Skip to comments.Time to kill crop-derived biofuels
Posted on 03/29/2008 3:33:03 AM PDT by stickman20089
Yet another prominent scientist has joined the chorus against crop-derived biofuels, as Lewis Page reports.
Dr Richard Pike, chief of the Royal Society of Chemistry, has said that biofuels are a "dead end" and "extremely inefficient", and that the government was wrong to impose a requirement for 5 per cent biofuel content in motor fuel by 2010.
Dr Pike points out that "the 80 tonnes of kerosene used for a one-way commercial flight to New York is equivalent to the annual biofuel yield from an area of approximately 30 football pitches." At this rate it would take the whole of Britain's farmland just to run Heathrow.
It really is time to stop this nonsense. To produce these crops people are farming intensively, using more fertilizers and pesticides. In poorer countries people are cutting down virgin rainforest to plant biofuel crops. Poor people are finding corn and wheat priced out of their market, and the tanks of 4x4s are taking the food from the plates of poor families.
(Excerpt) Read more at adamsmith.org ...
“...30 football pitches...”
(Love those quaint Brits!)
I’m glad more people are coming around on this. Now maybe the price of beef will come back down.
Foodstuffs can make fuel.
By using corn as fuel it has raised prices making farming profitable.
Besides it makes foodstuffs more expensive for other countries that don’t raise enough for their own populations.
The Mid-East makes us dig deep for their fuel, let’s make them dig deep for our foodstuffs.
Use food as a weapon.
I can mostly get by without fuel but I gotta eat.
We are in the process of transitioning to a significant presence of ethanol based fuels in our society but we are also faced with a Chicken and Egg issue. The Government is pushing through this barrier via a number of programs.
Ultimately the step up to E85 as a significant player in the auto fuel market will bring down the cost of Oil and Ethanol both. And, in the pipeline are newer technologies that will replace grain based ethanol in the next 5 years.
There was an article in the paper the other day about a company in Wisconsin making biofuel from switch grass. It’s cheaper to produce and more efficient.
I disagree strongly with this article. While ethanol is a dead end, biodiesel is not, and there’s no need to throw the baby out with the bath water when a number of technological breakthroughs are being made that make production of biodiesel and even ethanol to a certain extent more practical and less harmful to the food supply for this country.
This article might be of interest to you.
By using corn as fuel it has raised prices making farming profitable.
1960 Corn $1.05/bu
1960 New Chevrolet $2500.00
2008 Corn $4.00
2008 New Chevrolet $32,000.00
Corn should be $13.40/bu
1960 New combine $7,500.00
2008 New Combine $250.000.00
Corn should be $34.66/bu
The American farmer is still getting the shaft.
Oil is the lifeblood of the American economy, it cannot be replaced at this time, or in the near future.
I encourage you to read Walter William’s recent article on this topic. Please do so and give us your opinion on what he has to say.
For instance; to produce one gallon of ethanol, from to seed to “fuel”, more than one gallon of fossil fuel is used.
Only Texans are against ALL alternatives to oil.
We currently (2008 Farm Bill )pay farmers NOT to plant 38m acres.
Man kind has always used food for transportation fuel.
A 1,000 pound horse consumes 3% of its body weight daily.
It really is time to stop this nonsense.
Biofuels are nothing more than taxpayer and consumer payoffs to farm states and their politicians.
I’m not a Texan, it’s just insanity to not increase the productiion of oil BEFORE an alternative is discovered. No, an alternative to oil has not been discovered yet.
If people intended to ruin the American economy what would they be doing differently?
I take umbrage with your Anti-Texan rant. I’m for alternate fuels. Alternate fuels that make sense. The farm bill is another animal entirely. That has been awful for years.
Yes they are but it is getting better for a change.
What the Brit's may do or not do will have no affect here in the U.S. on the “price of beef” or any other commodity that is grain based, a derivative of, or has content. Unfortunately for we Americans the “fix is in” when it comes to ethanol production. Although it is now well documented that ethanol is produced at a net loss of energy, takes 1.25 gallons of hydrocarbon based energy to produce 1.0 gallon of ethanol - then factor this against fact that ethanol gets about 75% MPG that gasoline does, one can see the folly of this endeavor. But sadly, we have made whores of the upper-midwest farmers and any politician of either party who so much as dares whisper a negative word against ethanol/subsidies will do so at their own peril in the upcoming state and national elections. So, long story short, we are stuck with ethanol and consequential high prices of everything from corn flakes to beef. Just one more example of the consequences of government interference in the market place...
C’mon, someone, anyone make the case FOR ethanol.
Tell us why we should sit quietly by while oil is forsaken and the American economy is ruined by this alternate fuel nonsense AND the great man-made climate change hoax.
I ask the ethanol defenders to be upfront on whether they are farmers or in the ethanol industry in any capacity. There are those here involved in the building of ethanol plants that cannot be swayed by any logical discussion.
I also ask any man-made climate change defenders to be upfront on whether they are getting federal grant money to study the effects of man-made climate change from the annual $5 billion budgeted for the study. Or if they are government school educators, or anti-capitalists, communists, socialists or just simply anti-American.
Yep, the West needs to use food, medicine, water, and all the other essentials as a weapon against the Enemy Oil Monopolies...a little shared pain would be helpful.
Did you forget your sarcasm tag?
The USDA was notified yesterday that US exporters are set to ship nearly 400,000 metric tons of corn to foreign buyers, so obviously no one is worried about the price of our food here.
Argentina is suspending the export of their wheat, and other countries are banning grain exports, but the good old USA is shipping our grain out even when the crop forecasts for this year point to shortages here. Free traitors don’t care about your food bill.
Sounds like foreign farmers are getting their jobs outsourced.
Why would Mr. Boucher need a sarcasm tag?
In centuries past, it was common to deny food, water and medical relief to your enemies. Why would this be any different? The oil cartel is our enemy, make our enemy suffer. I don’t believe in sending humanitarian help of any kind to people who hate us.
only lib/dem tree huggers prefer to put foodstuffs into energy supplies instead of drilling for the massive oil reserves lying under the US!!!!
eventually the US will be the consumate turd world nation...not enough fuel...not enough food....but plenty of turd world illegal invaders that are in the process of destroying the social/economic fabric of the US in the name of diversity, etc.!!!!
Our enemy? The leading foreign exporters of oil to the United States are Canada and Mexico. And of course STILL a large percentage of oil is produced domestically. All oil and oil producers are NOT the enemy. That attitude will ruin us, we should be encouraging the oil industry to increase oil production and rifing capabilities. Not villifying them.
> Our enemy? The leading foreign exporters of oil to the United States are Canada and Mexico. And of course STILL a large percentage of oil is produced domestically. All oil and oil producers are NOT the enemy. That attitude will ruin us, we should be encouraging the oil industry to increase oil production and rifing capabilities. Not villifying them.
Canada is OK, but Mexico is our enemy. They would and do screw us over every chance they get.
And, in the pipeline are newer technologies that will replace grain based ethanol in the next 5 years.
Where will these new ethanol plants be located?
The oil cartel is an enemy who has us by the family jewels, thanks to our refusal to drill for oil and build nukes in this country.
We cut off their food & medicine (which most of their people never see anyway) and a few more people die, but nothing really changes.
They cut off our oil supply and trigger an economic collapse in this country.
The proper way to be detrimental to oil producing nations that are our enemies would be to INCREASE domestic oil production, not villifying the whole industry and ruining the American economy.
I would like to know these scientists agendas. Are they simply environmentalists who want to shut down all human activity?
No, these scientists are getting paid to forsake their country.
Oh, negate that last comment! These scientists are practical scientists who are speaking out against the divorce of common sense..
I was thinking of scientists receiving grants to study the affect of “man-made climate change.
“I would like to know these scientists agendas. Are they simply environmentalists who want to shut down all human activity?”
The short answer is: They are de facto Gramscian communists. Therefore, they wish to shut down all capitalist countries, especially America.
NOT GOING TO HAPPEN
Too much $$$$$ involved and too much power and influence from the albeit small farmer/ethanol lobby.
We could have been okay, except W (who could have vetoed, much less supported this madness) has gone off the deep end and gravitated over to the "dark side."
Sarc...I just wanted to rant before the coffee kicks in. lols.
“These folks bashing on BioFuels based on the current moment are just stupid.”
Some folks are so stupid, they don’t know how stupid they are.
Sure, if this whole thing really is about alternatives to oil...which it's not.
Well, that just the corn average Americans refuse to eat. < /sar >
All kidding aside, these probably are contracted sales. With the price of corn going though the roof, I imagine exports will decrease in the future
Then read how we gave up on getting free because some clueless people decided to love oil more than freedom.
The rest has been known for a while, but you can't switch to major use of Ethanol as a fuel without having any Ethanol to switch to. This is a sucker play for those who want to give over the care and guidance of our country to foreign interests.
You are just knee jerking. Learn more, think more.. this war will not be won in Iraq alone. This is the time to get even more determined to exert our freedom.
Understand, Grain based Ethanol is a passing thing.. but a necessary thing. Do not let folks talk you into surrendering here at home.. when we are winning abroad.
Cue the HEMP lobby!
Just wait til there’s a DROUGHT!!! Idiocy!
Just wait til there’s a DROUGHT!!! Idiocy!
This is because we are vulnerable, more than folks apparently understand.
If we withdrew ethanol from Gasoline mixes now, the price of Gasoline would rise perhaps significantly. Not because, we would have less fuel, though this would probably tighten the fuel market considerably.. but as we will have given up our escape plan, the futures market would push the price of a barrel to $150 or more with no possibility of relief.
One of the distortions that is being used is that it takes more fuel to create a gallon of ethanol than a gallon of ethanol, and this is probably true.. but its not like you think. Not a gallon of gasoline, but equivalent energy such as Natural Gas, and fuel in creating the various components such as the yeasts and processing the waste materials. Such that we gain more than 1 gallon per gallon of ethanol produced. But, the problem of mass producing enzymes and yeasts for truly large scale production from non-grain sources is being worked out and this takes time and capital and testing at scale.
This has been laid out as a national security priority and not as as the most economical move in the short term but buying oil in a tight fuel market is not the most economical move.. but we will be glad if one day we find our supply cut by 25%.
Now many folks want to get us into a corner so badly that we have to start drilling and refining US Oil reserves, but that corner may not be something we get to turn. Its very much like deciding to elect a Democrat to show the rascally Republicans they need to shape up. Folks tried that in 2006 and see what we got, more Democrats and tax increases already passed to make the additional cost of fuel a joke compared to what they plan to take out of your pocket directly.
This is how conservatives are knee jerked into self-defeat.
Don't fall for it.
I suggest you take your wife for a Burkha fitting.
Grain based ethanol is costly and as the price of fuel and grain goes up, it gets more costly. You don't have to whine, knee jerk or legislate to stop its production. Economics are against it in the long term, but the short term requires ethanol to be produced in mass quantities before we attempt to produce it in truly massive quantities.
Right now, many different technologies are being tested, literally tens of test plants all competing to find which processes deliver the goods. The plan is to produce Ethanol for less than $1.50 per gallon by 2011 and that would force the price of gasoline down to about $2.30 more or less over the next 10 years. And by 2022, we will have replaced our entire dependence on the Mid-East.
Which means we still need to produce or buy the other 75% from Canada, Mexico and our own production.
Drawing it in a cartoon doesn’t make it true. I need, maybe 10 gallons of fuel to plant, fertilize, spray and harvest an acre of corn. That acre will yield 200 bushels, which in turn will yield almost 600 gallons of ethanol and 3,600# of distillers dried grains.
We can import ethanol from Brazil for far less than we produce it here. US ethanol production is payola to special interests, farmers and their politicians, nothing else.