Currently, diesel fuel use in North Dakota is about 165 million gallons per year. About 85 million gallons are used on farms in crop production.
Potential fuel from oil crops
In 2001, about 2.1 million acres of soybeans were produced in the state with an average yield of about 33 bushels per acre. Soybeans contain about 18% oil so the average oil production per acre is about 49 gallons. If this oil were converted to an ester fuel, more than 100 million gallons of fuel could be produced. Soybean ester fuel could replace all the on-farm diesel fuel needs in the state. Other oil crops grown in the state could be used to produce additional fuel. Following table shows the production potential of biodiesel from the main oil crops grown in North Dakota.
|Potential fuel from North Dakota oil crops |
|Crop||Acres in State||Yeild||Oil||Gallons|
Every gallon of vegetable oil will produce about 1 gallon of biodiesel. The total input/output energy ratio shows a very positive return. For every BTU of energy used to produce the crop and process the oil, about 3.3 BTU's is produced as fuel.
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