More myths about Ethanol exposed

Gas prices are skyrocketing as the high-demand summer season rolls in, and Bloomberg News predicts that some pumps may soon hit four dollars per gallon.

Along with high gas prices come the calls for Americans to diversify our energy sources and reduce our dependence on foreign oil. But be skeptical of politicians who tout ethanol as the clean-burning solution to our energy crisis.

The Miracle Solution?
The idea that ethanol is the answer is a myth. Ethanol is one thing that both Republican and Democratic candidates agree on this campaign season. Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., and former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani voice their support for the corn-based fuel, and Sens. Hillary Clinton, D-N.Y., Barack Obama, D-Ill., and former Sen. John Edwards want the government to subsidize ethanol production. According to former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, "The economics of ethanol make more and more sense."

Ethanol "makes sense" to these politicians because, they say, it's a clean and renewable energy source that will slow global warming, protect the environment and reduce our dependence on foreign oil. Plus, it just sounds good: Ethanol's made from corn, and we grow corn, so it just seems natural.

But if ethanol made so much sense, we wouldn't have to subsidize it or mandate its consumption. Jerry Taylor of the Cato Institute said, "If you can make a profit in this economy by putting something on the market, the government doesn't need to put a gun to your head."

But ethanol producers do need the help of government subsidies if anyone is going to buy their product, because without subsidies it would cost much more than gasoline. And critics point out that the idea that ethanol is good for America in terms of energy prices, foreign policy or the environment is a myth. More at ABC news

Leave a Reply