Honors College Thesis


Biodiesel in Oregon : an agricultural perspective Public Deposited

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  • Biodiesel is a renewable, non-toxic, and biodegradable diesel fuel made from agricultural feedstocks. With a vibrant agricultural industry, Oregon is positioned to play an important role in the future of this energy source. Limiting factors to widespread biodiesel production include low value of biodiesel feedstock crops, lack of infrastructure, lagging consumer demand, and high production costs. These factors are slowing the growth of the biodiesel industry in Oregon. This project identified opportunities and limitations for a partnership between agriculture and biodiesel in the Willamette Valley and the state of Oregon more broadly. In-depth interviews and a survey of farmer attitudes toward, familiarity with, and experience with biodiesel were conducted. Findings from this survey indicate that a majority of farmers are aware of the role agriculture can play in the future of biodiesel, agree that they have an opportunity to help reduce our nation’s dependence on foreign oil, believe that biodiesel will be an important national market for Oregon agricultural products in the next ten years, and are interested in the ability of biodiesel to provide a profitable crop. The opportunities are obvious; farmers are positively predisposed to biodiesel and wait for openings to become full participants in Oregon’s biodiesel future.
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