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Carl R. Woese Institute for Genomic Biology

Where Science Meets Society

Biodiesel from sugarcane more economical than soybean

America's oil consumption far exceeds that of every other country in the world. What's more, it's unsustainable. Therefore, in 2007, Congress mandated a move away from petroleum-based oils toward more renewable sources. Soybeans, an important dietary protein and the current primary source of plant-based oils used for biodiesel production, only yield about one barrel per acre. At this rate, the soybean crop could never quench the nation's thirst for oil.

Oil- and metal-munching microbes dominate deep sandstone formations

Oil- and metal-munching microbes dominate deep sandstone formations

Halomonas are a hardy breed of bacteria. They can withstand heat, high salinity, low oxygen, utter darkness and pressures that would kill most other organisms. These traits enable these microbes to eke out a living in deep sandstone formations that also happen to be useful for hydrocarbon extraction and carbon sequestration, researchers report in a new study.

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