Thursday, June 2, 2011

Stuff Ag Communities Don't Want to Think About

and the government won't.
Rapeseed and corn biodiesels were calculated to produce up to 70 per cent and 50 per cent more greenhouse gases respectively than fossil fuels.

Our excursion on Memorial Day took us past miles of rich farmland. There were a few fields of rape in bloom, lending a brilliant stripe here and there across the landscape.

A certain cultivar of rape is called "canola" and is used to provide the cooking oil in your kitchen cabinet. Other varieties are used for feed and for the production of biofuels, particularly biodiesel.

The major portion of biofuels are produced from rapeseed and from corn, the former largely in Europe, and the latter in North America.

Recent research has shown that aside from the addition of greenhouse gases to the atmosphere due to transportation of the product, the fuels themselves when used may be more damaging to the environment than are traditional petrofuels. Specifically, nitrogen oxide which is emitted, is 296 times more powerful as a greenhouse gas than is carbon dioxide. Recent scientific studies have shown that biofuels release twice as much N2O as previously thought. These were done by respected scientists, including Nobelist Paul Crutzen.

Huge numbers of semi trucks rumble past my domicile in the fall on their way to the ethanol plant a few miles down the road. Do the math. And here, my math may be faulty, but it seems to me that the more corn turned into ethanol, the higher the cost of the bacon to go with my eggs. And I get to help pay for the biofuel whether or not I use it, thanks to the government subsidies!


Secondary Roads said...

Amen brother! "Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain . . ."

Anonymous said...

The government should suspend all
subsidies to farmers and let them get a fair market price for their goods. If they are going to help
ethenol, they should help with our oil products.


Sharkbytes (TM) said...

Yeah, I don't think ethanol is going to be the solution to future travel.

Lin said...

Hey, we are gonna be in your neck of the woods on Saturday. We'll be in Rossville for a graduation party.

vanilla said...

Chuck, do you, like me, sometimes feel as though you are falling down a rabbit hole?

Bob, and they should suspend messing in a whole lot of other things that are not properly the province of the federal government.

Shark, I'd be totally surprised.

Lin, I'll email you.