It's no secret that ethanol is a controversial fuel. There are numerous arguments against the use of corn-derived alcohol as a fuel, both economic and environmental. The federal and some state governments have been subsidizing corn ethanol production for many years, but the 2007 energy bill mandated a huge increase in production of both corn and cellulosic ethanol.

The subsidies were intended to be a carrot to stimulate production, but with production now mandated, the subsidies now seem redundant, at least according to the editorial board of the Kansas City Star. The paper is calling for the repeal of the corn ethanol subsidies which seem to do little more than line the pockets of big corn producers and processors. Eliminating the 45 cent per gallon credit would also pave the way for cheaper sugar can ethanol to come in from Brazil. There should also be more rigorous study of the effects of corn ethanol production including water and land use.

[Source: Kansas City Star]


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