Energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions from enzyme and yeast manufacture for corn and cellulosic ethanol production

Jennifer B. Dunn, Steffen Mueller, Michael Wang, Jeongwoo Han

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

51 Scopus citations

Abstract

Enzymes and yeast are important ingredients in the production of ethanol, yet the energy consumption and emissions associated with their production are often excluded from life-cycle analyses of ethanol. We provide new estimates for the energy consumed and greenhouse gases (GHGs) emitted during enzyme and yeast manufacture, including contributions from key ingredients such as starch, glucose, and molasses. We incorporated these data into Argonne National Laboratory's Greenhouse Gases, Regulated Emissions, and Energy Use in Transportation model and observed that enzymes and yeast together contribute 1. 4 and 27 % of farm-to-pump GHG emissions for corn and cellulosic ethanol, respectively. Over the course of the entire corn ethanol life cycle, yeast and enzymes contribute a negligible amount of GHG emissions, but increase GHG emissions from the cellulosic ethanol life cycle by 5. 6 g CO2e/MJ.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2259-2263
Number of pages5
JournalBiotechnology Letters
Volume34
Issue number12
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 2012

Keywords

  • Enzymes
  • Ethanol
  • Life-cycle analysis
  • Yeast

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Bioengineering
  • Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology

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