Skip to comments.Ethanol: A Tragedy in 3 Acts
Posted on 04/27/2006 10:45:52 AM PDT by Brian Allen
Amid the current panic about gas prices many people are embracing ethanol. But that's not such a good idea
During the comment period for the RFG (reformulated gas) program, supporters of ethanol had argued that the volatile organic compound (VOC) emission standards in the program -- 42 U. S. C. 7545 (k) (3) (B) (i) -- would preclude the use of ethanol in RFG because adding ethanol to gasoline increases its volatility and raises VOC emissions, especially in the summertime.
Background The American Petroleum Institute v. the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency [Docket #94-1502 (Heard by the U. S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit and decided on April 28, 1995)]
If there were ever a time when the truth in advertising standards should be put back into place, it's now -- during the current (third) attempt to convince the public that the massive use of corn-derived ethanol in our gasoline supply will alleviate our need for foreign oil. Ultimately, the answer to just one question determines ethanol's actual usefulness as a gasoline extender: "If the government hadn't mandated this product, would it survive in a free market?" Doubtful -- but the misinformation superhighway has been rerouted to convince the public its energy salvation is at hand ....
(Excerpt) Read more at businessweek.com ...
Me--I'll be in the middle of corn country in another few weeks and will carefully observe for any evidence of ethanol or bio-diesel being used in the growing, cultivation, or harvest of corn---
There is a whole other issue not considered by any of the economists. That is that in most of the Great Plains states, groundwater is used to grow the crops. That water is being depleted and not replaced. Using water to grow crops to produce vehicle fuel is to me a waste. It may make economical sense (then again it may not), but the water is irreplacable for use by individual farms, communities and for use in other crops. Here are some references:
http://www.choicesmagazine.org/2003-1/2003-1-04.pdf (Conserving the Ogallala Aquifer: Efficiency, Equity and Moral Motives)
http://www.uswaternews.com/archives/arcsupply/3scisay2.html (Scientists say drought accelerating depletion of Ogallala Aquifer)
Read the first page of the first reference for some statistics. Sobering what depletion of the aquifer will mean for our agriculture.
You've nailed it.
The author of this article, Ed Wallace, has a show Saturdays 8AM to 1PM on www.klif.com and a website at insidequotmotive.com.
And to this travesty may we add the prospect of damage caused by ethanol to automotive/fuel systems? Boat owners are already starting to discover an unpleasant truth as some fiberglass fuel tanks "dissolve" into sludge when ethanol is introduced. Of course there is no provision to exclude marine fuel from this short sighted special interest group driven government-mandated ethanol additive program.
Ethanol is used for powering the driver, not the vehicle.
what no one sees is that there is a .51 tax on each gallon of ethynol, thanks to the corn lobbyists. the refining cost is unbelievable because of the greedy hands in the pot. If we could make the fuel from sugar cane, well, that would be different but nothing's going to change until our government decides to quit politicizing the problem and starts focusing on how to get this country independent of foreign oil.
What a mess--another disgraceful sellout by congress to special interests, at our expense.
Gee, that paints a cheery picture, doesn't it? And I can't see where it's wrong, either - pretty much everyone agrees the aquifers are being drained and polluted. Do you suppose anything will be done about it before they're sucked dry?
Another problem that the Left-Wing Enviroterrorists won't talk about - With the promotion and increased use of alternative fuels, i.e., corn and sugar cane based ethanol, soy bean and palm oils for blended diesel fuels, farmers in South America and elsewhere are clearcutting thousands of acres of pristine forest to meet the demand for these "greener" fuels.
Wouldn't a more sensible and more environmentally friendly solution (for the US) be to drill in ANWAR. So much for saving the Earth.
What study are you saying is incorrect and was later revised?
OK, how is that study incorrect?
Don't forget the energy used to transport the ethanol to blending plants, because it can't be mixed in at large refineries and shipped through pipelines as blended gas. This looks like a completely uneconomical mess to me.