NewEnergyNews: TERMITE ENERGY

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Gleanings from the web and the world, condensed for convenience, illustrated for enlightenment, arranged for impact...

The new challenge: To make every day Earth Day.

YESTERDAY

THINGS-TO-THINK-ABOUT THURSDAY, March 26:

  • TTTA Thursday-WHERE CLIMATE CHANGE HAS ZERO IMPACT
  • TTTA Thursday-NEW ENERGY TAKING OVER
  • TTTA Thursday-SOLAR CLOTH
  • TTTA Thursday-HOW TO SUCCEED WITH NEW BUILDING MATERIALS
  • THE DAY BEFORE

  • ORIGINAL REPORTING: INSIDE THE BATTLES FOR FLORIDA'S ENERGY FUTURE
  • QUICK NEWS, March 25: CALIFORNIA IS 1ST STATE TO GET 5% POWER FROM BIG SOLAR; FEDS GREENLIGHT VIRGINIA OCEAN WIND; FLA SOLAR INITIATIVE ADVANCES
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    THE DAY BEFORE THE DAY BEFORE

  • GUEST REPORTING: ELON MUSK – PROFILE OF A GREEN LEADER
  • QUICK NEWS, March 24: SOLAR BRINGS JOBS; WIND POWERING MONTANA; GLOBAL PRE-PAID METERING TO TRIPLE
  • THE DAY BEFORE THAT

  • ORIGINAL REPORTING, MARCH 25: HOW POWER COMPANIES CAN GET TO UTILITY 2.0 AND BEYOND
  • QUICK NEWS, March 23: KAFKA IN FLORIDA; SUNRUN READIES IPO; THE OBAMA TEAM BACKS WIND
  • AND THE DAY BEFORE THAT

  • Weekend Video: Making Toast – A Choice
  • Weekend Video: Greenpeace Makes A Point To Shell Oil
  • Weekend Video: The Speed Of New Energy
  • THE LAST DAY UP HERE

  • FRIDAY WORLD HEADLINE-WORLD BANK TALKS BEATING CLIMATE CHANGE
  • FRIDAY WORLD HEADLINE-HOW HIGH SOLAR CAN FLY
  • FRIDAY WORLD HEADLINE-SCOTS GIVE WIND BIG APPROVAL
  • FRIDAY WORLD HEADLINE-WAVE ENERGY GOES LIVE IN AUSTRALIA
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    Anne B. Butterfield of Daily Camera and Huffington Post, is an occasional contributor to NewEnergyNews

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    Some of Anne's contributions:

  • Another Tipping Point: US Coal Supply Decline So Real Even West Virginia Concurs (REPORT), November 26, 2013
  • SOLAR FOR ME BUT NOT FOR THEE ~ Xcel's Push to Undermine Rooftop Solar, September 20, 2013
  • NEW BILLS AND NEW BIRDS in Colorado's recent session, May 20, 2013
  • Lies, damned lies and politicians (October 8, 2012)
  • Colorado's Elegant Solution to Fracking (April 23, 2012)
  • Shale Gas: From Geologic Bubble to Economic Bubble (March 15, 2012)
  • Taken for granted no more (February 5, 2012)
  • The Republican clown car circus (January 6, 2012)
  • Twenty-Somethings of Colorado With Skin in the Game (November 22, 2011)
  • Occupy, Xcel, and the Mother of All Cliffs (October 31, 2011)
  • Boulder Can Own Its Power With Distributed Generation (June 7, 2011)
  • The Plunging Cost of Renewables and Boulder's Energy Future (April 19, 2011)
  • Paddling Down the River Denial (January 12, 2011)
  • The Fox (News) That Jumped the Shark (December 16, 2010)
  • Click here for an archive of Butterfield columns

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    Some details about NewEnergyNews and the man behind the curtain: Herman K. Trabish, Agua Dulce, CA., Doctor with my hands, Writer with my head, Student of New Energy and Human Experience with my heart

    email: herman@NewEnergyNews.net

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    Your intrepid reporter

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  • Tuesday, November 27, 2007

    TERMITE ENERGY

    Until recently, cellulosic ethanol represented the most likely biofuel that would not require more energy to make than it generated. With emerging information about biofuels derived from algae, that has changed.

    Fuel’s Gold: Termites point way to new dawn of bio-energy
    November 22, 2007 (AFP)

    WHO
    Andreas Brune, Max Planck Institute for Terrestrial Microbiology; Eddy Rubin, director, Joint Genome Institute (JGI)/US Department of Energy; ccientists from California Institute of Technology (Caltech), biofuels company Verenium Corp., the National Biodiversity Institute (INBio) of Costa Rica and the IBM Thomas J. Watson Research Center

    Might the humble termite soon determine the kind of ethanol that fuels our cars? Or was that yesterday's best bet?

    WHAT
    Termites capacity to digest fiber comes from intestinal enzymes that may point the way to commercial-scale production of cellulosic ethanol. Understanding the genetic sequence of the microbes that produce the enzymes may allow scientists to reproduce the enzymatic processes.

    WHEN
    - Research findings published November 21 in “Nature.”
    - “First generation” ethanol is produced from well-known enzymatic fermentation and distillation of simple carbohydrates in corn and sugar plants not requiring much cellulose breakdown.
    - “Second generation” cellulosic ethanol not been produced at commercial scale economically because of the difficulty of breaking down the cellulose.

    WHERE
    - Gene researchers are studying enzymes in the lowest part of termites’ digestive tract, the “third paunch.”.
    - The researchers are studying bulbous-headed Central American worker termites.

    WHY
    - Microbes in the termites’ intestines exude enzymes capable of releasing nutritional value from the woodiest fibers.
    - Breaking down wood and woody cellulose fibers in non-food plants at economically competitive cost would allow production of ethanol that would (theoretically) not impact food crops or food crop prices.
    - The research, though vital, is only a first step.

    The numbers don't lie. (click to enlarge)

    QUOTES
    - Andreas Brune, Max Planck Institute for Terrestrial Microbiology: "In theory, [termites] could transform an A4-sized sheet of paper into two liters (1.8 pints) of hydrogen…"
    - Eddy Rubin, director, Joint Genome Institute (JGI)/US Department of Energy: "Scaling up this process so that biomass factories can produce biofuels more efficiently and economically is another story…To get there, we must define the set of genes with key functional attributes for the breakdown of cellulose and this study represents an essential step along that path."

    2 Comments:

    At 6:16 AM, Blogger Ron Wagner said...

    What about just letting the termites eat the worst waste wood, and just turn the excrement into biodiesel? We already do this with chicken and hog guts and excrement. When we get excess termites, we can use them too.

     
    At 11:06 PM, Anonymous Shashidhar Belbase, University of Wyoming said...

    Search of alternative biochemical process for the decomposition of complex organic matter like cellulose to fuel like methane, hydrogen or ethanol is very essential in the today's fuel crisis in the world. This kind of research will open new avenue for the solution of fuel or energy crisis in the future. Biofuel will be more sustainable, renewable and cost effective together with environmentally suitable one.

     

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