Saturday, April 30, 2011

Should Cannabis Be Illegal? Check the Facts.

Posted on: April 29, 2011 11:23 pm on a comments section below an article about Janoris Jenkins' departure from the Florida Gators.

Jenkins: "No option" to stay offered by Muschamp. 

I’m not questioning WHERTHER marijuana is illegal or not, I’m QUESTIONING whether it SHOULD be illegal or not and whether people like this star player or anyone else should have their lives ruined by an unjust and unnecessary law.  Like I said this is the same law several of our presidents, many legislators in congress and about 100 million other Americans have broken. Any law being broken this often, which also CAUSES an otherwise law abiding citizen to be arrested every 38 seconds in the USA is well worth questioning, don’t you think? Especially when no one is history has ever died from the plant this law prohibits, it’s not addictive and it has NEVER been proven to cause ANY serious health problems whatsoever.

Let’s not forget that everything Adolf Hitler did was LEGAL and everything MLK did was ILLEGAL! Legal doesn’t always mean right and illegal DOES NOT always mean wrong. The: “it’s the law” argument is a moot point which I just completely debunked and proved has no relevance whatsoever in a discussion about whether or not this law and the harms it is causing should even exist.

to your assertion, we do in fact get to pick and choose the laws we live under. That’s exactly what the voters in 15 States and Washington DC have done by bucking the Feds on medical marijuana.

The stifling of rational discussions buy the anti-marijuana crowd has prevented the truth about marijuana from reaching the voters for far too long! Once they know the honest facts about marijuana and marijuana prohibition 80% of Law Enforcement that attend a Law Enforcement Against Prohibition presentation support legalizing. That’s not an opinion, it’s a well documented FACT, proven over several years of post presentation surveys nationwide and in many other countries. Since that large a percentage of law enforcement favor legalizing once they have the honest facts, there is no doubt even a larger percentage of the public will favor legalizing once they know the truth!

All the facts support legalizing, the only thing holding legalization back is the public not knowing the truth, but that is changing and so are the laws as the truth becomes known.

Why do you support decriminalization of marijuana and reject legalization? Decriminalization is a misleading term! It still leaves the entire marijuana TRADE in the hands of criminals, gangsters, terrorist and illegal aliens. Legalization on the other hand, will virtually end the black market marijuana trade, just like it ended the large scale illegal alcohol black market alcohol trade when alcohol prohibition ended and alcohol was re-legalized . When alcohol prohibition ended violent crime fell by 65% and alcohol consumption is KNOWN to CAUSE violence! Marijuana consumption DOES NOT cause violence, it never has and it never will!

Everything you posted about marijuana causing serious mental problems and EVERY OTHER claim you made or suggested about marijuana causing harm is pure HOGWASH! Marijuana does NOT cause “
psychological dependence”, what causes that is mental problems that are present in some people. Most commonly it’s attributed to what’s called “an addictive personality”. About 10% of the population has “an addictive personality”. Isn’t it amazing that about 10% of marijuana consumers are cited as having psychological dependence” to marijuana in virtually every study on the subject ever done! Marijuana does NOT alter personality, or change the chemistry of the brain cortex! The effects of marijuana are temporary and ONLY occur while under the influence. The endorphin centers of the brain DO NOT crave more stimulation to achieve a high, if they did that would lead to physical addiction which marijuana DOES NOT cause!

Marijuana consumption DOES NOT  CAUSE
attendant behaviors to become more prominent in the participant's thinking and conduct. Your claim that it does is pure hogwash! Regarding your claim that: “It outweighs all other considerations to the point where lying, cheating, or even stealing to get high don't seem quite so bad anymore.  Things aren't quite so black and white, morally, and loyalty to team, accountability, and self- control seem like square, old- fashioned sucker deals.” EVERY BIT OF WHAT YOU SAID THERE IS PURE HOGWASH! Marijuana consumption produces a very mild euphoric effect, no physical addiction whatsoever, NO loss of judgment or lack of morality or loyalty to virtues held prior to its use. Alcohol use can cause all those things but Marijuana use CANNOT! The ingredients in marijuana simply don’t effect people like you claim they do!
The so called “gateway theory” has been so completely debunked and for such a long time that I’m amazed anyone with even two brain cells to rub together ever mentions it any more. There is NOTHING about using marijuana that causes anyone to use other drugs. 100% of all the people that use cocaine, meth, smack and every other drug, also drank milk as babies! What does one substance have to do with the other? Absolutely NOTHING! What causes people to use other drugs is their own personal choice. The vast, VAST majority of those that consume marijuana never use any other illegal drug at all and that’s a well documented statistic… so much for the “gateway theory”!

If you can scientifically or medically prove ANY serious harm from consuming marijuana please post it! Just don’t post a bunch of anti-marijuana nonsense funded by anti-marijuana groups which contain words like “might, may, maybe, perhaps, suggests”, or data on marijuana use in conjunction with other drugs, or the ever popular phrase “we need to do more studies”. Marijuana is one of the most intensely studied plants on earth and it has been used SAFELY for THOUSANDS of years! The US Government estimates $113 BILLION worth of marijuana is consumed in the USA every year and that has been going on for decades. Where are all the dead, dying, mentally ill, zombies, with serious health problems that got that way from consuming marijuana? THEY DON’T EXIST!  

You said: “Look at the effects buying this garbage and consuming it has had on society.  Look at the Mexican border and see what your drug money has bought by way of corruption of government officials, murders, and gang infestation.  Tell me drug use is harmless.”  In the first place. Marijuana is FAR from garbage, it is probably the most beneficial plant know! You are blaming problems CAUSED by marijuana PROHIBITION on marijuana! When was the last time you heard of alcohol dealers getting into a shootout? I BET IT WAS WHEN ALCOHOL WAS PROHIBITED! Legal alcohol dealers certainly aren’t involved in murder and violence now are they?  

You said: “It's not a Mexican problem- it's an American problem.  Until we quit buying this poison and financing gangs and corruption, we have blood on our hands.  Think about that next time you're shotgunning a torpedo.” Again you misstate the facts! Marijuana IS NOT poison! It is nontoxic and one of the safest substances known! You and everyone else need to accept the truth and put the blame squarely where it belongs, on marijuana PROHIBITION! NONE of those problems you mentioned were CAUSED by marijuana consumption, they were caused by the violent gangsters marijuana PROHIBITION puts in business and funds with hundreds of billions of tax free dollars every year.

It’s an undeniable FACT that the vast majority of so called “drug-related” violent crime is caused by the PROHIBITION of drugs, rather than the drugs themselves. It was the same during alcohol prohibition. Alcohol prohibition created violent criminal organizations just like every other drug prohibition has. These violent crimes should be labeled PROHIBITION RELATED, not drug related. Ending alcohol prohibition is exactly why you don’t see shootouts over that once ILLEGAL drug TRADE any more. THE YEAR ALCOHOL PROHIBITION ENDED VIOLENT CRIME FELL BY 65%!
Marijuana accounts for roughly half of the entire illegal drug trade. Legalizing this one nontoxic plant that it is impossible to overdose on will take away HALF of all the illegal money that is funding ALL the illegal drug dealers! Marijuana PROHIBITION is causing VIOLENT CRIME over the illegal MONEY. Consuming marijuana is causing virtually NO harm at all! Even if there are some unknown medical harms from consuming marijuana, PROHIBITION has failed to prevent or even reduce marijuana use!

The proper course of action is legalization and policy that minimizes the harms under a legal market! That takes the violence created by the gangsters marijuana prohibition puts in business completely out of the picture because it eliminates their ability to make a profit.

An illegal market simply cannot compete with a legal market! In a legal market there’s not enough profit in the illegal trade, so the illegal trade virtually disappears completely and so does all the violence from the illegal TRADE. Alcohol prohibition proved this beyond any shadow of doubt!

If you think marijuana prohibition has anything to do with the imaginary, false, fabricated, alleged harms from using marijuana as a recreational drug, or if you think marijuana causes violent or dangerous behavior, or if you think science has proven ANY serious health problems from consuming marijuana, YOU HAVE BEEN DUPED!

copy these links or bookmark this page and consider the information linked below when you have time. It’s all good information and most of it has very credible sources included. You’ll probably NEVER see any of this mentioned in the mainstream media and this is just the tip of the iceberg of well documented FACTS supporting legalization!

No matter where you stand on the issue of legalizing marijuana everyone should read: 



and  the free online book:

THE EMPEROR WEARS NO CLOTHES, The Authoritative Historical Record of Cannabis and The Conspiracy Against Marijuana.

Click the links to those titles on this webpage:
Internet Explorer web browser:   
ll Other Browsers:


Even Heavy Marijuana Use Doesn't Damage Brain:



In this myth shattering, information packed documentary, learn from physicians and leading researchers about medicinal cannabis and its demonstrated effects on human health. This game-changing movie presents the most comprehensive synopsis to date of the real science surrounding the world’s most controversial plant.
Great factual movie about marijuana and marijuana prohibition!
There has NEVER been even one case of marijuana causing cancer. In fact: "Harvard study released on April 17, 2007 shows that the active ingredient in marijuana, THC, cuts tumor growth in common lung cancer in half and significantly reduces the ability of the cancer to spread!"



National Institutes Of Cancer Website Recognizes Cancer-Killing Properties Of Cannabinoids





Watch Irvin Rosenfeld who gets his marijuana from the Federal Government destroy all the lies about marijuana consumers being lazy and unproductive. Watch him destroy all the lies about long term heavy marijuana use being harmful. Learn the truth about marijuana:

Listen to these high ranking narcotics officers expose the harms and waste of the drug war. Learn the truth about the drug war. It is a FAILED HARMFUL UNCONSTITUTIONAL UNLAWFUL VIOLENT WAR AGAINST NONVIOLENT CITIZENS: 

he World Health Organization Documents Failure of U.S. Drug Policies


Cannabis Reduces Infant Mortality:

This is a great example of information the drug war prohibitionists suppress every way they can. If babies are getting natural cannabis like substances in mother’s breast milk, do you still believe marijuana is harmful at any age?
A false link between marijuana and mental illness



If you want a good look at how far the government will go to promote its unconstitutional anti-marijuana drug war message read this:


Watch this documentary about marijuana curing cancer! There are 7 parts, watch them all!

If you doubt marijuana is good medicine read: Granny Storm Crow’s List



It’s more like a library than a list!

“What about marijuana causing car accidents?”

The Journal of Psychoactive Drugs, Hartford Hospital in Connecticut and the University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine document that MARIJUANA DOES NOT CAUSE DANGEROUS DRIVING:

(read the article not just the link!)
Not medicine? Watch this and see with your own eyes!

April 29th Marks 100th Anniversary Of First Marijuana Prohibition


norml remember prohibition 
By Steve Elliott of Toke of the Town

Friday marks an unhappy anniversary in hemp history. On April 29, 1911, Massachusetts enacted the first state law making it illegal to sell or possess cannabis without a prescription, becoming the first U.S. state to institute marijuana prohibition.

Violators of the new law were subject to a $100 fine and up to six months in jail, and just being present in the same room with marijuana could get you three months, according to cannabis historian Dale Gieringer of California NORML.

Ironically, marijuana was merely collateral damage of the Massachusetts law, which was aimed primarily at other “hypnotic” drugs such as opium, morphine and heroin. Abuse of opiate painkillers had become a concern among reformers and temperance advocates in the early 20th century, and cannabis was added to the list “for the sake of completeness,” since it was also a hypnotic palliative commonly found in pharmacies.

“This incidental decision would turn out to have far-reaching consequences, aptly illustrating the dangers of governmental misjudgment in matters of drug regulation,” Gieringer said. Interestingly, the Massachusetts law specifically permitted medicinal use of cannabis with a prescription; the medical value of “Indian hemp” was widely acknowledged at the time.

“Only in 1937 was medical cannabis suppressed at the insistence of federal narcotics boss Harry Anslinger, whose last-century ‘Reefer Madness’ policy sadly remains with us today,” Gieringer said.
It didn’t take long for other states to hop onto the moralistic anti-drug bandwagon. California, Maine, Indiana and Wyoming all prohibited marijuana in 1913, despite the fact that, just as in Massachusetts, there was no public concern about cannabis at the time. Officials admitted that marijuana was not a problem, but warned that “it might become one” unless “steps were taken” to prevent it.

“Ironically, only after being prohibited did cannabis become widely popular,” Gieringer said. Marijuana use spread in the 1920s from Mexican and Caribbean immigrants to jazz musicians and hipsters; so, predictably, did the laws against it, since its use was popularly associated with minorities, fringe elements, and strange-seeming subcultures.

More than 30 states had outlawed marijuana by 1937, when Congress passed the first federal prohibition law, and penalties got stiffer and stiffer through the 1950s and into the 1960s. “None of this did anything to prevent an explosion in marijuana use in the late 1960s and 1970s,” Gieringer said. “The result was to leave marijuana firmly established as America’s second most popular intoxicant after alcohol, a status it seems destined to enjoy for the foreseeable future.” (Actually, in my opinion, it’s fixin’ to leave alcohol in the dust.

“In practice, prohibition has served as a crime-creation program, criminalizing otherwise innocent Americans, promoting a criminal market, and generating disrespect for the law,” Gieringer said. “Americans would be well advised to reject their bankrupt paternalism and reclaim their historical freedom to use cannabis.”

Potential impact of Industrial Hemp -- a plant that's useful, but you can't grow

by Andrew Keller

Presque Isle County Board of Commissioners passed resolution supporting hemp

HILLMAN, MI -- The Presque Isle Board of Commissioners passed a resolution today to support the legalization of a crop that is banned in the United States.  We’re talking about industrial hemp.
One local man says this cash crop could fuel the Northern Michigan economy.

More than 25,000 products are made from hemp, including some shoes and the rope you'd use to tie your boat to the dock.  A Northern Michigan man says it's time to lift restrictions." "If you smoked it, you'd get a headache," said Everett Swift, the executive director of MI-Hemp, the Michigan Industrial Hemp Education and Marketing Project. Swift says if you light up a hemp cigarette, you're not getting high. “Kind of like having a bad cousin, and you get the blame for what the cousin is doing," he explained.

The DEA calls hemp a controlled substance.  But would you believe the fibers from marijuana's distant cousin make products like nap-sacks, baseball hats, and even suntan lotion?  It’s legal to buy it, but there's a problem, you can't grow it in the US. “Common sense to me says we need to use this product since we are importing $360-million of it a year," said Swift.

Swift says this could be money put into farmer's pockets. “We need to be growing it here and pump money into our economy, instead of shipping it out." According to a 2006 report released by the Fuel and Fiber Company, a national group promoting the growing of hemp from Arizona, legalizing the plant could create 1,700 to 4,200 new jobs.  Farmers would also benefit.  They could profit $50 to $500 dollars an acre. "The more I learn, the more i see this is a ridiculous law we have here in the United States on this," said Swift.

States, like North Dakota, Hawaii, and Kentucky, have passed laws saying farmers can grow hemp, and like the Presque Isle County Commission, they're hoping to put pressure on the federal government to change the law.

“I would like to see the DEA step back and allow state rights on this issue," said Swift. Everett says hemp offers nutritional value, like in this granola bar, you can find Omega 3 and other essential fatty acids. Tastes like a protein bar, but overall, it's pretty good.

Everett Swift questions why you can't grow hemp in America. Swift is the executive director of MI-Hemp, an organization that educates and informs people of the benefits of industrial hemp.  He says last year, the US imported $360-million in hemp that is used for more than 25,000 products, some numbers show maybe closer to 50,000 products.  Manufacturers can use it, you can wear it, you can even eat it, but like its close cousin marijuana, you can't grow it.

Swift says even though hemp a close cousin and resembles marijuana, you can't get high off of it like you can marijuana, and the plant is used primarily for its fibers, which can be turned into several different types of items.

His argument is the time has come to lift the ban from growing hemp in the United States, which could potentially pump millions into the Northern Michigan economy.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Hemp: Fuel Food Fiber Medicine Industry

Below are more fun facts about hemp from the website but were sourced from the Jack herer website:  Jack

  • Farming 6% of the continental U.S. acreage with biomass crops would provide all of America's energy needs. 1
  • Hemp is Earth's number-one biomass resource; it is capable of producing 10 tons per acre in four months. 1
  • Biomass can be converted to methane, methanol, or gasoline at a cost comparable to petroleum, and hemp is much better for the environment. Pyrolysis (charcoalizing), or biochemical composting are two methods of turning hemp into fuel.2
  • Hemp can produce 10 times more methanol than corn.
  • Hemp fuel burns clean. Petroleum causes acid rain due to sulfur pollution.
  • The use of hemp fuel does not contribute to global warming.

  • Hemp seed can be pressed into a nutritious oil, which contains the highest amount of fatty acids in the plant kingdom. Essential oils are responsible for our immune system responses, and clear the arteries of cholesterol and plaque.2
  • The byproduct of pressing the oil from hemp seed is high quality protein seed cake. It can be sprouted (malted) or ground and baked into cakes, breads, and casseroles. Hemp seed protein is one of mankind's finest, most complete and available-to-the-body vegetable proteins. 2
  • Hemp seed was the world's number one wild and domestic bird seed until the 1937 Marijuana prohibition law. Four million pounds of hemp seed for songbirds were sold at retail in the U.S. in 1937. Birds will pick hemp seeds out and eat them first from a pile of mixed seed. Birds in the wild live longer and breed more with hemp seed in their diet, using the oil for the feathers and their overall health. 2

  • Hemp is the oldest cultivated fiber plant in the world.
  • Low-THC fiber hemp varieties developed by the French and others have been available for over 20 years. It is impossible to get high from fiber hemp. Over 600,000 acres of hemp is grown worldwide with no drug misuse problem.
  • One acre of hemp can produce as much usable fiber as 4 acres of trees or two acres of cotton.
  • Trees cut down to make paper take 50 to 500 years to grow, while hemp can be cultivated in as little as 100 days and can yield 4 times more paper over a 20 year period.
  • Until 1883, from 75-90% of all paper in the world was made with cannabis hemp fiber including that for books, Bibles, maps, paper money, stocks and bonds, newspapers, etc. 2
  • Hemp paper is longer lasting than wood pulp, stronger, acid-free, and chlorine free. (Chlorine is estimated to cause up to 10% of all Cancers.) 2
  • Hemp paper can be recycled 7 times, wood pulp 4 times.
  • If the hemp pulp paper process reported by the USDA in 1916, were legal today it would soon replace 70% of all wood paper products. 2
  • Rag paper containing hemp fiber is the highest quality and longest lasting paper ever made. It can be torn when wet, but returns to its full strength when dry. Barring extreme conditions, rag paper remains stable for centuries. 2
  • Hemp particle board may be up to 2 times stronger than wood particleboard and holds nails better.
  • Hemp is softer, warmer, more water absorbent, has three times the tensile strength, and is many times more durable than cotton. Hemp production uses less chemicals than cotton. 2
  • From 70-90% of all rope, twine, and cordage was made from hemp until 1937. 2
  • A strong lustrous fiber; hemp withstands heat, mildew, insects, and is not damaged by light. Oil paintings on hemp and/or flax canvas have stayed in fine condition for centuries. 2

  • Deaths from marijuana use: 0
  • From 1842 through the 1880s, extremely strong marijuana (then known as cannabis extractums), hashish extracts, tinctures, and elixirs were routinely the second and third most-used medicines in America for humans (from birth through old age). These extracts were also used in veterinary medicine until the 1920s and longer. 2
  • For at least 3,000 years prior to 1842 widely varying marijuana extracts (bud, leaves, roots, etc.) were the most commonly used real medicines in the world for the majority of mankind's illnesses. 2
  • The U.S. Pharmacopoeia indicated cannabis should be used for treating such ailments as fatigue, fits of coughing, rheumatism, asthma, delirium tremens, migraine headaches, and the cramps and depressions associated with menstruation. 3
  • In this century, cannabis research has demonstrated therapeutic value and complete safety in the treatment of many health problems including asthma, glaucoma, nausea, tumors, epilepsy, infection, stress, migraines, anorexia, depression, rheumatism, arthritis, and possibly herpes. 3
  • Deaths from aspirin (U.S. per year): 180 - 1,000 +
  • Deaths from legal drugs (U.S. per year) at doses used for prevention, diagnosis, or therapy: 106,000

  • Almost any product that can be made from wood, cotton, or petroleum (including plastics) can be made from hemp. There are more than 25,000 known uses for hemp.
  • For thousands of years virtually all good paints and varnishes were made with hemp seed oil and/or linseed oil. 2
  • Hemp stems are 80% hurds (pulp by-product after the hemp fiber is removed from the plant). Hemp hurds are 77% cellulose - a primary chemical feed stock (industrial raw material) used in the production of chemicals, plastics, and fibers. Depending on which U.S. agricultural report is correct, an acre of full grown hemp plants can sustainably provide from four to 50 or even 100 times the cellulose found in cornstalks, kenaf, or sugar cane (the planet's next highest annual cellulose plants). 2
  • One acre of hemp produces as much cellulose fiber pulp as 4.1 acres of trees, making hemp a perfect material to replace trees for pressed board, particle board, and concrete construction molds. 2
  • Heating and compressing plant fibers can create practical, inexpensive, fire-resistant construction materials with excellent thermal and sound-insulating qualities. These strong plant fiber construction materials could replace dry wall and wood paneling. William B. Conde of Conde's Redwood Lumber, Inc. near Eugene, Oregon, in conjunction with Washington State University (1991-1993), has demonstrated the superior strength, flexibility, and economy of hemp composite building materials compared to wood fiber, even as beams. 2
  • Isochanvre, a rediscovered French building material made from hemp hurds mixed with lime petrifies into a mineral state and lasts for many centuries. Archeologists have found a bridge in the south of France from the Merovingian period (500-751 A.D.), built with this process. 2
  • Hemp has been used throughout history for carpet backing. Hemp fiber has potential in the manufacture of strong, rot resistant carpeting - eliminating the poisonous fumes of burning synthetic materials in a house or commercial fire, along with allergic reactions associated with new synthetic carpeting. 2
  • Plastic plumbing pipe (PVC pipes) can be manufactured using renewable hemp cellulose as the chemical feed stocks, replacing non-renewable coal or petroleum based chemical feed stocks. 2
  • In 1941 Henry Ford built a plastic car made of fiber from hemp and wheat straw. Hemp plastic is biodegradable, synthetic plastic is not.

  1. Jack Economics: Energy, Environment, and Commerce
  2. Jack Uses of Hemp
  3. Jack Therapeutic Uses of Hemp

In memory of Jack Herer

Hemp Car

Below is a series of articles from the Hemp Car website. 


Hemp Car Manifesto:

Hemp car was an alternative-fuel project car that utilized hemp biodiesel for fuel. Industrial hemp would be an economical fuel if hemp were legal to cultivate in the United States. Industrial hemp has no psychoactive properties and is not a drug. Hemp Car demonstrates the concept of hemp fuels on a national level and promotes the reformation of current law.

The car toured America, with stops in Canada, frequenting alternative-energy, environmental, and hemp-legalization events. The car departed from Washington D.C. on July 4, 2001 and returned home on October 2, 2001. The car generated publicity, emphasizing the utility of industrial hemp to modern society. We provided the public with information about biofuels, hemp, their uses, and current American laws. We established a world distance record for a vehicle utilizing hemp for fuel: 10,000 miles.

A network of hemp activists provided us with the hemp oil at planned intervals throughout the country. Funding, sponsorships, and networking were necessary for Hemp Car to succeed. We give great thanks to all of the activists and concerned citizens who made Hempcar possible. 

Energy Farming In America By Lynn Osburn

A practical answer to America's farming, energy and environmental crises.
On June 12,1989, President Bush addressed his campaign promises to deal with the pollution problems long facing the United States.

He unveiled an ambitious plan to remove smog from California and the nation's most populous cities, as well as efforts to reduce acid rain pollution. Bush recommended auto makers be required to make methanol-powered cars for use in nine urban areas plagued by air pollution. Methanol is the simplest form of primary alcohol and is commonly called wood alcohol.

Bush called methanol "home-grown energy for America." He further proposed a 10 million ton reduction in sulfur dioxide emissions from coal-burning power plants; that's a 50% reduction over present standards. Sulfur dioxide is a major cause of acid rain, which kills 50,000 Americans and 5,000-10,000 Canadians yearly. (Brookhaven National Laboratory 1986)

William Reilly, chief of the Environmental Protection Agency, at a briefing before Bush's speech, estimated the cost of the plan would be between $14 billion and $19 billion a year after its full implementation at the turn of the century. Bush said, "Too many Americans continue to breathe dirty air, and political paralysis has plagued further progress against air pollution. We've seen enough of this stalemate. It's time to clear the air." Political paralysis seems to be a dominant trait in Washington in any given decade, but what did he mean by "stalemate'?

The root of this "stalemate" can be found in the concept of world energy resources. The industrial world currently runs on fossil fuel: natural gas, oil, and coal. Fossil fuel resources are non-renewable, being the end product of eons of natural decomposition of Earth's ancient biomass. Fossil fuels contain sulfur, which is the source of many of the aggravating environmental pollution problems threatening America.

Removing sulfur compounds from fossil fuels is a major expense to the energy producers. Also, burning fossil fuels releases "ancient" carbon dioxide, produced by primeval plant life eons ago, into the atmosphere causing the air we breathe to be over-burdened with CO2 increasing the danger of global warming and the greenhouse effect.

In the late 1800s, the fledgling petroleum industry aggressively competed with the established biomass-based energy industry in a effort to gain control of world energy production and distribution. Fossil fuel producers succeeded in their campaign to dominate energy production by making fuels and chemical feedstocks at lower prices than could be produced from biomass conversion. Now the pendulum is swinging against them.

It is likely that peak oil and gas production in the coterminous United States has been reached. The bulk total production of roughly 80% will be reached by the year 2000. Peak world production will occur about the same year.

The situation for recoverable coal, world wide, is more favorable. Peak production is estimated to happen shortly after the 2100. However, increasing numbers of Americans are unwilling to accept the escalating costs of environmental pollution and destruction associated with coal-fired power plant smokestack emissions and the land destruction resulting from coal mining.

If the pollution problems inherent with fossil fuel use are solved, the dollars and cents cost of this form of energy will continue to rise due to the dwindling availability of this non-renewable world resource. On the other hand, the dollar cost of energy production from biomass conversion will remain relatively constant because the world biomass resource is renewable on a yearly basis.

The point where the cost of producing energy from fossil fuels exceeds the cost of biomass fuels has been reached. With a few exceptions, energy from fossil fuels will cost the American taxpayer more money than the same amount of energy supplied through biomass conversion.

Biomass is the term used to describe all biologically produced matter. World production of biomass is estimated at 146 billion metric tons a year, mostly wild plant growth. Some farm crops and trees can produce up to 20 metric tons per acre of biomass a year. Types of algae and grasses may produce 50 metric tons per year.
Dried biomass has a heating value of 5000-8000 Btu/lb, with virtually no ash or sulfur produced during combustion. About 6% of contiguous United States land area put into cultivation for biomass could supply all current demands for oil and gas. And this production would not add any net carbon dioxide to the atmosphere. (Environmental Chemistry, Stanley E. Manahan, Willard Grant Press, 1984)

For its Mission Analysis study conducted for the U.S. Department of Energy in 1979, Stanford Research Institute (SRI) chose five types of biomass materials to investigate for energy conversion: woody plants, herbaceous plants (those that do not produce persistent woody material), aquatic plants, and manure. Herbaceous plants were divided into two categories: those with low moisture content and those with high moisture content.

Biomass conversion may be conducted on two broad pathways: chemical decomposition and biological digestion.

Thermochemical decomposition can be utilized for energy conversion of all five categories of biomass materials, but low moisture herbaceous (small grain field residues) and woody (wood industry wastes, and standing vegetation not suitable for lumber) are the most suitable.

Biological processes are essentially microbic digestion and fermentation. High moisture herbaceous plants (vegetables, sugar cane, sugar beet, corn, sorghum, cotton), marine crops and manure are most suitable for biological digestion.

Anaerobic digestion produces high and intermediate Btu gasses. High Btu gas is methane. Intermediate-Btu is methane mixed with carbon monoxide and carbon dioxide. Methane can be efficiently converted into methanol.

Fermentation produces ethyl and other alcohols, but this process is too costly in terms of cultivated land use and too inefficient in terms of alcohol production to feasibly supply enough fuel alcohol to power industrial society.

Pyrolysis is the thermochemical process that converts organic materials into usable fuels with high fuel-to-feed ratios, making it the most efficient process for biomass conversion, and the method most capable of competing and eventually replacing non-renewable fossil fuel resources.

The foundation on which this will be achieved is the emerging concept of "energy farming," wherein farmers grow and harvest crops that are converted into fuels.
Pyrolysis is the technique of applying high heat to organic matter (lignocellulosic materials) in the absence of air or in reduced air. The process can produce charcoal, condensable organic liquids (pyrolytic fuel oil), non-condensable gasses, acetic acid, acetone, and methanol. The process can be adjusted to favor charcoal, pyrolytic oil, gas, or methanol production with a 95.556 fuel-to-feed efficiency.

Chemical decomposition through pyrolysis is the same technology used to refine crude fossil fuel oil and coal. Biomass conversion by pyrolysis has many environmental and economic advantages over fossil fuels, but coal and oil production dominates because costs are kept lower by various means including government protection.

Pyrolysis has been used since the dawn of civilization. If some means is applied to collect the off-gasses (smoke), the process is called wood distillation. The ancient Egyptians practiced wood distillation by collecting tars and pyroligneous acid for use in their embalming industry.

Pyrolysis of wood to produce charcoal was a major industry in the 1800s, supplying the fuel for the industrial revolution, until it was replaced by coal.

In the late 19th Century and early 20th Century wood distillation was still profitable for producing soluble tar, pitch, creosote oil, chemicals, and non-condensable gasses often used to heat boilers at the facility.

The wood distillation industry declined in the 1930s due to the advent of the petrochemical industry and its lower priced products. However, pyrolysis of wood to produce charcoal for the charcoal briquette market and activated carbon for purification systems is still practiced in the U.S.

The wood distillation industry used pyrolytic reactors in a process called destructive distillation. The operation was carried out in a fractionating column (a tall still) under high heat (from 1000-1700°F). Charcoal was the main fuel product and methanol production was about 1% to 2% of volume or 6 gallons per ton. This traditional method was replaced by the synthetic process developed in 1927.

The synthetic process utilizes a pyrolytic reactor operating as a gasifier by injecting air or pure oxygen into the reactor core to completely burn the biomass to ash. The energy contained in the biomass is released in the gasses formed. After purification the syngas, hydrogen and carbon monoxide in a 2 to 1 ratio, is altered by catalysts under high pressure and heat, to form methanol. This method will produce 100 gallons of methanol per ton of feed material.

Methanol-powered automobiles and reduced emissions from coal-fired power plants can become a reality by using biomass derived fuels. The foundation upon which this will be achieved is the emerging concept of energy farming, wherein farmers grow and harvest crops that are converted into fuels. Energy farming can save American family farms and turn the American heartland into a prosperous source of clean renewable energy production.

Pyrolysis is the most efficient process for biomass conversion into fuels that can replace all fossil fuel products. . . When farmers can grow hemp for biomass they will make a profit energy farming.

Universities, government agencies, and private firms have conducted studies looking into the feasibility of growing biomass at low cost to make fuels at affordable prices, but the most promising plant species was never considered because it is prohibited. Instead emphasis has centered around utilizing waste products: agricultural residues after harvest, forestry wastes from the timber and pulp wood industry, and municipal wastes. All of these combined cannot produce enough fuel to satisfy the needs of industry or the American consumer's automobile. Yet biomass conversion to fuel has been proven economically feasible in laboratory tests and by continuous operation of pilot plants in field tests since 1973.

Farmers should be encouraged to grow energy crops capable of producing 10 tons per acre in 90-120 days. The crop has to be naturally high in cellulose. It must grow in all climactic zones in America. And it should not compete with food production for the most fertile land. It could be grown in rotation with food crops or on marginal land where other crop production isn't profitable.

At congressional hearings on alternative fuels held in 1978, Dr. George T. Tsao, professor of chemical engineering and food and agricultural engineering, director of laboratory of renewable resources, Purdue University, said $30 per ton for biomass delivered to the fuel conversion plant is an adequate base price for the energy farmer. The price of $30/ton has also been suggested by other researchers.

Both Dr. Serge Gratch, director chemical sciences laboratory, Ford Motor Co. and Dr. Joseph M. Colucci, director fuels and lubricants General Motors Research Laboratories testified their companies were willing, especially Ford, to make cars that would run on methanol fuel. The scientists said it would take several years to tool up factories to make methanol powered autos. They said industry could solve the problems associated with methanol as fuel. And it would take about the same amount of time for the energy industry to build methanol production facilities.

So why don't we have methanol at the filling station? The scientists said the problem was government certification under the Clean Air Act required automobile manufacturers meet standards set by the EPA based on fuels available on a national level. Since methanol fuel standards had not been set, the car makers couldn't make the new fleet until the methanol fuel was available at the pump. This catch-22 situation continues today. Government is unwilling to subsidize pilot energy farms and biomass refinery construction because fossil fuel producers control the energy industry.

Hemp is the only biomass resource capable of making America energy independent. The government suspended marijuana prohibition during WWII. It's time to do it again.

The way to end this political stalemate is to start literally from the ground up. When farmers can grow hemp for biomass they will make a profit energy farming. Then it will not take long to get 6% of continental American land mass into cultivation for biomass fuels -- enough to replace our economy's dependence on fossil fuels. And as the energy crop grows it takes in CO2 from the air; when it is burned the CO2 is returned to the air, creating a balanced system. We will no longer be increasing the CO2 content in the atmosphere. The threat of global greenhouse warming and adverse climatic change will diminish.

This energy crop can be harvested with equipment readily available. It can be "cubed" by modifying hay cubing equipment. This method condenses the bulk, reducing trucking costs from the field to the pyrolysis facility.

Sixty-eight percent of the energy in the raw biomass is contained in the charcoal and fuel oils made at the facility. The charcoal has the same heating value in Btu as coal, with virtually no sulfur to pollute the atmosphere. The pyrolytic fuel oil has similar properties to no. 2 and no. 6 fuel oil. The remaining energy is in noncondensible gases that are used to co-generate steam and electricity.

To keep costs down pyrolysis reactors need to be located within a 50 mile radius from the energy farms. This necessity will bring life back to our small towns by providing jobs locally. The pyrolysis facilities will run three shifts a day.

Charcoal and fuel oil can be "exported" from the rural small town in the agricultural community to the large metropolitan areas to fuel the giant power plants generating electricity. When these utility companies use charcoal instead of coal, the problems of acid rain will begin to disappear.

The charcoal can be transported economically by rail to all urban area power plants. The fuel oil can be transported economically by truck creating more jobs for Americans.

When this energy system is on line producing a steady supply of fuel for utility companies, it will have established itself in commerce. Then it will be more feasible to build the complex syngas systems to produce methanol from biomass, or make synthetic gasoline from methanol by adding the Mobil Co. process equipment to the gasifier.

To accomplish this goal of clean energy independence in America we must demand an end to hemp prohibition, so American farmers can grow this energy crop. Our government foolishly outlawed it in 1938.

Hemp is the world's most versatile plant. It can yield 10 tons per acre in four months. Hemp contains 80% cellulose; wood produces 60% cellulose. Hemp is drought resistant making it an ideal crop in the dry western regions of the country.

Hemp is the only biomass resource capable of making America energy independent. Remember that in 10 years, by the year 2000, America will have exhausted 80% of her petroleum reserves. Will we then go to war with the Arabs for the privilege of driving our cars; will we stripmine our land for coal and poison the air we breathe to drive our autos an additional 100 years; will we raze our forests for our energy needs?
During the Second World War, the federal government faced a real economic emergency when our supply of hemp was cut off by the Japanese. The federal government responded to the emergency by suspending marijuana prohibition. Patriotic American farmers were encouraged to apply for a license to grow hemp. They responded enthusiastically and grew 375,000 acres of hemp in 1943.
The argument against undertaking this massive hemp production effort today does not hold up to scrutiny.

Hemp grown for biomass makes very poor grade marijuana. The 20 to 40 million Americans who smoke marijuana would loath to smoke hemp grown for biomass, so no one could make a dime selling a farmers hemp biomass crop as marijuana.
It is time for the federal government to once again respond to our current economic emergency by utilizing the same procedure used in WWII to permit our farmers to grow American hemp so this mighty nation can once again become energy independent and smog free.

by Lynn Osburn

  1. U.S. Energy Atlas, David J. Cuff & William J. Young, FreePress/McMillan Publishing Co., NY, 1980
  2. Progress in Biomass Conversion Vol. 1, Kyosti V. Sartanen & David Tillmall editors, Academic Press, NY, 1979
  3. Brown's Second Alcohol Fuel Cookbook, Michael H. Brown (Senate hearing transcripts)
  4. Environmental Chemistry, (4th edition), Stanley E. Manahan, P.W.S. Publishers, Boston, MA, 1979
  5. Hemp for Victory, U.S. government documentary film, USDA 1942-43

Pollution: Petrol vs Hemp

Hemp can be Procured Domestically
Hemp is a Renewable Resource
Hemp is Biodegradable
Hemp can Provide Economic Gain to American Farmers and Industry


Petrol is Dangerous to Handle and Store
Petrol Contributes to Global Warming
Petrol Produces Toxic By-Products of Emission
Petrol Contributes to Sulfur Pollution (acid rain)
Procurement of Petrol Pollutes the Local Environment
Petrol is Highly Toxic to Humans and Other Animals

Hemp Biodiesel vs Diesel: Compiled from: Greenfuels and NBB

• Overall ozone (smog) forming potential of biodiesel is less than diesel fuel. The ozone forming potential of the speciated hydrocarbon emissions was nearly 50 percent less than that measured for diesel fuel.1
• Sulfur emissions are essentially eliminated with pure biodiesel. The exhaust emissions of sulfur oxides and sulfates (major components of acid rain) from biodiesel were essentially eliminated compared to sulfur oxides and sulfates from diesel.1
• Criteria pollutants are reduced with biodiesel use. The use of biodiesel in an unmodified Cummins N14 diesel engine resulted in substantial reductions of unburned hydrocarbons, carbon monoxide, and particulate matter. Emissions of nitrogen oxides were slightly increased.1
• Carbon Monoxide: The exhaust emissions of carbon monoxide (a poisonous gas) from biodiesel were 50 percent lower than carbon monoxide emissions from diesel.1
• Particulate Matter: Breathing particulate has been shown to be a human health hazard. The exhaust emissions of particulate matter from biodiesel were 30 percent lower than overall particulate matter emissions from diesel.1
• Hydrocarbons: The exhaust emissions of total hydrocarbons (a contributing factor in the localized formation of smog and ozone) were 93 percent lower for biodiesel than diesel fuel.1
• Nitrogen Oxides: NOx emissions from biodiesel increase or decrease depending on the engine family and testing procedures. NOx emissions (a contributing factor in the localized formation of smog and ozone) from pure (100%) biodiesel increased in this test by 13 percent. However, biodiesel's lack of sulfur allows the use of NOx control technologies that cannot be used with conventional diesel. So, biodiesel NOx emissions can be effectively managed and efficiently eliminated as a concern of the fuel's use.1
• Biodiesel reduces the health risks associated with petroleum diesel. Biodiesel emissions showed decreased levels of PAH and nitrited PAH compounds which have been identified as potential cancer causing compounds. In the recent testing, PAH compounds were reduced by 75 to 85 percent, with the exception of benzo(a)anthracene, which was reduced by roughly 50 percent. Targeted nPAH compounds were also reduced dramatically with biodiesel fuel, with 2-nitrofluorene and 1-nitropyrene reduced by 90 percent, and the rest of the nPAH compounds reduced to only trace levels.1

Environmental & Safety Information:

• Acute Oral Toxicity/Rates: Biodiesel is nontoxic. The acute oral LD50 (lethal dose) is greater than 17.4 g/Kg body weight. By comparison, table salt (NaCL) is nearly 10 times more toxic.1
• Skin Irritation: A 24-hr. human patch test indicated that undiluted biodiesel produced very mild irritation. The irritation was less than the result produced by a 4 percent soap and water solution.1
• Aquatic Toxicity: A 96-hr. lethal concentration for bluegill of biodiesel grade methyl esters was greater than 1000 mg/L. Lethal concentrations at these levels are generally deemed "insignificant" according to NIOSH (National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health) guidelines in its Registry of the Toxic Effects of Chemical Substances.1
• Biodegradability: Biodiesel degrades about four times faster than petroleum diesel. Within 28 days, pure biodiesel degrades 85 to 88 percent in water. Dextrose (a test sugar used as the positive control when testing biodegradability) degraded at the same rate. Blending biodiesel with diesel fuel accelerates its biodegradability. For example, blends of 20 percent biodiesel and 80 percent diesel fuel degrade twice as fast as #2 diesel alone.1
• Flash Point: The flash point of a fuel is defined as the temperature at which it will ignite when exposed to a spark or flame. Biodiesel's flash point is over 300 deg. Fahrenheit, well above petroleum based diesel fuel's flash point of around 125 deg. Fahrenheit. Testing has shown the flash point of biodiesel blends increases as the percentage of biodiesel increases. Therefore, biodiesel and blends of biodiesel with petroleum diesel are safer to store, handle, and use than conventional diesel fuel.1
Although the concept of ethanol as a fuel began as early as the first Model T car designed by Henry Ford, American usage of ethanol-blended gasoline did not begin until the late 1970s. Environmentally, the use of ethanol blends has since assisted in reducing carbon monoxide emissions as mandated by the U.S. Clean Air Act of 1990.2

Hemp Ethanol vs Petrol:

Net Reduction in Ground-level Ozone Forming Emissions: Ground-level ozone causes human respiratory problems and damages many plants but does nothing to increase ozone concentration in the stratosphere that protects the earth from the sun's ultraviolet radiation. There are many compounds that react with sunlight to form ground-level ozone, which, in combination with moisture and particulate matter, creates 'smog', the most visible form of air pollution. These compounds include carbon monoxide, unburned hydrocarbons, benzene, and nitrogen oxides (nitrous oxide and nitric oxide).2

In an effort to reduce automobile emissions that contribute to the formation of ground-level ozone, the highly populated state of California has legislated stringent automobile emissions standards. Several Canadian urban centers record similar hazardous exposures to carbon monoxide, especially during late fall and winter, and would be out of compliance if Canada implemented air quality legislation equivalent to the U.S. Clean Air Act. In Canada, southern Ontario, southern British Columbia, and parts of Nova Scotia and New Brunswick are prone to smog. Using oxygenated fuels, such as ethanol, is one way of addressing the issue of air pollution.2

The net effect of ethanol use results in an overall decrease in ozone formation. The emissions produced by burning ethanol are less reactive with sunlight than those produced by burning gasoline, resulting in a lower potential for forming the damaging ozone. In Canada, where the volatility of ethanol blends must match normal gasoline, the ozone forming potential of ethanol blends is even lower than in the U.S., where ethanol blends are allowed to have increased volatility.2

Reduction in Harmful Greenhouse Gases: The 'Greenhouse Effect' refers to the Earth's atmosphere trapping the sun's radiation. It is a term often used synonymously with 'Global Warming', which refers to the increasing average global temperature, arising from an increase in greenhouse gases from industrial activity and population growth. Greenhouse gases contributing to the Greenhouse Effect include carbon dioxide, methane, and nitrogen oxide.2

The term 'Climate Change' refers to a wide range of changes in weather patterns that result from global warming. A substantial increase in the Earth's average temperature could result in a change in agricultural patterns and melting of polar ice caps, raising sea levels and causing flooding of low-lying coastal areas.2

The use of ethanol-blended fuels such as E85 (85% ethanol and 15% gasoline) can reduce the net emissions of greenhouse gases by as much as 37.1%. Ethanol-blended fuel as E10 (10% ethanol and 90% gasoline) reduces greenhouse gases by up to 3.9%. By the year 2010, the reductions for E85 and E10 are projected to be 44.5% and 4.6%, respectively. This represents only a small percentage of the total greenhouse gas reduction required from the Kyoto Protocol. It is expected that once ethanol is made from cellulose, the greenhouse gas emissions reductions will further improve. Hemp produces four times as much cellulose per acre than trees.2

Emissions Reductions from Using Ethanol-Blended Fuels:
Reduction in Net Carbon Dioxide (CO2) Emissions: Use of 10% ethanol-blended fuels results in a 6-10% net reduction of CO2. The carbon dioxide released from ethanol production and use is less than that absorbed by the plants and soil organic matter used to produce ethanol. The carbon dioxide produced during ethanol production and gasoline combustion is extracted from the atmosphere by plants for starch and sugar formation during photosynthesis. It is assimilated by the crop in its roots, stalks and leaves, which usually return to the soil to maintain organic matter, or in the grain, the portion currently used to produce ethanol. Over time, the organic matter breaks down to CO2, but with the implementation of conservation measures, such as reduced tillage, the soil organic matter will build up. Therefore, by increasing its organic matter content, the soil acts as a significant sink for carbon dioxide.2

Volatile Organic Compounds (VOC's):Volatile organic compounds are highly reactive in the atmosphere, and are significant sources of ground-level ozone formation. Because ethanol oxygenates the fuel, there is approximately a 7% overall decrease in exhaust VOC's emitted from low-level ethanol-blended fuels relative to conventional fossil fuels. In high level blends, the potential for exhaust VOC reduction is 30% or more. 2

Sulphur Dioxide (SO2) and Particulates: As ethanol contains no sulphur, and because it promotes more complete fuel combustion, blending gasoline with ethanol would reduce any potential for these emissions and the adverse effects of sulphur. In diesel engines, where SO2 and particulates are of concern, the use of ethanol-blended diesel or neat ethanol shows a significant reduction in these emissions. 2

  1. National Biodiesel Board, Fuel Fact Sheet
  2. Environmental Benefits of Ethanol

Biofuels Facts
Compiled from NBB
What is Biodiesel?
Biodiesel is the name for a variety of ester-based oxygenated fuels made from hemp oil, other vegetable oils or animal fats. The concept of using vegetable oil as an engine fuel dates back to 1895 when Dr. Rudolf Diesel developed the first diesel engine to run on vegetable oil. Diesel demonstrated his engine at the World Exhibition in Paris in 1900 using peanut oil as fuel.
Properties of Biodiesel:
Today's diesel engines require a clean-burning, stable fuel that performs well under a variety of operating conditions. Biodiesel is the only alternative fuel that can be used directly in any existing, unmodified diesel engine. Because it has similar properties to petroleum diesel fuel, biodiesel can be blended in any ratio with petroleum diesel fuel. Many federal and state fleet vehicles are already using biodiesel blends in their existing diesel engines.
The low emissions of biodiesel make it an ideal fuel for use in marine areas, national parks and forests, and heavily polluted cities. Biodiesel has many advantages as a transport fuel. For example, biodiesel can be produced from domestically grown oilseed plants such as hemp. Producing biodiesel from hemp and other domestic crops reduces the United States' dependence on foreign petroleum, increases agricultural revenue, and creates jobs.
Advantages of Biodiesel:
  1. Biodiesel is the only alternative fuel in the US to complete EPA Tier I Health Effects Testing under section 211(b) of the Clean Air Act, which provide the most thorough inventory of environmental and human health effects attributes that current technology will allow.
  2. Biodiesel is the only alternative fuel that runs in any conventional, unmodified diesel engine. It can be stored anywhere that petroleum diesel fuel is stored.
  3. Biodiesel can be used alone or mixed in any ratio with petroleum diesel fuel. The most common blend is a mix of 20% biodiesel with 80% petroleum diesel, or "B20."
  4. The lifecycle production and use of biodiesel produces approximately 80% less carbon dioxide emissions, and almost 100% less sulfur dioxide. Combustion of biodiesel alone provides over a 90% reduction in total unburned hydrocarbons, and a 75-90% reduction in aromatic hydrocarbons. Biodiesel further provides significant reductions in particulates and carbon monoxide than petroleum diesel fuel. Biodiesel provides a slight increase or decrease in nitrogen oxides depending on engine family and testing procedures. Based on Ames Mutagenicity tests, biodiesel provides a 90% reduction in cancer risks.
  5. Biodiesel is 11% oxygen by weight and contains no sulfur. The use of biodiesel can extend the life of diesel engines because it is more lubricating than petroleum diesel fuel, while fuel consumption, auto ignition, power output, and engine torque are relatively unaffected by biodiesel.
  6. Biodiesel is safe to handle and transport because it is as biodegradable as sugar, 10 times less toxic than table salt, and has a high flashpoint of about 300 F compared to petroleum diesel fuel, which has a flash point of 125 F.
  7. Biodiesel can be made from domestically produced, renewable oilseed crops such as hemp.
  8. Biodiesel is a proven fuel with over 30 million successful US road miles, and over 20 years of use in Europe.
  9. When burned in a diesel engine, biodiesel replaces the exhaust odor of petroleum diesel with the pleasant smell of hemp, popcorn or french fries.
  10. The Congressional Budget Office, Department of Defense, US Department of Agriculture, and others have determined that biodiesel is the low cost alternative fuel option for fleets to meet requirements of the Energy Policy Act.
Biodiesel Impact:
An important factor that is not usually considered when calculating the costs and benefits of industrial feedstock materials is the macroeconomic effect associated with domestically produced, renewable energy sources. Economic benefits of a biodiesel industry in the US would include value added to the feedstock (oilseeds or animal fats), an increased number of manufacturing jobs, an increased tax base from plant operations and income taxes, investments in plant and equipment, improvement of our trade balance, and reductions in health care costs due to improved air quality and greenhouse gas mitigation.

Biodiesel has positive impacts on the state economy. An Iowa State University study concluded that three economic benefits would accrue to state from biodiesel. First, biodiesel expands demand for soybean oil, causing processors to pay more for soybeans, In addition, soybean farmers near the biodiesel plant would receive slightly higher prices for soybeans; and third, the presence of a facility that creates energy from soybeans would add value to the state's industrial and income base.

Dr. Hayes concluded that, "If the state of Iowa were to mandate the use of a 20 percent biodiesel blend in its state vehicle fleet where feasible, the total additional cost of this policy would range from $400,000 to $500,000. If it could be shown that this policy would result in a new five million gallon biodiesel plant in the state, then the policy would create more new tax revenues than it would cost and would clearly be in the best interest of the state."

Biodiesel has positive implications for production agriculture. A 1996 economic study published by the USDA Office of Energy predicted that a modest, sustained annual market for biodiesel of 100 million gallons in the US would contribute approximately seven cents to the price of each bushel of soybeans produced in the US. Based on last years harvested crop, the increase could have resulted in more than $168 million directly to the use of biodiesel.

Biodiesel has a positive impact on the US balance of trade.A 1998 biodiesel lifecycle study jointly sponsored by the US Department of Energy and the US Department of Agriculture concluded that increased use of biodiesel and biodiesel blended fuels such as B20 would substantially benefit our economy. The report concluded that national spending to import petroleum sends significant amounts of dollars out of our domestic economy every year. Biodiesel offers the potential to shift this spending from foreign imports to domestically produced energy. The report notes: "With its ability to be used directly in existing diesel engines, biodiesel offers the immediate potential to reduce our demand for petroleum in the transportation sector."

Biodiesel contributes jobs to the local economy. Economic work conducted at the University of Missouri estimated the benefits of producing biodiesel in a metropolitan region. This study concluded that 100 million gallons of biodiesel production could generate an estimated $8.34 million increase in personal income and over 6,000 additional temporary or permanent jobs for the metropolitan region.1

  1. National Biodiesel Board

Biofuels Resources

"The hydrocarbons in hemp can be processed into a wide range of biomass energy sources, from fuel pellets to liquid fuels and gas. Development of biofuels could significantly reduce our consumption of fossil fuels and nuclear power." -Department of Energy and Dr. Brooks Kelly

Fuel and Fiber
Renewable Resource Data Center
National Renewable Energy Laboratory
National Biodiesel Board
The Veggie Van
Biggest Biodiesel Links Directory
Grassroots Biodiesel
Green Fuels
Journey to Forever
Vegetable Oil:
Grease Car
Green Fuels
Global Hemp
Energy Farming in America
Pyrolysis Technology
Used Tires into Fuel
Pyrolysis Oils from Biomass (Book: Oxford U. Press)