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  • Subject area(s): Marketing
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  • Published on: 14th September 2019
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  The rate at which the world consumes fossil fuels is constantly increasing, as well as the world's population, and with fuel consumption and lack of fossil fuels we have increasing awareness about the impact on the environment and economy in America. This is due to the fact that finding a cheaper alternative energy has become very important, especially at a time where the world is facing global repercussions such as global warming and fluctuating fuel sources.. As the world's population grows larger, the magnitude of composite demand for goods and services also enlarges, this in effect, causes a growth in the consumption of energy/fuel. As stated by Ecotricity, “our known oil deposits will last until 2052”. A combination of alternative energy sources along with the reduction of dependency on fossil fuels can reduce the effects of global repercussions. In an effort to combat this problem scientists have turned to biofuels as an answer. Biofuels are energy sources that are produced from living organisms which can potentially reduce greenhouse gas emissions from the atmosphere as well as provide an efficient biofuel industry to stabilise the American economy. It is undeniable that the United States economy, national security, and environmental stability is dependent on a reliable source of energy security such as renewable fuels or biofuels.

The most popular opposing argument of biofuels is that they would take up harvests of crops that are used as a primary food sources all over the world, specifically corn. With hunger and malnutrition issues already at the fore of the global conscience, it is worthwhile to debate whether the bigger need is to fuel or to feed the population. Critics claim that biofuels pose a threat to a global shortage of food and unpredictable environmental change. Another issue is whether biofuels are really any better at limiting the amount of greenhouse gas emissions released into the atmosphere. What needs to be understood, is that the machinery required for the production and transport of the biofuel product is run on fossil fuels, negating the positive effect the produced biofuels had originally aimed for. Despite the opposing argument however, there are many advantages of using renewable energy. The most important being is the fact that the earth will never run out of self replenished natural resources supplied by nature seeing as biofuels are produced as renewable fuels. The way we can eliminate the potential cons of renewable fuels is most pressing issues at the moment as scientists rush to find out how to hedge the negative aspects of using biofuels. The main advantage of biofuels compared with most other traditional fuel is that it is a biodegradable technology, therefore it is to a moderate degree, harmless to the environment. Supporters of biofuels argue that it can reduce greenhouse gas by the growing plants or biomass that remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, emitted by crude oils. However, critics claim that biofuels pose a threat to a global shortage of food and unpredictable environmental change.

Economically, biofuels have great potential to boost america's economy through multiple ways and approaches. The most significant approach to energy is its impact on our national security. The sovereignty and prosperity of the US is strengthened by homegrown energy supplies which we have to a very high degree. It is imperative that we leverage our natural resources to foster a sustainable, stable, and secure energy supply. It is vital that the US achieves a net import rate of 0% as this would indicate energy independence and furthermore national security (Net imports are based on the difference between consumption and production - targeting ethanol consumption mandates within each country). We need to establish a production capacity that meets our domestic consumption. There is significant opportunity for US exporters to to fill the gap not provided by domestic production in other countries.The ethanol industry, a primary branch of biofuels, expenditures provide a multitude of services such as corn, industrial chemicals, electricity, natural gas, water, labor and services such as maintenance, and insurance. Jobs supported by the ethanol industry in 2017 included employment in ethanol production, agriculture, construction, engineering, marketing and sales, logistics, power automation, emission testing, accounting, rail transportation, industrial cleaning, water management, enzyme providers, risk management service and underground tank installation. A 2017 study by ABF Economics commissioned by the Renewal Fuels Association,(RFA) indicates that the ethanol industry contributed $45 billion to America's economy in 2017 through annual operations of ethanol production, co-product output, agriculture, investments in research and development and construction. According to the study, the ethanol industry directly employed 71,906 Americans in 2017. Including indirect and induced jobs – such as those in agriculture, transportation, retail trade and services sectors – that number rose to 357,493 jobs. The study adds that the ethanol industry's economic activities in 2017 contributed $24 billion in household income. The introduction of biofuels can help bring modern energy services to rural areas particularly. 75% of the world's poor can be employed due to the greater investment are fostered. On the other hand, biofuels industry can also create new job opportunities in rural areas and a major new source of income for farmers can also be provided. And farmers can enter a market with higher prices and rising demand by producing transportation fuel. Growing energy crops is more likely to attract the kind of foreign investment that can modernize their agricultural practices as well as increase their food production

b. Environment

A biofuel can be defined as fuel derived from biomass which is found in many living biological material. Living organisms and their metabolic byproducts such as manure have been successfully used as biomasses. A large amount of biofuels come from specifically grown agricultural crops such as sugarcane and corn. Biofuels pose environmental advantages to producers and consumers. In reality the fuel used by everyone today is made from corn and could plant corn forever, but eventually it will cause land exhaustion, making it harder to grow any crop at all. Once the land is dried and unable to reproduce anymore food or supply, there will be no more oil production left in the world. This not only increases the process of fuel making, but it also increases the price range. The US government has mainly relied on corn for it's biofuel, which in return can only harm and damage the local or other nations environment. Seeing as they are renewable fuels, biofuels made from crops can, potentially, be grown in vast quantities and thus carry a much lesser threat of running out than conventional fossil fuels currently being used. This also means that biofuels can be produced and utilized on an infinitesimally shorter time scale than fossil fuels, which need millions of years to naturally decompose and form and have disastrous effects on the environment. Biodiesel burns much cleaner than petroleum diesel

Biodiesel is nontoxic and biodegradable. Compared to petroleum diesel fuel, which is refined from

crude oil, biodiesel combustion produces fewer air pollutants such as particulates, carbon monoxide,

sulfur dioxide, hydrocarbons, and many other harmful toxins. biodiesel to be carbon-neutral because the

plants that are the sources of the feedstocks for making biodiesel, such as soybeans and palm oil trees,

absorb carbon dioxide (CO2) as they grow. The absorption of CO2 by these plants offsets the CO2 that

forms while making and burning biodiesel. Most of the biodiesel produced in the United States is made from

soybean oil. Some biodiesel is also produced from used vegetable oils or animal fats, including recycled

restaurant oil and grease. Ethanol has been the more preferred fuel alternative that is being widely

developed all over the United States because of its greater potential in solving the existing environmental

and economic troubles that petroleum oil creates. It is a domestically and organically- produced energy that

proves to have more substantial benefits than limitations. Although the technology of manufacturing ethanol

has not yet been fully-developed to be absolutely cost-effective and advantageous, its wide use has been

started by concerned motorists all over the country, hoping to contribute in the preservation of the ozone

layer and the reduction of dependence in high-priced imported oil. Argonne National Laboratory, in the

above mentioned study, concluded that greenhouse gas emissions from ethanol, including LUC, is 19

percent to 48 percent (depending on the energy efficiency of the plant) or on average, 34 percent, lower

than gasoline.

c. Foreign

According to United States Department of Agriculture Economic Research Service report, “The United States is the world's largest exporter of ethanol, providing 30 percent of global exports in 2016. Half of those exports went to countries that have historically imported ethanol from the United States (Brazil, Canada, and the European Union (EU)”. The advancement of the production of biofuels and the reduction of imported oils is instrumental in advancing tot protect the environment, strengthen the U.S. economy, and promote energy independence. Since biofuels are manufactured from a wide range of crops and resources that can be grown almost universally, each country could potentially become self-reliant in matters of energy demands, ending the domination of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries. First and foremost, the United States must move away from traditional oil consumption and convert to biofuel. Oil is the largest sole contributor to our trade deficit and if America was a able to domestically produce more at home and export less, the economy would be much alleviated of stress from debts. Records state that more than $1 billion a day in funds are sent to oil exporting countries. Magnified with ongoing conflicts in the Middle East as well as other oil producing nations, this has left America indebted to much of the world through oil trade. There is an increasingly important in the use of biofuels as a replacement, now being considered by many countries such as the United Stated, by 2025 aim to replace 75% of the oil coming from the Middle East. By gradually transitioning from fossil fuels to biofuels, the United States can free itself from foreign dependence. An opportunity of developing countries to enhance national energy security has been provided by biofuels, by reducing expenditures and dependence on fluctuated price of oil. The initial biofuels programme took about 4 billion US dollars, and nowadays 100 billion US dollars are saved because of the programme. Our economic and national security, we must reduce our dependence on foreign sources of energy – including on the natural gas that is a source of electricity for many American homes and the crude oil that supplies gasoline for our cars. Investing in this from of clean energy will drives economic growth, job creation, broadens the tax base, adds value to crops and farmland and attracts new investments from foreign nations.

4. Conclusion

The energy security of The United States of America severely depends on the actions taken within the next few years to reduce its dependency on oil and improve its usage of biofuel. The process to become less dependent on foreign energy sources will be crucial for the stability and growth of the nation in the upcoming years. Re-examining subsidies and tariffs are essential if any positive change is to be made. Tariffs to imported fuels would increase the benefits of american made fuels as well as paying farmer to produce biofuels through government subsidies. Gas taxes could cause an greater reliance on biofuels and tax breaks would ultimately encourage the use of biofuel cars. Biofuels have advantages and disadvantages, for the advantages, biofuels is safe because it enhances national energy security and helps the country by saving money instead of using import oil. Also, it can create major job opportunities which would increase economic prosperity. And the most important advantages are, using biofuels can definitely alleviate the pressing problem of carbon emission. On the other hand, biofuels have disadvantages as well, deforestation rate will increase as more land is cleared for the harvest of corn, thus affecting the biodiversity.

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