22 March 2008

Black Gold

I stumbled upon this report from Barking Moonbat Early Warning System. They report that a Georgia man has discovered the secret to making oil from waste.

J.C. Bell from Tipton GA has found, through four years of research, how nature converts biomass (dead rotting stuff) into oil by way of bacteria. He has started his own company, Bell Bio-Energy, Inc., and has patented his work. He anticipates that by October 2009 his company will be busily converting grass clippings, sawdust, and corncobs into oil. This oil will be refined into gasoline, kerosene and diesel fuel by the same processes that are used with natural crude, with the added bonus that there is no sulpher to contend with.

His is not the only company that is involved with this type of research. A company called LS9 has genetically engineered our old nemesis E. Coli to produce complex hydrocarbons (that would be oil) out of fatty acids.

A company called Amyris is working on doing the same thing with microbes. And Craig Venter, the guy that led the private effort to map the human genome, is genetically engineering DNA to produce hydrocarbons out of high levels of CO2, as are found in the smokestacks of coal fired electrical generating plants.

I have long opined that the future in automotive technology will be the hydrogen powered fuel cell driving an electric motor, but I would have no problems being wrong about that. The technology that would produce oil out of waste products would be infinitely preferable to using our own food sources for energy, as is being done with ethanol production, and the ability to continue to use the existing infrastructure that has been developed for oil is a nice feature as well.

The highest plus on the list would be the ability to once and for all separate ourselves from the mess that is the Middle East. Eliminate our need for their oil and they can go back to killing each other until the last one dies and we are no longer plagued with them. OPEC has been playing this game with us far too long, it's past time to deal ourselves out.

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