Biofuel

Ombeni Urio is a biofuel entrepreneur in Arusha, Tanzania. He runs a company which installs biogas systems consisting of tanks for animal or human waste, which then produces natural gas as it decomposes. The gas is then piped off and used for cooking fuel, and the residue waste becomes fertilizer for crops. Photo: Russell Watkins/Department for International Development (CC BY 2.0)
Ombeni Urio is a biofuel entrepreneur in Arusha, Tanzania. He runs a company which installs biogas systems consisting of tanks for animal or human waste, which then produces natural gas as it decomposes. The gas is then piped off and used for cooking fuel, and the residue waste becomes fertilizer for crops. Photo: Russell Watkins/Department for International Development (CC BY 2.0)

Biofuel is fuel made from organic material, normally plants in some form. Common biofuels are wood, ethanol and biogas. As the carbon in biofuels are part of the natural carbon cycle, the carbon dioxide emitted when biofuels are used doesn’t increase the greenhouse effect and global warming.

Biofuels can however be problematic if farmland or crops which are needed for food production are used for energy production instead. Improper production of biofuel can also result in substantial emissions of greenhouse gases like methane. Biofuel is a form of renewable energy.

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