Driving Corn Too Far

This article from the International Herald Tribune says it all, quite succinctly. Relying on corn as the main source of biofuel is going to cause a lot more problems than it solves, and the sick twist of tariffs, subsidies, and tax breaks is distorting the real impact of political decisions to push corn-based ethanol production as The New Way to drive cars. I’m excited about biofuels, and one day soon they will make economic sense: especially the really efficient ones that we don’t also need to eat, export, and feed to our livestock. Check out the first picture (then the rest, it’s neat stuff) in this slideshow from Wired magazine. Green slime+water+sun+CO2=ethanol. Sounds so simple- maybe it can get off the ground and to consumers without all that government price fixing.

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2 Responses to “Driving Corn Too Far”


  1. 1 Dan September 27, 2007 at 11:41 am

    Yeah, that was my first thought too when I first saw ads for ethanol on TV. “Won’t this be worse for the environment overall?” Good to see reporters calling their bluff.

  2. 2 virescent September 28, 2007 at 12:55 pm

    Businessweek has an interesting article on how Big Oil is highlighting the impractical impacts of massive corn ethanol use, though I do find it hard to feel sympathetic to them. It’s pretty interesting to note how much more disparaging their rate of energy return studies are than the ones cited by Wired magazine in this month’s feature article on cellulosic ethanol. Unfortunately, theres no other commercially viable source of the stuff than corn right now, which is digging everyone into this mess. Go science, go faster.


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