Emissions Comparison to Diesel
Biodiesel is the only alternative fuel to have fully completed the health effects testing requirements of the Clean Air Act. The use of biodiesel in a conventional diesel engine results in substantial reduction of unburned hydrocarbons, carbon monoxide, and particulate matter compared to emissions from diesel fuel. In addition, the exhaust emissions of sulfur oxides and sulfates (major components of acid rain) from biodiesel are essentially eliminated compared to diesel.
Biodiesel’s Positive Energy Balance
A large industry myth about biodiesel is that it is a net energy loser. The U.S. Dept. of Energy and the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture joined together in 1998 and produced a study that found Biodiesel to have a positive energy balance of 220% vs. the negative energy balance of 17% for petro diesel.
It draws this conclusion: “Biodiesel yields around 3.2 units of fuel-product energy for every unit of fossil energy consumed in the life cycle. By contrast, petroleum diesel’s life cycle yields only 0.83 units of fuel-product energy per unit of fossil energy consumed.”
In other words, Petro diesel is the fuel that takes more energy to produce than it provides in return and Biodiesel is a fuel that takes LESS energy to produce than it provides.