Policymakers favoring government subsidies often point to Brazil, which produces 20 percent of its fuel from ethanol, as an example of how our nation can become less foreign energy dependent. But according to a new report from the National Center for Policy Analysis it will be a difficult challenge for the U.S. to mimic Brazil’s strategy. The reason stems from the fact that Brazilian ethanol is made from sugar cane and can produce twice as many gallons per acre as American corn-based ethanol. When you also consider that Brazilian sugar cane provides eight times the energy of the fossil fuel used to make it, whereas corn provides only 1.3 times as much energy, one can see why this Brazilian-American ethanol analogy is being plowed over.

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