Venture Capitalists Want to Put Some Algae in Your Tank

NILAND, Calif. — The idea of replacing crude oil with algae may seem like a harebrained way to clean up the planet and bolster national security.But Lissa Morgenthaler-Jones and her husband, David Jones, are betting their careers and personal fortunes that they can grow masses of the slimy organism and use its natural photosynthesis process to produce a plentiful supply of biofuel.

“If the U.S. put 15 million acres of desert into algae production, we could produce enough volume of liquid fuels to get us off the Middle East oil addiction and give Iowa back to the songbirds,” said B. Gregory Mitchell, an algae research biologist at the University of California, San Diego, who is a friend of Ms. Morgenthaler-Jones and Mr. Jones.

The company projects that in three years it can produce some biofuel, which theoretically could eventually be produced in quantities of as much as 20,000 gallons of fuel a year per acre of algae.

[NYTimes]

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