Researchers From UMaine Are Turning Wood Into Crude Oil
At some point, growing up here in Maine, we've all heard the term "yankee ingenuity". But up in Old Town, some researchers, in conjunction with the University of Maine at Orono, are pushing that concept to the limits. And pretty much all of the world stands to benefit.
The short story, is that they're taking wood waste.... pulp, sawdust, even old cardboard boxes, and they turn it into a form of biofuel. Through a series of processes, wood waste becomes crude oil. The folks behind the whole project, collectively known as the Forest Bioproducts Research Institute, are confident in the future applications of such a fuel, for a variety of reasons.
It runs super clean compared to regular fossil fuels... up to 60% cleaner. It has no sulphur, and best of all, it has the potential to invigorate the forest economy by powering sawmills, and running forest vehicles. It would basically be another way to keep using the wood waste that is now burned, or buried, or simply left behind. It can now become the driving force in slashing operating costs.
There's a lot of heavy science going on here, that honestly, I barely understand. But the fact that a new industry could be born of this, and potentially create tons of jobs in a long-standing Maine industry, is a no-brainer. Read all about it in this piece from NewsCenterMaine.com.
And who knows? Maybe Maine will end up saving the world from running out of gas?!