“In 2012, the Renewable Fuel Standard mandates the use of 12.2 billion gallons of corn ethanol—forcing as much as 40 percent of the dwindling U.S. corn crop into ethanol production. Meanwhile, the worsening drought is beginning to impact corn prices—they’ve spiked upwards of 50 percent since June. When corn prices rise, so do the prices of products that rely on corn. TheU.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) predicts increases in domestic prices of beef, dairy products and eggs ranging from 3 to 5 percent through 2013. Globally, the U.S. is the largest exporter of corn. Rising food prices will hit people in developing countries that rely on imports of our grains most severely. Higher grain prices in the U.S. are already triggering global food price spikes that parallel those seen in the 2008 global food crisis.”
Link to full Ecowatch article. “Severe Drought Shows Stupidity of Corn Ethanol Mandate”
Which renewable, sustainable fuel can replace ethanol? There’s only one fuel that can raise the bar on corn ethanol: higher mixed alcohol fuel. Made 24/7 from what’s in your trash, biomass, coal, methane and even power plant CO2. No crops needed. Stronger, cleaner, more mileage, more power, less expensive to produce, and more profitable too. And completely water soluble and biodegradable, with a 138 octane rating that provides 20+ percent more mileage in gas and diesel engines. What’s not to like?
Energy in America: Only one clean fuel can pick up where ethanol runs out of…gas.
Corn ethanol isn’t the best “oxygenate” fuel by any stretch, but it can’t ruin transmissions and radiators. The article linked below quotes a distraught, confused woman who blames ethanol for her car’s problems. Hilarious, but it doesn’t diminish what’s being said about increasing the ethanol blend wall to 15 percent this summer. Right now, gasoline sold at more than 95 percent of filling stations in the U.S. contains 10 percent ethanol, a blend known as E-10. Might not be a good idea to increase the blend wall until there’s a better, more powerful alcohol fuel to blend with gasoline. And diesel. And coal.
“Clean coal” and ethanol just are not that policy, nor will they ever be, they are a charlatans game.
Two sentences in the article linked below stuck out, especially with the bloodbath in the global economy and today’s
300+ 634 point drop in the DJIA. At what point does America begin to wake from its slumber and realize the house is on fire?
Link to full article: Coal and Ethanol Are Not Alternative Energy Policy, written by Andrew Smolski of oilprice.com
Scientific American article: Intoxicated on Independence: Is Domestically Produced Ethanol Worth the Cost?
Good article on ethanol. Understand what’s wrong with using a staple food crop, corn, to get you to Wal Mart and back and you will understand what’s wrong with ethanol in your gas tank.
Yes, we need ethanol to clean up gasoline and stretch the petroleum supply as far as possible. But we don’t need the ethanol industry to break the back of the country by insisting it’s the only “oxygenate” fuel. There are others, and one of them spanks ethanol!
At least in the USA, ethanol fermented from corn starch is currently leading the renewables industry in production volume, but its shortcomings aren’t going away. In fact, the inherent shortcomings of corn ethanol are being embraced by emerging “cellulosic” fermentation processes that use crop wastes instead of the food crop itself. For example, cellulosic ethanol has cost billions in investment, yet major questions of its long-term viability remain.
Ethanol, ethanol, ethanol. Ethanol all the time, everywhere you look. It’s easy to think that ethanol is the only renewable fuel, regardless of what it is fermented from. It isn’t. Especially in parts of the country that can’t grow corn!
Here are questions that aren’t even being asked about ethanol, but should be:
Why focus on one single alcohol in the first place? Why choose a fuel that can only be made from certain feedstocks, such as corn or corn wastes? Why choose a fuel that cannot be pipelined because it’s too corrosive? Why choose a fuel that gets up to 20 percent less mileage than gasoline? Why choose a fuel that requires laborious and expensive fermentation?
Why choose a fuel that can only be made in a relatively small number of states? Why choose a fuel that requires billions in subsidies? Why choose a fuel that consumes almost 40 percent of America’s corn crop?
Peruse today’s biofuel publications or articles on the internet for information about higher mixed alcohols. You won’t find much. Not because higher mixed alcohol isn’t an excellent clean fuel, it is! There’s a whole lot to like about a fuel that can be made nearly anywhere, from nearly anything carbon, and has a whopping 138 octane rating.
Nope. It’s because many of these publications, some of them backed by ethanol or petroleum interests, don’t really understand higher mixed alcohols, much less how they are made: using natural gas, coal, municipal solid wastes and biomass. Or worse, they understand completely and are keeping Americans in the dark.
What is the potential of a clean fuel that can rapidly scale to world proportion, rival fossil and renewable fuels in volume, price, and performance, drop seamlessly all types of gasoline and diesel engines without modification, lower tailpipe emissions, clean up coal, and most importantly, provide investors with consistently high returns? With no crops or subsidies required?
What is the potential of ENVIROLENE®?
Every gallon of gasoline we buy and burn is an investment in keeping America in debt and in chains. We’ve ignored the rumblings for 4 decades, but now the cheap energy party is over. Gas is heading toward $4 bucks a gallon and people are starting to pay attention. We’re in uncharted territory. China and India? 2.5 billion people with growing economies, and they’re buying oil at any price. We can barely keep this country running as it is. What will happen when gasoline is $5 or $6 per gallon and we’re still chasing dwindling oil supplies from all corners of the globe?
Most of us use fuels that must be transported great distances to be consumed. That somewhere else could be as far away as Saudi Arabia for the oil or as close as Iowa for the corn ethanol. You could live in California or New York. This logistical hairball is presenting problems across all fronts. And it’s slowly breaking the back of the American economy. Add in the increasing worries over the environment and the rapid development of Canadian tar sands to sate America’s appetite for crude and it’s a recipe for disaster.
America needs a renewable and clean fuel that doesn’t pollute and that puts people back to work everywhere across America, and not just where corn grows or the oil flows. Developing the ability to make clean fuel “nearly anywhere from almost anything” is a matter of national security, even if it is not necessarily in the best interests of a particular region of our country: the US corn belt. Or the best interests of our oil-enriched friends in the Middle East and Canada.
Will we need petroleum well into the future? Certainly. Coal too. Will we need cleaner, stronger fuels that replace or improve (clean up) petroleum and coal combustion? Definitely. We need large volumes of clean fuel that can be made almost anywhere, from almost anything.
Will this fuel simply be more ethanol? The answer is no. Corn ethanol isn’t scalable or profitable. But that’s all most people hear about. Big ag – ethanol interests have done a great job of controlling the biofuel message and shaping government’s renewable energy policy.
Consider current biofuel industry economics of “all ethanol, all the time.” Just as we depend on farmers for our food, we’re depending heavily (almost solely) on the US farm belt for this renewable fuel. This is leading to increasing use of pesticides and fertiliziers, which is putting additional pressure on the land, the rivers, and the oceans. And diverting this key food commodity to fuel is driving up prices of food around the globe. And given the dire economics of our time, this lock in to what clearly isn’t working in biofuels is causing real harm here in America.
Don’t get us wrong. Ethanol made from fermentation of corn starch was a great first step on the road to sustainable fuels. But it’s time to go beyond ethanol for the good of the entire country. There exists a huge and critical dependency on this single feedstock (corn) needed to make ethanol fuel.
It’s not just any feedstock, because corn is first and foremost a food crop. Corn requires substantial effort to plant, water, weed, fertilize, harvest and then ferment this “feedstock” into ethanol. It’s expensive and fossil-intensive agriculture. This year we’re diverting 40 percent of the nation’s corn crop to make it. To make a fuel that causes problems with engines, decreases mileage, and requires a government subsidy to manufacture?
National security threat: it’s the crumbling economy! Largely because we’ve lost the ability to produce much of anything the world needs, made where it counts the most: in America’s cities and towns.
Most of America is being completely shut out of the biofuel revolution because they can’t grow corn, which means they can’t easily make ethanol. Farmers in Montana or Vermont, for example, don’t grow much corn, so there’s no in-state ethanol production. So as a result, corn farmers in the midwest US have a virtual lock on ethanol production. (There is still no credible technology for making ‘cellulosic’ ethanol from wastes or biomass at scale.)
What fuel can the the whole country manufacture in their own cities and towns? What can Utah, Arizona, New York, Texas, Florida, Mississippi, and every other state in the union make in massive volumes, profitably? What clean fuel can refiners, coal companies and natural gas interests produce from their waste carbons and fossil feedstocks? There’s only one credible choice. Higher mixed alcohol fuel. It’s a better renewable fuel, made profitably, almost anywhere, from almost anything.
The diffusion of social responsibility for liquid energy has gone on long enough. It’s your problem, and it’s your opportunity, America.
We all have a part to play in BEing the solution. It’s time to fuse social responsibility, capital, and commitment into a liquid fuel solution that works for everyone and not just a select few. Corn is food, that is its highest and best purpose. America’s trash, biomass, coal and methane, on the other hand, can be made into a biodegradable fuel that is up to 95 percent cleaner than the gasoline (and cleaner and more powerful than ethanol) it displaces.
Imagine yourself in a community that produces clean liquid fuel from its trash, garbage and biomass. Imagine your Indian tribe using its coal and methane reserves in a responsible, profitable and sustainable green energy business. Imagine a cleaner environment. Imagine skilled jobs and sustainable industries. But don’t dream about it too long. Get busy. Play to win in your town or your industry because that’s the stage where the clean liquid energy revolution will unfold with higher mixed alcohols.
Clean, abundant and powerful liquid energy is the national security solution.
You knew this was coming. After slashing previous quota mandates in 2009, 2010 and 2011, your government is telling you that 2012 won’t be any different. Ethanol (both corn and cellulosic varieties) isn’t getting the job done.
We’re not surprised, and anyone paying attention to renewable fuels shouldn’t be either. For this, American taxpayers are being bilked for billions in subsidies, which have recently been carried forward another year.
This is your government on stupid, this is our country becoming the butt of a corny and expensive joke called ethanol.
Of course it’s a sophisticated joke told by sophisticated joke tellers, which is why almost nobody gets the punchline.
Link to Ethanol Producer article
Here’s an important yet short book focusing on America’s imported oil problems and what we can do about them.
Energy independence is not about the amount of oil we use or import; it’s about turning oil from a strategic commodity to just another commodity, like ordinary table salt.
Clean alcohol fuels and Flex-Fuel Vehicles are the next steps forward for our country: to not only break the grip of foreign oil, but create a cleaner environment and abundant new sources of domestic energy production, jobs and businesses.
Read more about “Turning Oil Into Salt” at Amazon
Ethanol was supposed to be cheap, renewable energy insurance. What happened?
Ethanol is on federally subsidized life support, it puts significant pressure on food prices, and is generally bad for the environment. What’s more, “cellulosic” ethanol hasn’t made it to market despite massive investments. Beyond all this, ethanol is a relatively poor performer compared to other types of alcohol fuels.
So what is a world powered by liquid energy and facing an increasingly uncertain future to do?
The world will eventually decide to move beyond ethanol—regardless of the source—to better, stronger, faster, and cheaper, clean fuel alternatives such as E4 ENVIROLENE. Commercial production of this next-generation fuel will be modest at first, and then scale up and out rapidly as the many positive advantages of higher mixed alcohol fuel become clear.
“Corn ethanol was one of the first biofuels to find a market. Pushed by companies like Archer Daniels Midland (ADM) and Cargill, corn ethanol is now an integral ingredient in many blends of gasoline. It is compatible with gasoline and, its advocates say, it burns cleaner.
But corn is a row crop. That means it’s planted in long rows. It’s dependent on man for its survival. (If we didn’t open the husks and spread the seed it would not exist.) Corn also takes nitrogen from the soil. It depletes the land. The way you sustain land for corn is by either spreading fertilizer every year or letting the land “rest” every so often, rotating it with soybeans or (better yet) some non-food crop such as a perennial grass. ”
“Support for corn is the Achilles Heel of the alternative fuels industry. And it doesn’t have to be that way.”
One novel way to view trash? Think of trash as mankind’s apathy, made real. The visible signs of our failure to act responsibly to preserve our own interests. We’ve been burying and burning waste since we lived in caves or slept underneath the stars 10,000 years ago. Just like apathy which shadows all human initiative, trash has been a constant backdrop of all human activity.
At some point soon enough, without direct, concerted action at the local and municipal level, we’ll bury ourselves in trash, if we don’t go flat broke (whoops, we are already) or perish from the inevitable pollution first. Our collective apathy will ensure the outcome.
Nobody in their right mind wants this, right? Then why is it turning out that way?
If you think we’re being dramatic here, just keep doing what you are doing, which is probably nothing. In case you’re wondering, simply reading what we have to say on the subject is next to nothing if you don’t do anything real with what you’ve learned.
Or visit Disneyland for a Really Good Time.
But if you’re still with us, we need your help on a few million sundry items, such as:
How can we turn what has never had a practical use into something very valuable? And to further beg the metaphor, how can Bioroot Energy turn personal apathy (maybe even yours) about the subject into abundant enthusiasm for supporting what we are doing?
Would money help? Sure! you say. How about a cleaner planet? Absolutely, right?
The green energy potential in the trash and harvestable, sustainable non-crop biomass within 50 miles of you is likely far, far larger than you might think. Whether it’s enough to make a biofuel venture work is up to the experts, but it’s well worth considering if you have interest in solving one of America’s biggest problems and reaping the benefit, right in your town.
The other big variable that has yet to be addressed, at least in our project, is what to do with the syngas created by processing the feedstock via gasification. Make ethanol? What about methanol or di-methyl ether? What’s the highest best use of the syngas? What will justify the large investments required to build these facilities, and get the green biofuels ball rolling for real?
Is there a way to turn syngas into a fuel type that is less toxic, cleaner burning, and has a higher octane rating than ethanol? What options are there?
That’s what Bioroot Energy wants to know.