Thursday, October 09, 2008

It's time to give up on converting food into fuel

Readers of Pound360 know we think converting food into fuel is a dumb idea. And there's a lot of evidence out there backing us up. According to a recent report at the NY Times, "a host of studies in the past year concluded that the rush to biofuels had some disastrous, if unintended, consequences for food security and the environment." Not only that, the biofuel craze has "contributed significantly to rising food prices" and "hunger in poor countries."

What about the environment and national security? Doesn't the CO2 that growing crops for biofuels suck out of the air offset tailpipe emissions? Doesn't growing our fuel lead to energy independence. Not really. According to a study by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, reported by the Times, biofuels have "a limited impact on reducing greenhouse gases and improving energy security."

Governments need to stop subsidizing the conversion of food into fuel.

If they want to invest in biofuels, try investing in technologies that
convert algae into energy (Pound360's favorite). Algae pulls C02 out of the atmosphere, it doesn't require farmland and we wouldn't otherwise feed it to hungry people. Yes, it's expensive to convert algae into fuel, but the way fuel prices have been going, that's starting to change.

More on the insanity of using palm, corn and other foods for fuel…
Rush to biofuels may cause 'environmental disaster'
Another day, another argument against biofuels
Biofuel demand sparks food riots
Palm oil: 'Worse than crude'
UK report challenges biofuel mania

Pound360 Archive

About Me

My photo
I started pound360 to channel my obsession with vitamins, running and the five senses. Eventually, I got bored focusing on all that stuff, so I came back from a one month hiatus in May of 2007 (one year after launching Pound360) and broadened my mumblings here to include all science.