I see the the algae economy is in lock step with the hydrogen economy: (perpetually) 20 years away.
We still have so much waste from which biodiesel can be made in a commercially profitable way that pursuing more than a theoretical (as opposed to economically practical) means of converting algae to fuel is ludicrous.
As an example: There is currently enough waste cooking oil dumped (illegally) into the NYC sewer system to produce sufficient biodiesel fuel for every diesel engine in the five boroughs. Garbage trucks, busses, back-up generators for hospitals, etc. That does not include the used oil properly recycled, just the amount poured down the drain.
Algae as a feedstock is nice to consider, but there are easier pickings that are currently more practical, and will additionally help reduce our waste stream volume. Producing fuel from a virgin resource when producing fuel from recycling waste (food oil, butcher rendering, inedible crop) is less energy intensive isn't a logical plan of action.
Postulating that the future possibility of algae's CO2 absorption be used as justification for continued fossil fuel burning isn't much more than putting the issue of cleaning up our dirt on someone else at some time else.
wow, what a worthless website. I now feel it is urgent to get my "powered by sustainable whale oil" bumper stickers printed.
algae works nicely on some scales, as you can burn it, and pump the exhaust threw your growing tank. There by making CO2 from burning it, which the algae then uses to grow and spits out O2. If you dry and heat algae (with out O2) you make a flammable gas which you could burn in an engine much like propane or NG. I've done some research of photosynthesis rates by square m and compared them to the exhaust output of a car... lets just say at noon on a really clear day, with a tiny high efficiency car you would need a large green house, really large, so large that it would require a lot of power to drag along, so you'd need an even bigger green house, so you'd need more power.......... Kind of like running your car off on demand HHO (but that's for another thread...)
I see algae as a much better source of fuel than corn, and i'm sure it will be taking off soon. Buy stocks in algae now! or maybe in companies that make glass tubing, water pumps, and fancy water treatment systems.