The main difference between regular or first generation biofuels and second generation biofuels is what they are made from.
First generation biofuels are made from food crops like corn or sugar cane.
Second generation biofuels are made from lignocellulosic crops, which can be a variety of different plants and forest residues. Lignin and cellulose in plants can be split with second generation technology and the cellulose can be used to produce the alcohol which is used for fuel.
There may be benefits to using second generation biofuels over first generation fuels because the plants used can be grown on poorer quality land, are cheaper to maintain than food crops, and yield higher energy in the same amount of space than first generation crops.
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