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Researchers claim new bioenergy alternative from hydrogen

A new bioenergy alternative for the future is being created by researchers at the University of Birmingham, UK.

By creating clean hydrogen from food waste this research hopes to provide answers to the questions concerning whether the mass production of bioethanol using sugarcane is a long-term sustainable solution, particularly in countries like Brazil.

‘Bioethanol is the current biofuel of choice in Brazil but our research shows the huge potential for biohydrogen to be the fuel for the future,’ says professor of applied microbiology Lynne Macaskie. ‘Biohydrogen could even be made from the wastes from bioethanol production, giving two biofuels for the price of one.’

Macaskie believes any such positive outcome would allow many manufacturers to convert the hydrogen waste to clean electricity rather than just disposing of it as they do currently.

‘However, more work and research by focused teams is needed as agricultural wastes are tougher for bacteria to digest,’ she adds.