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Volume 8, Issue 4
Published: July 1, 2014
Next generation enzymes

The global population, which will surpass eight billion by 2030, is expected to consume over 30% more energy than today1. With oil reserves declining and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from fossil fuels increasing, the global community is looking for alternative energy sources such as biofuels, wind and solar. First generation biofuels, derived from food sources like corn, starch, sugar, animal fats and vegetable oil, is already well-established and can create fuels that are readily used in today’s petrol engines. There are mandates for blending biofuels in many countries, as the first generation biofuel processes are raising concerns about possible threat to the food supply, inefficiencies of farming food crops and cost competitiveness against fossil fuels. Second generation biofuels offer great advantages over the current biofuel technology. Instead of competing with the food supply, it consumes agricultural waste or crops specifically grown for energy. These feedstocks are rich in the lignocellulose needed to make the cheap sugar used in the creation of cellulosic ethanol and bio-based chemicals.

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Further Articles in this Issue:
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