Biofuel efficiency is measured by a number of factors; the energy inputs to grow the fuel, the amount of land needed, the amount of product to create a gallon of the biofuel, and the waste leftover from extracting the fuel (just to name a few). The more efficient the biofuel is with these factors, the better the fuel is.
Biofuels are separated into categories called generations. As you go up in generations, the fuels get more efficient. First generation biofuels are the most commonly used and include corn ethanol, soy ethanol, and palm oil ethanol. Second and third generation biofuels (such as sorghum and algae, respectively) are even more efficient than first generation; also, fourth generation biofuels have been recently discovered; they are made from synthetically derived microorganisms that sequestered carbon and secrete sugars.
It appears that plant diversity is more important for the production of a better bio fuel.
It was discovered that prairie grass grown on infertile land is an extremely powerful bio fuel. Not only does it produce an average of 238% more bio fuel then the same land planted with a single prairie plant species, it takes no fertilizers or excessive irrigation to produce. Prairie grasses grown in this way even rejuvenate the soil they are grown in.
This bio fuel produces 51% more energy per acre than corn ethanol grown on fertilized land.
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