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Thread: Ethanol Cons

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    Ethanol Cons

    Even if all corn went to fuel, we’d only fill a fraction of our needs.

    Growing more corn uses more water and fertilizer.

    That nitrogen imported from South America, Russia and the Arabian Gulf (familiar sounding places) gets into the aquifer. Soon your Wal-Mart drinking fountain may warn ‘not responsible for three-eyed offspring due to excess nitrates’ (or words to that effect) just like in McCook, Nebraska.

    The law of supply and demand hits you in your corn flakes’ box, and your corn fed beef and …amazing how many things contain corn.

    It is not clear how much energy it takes to produce ethanol versus how much energy you get out of it. Some reputable studies claim that it takes as much energy to produce as what you get out of it.

    The environmental problems related to burning ethanol may be worse than from burning gas.

    Who wants to hear that the ‘cure’ may be worse than the disease? Just don’t think about the morning after this ethanol bender.



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    Re: Ethanol Cons

    The process is becoiming more efficient by the year. I actuaslly think the truth is you get 110% of the eneergy expended after turning into ethanol., Should malke a lot of jobs..Heard that food will be 5-10% Higher.

    MAYBE THE ARGUMENT IS - IS IT REVENUE NEUTRAL.

    Ultimately we do pay more for everything if we xchoose to make ethanol. Might want to import oil from Venezuela after all. Keep hearing switchgrass to ethanol is the ticket.


    Need to get better gas mileage out of vehicles in next 10years. Do not kid yourself, Detroit, this is the message that you will hear in the near future.


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    Re: Ethanol Cons

    Quote Originally Posted by Wesley View Post
    Need to get better gas mileage out of vehicles in next 10years. Do not kid yourself, Detroit, this is the message that you will hear in the near future.
    I wish that were the case, I drove by one of the biggest car dealers in central Iowa last night. The probably have 500 vehicles, and I counted 40 cars, and 5 of them were vettes that get worse gas milage than a truck.

    I am out shopping for a new car, but I cannot find anything with the features I want, that also gets good milage. They are either really cheap and fuel effecient, or expensive and get like 22/26. All the nice cars have like 300+ HP, I don't need that.


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    Re: Ethanol Cons

    Here is another con, you cannot transport ethenol by pipeline, so you have to pay more to ship it by tanker, or produce it where it is needed.


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    Re: Ethanol Cons

    I would rather pad a farmer's wallet than an Arab's. That's a big pro than can't be denied.



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    Re: Ethanol Cons

    Quote Originally Posted by Incyte View Post
    I would rather pad a farmer's wallet than an Arab's. That's a big pro than can't be denied.
    A significant amount of oil is used to cultivate corn and to produce ethanol.



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    Re: Ethanol Cons

    What we need is to allow imports of Brazilian ethanol that is made from sugar cane. Much better way to make ethanol, and should keep costs down.

    FWIW, I think skyrocketing corn prices should be great for Iowa. Sure it makes groceries more expensive, but it pumps a lot more money into the Iowa economy. Other non-corn producing states are the ones who will be hurt.



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    Re: Ethanol Cons

    I wouldn’t have any problem with ethanol but for all the government handouts.

    Unfortunately, the idea that market-determined prices are far superior at allocating resources isn’t particularly popular in Iowa or in Washington.

    Personally, I'd prefer prices make the call, than politicians, government bureaucrats and lobbyists. Did you know the order of a well-shuffled deck of cards is virtually always unique (see link)?

    Marvelous properties - Pittsburgh Tribune-Review



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    Re: Ethanol Cons

    Quote Originally Posted by alaskaguy View Post
    A significant amount of oil is used to cultivate corn and to produce ethanol.
    That oil is used regardless of rather corn is converted to ethanol or otherwise. If you don't see how ethanol benefits Iowa your head is in the sand.



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    Re: Ethanol Cons

    Quote Originally Posted by brianhos View Post
    Here is another con, you cannot transport ethenol by pipeline, so you have to pay more to ship it by tanker, or produce it where it is needed.

    That is only because production doesn't yet justify a pipeline. It will soon.



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    Re: Ethanol Cons

    Quote Originally Posted by Incyte View Post
    That oil is used regardless of rather corn is converted to ethanol or otherwise. If you don't see how ethanol benefits Iowa your head is in the sand.
    It does benefit Iowa yes, but it hurts other states that have to have the govn fund a energy source that cannot stand on it's own. I am for ethenol, but in it's current state, it just does not make sense.


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    Re: Ethanol Cons

    [QUOTE=alaskaguy;134468 Some reputable studies claim that it takes as much energy to produce as what you get out of it. /QUOTE]

    Those studies are not reputable and are largley a laughingstock in the scientific community.



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    Re: Ethanol Cons

    Quote Originally Posted by Incyte View Post
    That is only because production doesn't yet justify a pipeline. It will soon.
    No it is not stable for the long journey, I thought that too, but saw a program on ethenol on discovery, it will not withstand the amount of time it needs to be in the pipeline. I will have to do some research on this and find out exactly why not.


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    Re: Ethanol Cons

    The Wall Street Journal on Friday published a column by Kimberley A. Strassel, "Ethanol's Bitter Taste," including this excerpt:
    The hugely influential National Cattlemen's Beef Association has gone so far as to outline a series of public demands, including an end to any government tax credits (subsidies) for ethanol and an axe to the import tariff on foreign ethanol. . . .
    OpinionJournal - Potomac Watch

    Congress is also considering changing the current mandate, so less would come from corn.



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    Re: Ethanol Cons

    Funny thing about the price of corn. Last year at this time, it was about the same price as it was in the 70's. And you know the price of a box of cereal has at least doubled since then if not tripled. The farmers who are left out there have earned that high price.

    As for ethanol using more energy than it creates, that's BS. That study not only includes what is done at the ethanol plant and shipping, it also includes diesel fuel for the tractors, the process of making fertilizer, etc. I'm betting that the farmers would plant and harvest the corn whether there was an ethanol plant nearby or not, so those inputs are not exactly viable.

    I think everyone knows that ethanol is not the final answer. There's just not enough corn. BUT, it is a start. And these current ethanol plants will probably end up being the ones converting switchgrass or corn stover to ethanol in 10-15 years. If it takes the government subsidizing it for awhile, I say that it's well worth it to ween ourselves off of oil from the middle east. And, if it gives farmers some extra cash for a few years, that's not a bad thing either.


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