60 % greenhouse gases and improve your own
dioxide is a chemical compound of carbon and
oxygen. The chemical formula for carbon dioxide
is CO2. It is a colorless, odorless
gas and composes 0.04% of the earth's atmosphere.
In general, CO2 is consumed by
green plants and produced by humans and animals.
Additionally, carbon dioxide is created by
the combustion of fossil fuels or vegetable
matter, as well as other chemical processes.
compound of fossil fuels, which are produced
from crude oil, is carbon. This carbon was
chemically bound by plants millions of years
ago. Captured in the earth's geological layers,
this carbon is now rapidly released as CO2
to the atmosphere contributing to the warming
of the earth's temperature (greenhouse gas
advantage of biofuels is that the carbon which
is emitted by the combuston of biofuels is
absorbed by the regrowth of plants (e.g. rape).
Therefore, biofuel production and use can
be regarded as a closed loop in contrast to
the combustion of fossil fuels.
it has to be considered that for the production
of biofuels energy is needed and carbon dioxide
is emitted. Energy input is required e.g.
for crop cultivation, harvest, transport,
storage, and biofuel processing. Additionally,
other greenhouse gases than CO2
(methane, nitrous oxide) are emitted which
are included as "CO2 equivalents"
in the CO2 balance of biofuels.
balance is influenced by the following factors:
of co-products (glyzerine, press cake)
Several methodologies exist for the calculation of greenhouse gas balances and reduction numbers. They differ in system boundaries and calculation procedures. A main factor influencing the results is the consideration of co-products which are the press cake and glycerine for biodiesel from rapeseed.
For instance, if the co-product glycerine is used for chemical purposes and credited to the calculation, a minimum 60% greenhouse gas reduction can be calculated for biodiesel from rapeseed when compared to fossil diesel. The Ifeu
Institute in Heidelberg/Germany
investigated greenhouse gas emissions of the
whole life cycle of RME production. According
to the Ifeu
Institute 2,2 kg CO2
equivalents are saved per liter RME compared
to the use of fossil diesel. Representatives
of the Ifeu
Institute and other renowned international
biodiesel experts (see Advisory
Board of the Carbon Labelling project)
have verified the 60% CO2-equivalent
reduction of RME which was applied in the first CO2Star campaign at Q1 stations where solely biodiesel
produced from rapeseed in Germany is offered.
Currently, the European Union is preparing a new Directive "on the promotion of the use of energy from renewable sources". A draft directive was issued by the European Commission and is now reviewed by the European Parliament and the Member States. This proposed Directive also includes a methodology for greenhouse gas calculations for several biofuels. According to this methodology, typical GHG savings for RME are 44% and default values for GHG savings are 36%.