Al Gore’s Flip-flop on Ethanol, He Had it Right the First Time
by Matt Hartwig (Renewable Fuels Association) Now he tells us: Al Gore was for grain ethanol before he was against it.
Speaking at a green energy business conference in Athens, the former vice president declared “it is not good policy to have subsidies for (U.S.) first-generation ethanol.” Grain ethanol is “a mistake,” Gore said, because its energy conversion ratios are very small, and it contributes to the food price crisis.
…As the U.S. Department of Agriculture reported in 2008, ethanol produces about 2.3 BTU of energy for every 1 BTU of inputs. That’s a big improvement from 2000 and before, when Gore supported ethanol. In fact, ethanol production keeps becoming more efficient: Over the five years preceding 2009, there was a 27% decrease in consumptive water use, a 22% reduction in fossil energy use, and a 7% increase in the amount of ethanol produced per bushel of grain.
Nor does ethanol production compete with the food supply. Using virtually the same acres as two generations ago, America’s corn farmers produced the highest corn crop on record in 2009 – 13.2 billion bushels. READ MORE and MORE (DomesticFuel.com) and MORE (Growth Energy)