Posts Tagged ‘ethanol’

Crony biofuel politics wag the dog

Monday, April 13th, 2015

Source: SPPI

A governor and his son lobby for ethanol – and expect presidential candidates to endorse it

by Paul Driessen

Talk about the Norfolk terrier tail wagging the Great Dane. If they are to have any hope of winning their party’s nomination, Republican presidential hopefuls better support ethanol mandates, Hawkeye State politicos told potential candidates at the recent Iowa Agricultural Summit in Des Moines.

“Don’t mess with the RFS,” Republican Governor Terry Branstad warned, referring to Renewable Fuel Standards that require refiners to blend increasing amounts of ethanol into gasoline. “It is the Holy Grail, and I will defend it,” said Rep. Steve King, another Iowa Republican. It is vital for reducing carbon dioxide emissions and preventing dangerous climate change and weather extremes, said others.

Corn ethanol is big in Iowa, the March 7-8 Ag Summit kicked off the state’s 2016 election debates, big-time GOP donor Bruce Rastetter made his fortune from ethanol and hosted the event, and the first presidential primary will be held in Iowa. Moreover, Gov. Branstad’s son Eric directs the multi-million-dollar America’s Renewable Future campaign, which co-sponsored the summit and hopes to convince increasingly skeptical voters that the federal government must retain the RFS or even expand it. (more…)

A Chinese Perspective on Corn-Ethanol Biofuels

Saturday, September 1st, 2012

Source:  CO2 Science

Yang, Q. and Chen, G.Q. 2012. Nonrenewable energy cost of corn-ethanol in China. Energy Policy 41: 340-347.

The authors write that “interest in bio-ethanol as a substitute energy supply for nonrenewable fossil fuels has been growing since [the] 1990s in China,” and they say that “after Brazil and the US, China has recently become the third largest ethanol producer and consumer.” In this regard, however, they note that after it was suggested by Chambers et al. (1979) that the production of corn-ethanol might use more energy than it delivers, “numerous studies of the net-energy value of the bio-ethanol have been reported in many countries,” and they cite a group of 26 reports that “provide very different results, with net energy values ranging from highly positive to negative.” (more…)

Stop Burning Food During a Drought

Saturday, September 1st, 2012

Source: Town Hall  

It is always foolish for a country to order the burning of its food supply, but it takes a special kind of depravity to do it in the midst of a severe drought. Yet that is precisely what the misguided federal ethanol mandate is doing, requiring the burning of 40 percent of the corn supply at a time of shortages and sky-high prices. If no action is taken, the impact will be another spike in grocery prices next year, as well as devastation for farmers and ranchers attempting to cope with higher feed prices.

The severity of the situation is being expressed across the political spectrum and across the world. (more…)


Monday, August 20th, 2012

Source:  SPPI


CHURCHVILLE,VA—Recently I watched John Stosell’s program on “Politician’s Top Ten Promises Gone Wrong.” Ethanol’s promise gone wrong was surpassed only by the housing subsidy bubble and the promise that more and bigger Europe-style government was the answer to the future.

Six years ago, when President Bush expanded the corn ethanol mandate, I wrote that producing more corn ethanol would take too much of the scarce prime cropland the world needs to produce its food. Almost immediately, in 2008, a spike in oil prices created a global shortage of corn, with food riots in two dozen countries. (The price of corn is inevitably global.)

Now this year’sCorn Beltdrought has brought us face to face—again—with high-priced hunger for the world’s poor, no answer to global warming, and a sinful waste of the world’s currently scarce financial resources. (more…)

The folly of E15 anti-hydrocarbon policies

Thursday, April 26th, 2012

EPA’s E-15 ethanol plan is bad for our pocketbooks, environment and energy policy

by Paul Driessen

The Obama Administration’s anti-hydrocarbon ideology and “renewable” energy mythology continues to subsidize crony capitalists and the politicians they help keep in office – on the backs of American taxpayers, ratepayers and motorists. The latest chapter in the sorry ethanol saga is a perfect example.

Bowing to pressure from ADM, Cargill, Growth Energy and other Big Ethanol lobbyists, Lisa Jackson’s Environmental Protection Agency has decided to allow ethanol manufacturers to register as suppliers of E15 gasoline. E15 contains 15% ethanol, rather than currently mandated 10% blends.

The next lobbying effort will focus on getting E15 registered as a fuel in individual states and persuading oil companies to offer it at service stations. But according to the Associated Press and Washington Post, Team Obama already plans to provide taxpayer-financed grants, loans and loan guarantees to “help station owners install 10,000 blender pumps over the next five years” and promote the use of biofuels.  (more…)

Government’s ethanol mandate invites corruption

Thursday, February 9th, 2012

Source:  Washington Times

EDITORIAL: Clean green fraud

The spectacular failure of Solyndra opened a lot of eyes. Yet the bankrupt solar panel manufacturer is far from the only fly-by-night outfit to take advantage of the current “green energy” fad. No program is more ripe for abuse than the renewable fuel standards set by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

Last week, House Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Fred Upton, Michigan Republican, and Energy and Power Subcommittee Chairman Ed Whitfield, Kentucky Republican, opened their own investigation into the fraudulent outfits that sell tradeable biodiesel fuel credits to legitimate companies that need to meet the arbitrary mandates established by the EPA and Congress.

In 2007, President George W. Bush signed a law declaring 36 billion gallons of ethanol would be used in gasoline by the year 2022. Though the move purportedly would help the environment, it’s no secret that the corn fuel mandate has more to do with politicians seeking Midwestern votes. There wasn’t a lot of thought put into the consequences of this unrealistic and pointless command handed down from above. (more…)

Children of the Corn: The Renewable Fuels Disaster

Tuesday, January 10th, 2012

Source:  The American

How government policy can push more than 100 million people below the extreme poverty line

Deficit hawks, environmentalists, and food processors are celebrating the expiration of the ethanol tax credit. This corporate handout gave $0.45 to ethanol producers for every gallon they produced and cost taxpayers $6 billion in 2011. So why did the powerful corn ethanol lobby let it expire without an apparent fight? The answer lies in legislation known as the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS), which creates government-guaranteed demand that keeps corn prices high and generates massive farm profits. Removing the tax credit but keeping the RFS is like scraping a little frosting from the ethanol-boondoggle cake.

The RFS mandates that at least 37 percent of the 2011-12 corn crop be converted to ethanol and blended with the gasoline that powers our cars. The ethanol mandate is causing corn demand to outstrip supply by more and more each year, creating a vulnerable market in which even the slightest production disturbance will have devastating consequences for the world’s poor. It is time for the federal government to stop requiring cars to burn food. (more…)

10 Problems with Ethanol

Thursday, June 23rd, 2011

Source:  BestCollegesonline

The ongoing turmoil in the Middle East has resulted in higher gas prices, inconveniencing Americans who are already attempting to pick up the pieces following the recent economic downturn. In recent years, ethanol has become a popular alternative to gasoline because of its low cost and ability to burn cleanly. However, with the government’s quest to increase ethanol production and reduce our dependence on oil, the latter of which is a necessary goal, many of ethanol’s flaws have been overlooked. Whether you’re concerned for the environment or just a college kid on a budget, you should first consider the following 10 reasons to steer away from the corn-based fuel before making it a regular purchase. (more…)

Senators Snowe, Inhofe Request EPA Evaluation of E15 Waiver on Fuel Supply

Thursday, January 6th, 2011

Source: Senator Inhofe

Link to Press Release

Link to Letter

WASHINGTON, D.C. –  U.S. Senators Olympia J. Snowe (R-Maine) and James Inhofe (R-Oklahoma), Ranking Member of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, have requested the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to examine whether its recently-announced policy to allow 15 percent volume ethanol (E15) in the nation’s transportation fuel supply will adversely affect the supply of pure gasoline required for operating thousands of engines including those in snowmobiles, chainsaws, lawnmowers, boats, small airplanes and other non-road machinery.  In a letter sent yesterday to EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson, both senators inquired as to whether the EPA considered the availability of pure gasoline in granting the waiver for the use of E15, as well as what policy recommendations the Administration would suggest to ensure sufficient supply of pure gasoline. (more…)

Chu Rings Death Knell on Ethanol Or Did He?

Wednesday, December 1st, 2010

Source: Uncoverage

By Dell Hill

Energy Secretary Stephen Chu got to let the cat out of the bag on the future of transportation fuel, and the future for ethanol is none too rosy.  In fact, if one had to guess, I’d say the government has sent hundreds of billions of dollars in research and development — along with equipment investments and product — right down the old drain. (more…)

End the Ethanol Subsidies

Thursday, November 18th, 2010

Source:  Townhall

by Paul Driessen

What am I missing? There must be some aspect of our insane energy policies that I fail to appreciate.

“We the People” just booted a boatload of spendthrifts out of Congress, after they helped engineer a $1.3 trillion deficit on America’s FY-2010 budget and balloon our cumulative national debt to $13.7 trillion.

The “bipartisan White House deficit reduction panel” chimed in with a 50-page draft proposal, offering suggestions for $3.8 trillion in future budgetary savings. The proposal targets $100 billion in Defense Department weapons programs, healthcare benefits and overseas bases. It also proposes a $13-billion cutback in the federal workforce and lining out $400 million in unnecessary printing costs. And yet, amazingly, not even this independent commission was willing to eliminate the $6-billion sacred cow of annual ethanol subsidies. The current 45-cents-per-gallon tax credit for blending ethanol into gasoline automatically expires December 31, as does the 54-cents-a-gallon tariff on imported ethanol. So all senators and congressmen need to do is nothing, and beleaguered taxpayers will save six billion bucks. (more…)