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Algae Could Boost Jobs in San Diego

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Aired 4/19/09

Greening the economy could literally mean greening your car. A new group in San Diego wants to produce algae-based fuels. KPBS Environment Reporter Ed Joyce has details.

Academic and industry researchers are banding together in an effort to make affordable algae-based fuels a reality within 10 years.

The San Diego Center for Algae-based Biofuels includes top researchers from a variety of academic areas along with engineers and other specialists.  

UC-San Diego's Steve Kay says they want to find out if algae can be used to power our cars.

Kay: So that we can really exploit interdisciplinary talent to try to push algae as a platform forward and really test if it's going to be a commercially-viable solution for the production of fuel.

Kay says algae could create a new type of agriculture in San Diego and Imperial counties.
 
Kay
: Essentially finding ways of harvesting and busting open these algae and extracting something that they already know how to do which is to make molecules that we can absolutely put into the fuel supply.

He says algae research is at a relatively early stage and a lot of funding is needed to push the development of slime.

Ed Joyce, KPBS News.

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