Too High A Price: 1/4 US Grain to Gas
This is not okay. The diversion of US topsoil, ground-water irrigation, fossil-fuel manufactured fertilizer, and millions of petro-barrels-as-spoils-of-war to grow grain crops to produce gasoline for American automobiles is not okay. Only the agri-conglomerates and our government (if there is indeed any difference) think this is a good plan.
Meanwhile, our tax dollars are subsidizing the production of ethanol to the tune of 6 billion dollars every year.
From that grain (mostly corn), 330 million people could have been fed for a year. But no. The push for biofuels by American and European governments elevated food prices by 75% while over 1 billion of the world’s people go hungry.
There are perhaps some other crops than food grains that could be converted to gasoline (sunflowers seem promising and yield both food and fuel) but they too deplete our top soil, water resources and require an energy input that is a significant percentage of the energy extracted.
Basically with the bad-idea of biofuels, what we’re up against is having to play the role of sun-plant-oil energy conversion one year at a time to replace the stored sun-plant-oil stores in the ground of fifty million years of fossilized summers that we’ve foolishly used up in 100 years as if it were a never-ending pot of gold.
Meanwhile, the low-hanging fruit of conservation and energy efficiency, personal habit and engineering changes that might allow us to avoid the need for growing gasoline, continue to take a far back seat to business as usual, benefiting all the usual suspects.Â | Source: The Guardian