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The Environmental Benefits Arising from the Use of Algae Biomass in Industry

  • Małgorzata Mironiuk
  • Katarzyna Chojnacka
Chapter
Part of the Developments in Applied Phycology book series (DAPH, volume 8)

Abstract

The replacement of nonrenewable raw materials with renewables is a strategy that has gained much attention in the face of high-energy consumption and increasing CO2 emissions. The introduction of algae biomass into industry could contribute to solving some of the main challenges that modern society faces: energy security, precarious water and food supplies, and climate change. Algae are considered as potential feedstock candidates for many products, such as food, feed, biofuels, biofertilizers, and cosmetics. Goods obtained from algae biomass are considered sustainable, renewable, and environmentally friendly, as they are generally formed through photosynthesis and use atmospheric CO2 and sunlight to produce oxygen and high-energy carbonaceous compounds (i.e., biomass) that can be transformed into valuable products. They can be produced locally on non-arable lands. An additional benefit of the application of algae is their productivity rates, which are higher than those of terrestrial biomass, such as corn. It has been suggested that wastewaters and wastes rich in organic and inorganic nutrients may be used in place of freshwater and fertilizers in algae cultivation. Thus, the utilization of waste and wastewaters to cultivate algae could simultaneously solve the problems of freshwater demand, the high cost of nutrients, and the need to remediate waste.

Keywords

Renewable energy Wastewater treatment Climate change Algae industry Environmentally friendly technologies 

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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Faculty of Chemistry, Department of Advanced Material TechnologiesWrocław University of Science and TechnologyWrocławPoland

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