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14 Aug 2008 05:08:25

Booze to biofuels

Booze to biofuels
Tequila and cars traditionally do not mix but researchers in Mexico are considering the possibility of using the Agave cactus from which the spirit is distilled as an alternative feedstock for biofuels.

Varieties of agave tequila weber – a type of cactus funding from Mexico's national ecology institute will help cultivate, conserve and patent – yield up to 2,000 gallons of distilled ethanol per acre.

And if their cellulose is included, they yield 12,000 to 18,000 gallons per acre, as well as 14 dry tons of feedstock per acre, Remigio Madrigal Lugo of the Autonomous University of Chapingo told Renewable Energy World.

Agave also has a better ration of energy yield per energy used in its production than existing biofuel crops and grows in semi-arid wastelands other crops might not thrive in, the publication notes.

Meanwhile, a Scottish whisky distillery is to get a £65 million investment to build an energy plant that is powered by its 90,000 tonnes of "spent wash" from the distillation process.

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