Hemp Could Be the Perfect Source for Biodiesel
Hemp biodiesel offers many sustainable features which may make it an important candidate for sustainable fuel
Hemp biodiesel may prove to be a more attractive source of bio-fuel than other crops currently used to create biofuel. University of Connecticut researchers have studied the viability of using industrial hemp as a raw material for biodiesel fuel and have found that there are a number of factors that may make hemp biodiesel an important player in sustainable fuel creation. For one, a limiting factor of many crops considered for fuel is the food versus fuel debate. Food crops or those grown on primary croplands are not the first choice when considering the creation of sustainable fuels. Hemp biodiesel does not face this issue as it is not developed from a food source. Instead, the oil in the seeds from the hemp plants, which are usually thrown away, are the portion used to create the biodiesel.
Another sustainable feature is that Hemp grows in low quality and infertile soil, making it an easily harvested, viable plant under many conditions. Further, unlike biofuels from plants that are not regularly harvested, the development of hemp biodiesel benefits from a hemp growing industry that already exists.
Researchers suggest that a hemp growing operation could power itself with the hemp biodiesel generated from the seeds of their own crop. Hemp growing is currently illegal in the United States but hope remains for its potential as a fuel source in other parts of the world. The industrial hemp that would be used for the hemp biodiesel is not to be confused with other hemp varieties grown for recreational drug use, as it does not contain a high enough concentration of the psychoactive chemicals in its flowers to be used in this manner.