Hemp ethanol could replace fossil fuels.
In 1941, Henry Ford created the first automobile than ran entirely on fuel created from biomass. Almost 100 years later, we’re only beginning to follow his example and transition to more renewable fuels. Hemp ethanol could, in fact, replace fossil fuels.
In Henry Ford’s day, there was already a worry about fueling our world with petroleum energy sources due to the shortage of domestically produced oil, gas, and coal. These fears, unfortunately, were realized in the 1970s with the oil crisis, which saw the price of oil skyrocket due to the sanctions imposed on the US by overseas nations with control of their oilfields. Now, in the 21st century, we are finally moving toward what we should’ve established as the main fuel source for our cars, generators, and the world. Hemp.
Hemp has been used for thousands of years for textiles, food, clothing, and many more applications. While the common refrain from recreational cannabis users worldwide has been to “legalize it, dude,” even they don’t realize how much cannabis already impacts their day-to-day lives.
It is used in medicine, bio-degradable plastic, and even the paint that goes onto our walls. We are literally surrounded by hemp, and most people aren’t even aware of it. Ford was on the money when he encouraged the production of our domestic hemp industry. However, the oil and gas lobbies are quite powerful and have been so for a very long time. It’s only in the past 30 years that the long-term effects of fossil fuel production and usage are showing their ugly faces, and only now is it becoming a priority for governments worldwide to divest from fossil fuels and invest in renewable energy. The truth is hemp ethanol could replace fossil fuels.
The reason why hemp ethanol makes more sense to produce and use in our lives is because of the byproducts of industrial hemp production. Hemp bio-fuel is time intensive and requires the usage of the seeds of hemp, which are not nearly as common or easy to harvest as the stalks.
These stalks are considered waste in the hemp industry and are often left to compost when they just as easily could be used to create a cheap, renewable alternative to fossil fuels. And not only is it cheap to produce, but it’s good for our environment. Hemp can grow well in soil that otherwise would be considered low-grade or nutritionally deficient and captures carbon better than other plants, like trees, for example.
Many in the environmental movement understand it will take a multi-pronged approach to address the climate crisis. And though many would love to see everyone driving Teslas, the reality might be what Henry Ford predicted way back in the 40s.