Using manure to reduce the cost of growing canola as a biodiesel feedstock


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A review of the literature indicated that good quality biodiesel can be used in farm equipment at concentrations from 20% (B20) to 100% (B100) depending on air temperature and the design of the engine. Using biodiesel reduces emissions of carbon monoxide, sulfur containing pollutants that contribute to acid rain, unburned hydrocarbons, and particulates. Using B100 in a diesel engine can reduce fuel efficiency by about 8%, but had no other negative impacts when operated during warm weather. Using B20 to B50 has been shown to be sufficient to make loss of fuel efficiency inconsequential and allows operation of tractors in cold weather. The objectives of this study were to compare the use of soybeans and canola as a fuel crop for on-farm biodiesel production, and to determine the benefits of using animal manure as a source of fertilizer for on-farm fuel crop production

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Using manure to reduce the cost of growing canola as a biodiesel feedstock

  1. 1. Production of Fuel Crops to MakeProduction of Fuel Crops to MakeBiodiesel Using Animal ManureBiodiesel Using Animal ManureJohn P. Chastain, Ph.D.John P. Chastain, Ph.D.Professor and Agricultural Extension EngineerProfessor and Agricultural Extension EngineerWilder Ferreira, Extension EconomistWilder Ferreira, Extension EconomistSchool of Agricultural, Forest and Environmental SciencesSchool of Agricultural, Forest and Environmental SciencesWaste to Worth Conference, Denver, ColoradoWaste to Worth Conference, Denver, ColoradoGrand Hyatt Hotel • April 1-5, 2013Grand Hyatt Hotel • April 1-5, 2013
  2. 2. Motivating Factors for Biofuels Increase in fuel prices. Desire to reduce energy costs toproduce crops. Desire to reduce exhaust emissionsthat pollute the air. Concern over green house gases.
  3. 3. Objectives To compare soybeans and canola aspotential biofuel crops for on-farmproduction of biodiesel. To determine the cost savings relatedto using animal manure as thenutrient source for on-farm biodieselproduction.
  4. 4. Is using vegetable oil for fuel in adiesel engine a new idea? No. Dr. Rudolph Diesel demonstrated hisnew invention at the World Exhibition in1900. The fuel he used was pure peanut oil. He planned for farmers to grow theirown fuel! The original engine was later modified touse petroleum diesel.
  5. 5. Biodiesel can be made from… Vegetable oils Animal fats Most any biodegradable oil
  6. 6. Biodiesel is a product oftransesterification Mix methanol and sodium hydroxide (or KOH) Mix this chemical solution, at the proper amount,with oil/fat. Add heat and mix to allow the reaction to occur toform methyl esters (known as “biodiesel”) Settle the mix into two layers – biodiesel andglycerin. Separate and wash the biodiesel. Sell the glycerin for making soap and otherproducts. – Currently has no real value!
  7. 7. Biodiesel PropertiesBiodiesel Properties Biodegradable Renewable Chemical properties similar to dieselfuels An exceptional lubricant. Contributesto longevity and cleanliness of dieselengines Smells better. Will clean an old engine.
  8. 8. But what about the energy requiredfor making biodiesel? We must remember that making fuelfrom a crop takes energy. Fuel for tractors Fertilizers and pesticides all requiresubstantial amounts of energy also. Using waste oil/fat is better but is alimited resource.
  9. 9. Energy Ratio for Soybean Biodiesel In 1998 USDOE calculated that theenergy ratio including by-productswas 3.2. Ethanol can be as high as 1.5. New study (2008) by USDA-OCE,ARS, and University of Idaho revisedthe calculation based on efficiencyimprovements (ag & proc.) and foundit to be 3.9.
  10. 10. How does the energy ratio of soybeanbiodiesel compare with petroleum diesel? Soy biodiesel w/out BP = 1.50 Soy biodiesel w BP = 3.9 (3.2, 1998) Petroleum diesel = 0.83 (DOE, 1998)
  11. 11. So why don’t we have everyoneproducing biodiesel? Energy ratio is not what controls themarket price. Supply and demand does. If I can produce enough of a productat a profit then I can build a businessaround it. Comparing ERs to $$$ is likecomparing apples to oranges.
  12. 12. The market reflects the ethicalchoice. If we used all of the US soybeancrop for biodiesel we could onlyreplace 6% of current diesel usage!(U of MN 2010) Do we grow food for hungry peopleor grow crops to feed cars?
  13. 13. Clearly we can’t look at biodieselas a fuel for most vehicles.Should farmers look atmaking biodiesel for theirown use?
  14. 14. Maybe. Need to take into account the marketvalue of the crop and cost ofproduction. It cost $1.00 to $2.00 per gal tomake biodiesel if the oil is free. If you can get waste oil you can makebiodiesel for around $1.50/ gal. Is there an oil crop that we can grow?
  15. 15. Would soybeans be a good crop foron-farm biodiesel production? One bushel of soybeans yields about1.5 gal of biodiesel (19% oil) Price of soybeans has ranged from $10to $14 per bu. The fuel value of 1 bu would rangefrom $6.67 to $9.33 per gallon of BD. If diesel cost = $4.20 it would be likeselling soybeans for $6.30/bu. Not a good idea!
  16. 16. Canola
  17. 17. Would canola be a good crop foron-farm biodiesel production? One bushel of canola yields about 2.8gal of biodiesel (40% oil) Price of canola has increased from $5to over $10 per bu. If diesel cost = $4.20 it would be likeselling canola for $11.76/bu. In South Carolina and many otherSouthern states there are few places tomarket canola.
  18. 18. Difference in properties of SoybeanBD and Canola BD Canola BD has a cetane no. of 55 Soy BD has a cetane no. of 47 Petro D has a cetane no. of 43 Canola BD has a lower cloud pointthan soy BD so it can operate asB100 at lower temperatures.
  19. 19. Canola may be a possibility Grown in fall/winter like wheat. Will work in with many commonrotations and can be double-croppedwith soybeans. Takes more N and S, but animalproducers have that in manure! In the Southeastern US we can getyields from 30 to 70 bu per acredepending on soil conditions and rain.
  20. 20. Additional considerations A farmer could make 112 to 140gal BD/ac from canola Both would require that an on-farmor near-by cooperative plant forseed crushing (no solvents) andbiodiesel production.
  21. 21. Canola requires more N than wheat Canola needs about 120 lb N/ac About 45 lb P2O5/ac About 60 lb K2O/ac (Potash) About 10 to 25 lb S/ac (based on soiltest) Can work as a second crop followingsoybeans in the Southeast or plant inrotation prior to soybeans in other partsof the country.
  22. 22. Estimate of Cost of Production Based on info from Ag Economists atClemson University and North CarolinaState University Fertilizer cost used: $0.71/lb of N, $0.61/lbof P2O5, $0.55/lb of K2O. Included costs from wheat budget for lime,herbicides, pesticides, application, planting,harvesting, hauling, labor, interest onoperating capital. Also includes cost of petro diesel.
  23. 23. Cost to produce canola with andwithout animal manure - $/acreFert. ManureSeed $20.00 $20.00N $85.20 --P2O5 $24.40 --K2O $33.00 --Lime, Pest, Herb, Fung. $57.25 $57.25All Labor & Mach. $81.00 $81.00Interest on Op. Cap. $11.29 $11.29Total VC $312.14 $173.54Cost Per Bu (50 bu/ac) $6.24 $3.47
  24. 24. What is the canola cost per gallonof BD? Get 2.8 gal BD/bu of canola With purchased fertilizer canola costis $2.23/gal biodiesel. If animal manure is used as solefertilizer canola cost is $1.24/galbiodiesel. Using manure reduces canola cost by44.4%.
  25. 25. What is the cost to make a gal ofcanola BD? Current prices range from $1.00 to$2.00 per gallon. Depends on cost of methanol, sodiumhydroxide, and equipment capacityutilization.
  26. 26. Cost to produce canola BD with andwithout animal manureFert. ManureCanola Cost ($/gal) $2.23 $1.24Cost to make the BD + CanolaLow ($1.00/gal) $3.23 $2.24Medium ($1.50/gal) $3.73 $2.74High ($2.00/gal) $4.23 $3.24Note that these values do not include the valueof meal or glycerol.
  27. 27. Value of Canola Meal Price of canola meal used as cattlefeed was assumed to be $234/ton. Will yield about 0.75 ton meal peracre with a value of $175.50/ac. At 140 gal BD/ac this would be equalto a $1.25/gal BD credit.
  28. 28. Cost to produce canola Biodieselincluding meal value as a credit.Fert. ManureCanola Cost ($/gal) $2.23 $1.24Meal credit ($/gal) - $1.25 - $1.25Cost to make the BD + CanolaLow ($1.00/gal) $1.98 $0.99Medium ($1.50/gal) $2.36 $1.49High ($2.00/gal) $2.98 $1.99Does not include costs for ASTM quality testing or taxes if sold.
  29. 29. How many acres are needed tomake 1000 gal of canola biodiesel?At 35 bu/ac – 10.2 acAt 40 bu/ac – 8.93 acAt 50 bu/ac – 7.14 acAt 60 bu/ac – 5.95 ac
  30. 30. Should farmers look at makingbiodiesel for their own use?1. If they do not have animalmanure – Maybe not.2. Animal producers have theadvantage in that they producethe needed fertilizer.3. Need to sharpen the pencil,manage costs and market meal.
  31. 31. Agricultural Mechanization &BusinessSchool of Agricultural, Forest, andEnvironmental SciencesContact:Christi Leard864.656.3250