Definition of "Second Generation Biofuels"

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Jatropha, a second generation crop
First generation biofuels are made from sugars and starches, easily digested by yeast. Second generation biofuels turn the more difficult-to-digest portions of a plant into fuel. Since a much larger part of any plant is the difficult-to-digest part, second generation technologies can generate much more fuel in a more sustainable way.

Second generation biofuels turn non-food crops, and non-edible parts of plants into fuel. For example, stems, leaves, husks, grass, jatropha, miscanthus, woodchips from industrial waste, skins and pulp from fruit processing, etc.

Many of the grasses used to produce biofuel can be grown on land that isn't good enough to grow crops, and with far less fertilizer and lower consumption of energy to cultivate and harvest.

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