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Methanol, a Potentially Renewable Energy Resource

What is Methanol?

Methanol is a colorless, odorless, somewhat corrosive, slightly flammable liquid, also called methyl alcohol or wood alcohol. Methanol is a renewable energy source that can be produced from just about anything containing carbon. Potential sources include natural gas, coal, and biomass. Currently most methanol is produced from natural gas, or methane, using steam, pressure, and a catalyst. Methane, a greenhouse gas, is also given off by decomposing vegetable matter in landfills – another source that could be tapped for methanol production. In order for methanol to be renewable, it must be produced from biomass. (CNG) or liquefied (LNG).