One Last Kick at the Ethanol Can
We could go on about the silliness of ethanol from corn, and usually do; however it is a horse that has been flogged to death on TreeHugger,. However, if you need a well written and powerful indictment of ethanol, you should read Jeff Goodell's article in Rolling Stone:
Ethanol Scam: Ethanol Hurts the Environment And Is One of America's Biggest Political Boondoggles.
He starts strongly: "The great danger of confronting peak oil and global warming isn't that we will sit on our collective asses and do nothing while civilization collapses, but that we will plunge after "solutions" that will make our problems even worse. Like believing we can replace gasoline with ethanol, the much-hyped biofuel that we make from corn." and explains the political pressures that lead so many politicians like Obama, Clinton, McCain, and Edwards, who should know better, to support it.Before the "corn is just the first step" people jump in, Jeff covers that, quoting Vinod Kholsa, but explaining how cellulosic ethanol, if it can be scaled up to production, is still no answer. "replacing fifty percent of our current gasoline consumption with cellulosic ethanol would consume thirteen percent of the land in the United States - about seven times the land currently utilized for corn production. "
The facts are straightforward: Filling the tank of 1 SUV with pure ethanol consumes more than 450 pounds of corn, enough calories to feed a person for a year. "if we rely on ethanol to save the day, we could soon find ourselves forced to make a choice between feeding our SUVs and feeding children in the Third World. And we all know how that decision will go. "