Ethanol is a renewable fuel source that is produced mainly though the fermentation of grain corn in Ontario. Ethanol is can be added to gasoline to create be a higher octane fuel. Octane is the measure of a fuel’s ability to resist “knocking” or pining noises when the air/fuel mixture burns too early during combustion in an engine. High octane fuel improves performance as less fuel is burned.
Ethanol has a higher octane than gasoline which is able to
improve the quality of the gas while still being cost effective. Gasoline has
always required additives to raise the octane level, and previous additives included were lead and MTBE- both have since been banned for
their poor environmental/health effects.
Ethanol is made from grain corn which is a renewable and sustainable fuel that can help reduce greenhouse gases by up to 62%! And, ethanol is produced with grains grown by Ontario’s grain farmers, which is a great end use market for #YourFarmers.
Continue reading “Ethanol and Your Engines”
This past weekend, our Growing Connections exhibit visited the Honda Indy Toronto races in Toronto, Ontario! We were on hand for three days of racing to share stories about Ontario grain farms and to discuss #YourFarmers contributions to the bio-fuels industry.
Continue reading “Highlights from the Honda Indy Toronto”
Does growing grain for biofuels contribute to world hunger?
The simplest answer is no. There is a great discussion to be had around food and fuel and what producing grains for both in the right amount means for the economy and the environment. Continue reading “Food vs. Fuel”
This month, Darrel Good of the University of Illinoisâ€™ Department of Agricultural and Consumer Economics reported record estimates for U.S. ethanol production: more than 14 billion gallons (more than 1.3 billion gallons more than last year). The reason for this huge spike is something weâ€™ve been hearing a lot about lately: the long, hot U.S. summer, and the record corn crop that came with it.
Ethanol is a renewable fuel that is produced through grain fermentation; we produce a lot of ethanol in Ontario with mainly corn and some wheat. Canada also produces a large amount of biodiesel, which is similar but mostly made from used cooking oil and animal fats (some also comes from soy and canola oil).
While some vehicles can run on 100% ethanol, it is most commonly found as an additive in gasoline, making up as much as 10% of gasoline blends in Ontario. A car using ethanol-blended gasoline instead of unblended fuel emits lower amounts of greenhouse gases, carbon monoxide, particulate matter, and other toxic substances. A 2011 report produced by Grain Farmers of Ontario estimated that substituting 10% ethanol into gasoline in Ontario meant a 62% reduction in net greenhouse gas emissions on a per litre basis.
The Ontario corn crop wonâ€™t reach the record size that this summerâ€™s U.S. crop has, but we will likely see some of its effects. While Canada produces a lot of ethanol and biodiesel, we are still one of the worldâ€™s largest importers of U.S. ethanol. Itâ€™s unlikely that youâ€™ll see a dip in the prices at the pump because of this, but the huge supply of U.S. corn and U.S. corn ethanol will obviously continue to influence the price of corn and corn products for some time to come.
Good, D. â€śBig Year for Ethanol.â€ť farmdoc daily (4):192, Department of Agricultural and Consumer Economics, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, October 6, 2014.
â€śWhat are the Effects of Biofuels and Biproducts on the Environment, Crop and Food Prices and World Hunger?â€ť (GFO).