Wednesday, July 8, 2009

China Could Kick Our Butts in Algae

. . . if we don't get our act together. China is investing heavily in algae farms, powered by wind, to sequestrate their voluminous CO2 emissions. I was just saying the other day that wind could power algae farms in southwestern United States. I've also said that I think a lot of the elements for successful algae farming do exist -- someone just needs to bring them together for the right kind of farm. If China beats us on this thing, I'm gonna be seriously pissed.

Like nearly all algae ventures, China's is in development stages and is a few years away from commercial production. So they are not necessarily way ahead of us.

Meanwhile, Buffalo Bill from the last entry wants to make sure his own government is not funding algae farming. I'm gonna guess he doesn't mind his government having funded installing the third most corrupt government in the world in Iraq because that's serious patriotic wartime freedom stuff. So maybe he won't mind if our own Pentagon gets into algae farming. After all, tanks and jets need fuel too!

The closest thing our country has to a commercially operating algae farm, that I know of, is this farm run by the state-funded Center for Excellence in Hazardous Materials Management in New Mexico. They bill this as a commercial demonstration farm. I presume this means that, while every algae company has a small bioreactor that demonstrates their process, this farm will demonstrate it on a larger, more commercial scale. It's due to start production in September, and I'm looking forward to it.

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