NewsBits…June 10, 2021

Techno-economic Evaluation of Microalgal High-density Liquid Fuel

Apublic utility approach could reduce the fuel price toward cost-competitiveness, providing a key step on the path to a profitable, fully commercial, renewable fuel industry. Government’s adoption of such an approach could accelerate decarbonization, improve fuel security, and help support a local COVID-19 economic recovery. This study highlights the benefits and limitations of the development of the technology – providing insights on how governments, investors and industry can drive the technology forward.
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Why Seaweed is Definitely Having a Moment

Seaweed’s ability to offset carbon and its regenerative properties for ocean ecosystems has researchers everywhere talking. New research shows that while forests have long been considered the best natural defense in the battle against climate change, seaweed is actually the most effective natural way of absorbing carbon emissions from the atmosphere. “People are particularly excited about the potential of seaweed and what it can do for our environment,” said Luke Gardner, a biologist with the Moss Landing Marine Laboratories.
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Developing a Faster Way to Identify Microalgal Species

Identifying a potentially harmful microalgal species can take up to a few days, with scientists observing them under special microscopes or running toxicity tests. A researcher from the Nanyang Technological University’s (NTU) Asian School of the Environment is now developing a faster way of identifying these organisms with a hand-held device that can deliver results within a day. PhD student Christaline George said a portable device that can more quickly and accurately reveal what is swimming in the seas will greatly assist efficient water quality monitoring.
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“Glacier Blood” Could be a Key to Understanding Climate Change

Atop the French Alps, the normally white snow sometimes appears stained with blotches of what appears to be dark red blood. This “glacier blood,” which come from microalgae that live in the snow, is now being studied by scientists who recently trekked into the Alps as part of the AlpAlga project. The team is attempting to address many questions about glacier blood, including what environmental conditions trigger the algal blooms; how the seasonal appearance and disappearance of snow affects the algal life cycle; and how the blooms affect snowmelt and glacial retreat, on a large scale.
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South Korea’s Seawith Uses Algae for Cultured Meat

It’s been a banner year so far for cultured meat. In addition to all of the available funding since the start of 2021, there is also a growing number of startups from around the world attacking the issues of creating cell-based meat in unique ways. Among the latest such startups is South Korea’s Seawith, which is using algae as a scaffolding to grow meat, differentiating itself from other cultured meat players. The company, which is working to simulate beef steak, says this technology yields thicker “cuts of meat.”
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