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Energy briefs: New life form could turn CO2 into fuel

Energy briefs: New life form could turn CO2 into fuel

An American scientist says he is creating a life form that feeds on climate-ruining carbon dioxide to produce fuel. Geneticist Craig Venter's potentially world-changing "fourth-generation fuel" project follows his work mapping the genetic diversity of the oceans. "We have modest goals of replacing the whole petrochemical industry and becoming a major source of energy," Venter says. "We think we will have fourth-generation fuels in about 18 months, with CO2 as the fuel stock." Simple organisms can be genetically re-engineered to produce vaccines or octane-based fuels as waste, according to Venter. Biofuel alternatives to oil are third-generation. The next step is life forms that feed on CO2 and give off fuel such as methane gas as waste, according to Venter. "We have 20 million genes which I call the design components of the future," Venter said. "We are limited here only by our imagination." 

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