes to
> America's Heart land and feed the world. In Norway they found some
> trees ( slash pines.. I think)produced about 250% more wood at 1500PPB
> Well the cure for high prices are high prices.. So when whale oil got
> too expensive we switched to oil ( Fossil Fuel).. Now we are working
> more and more with Methane.. Cheap and is renewed by the energy from
> Nuclear Power in the centre of the Earth.earth's
> Just a thought,
> --- In email@example.com, "Robert" waterbagaustralia@
> > 1. The world economy relies on the movement of carbon from the
> crust into the atmosphere as its main source of energy. Burning ofworld
> fossil fuel is unsustainable for two reasons: peak oil and climate
> change. Algae biofuel is the only realistic option to fix these
> problems on global scale.
> > 2. Oil extraction rates have already passed their peak, with new
> reserves not adequate to supply growing demand. It is essential for
> political and economic stability that new bulk liquid fuel sources are
> established well in advance of any supply crisis.
> > 3. The climate change impact of carbon emissions is more
> controversial, but the fact is that CO2 emission rates are increasing,
> not decreasing, in order to power economic growth for an expanding
> population. NASA scientists say that if most of the carbon now in theThe
> crust was shifted to the atmosphere, Earth would become like Venus, a
> CO2 hothouse where life would be impossible. Just shifting a fraction
> of existing carbon into the air is already causing upheaval in global
> climate. The accelerating rate of emissions under business as usual
> means that climate change will become even more rapid until a systemic
> solution is implemented using new technology.
> > 4. In response to these twin problems, peak oil and climate change,
> biofuel has been proposed as a means to supply sustainable energy.
> first generation of biofuel, ethanol from grain, actually producesmore
> net emissions than fossil fuel, while also displacing food crops anda
> driving up food prices. The need is for a new generation of biofuel,
> source of abundant liquid fuel that can be produced using renewabletechnology.
> natural energy sources, that does not compete with food production for
> land, and that is rapidly scalable, simple to operate and good for the
> environment. Algae is the only crop that meets all these needs.
> > 5. Transformation of the world economy to sustainable energy
> production from algae requires development of innovative new
> The most promising method for bulk fuel production from algae islikely
> to emerge from the work of the US National Aeronautical and Spaceinto
> Administration, NASA, in their OMEGA Project - Offshore Membrane
> Enclosure for Growing Algae.
> > 6. Dr. Jonathan Trent, chief scientist for OMEGA, recently explained
> the status of the project http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1_z-LnKNlco
> OMEGA plans to grow algae by pumping wastewater from sewage plants
> floating fabric bags located in sheltered coastal bays. OMEGA haswell
> identified San Francisco Bay as an optimal test site, with readily
> available nutrient supply adjacent to suitable pilot locations, as
> as abundant human capital in the innovation hub of Silicon Valley.of
> > 7. Sewage contains high levels of nutrients, and can be treated
> offshore in floating farms to produce algae and fresh water, instead
> just dumping the treated waste at sea. Dr. Trent has shown that oncea
> the sewage is fully converted to algae, it can be simply processed to
> thick slush by putting it in a floating bag of a material that allows
> fresh water to escape by osmosis into the surrounding sea while
> retaining the algae cells in the bag. The concentrated algae is then
> valuable commercial bulk commodity.remainder
> > 8. Algae cells are mostly made of oil, protein and carbohydrate. A
> number of methods are now in development to extract the oil, which in
> preferred species is about half the mass of the cell. Algae oil can
> easily be converted to diesel fuel for use in transport and heating
> using the same methods now in operation in biofuel plants. The
> of the algae biomass can be used for fertilizer, food and fibre. Theaim
> is to produce abundant low cost commodities that will enrich the worldcan
> and put the global economy on to an ecologically sustainable path.
> > 9. Algae, growing in shallow warm seas, was the original source for
> the fossil deposits of petroleum in the earth's crust. Algae farms
> replicate this original natural production process in a fraction ofthe
> time, at commercially competitive cost, and in a way that will be goodeaten
> for the environment, the climate and the world economy.
> > 10. The OMEGA method mixes the algae with nutrient and CO2 inside a
> floating bag using wave energy. The nutrient source water and CO2 can
> be pumped in and out using tidal power. The entire operation needs no
> fossil fuel at all, as it uses natural sources and produces its own
> operational energy by converting sunlight into algae.
> > 11. If CO2 is pumped into the base of the algae farm together with
> nutrients, and drizzled up through the algated water, the CO2 will
> provide buoyancy for the farm and create a cultured environment to
> maximize productivity.
> > 12. Algae produced from sewage will not survive in the open ocean as
> it will die on contact with salt water. This provides an initial
> guarantee against environmental damage. Any spilled algae will be
> by fish.and
> > 13. The OMEGA pilot will examine risks such as shipping, lightning
> storm. It appears these are readily solved. Signage can separatefarms
> from shipping lanes, ability to patch any torn fabric can repairThis
> lightning damage, and ability to sink the entire system simply by
> expelling CO2 from the base can protect against rough weather. The
> ocean is still just below the surface.
> > 14. Considering the potential to expand from the San Francisco OMEGA
> pilot project, one feasible plan is the co-location of electricity
> stations with coastal algae farms and sewage plants, with all the CO2
> from the power plant going into the algae production, and the algae
> being dried and used as fuel in a closed loop with zero emissions.
> was proposed on land by the US National Renewable Energy Laboratory inthe
> the 1970s, but the project was shelved due to lack of interest from
> petrochemical industry.can
> > 15. If all the emissions from power plants, mines, cement factories
> and the like were piped into algae farms, the rise in global CO2 level
> could be stabilized and even reversed. Algae, produced in this way,
> replace the need for geological sequestration of C02. The best way toAustralia,
> sequester carbon is to use it as a valuable commodity to grow algae in
> bags at sea.
> > 16. My estimate is that all fossil fuel could be replaced by algae
> grown on 0.1% of the world ocean, 500,000 square kilometers. Optimal
> initial locations include pilot sites such as San Francisco Bay, and
> other sheltered shallow warm waters such as in the Gulf of Mexico and
> the northern coast of Australia. Just one mining project in
> the Gorgon Gas Project on Barrow Island, proposes to produce threereduce
> million tons of CO2 each year as a byproduct. Instead of pumping it
> below ground as worthless waste, algae farms can use this CO2 as a
> resource for energy production.
> > 17. In heavily polluted industrial environments such as in China,
> pumping of power station emissions into algae farms could rapidly
> air pollution. Such pumping can be entirely powered by tidal energyin
> coastal locations. Concentrated CO2 from inland locations can bebarged
> down rivers in fabric balloons to coastal algae farms.Barrier
> > 18. Another excellent potential test site is Australia's Great
> Reef. The reef is now at high risk from climate change due to warmingprocessing
> ocean water temperature killing the coral. Algae farms located near
> the reef can contain all the heat from the sun in the surface layer,
> providing local cooling of ocean water beneath them, reducing the
> overall temperature of the reef water, protecting the coral,
> phosphorus from agricultural runoff, and providing a sustainable foodto
> source for fish.
> > 19. The OMEGA pilot project in San Francisco offers the opportunity
> consider even more productive large scale methods, such as salt waterrichest
> algae that draws its nutrient by tidal power from the deep rich water
> 500 meters below the surface. Strains of salt water algae can be
> produced that will dominate within the cultured farm environment but
> will not grow in the open ocean.
> > 20. Tidal energy for pumping can mimic the upwelling of deep cold
> ocean currents that are now the nutrient source for the world's
> fish grounds. Eaten by fish, the algae product from an offshore farman
> will rapidly increase the protein biomass of the surrounding ocean,
> providing a major boost to food production and protecting fish stocks.
> > 21. Plant husbandry methods can achieve high yielding strains. If
> algae farm has multiple parallel tracks along which water flows, thebatch
> output can be tested for desired criteria, and the most productive
> can be used to seed the system, to outcompete wild strains andmaximize
> yield. If CO2 is pumped into the water in the farm, new algaevarieties
> will rapidly evolve that will grow well in the cultured environment,but
> will not survive in the open sea. My view is that such planthusbandry
> techniques are preferable to genetic engineering, and that allresearch
> and development should be highly precautionary regarding any risks.My
> estimate is that an initial yield goal of one cubic meter of oil perWhile
> hectare per day can rapidly be multiplied many times over through
> intensive research and development.
> > 22. Algae provides the only realistic way to actually drive down
> atmospheric CO2 levels by replacing current energy sources at global
> scale. Focus on technological innovation is far better than existing
> proposed climate response methods that concentrate on tax reform.
> it is likely that government subsidy would speed up the establishmentof
> a large scale commercial algae production industry, my assessment isthe
> that the methods described here should be commercially competitive
> against fossil fuels on current market prices, and even more so when
> environmental damage of fossil fuels is considered.forces
> > 23. There is no point in climate schemes that do not use market
> to transform the global economy away from its short term addiction toalgae
> fossil fuels. Production of fuel, fertilizer, fibre and food from
> will rapidly address fuel security and food security. Resources are
> needed to expand current pilot projects. Equity investment will be
> highly profitable and socially responsible, establishing a sustainable
> new industry that will fix some of the biggest problems facing the