Better for the Environment

Welcome to the Better for the Environment sub-section of the Biodiesel Sustainability Blog.

In this sub-section, you’ll find general sustainability facts, environmental and safety information, details on biodiesel emissions and health effects testing, and a biodiesel life-cycle summary.

Use the links below to navigate through the sub-section.

You’ll also find a benefits overview below.

Benefits Overview

Benefits of biodiesel production and use for American families include –

Cleaner Environment: Biodiesel is proven to Reduce Dangerous Emissions, Which Contribute to Climate Change: Biodiesel is the only alternative fuel to voluntarily perform EPA Tier I and Tier II testing to quantify emission characteristics and health effects. That study found that B20 (20% biodiesel blended with 80% conventional diesel fuel) reduced total hydrocarbons by up to 30%, Carbon Monoxide up to 20%, and total particulate matter up to 15%. Research also documents the fact that the ozone forming potential of the hydrocarbon emissions of pure biodiesel is nearly 50% less than that of petroleum fuel. Pure biodiesel does not contain sulfur and therefore reduces sulfur dioxide exhaust from diesel engines to virtually zero.

Health Benefits: Biodiesel is Safer for People to Breathe: Research conducted in the US shows Biodiesel emissions have decreased levels of all target polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH) and nitrited PAH compounds, as compared to petroleum diesel exhaust. PAH and nPAH compounds have been identified as potential cancer causing compounds. Targeted PAH compounds were reduced by 75 to 85 percent, with the exception of benzo(a)anthracene, which was reduced by roughly 50 percent. Target nPAH compounds were also reduced dramatically with biodiesel fuel, with 2-nitrofluorene and 1-nitropyrene reduced by 90 percent, and the rest of the nPAH compounds reduced to only trace levels. All of these reductions are due to the fact the Biodiesel fuel contains no aromatic compounds.

National Security: Biodiesel Reduces our Dependence on Foreign Oil: Biodiesel can play a major role in expanding domestic refining capacity and reducing our reliance on foreign oil. The 500 million gallons of biodiesel produced in the U.S. in 2007 displaced 20 million barrels of petroleum, and increased production and use of biodiesel will further displace foreign oil. In addition, biodiesel is an extremely efficient fuel that creates 5.54 units of energy for every unit of fuel that is required to produce the fuel.

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