A new Biofuels, Bioproducts and Biorefining study has found that using ethanol from corncobs for energy production may help reduce greenhouse gas emissions in China, if used instead of starch-based ethanol.
China has committed to limiting its emissions by 2030, and biofuel is considered the key to lower emissions from transportation. The authors note that corncobs are abundant agriculture residues, and the government should provide stronger incentives to encourage the industry to invest in corncob ethanol.
"Our life-cycle assessment suggests that corncob ethanol emits about 50% less greenhouse gas than corn ethanol," said co-author Dr. Yu Wang, of Iowa State University.
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Yu Wang et al, Lifecycle energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions from corncob ethanol in China, Biofuels, Bioproducts and Biorefining (2018). DOI: 10.1002/bbb.1920