DuPont and BP announced a breakthrough in biofuels on Tuesday, promising production of biobutanol, a plant-derived fuel more advanced than ethanol, according to The Financial Times. Biobutanol produces more energy than ethanol (up to 95 percent of the energy of conventional fuel compared to ethanol’s 75 percent), and can be used at a greater percentage than ethanol without modification to engines. Demand for ethanol in the U.S. has led to record trading volumes for corn and soaring investor interest in ethanol companies. DuPont and BP hope biobutanol will do the same for surplus sugar in the UK, despite the fact that it is more difficult and expensive to produce than ethanol. Production of nine million gallons of biobutanol is expected in 2007.
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