Want to use biofuel? There’s oceans of possibilities.

Could this green slime be a goldmine?

{image by Juvetson via Flickr Creative Commons}

A British biologist has suggested that there may be an overlooked candidate to make biodiesel. Corn, soy and Palm oil are three of the main crops converted into the alternative fuel but all have significant problems with environmental impact as well as raising the price of the foods themselves.

 John Munford proposed this week that much of the algae growing on the surface of the ocean could be harvested to produce biodiesel. Utah University has been studying fresh water algae, which can produce as much as 10,000 barrels of oil per acre. Munford says that seaborne algae has the advantage over this kind of pond scum by being self-maintained by existing ecosystems. An area similar to the North Sea could produce all the biodiesel currently used in transport across the world.

 [via The Economist]