The Environmental Protection Agency, following the lead of the Obama Administration, has promulgated rules designed to shut down America's coal industry and force the U.S. economy to rely on unsustainable wind and solar energy for future power generation. Americans in the know realize this course of action will lead to energy shortages, brownouts and blackouts, higher energy prices, and more. Lawsuits seeking to curtail the EPA's power are pending in federal court -- and the plaintiffs point out that the EPA is violating its own rules and federal law in its quest for power.
CFACT advisor Marita Noon says that 2015 promises to be a dark year for those who have benefitted from massive subsidies for wind, solar, and biofuels -- the public is tiring of the cost and the failed promises -- and of higher food costs. There will surely be a massive fight between Washington and the states over this -- but wait and see.
The federal ethanol mandate mut be rescinded, say CFACT Senior Policy Advisor Paul Driessen. Nearly 40% of the U.S. corn crop is devoted to ethanol, and this requires enormous amounts of irrigation water, fertilizers, pesticides, and gasoline or diesel fuel to grow, harvest, and ship the corn -- and then to ship the ethanol. While corn growers are protected by the mandate, they are making money -- but at the expense of chicken, turkey, egg, and hog farmers who are paying an extra $100 billion a year in feed costs. Moreover, energy from oil and gas drilling is much less harmful to the environment -- especially given the high usage of water, the unbearable flow of life-killing nutrients into the Gulf of Mexico, and of course the negative impacts on gasoline and diesel engines from the added ethanol (and the lower miles per gallon it delivers). It is time, says Driessen, to bury the Renewable Fuel Standard and the ethanol subsidies.
The Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) is a bad joke that is costing American businesses money and trouble over a fuel -- cellulosic ethanol -- that is perhaps decades away from marketability. A coalition is building to eliminate this costly, even damaging, mandate that the EPA is eagerly enforcing despite issuing its rules after the fact and pressing for engine-damaging ethanol limits of up to 15% at a time when gasoline prices are dropping and U.S. production of gasoline is peaking. CFACT advisor Marita Noon says it is time to reform, revise, or repeal the RFS.
Back in 2007, states passed renewable portfolio standards at the same time the George W. Bush Administration was patting itself on the back for enacting the renewable fuels standard -- aka the ethanol mandate. Seven years later, most people see the flaws in this energy strategy, but the EPA continues unabated in its quest to push more ethanol into America's automobiles.
Dave Juday points out that the Congressional Budget Office, created during the Nixon Administration to be a nonpartisan evaluator, is doing its job by reporting that with no changes to the renewable fuel standard, the price of diesel fuel will jump by 30 to 51 cents per gallon, with E10 gasoline prices rising 13 to 26 cents per gallon. The EPA has already admitted it needs to lower the biofuels requirement for 2014, but it is nearly August and no final action has been taken. This, Juday notes, frustrates policymakers, analysts, and most of all gasoline and diesel marketers. comending that the government make changes to the EPA's renewable fuel standard to reflect real-world
Paul Driessen explains the damage done to the Gulf of Mexico from nitrogen fertilizer runoff that flows down the Mississippi and creates massive dead zones (no oxygen) that kill marine life. This is on top of other problems caused by adding ethanol to gasoline -- poor engine performance, higher food prices, and more
Dennis Avery crows that even the environmental movement is seeking his support for ending ethanol mandates. And why not? Scientists have shown that the incentives for corn ethanol have resulted in conversion of 24 million acres of grassland, wetland, and shrubland to corn from 2008 to 2011 alone. Moreover, these policies have raised costs for dairy, livestock, and poultry farmers and thus for consumers nationwide.
In 2007, Congress passed a law requiring oil companies to blend billions of gallons of ethanol into gasoline. This so-called “ethanol mandate” wiped out millions of acres of conservation land and destroyed wildlife habitat.
With domestic oil and natural gas production soaring thanks to fracking, the nation is taking a harder look at subsidies and mandates for so-called "Green" energy. EPA for the first time proposed to reduce the amount of ethanol that has to be added to gasoline. An Arizona state agency just added a $5.00 monthly fee for solar customers to help pay for use and maintenance of the state's power grid. And 52 House members have signed a letter calling for the end of the wind production tax credit just as the sixth 20,000-pound turbine blade broke off in Illinois and sent shrapnel 1,500 feet away from the turbine hub -- two to three times the legal setbacks for homes and highways.
Japanese sushi bars are popular for their cuisine, but could they also provide a valuable form of biofuel? Apparently so, according to E&E News which reports that Kombu, an edible seaweed found in Japanese dishes like miso soup and sashimi, could be a great new source of energy.
Throughout history, the key resource crises have always been first about food security. The folly of fearing a warmer Earth belies the fact that all of the past crises have come at a time of global cooling that shortened growing seasons and reduced crop yields. Today, just as it is folly to fear manmade global warming, it is foolish to use corn as
Greens carp about fracking, partly because it uses some water (up to 6.0 gal/MMBtu of energy produced). Yet they champion ethanol, which uses up to 29,000 gal/MMBtu, and biodiesel (up to 74,000 gal/MMBtu). Is this mere Green hypocrisy, or Greenback Greed? It is well past time to end the mandates and the subsidies for ethanol and biodiesel.
Only an environmentalist would think it was a good idea to burn food as fuel instead of permitting corn to be used as part of the nation’s food chain and for export. As a former Republican member of the House of Representatives, Bob Beauprez of Colorado, noted in a Washington Times commentary, “The ethanol mandate has sent corn prices skyrocketing, harmed cattle and poultry producers, forced refiners to waste money on ethanol credits, and hiked food prices worldwide.”
EPA’s primary role is to confirm what was already laid out by statute in terms of annual volumes of biofuels. That so called “renewable fuels schedule” established in 2005 and update in 2007 requires an ever increasing amount of biofuel to be blended into the nation’s fuel supply until the total hits 36 billion gallons in 2022. Those volumes, however, are completely unrealistic – a fact even EPA recognizes.