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#18315 - 02/23/07 01:45 AM Jatropha Biodiesel
jamc Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 02/23/07
Posts: 7
I am a student and don't like the idea of ethanol because of the conflicting purposes coming from it's source. I mean because it comes from crops that could also be food. I found jatropha biodiesel and really started to take interest in it. I found this company (Gold Star Biodiesel) and they are worth taking a look at, www.goldstarbiodiesel.com. Jatropha seems be a very promising source of fuel for the future. Anyone more intelligent than me have any insight as to why it isn't as prominant right now as WVO or ethanol and is this as promising as I think it is?

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#18334 - 02/23/07 11:48 AM Re: Jatropha Biodiesel [Re: jamc]
DA Morgan Offline
Megastar

Registered: 10/17/04
Posts: 4136
Loc: Seattle, WA
There is no shortage of food on this planet.
There is a shortage of will to make it available to people.
Not using the crop to make biodiesel will not feed a single person.

That said I am against all diesel, all carbon based fuels, and the sooner we wise up and find alternatives the better for all concerned.

Global Star Biodiesel is part of the problem not part of the solution. They are just substituting one CO2 producer for another.
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#18350 - 02/23/07 08:29 PM Re: Jatropha Biodiesel [Re: DA Morgan]
jamc Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 02/23/07
Posts: 7
No offense but I have to disagree with you on that. From what I have researched, the amount of CO2 jatropha absorbs through photosynthesis more than makes up for the amount it emits when consumed as a fuel, (which is 78% less than petroleum). The more fuel they produce the more plants they will be growing, in turn taking more CO2 out of the air. Where is this contributing to the problem?

As for the amount of food the world has, I?m not so concerned with. What concerns me is driving up the cost of that crop by giving it another purpose such as diesel. Poorer countries that greatly depend on crops like corn are going to be hard pressed to afford it.


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#18369 - 02/24/07 01:37 AM Re: Jatropha Biodiesel [Re: jamc]
DA Morgan Offline
Megastar

Registered: 10/17/04
Posts: 4136
Loc: Seattle, WA
Or perhaps driving down the cost of the crop by encouraging more planting. It will always be the case that people will pay more to eat than they will for fuel.

Witness Americans paying more for bottled water than gasoline.

If you want to feed people ... solve the real problem. Birth control and the unchecked greed of the wealthy.
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#18392 - 02/24/07 11:27 PM Re: Jatropha Biodiesel [Re: DA Morgan]
jamc Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 02/23/07
Posts: 7
Hmm, okay let's stay on subject here Morgan. I thought we were talking about biodiesel?


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#18396 - 02/25/07 12:27 AM Re: Jatropha Biodiesel [Re: jamc]
DA Morgan Offline
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Registered: 10/17/04
Posts: 4136
Loc: Seattle, WA
Aren't you the one that wrote:
"I mean because it comes from crops that could also be food."

You started the discussion so it sure seems to be part of the topic.
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#18419 - 02/25/07 06:28 PM Re: Jatropha Biodiesel [Re: DA Morgan]
jamc Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 02/23/07
Posts: 7
"If you want to feed people ... solve the real problem. Birth control and the unchecked greed of the wealthy."
This quote is no where near what I want to discuss, and I don't even care where you are going with this because I am NOT trying to feed people.
I wanted to start a discussion of biodiesel and the pros/cons of jatropha. One of the pros being that it will not increase the price of crops which obviously will happen if we start producing oil from them. After I blew away your first response all you want to talk about is food.

I didn't start this for the intention of "feeding people" as you say. The diesel is my main concern and that is pretty obvious. You're taking the main topic and trying to carry it into a secondary topic. Let's get back to the biodiesel. I think we've heard your two cents Morgan,
"That said I am against all diesel, all carbon based fuels"

Looks like you are so far left you are closed to baby steps and only giant leaps in your direction are acceptable to you. Problem is, you were so close minded when you posted that quote, you missed the fact that by producing jatropha biodiesel, Gold Star is actually taking more CO2 out of the air than if they had never produced it at all. In other words, jatropha absorbs a lot more CO2 than it emits through consumption.


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#18433 - 02/26/07 03:44 AM Re: Jatropha Biodiesel [Re: jamc]
terrytnewzealand Offline
Megastar

Registered: 08/02/06
Posts: 1031
Loc: Whangarei New Zealand
From the original article:

"High yields of oil"

They don't say how high. The argument I've always heard against bio-diesel is that it takes a huge area to produce a litre of oil. Any idea of the conversion rate here?

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#18438 - 02/26/07 04:04 AM Re: Jatropha Biodiesel [Re: terrytnewzealand]
DA Morgan Offline
Megastar

Registered: 10/17/04
Posts: 4136
Loc: Seattle, WA
jamc wrote:
"This quote is no where near what I want to discuss"

My crystal ball is broken the ouija board lost somewhere in the closet and my mindreading skills not as good as they used to be. I was cured by raising teenagers.

Good point TNZ. And perhaps more important than area and conversion rate, though they are very important, is the requirement for water.
All indications are that India, and most of the rest of the planet, is running out of fresh water at an alarming rate.

I've a better idea jamc ... get a bicycle and encourage everyone you know to make intelligent use of birth control.
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#18533 - 03/02/07 02:38 AM Re: Jatropha Biodiesel [Re: DA Morgan]
jamc Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 02/23/07
Posts: 7
50,000 acres produce 10 million gallons of diesel per year. The thing about Gold Star is all their jatropha plantations are in desert land that would otherwise be useless. So taking up land is a null issue cause the land is worthless which is one of the benefits of jatropha over ethanol. I know Morgan is against all these types of biofuel, but reasonable people are not.
Safeway opened a biofuel station near Seattle last week which is ethanol I believe. So as much as you don't want ethanol Morgan, it's happening. It doesn't take a whole of reading to realise jatropha is much more promising as a major fuel supply. Deffinitely more so than ethanol. Jatropha is just less known at this point. There was an article in Newsweek last week that discussed jatropha and even mentioned Gold Star. This article came out a couple days later and is more detailed about jatropha, worth reading.

http://www.thestar.com/article/185292


Edited by jamc (03/02/07 02:43 AM)

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#18538 - 03/02/07 05:03 AM Re: Jatropha Biodiesel [Re: jamc]
DA Morgan Offline
Megastar

Registered: 10/17/04
Posts: 4136
Loc: Seattle, WA
jamc wrote:
"all their jatropha plantations are in desert land that would otherwise be useless"

And they water themselves?

Whose drinking water is being consumed?

What would the profitability of this venture be if those working that "desert land" were not impoverished slaves but rather earned a decent wage?

What is required to fertilize this crop? What is the energy consumption and wastage?

It seems you have a personal vested interest in this and you are acting a promoter rather than in the capacity of serious science ... but seriously ... where is the water coming from in the middle of your self-described useless desert? Because we both know that if there was water there ... it wouldn't be useless and it wouldn't be desert.

And no doubt anyone with half an IQ point directed toward ecological concerns may now ask who the "H" defines land as "useless" except those wishing to exploit it for their own personal financial gain. And that seems a reasonable concern to me given human history.
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#18597 - 03/04/07 09:02 AM Re: Jatropha Biodiesel [Re: DA Morgan]
terrytnewzealand Offline
Megastar

Registered: 08/02/06
Posts: 1031
Loc: Whangarei New Zealand
DA wrote:

"And no doubt anyone with half an IQ point directed toward ecological concerns may now ask who the "H" defines land as "useless" except those wishing to exploit it for their own personal financial gain. And that seems a reasonable concern to me given human history."

Indeed. we still hear occasionally in NZ that a great deal of Maori land is useless and should be made productive. Thankfully we hear it less these days but it was certainly used as an excuse for confiscations in the past.

As to water in the Sahel region of Africa. The desert is expanding but I get the feeling it's more due to human influence than changing climate. Within five minutes of arriving in the Sahel you see there are too many goats. From my farming background I know goats eat anything. As soon as anything green sticks its head up a goat nips it off. I presume it would be the same with jatropha. Of course there are too many goats because there are too many people. People also use any bit of wood, including cutting down available trees, for cooking fuel. The problems may not be insurmountable but they are nearly.

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#18610 - 03/04/07 09:34 PM Re: Jatropha Biodiesel [Re: terrytnewzealand]
DA Morgan Offline
Megastar

Registered: 10/17/04
Posts: 4136
Loc: Seattle, WA
And no doubt too the self-serving jamc would happily take the drinking water from some "inconsequential" poor person to water his profit-making crop while further increasing desertification.

All that trumped-up concern about food.
And a convenient blind-spot with respect to potable water.
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DA Morgan

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#18616 - 03/05/07 12:06 AM Re: Jatropha Biodiesel [Re: DA Morgan]
Ellis Offline
Megastar

Registered: 01/08/07
Posts: 1490
Loc: Australia
The proposition that 'useless' land be watered to produce fuel is ...well I don't know what it is--stupid- perhaps. If jamc is so concerned not to produce ethanol (sugar) instead of growing unspecified 'food' why cannot this useless land be used to grow 'food' instead of fuel too. His/her protests that this interpretation of the first post is unintended is naive. When dicussing such an important concept as watering land to produce biofuel every factor has to be considered. Here in Australia we have more than our fair share of schemes for the 'useless' land in the interrior of our continent. Very few get past close scrutiny. Anyway soon the potable water used raising this crop will be worth more than the fuel produced!

As DA says there is no shortage of food --- we just don't distribute it to everyone who needs it. And I think that, whereas biofuels may have a place in future fuel planning , if there is a possibility of making land productive then food should be grown as the first option. It is probable that this 'useless' land is in an area that is in need of an edible cash crop to provide the farmers with food for personal consumption as well as a marketable product. If this is so then that is what should happen.

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