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Discarded Coffee Cups Transformed Into Biofuel (Video)

Discarded Coffee Cups Transformed Into Biofuel (Video)

If there are two things people are addicted to, it’s coffee and oil. For years, scientists and inventors have been looking for cheaper, more efficient ways to provide both humans and their cars with the energy they need.

Now, it seems that microbiologists Richard Sparling and David Levin have developed a method for using discarded coffee cups to feed ethanol-producing bacteria.

Traditionally, ethanol is extracted from food sources such as corn and wheat; however, this method is much more economical. Like most coffee drinkers, the bacteria show brand preference: Tim Hortons cups are preferred to Starbucks in the production of coffee cup biofuel.

Related Reading:

U.S. Doctors Say Biofuels Could Kill 192,000+ People Per Year

The Future Of Biodiesel Fuels

German Airline Will Offer Biofuel Flights In 2011

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Image Credit: Flickr - Shortlake's Hobby

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64 comments

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3:03AM PDT on Apr 23, 2011

Cool

12:50PM PDT on Apr 14, 2011

the companies who claim we need coal etc for fuel can now see there are loads of green ways to get fuel people use manure all sorts so theres no excuse they can keep up with the world & still be green we have the tools & the maens to produce bio fuel and not harm the earth & its residents

10:06PM PDT on Apr 13, 2011

Turing trash into fuel seems like a good thought. Coffee cups, cups in general -- need to be that sturdy cup paper, or glass, or your own mug. Let's get rid of the other whatever they are made of cups used for all sources.

4:21PM PDT on Apr 12, 2011

Awesome.

12:37AM PDT on Apr 12, 2011

Clever.

11:41PM PDT on Apr 11, 2011

Hi everyone, I hear a German airline will be doing biofuel test flights this month.

9:28PM PDT on Apr 11, 2011

Not Timmies fault, it's to many lazy people not putting their cups in the proper containers!

6:27PM PDT on Apr 11, 2011

This is great. I hope they get the backing they need to implement their find. I hope they continue to find uses for other waste and get the recycling into full swing and reduce the danger of our sea and wildlife ingesting it.

3:51PM PDT on Apr 11, 2011

Everyone should recycle, and if going to a coffee shop take a reusable cup with you. We all should work on cutting back on waste. But what this video showed is a great way to help cut back on all of the waste going to landfills. I hate that our society is so wasteful.

12:22PM PDT on Apr 11, 2011

What a great way to make good!

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Beth Buczynski Beth is a freelance writer and editor living in the Rocky Mountain West. So far, Beth has lived in... more
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