6750960701_31948330e9_mThe magazine Dyna Engineering and Industry has published a articlein which I have collaborated with Mónica Casla on the industry of biofuels. The main conclusions are summarized below.

The takeoff of the biofuels industry as a real energy alternative in the world of transport depends on three closely related factors. In the first place, with the support of the main producers, a more demanding international regulation of the biofuel production process is required in its complete life cycle, from the cultivation and use of the land, to the production and management of biofuels. This regulatory system must be capable of certifying objectively and without any doubt that the biofuels subjected to said process meet the established standards and are, therefore, respectful of the environment.

Secondly, it is necessary for the benefits of biofuels to be known, socially shared and objectively taken into account in energy policies together with the costs which, due to their simplicity of calculation, are the ones that on many occasions exclusively determine their final use. Comparisons between the different energy alternatives are often made based on simple cost-effectiveness ratios (cost of removing one ton of greenhouse gases) in which bioenergy does not obtain very brilliant results.

Lastly, and undoubtedly the most relevant factor for the future development of biofuels, is the commercial introduction of the so-called second generation capable of extracting fuel from biomass not intended for food (agricultural, forestry, urban waste from the paper industry, among others). others) through highly complex thermal, chemical and biological processes to convert the cellulose and hemicellulose present in the biomass into sugar that can be transformed into ethanol by fermentation.