How Biofuels Could Starve the Poor
How Biofuel could starve the poor, by C. Ford Runge and Benjamin Senauer was give several different reasons proving why biofuels will case the poor to starve eventually. They start by going back to 1947 when the United States Congress took legislative steps to promote ethanol made from corn to be used as an alternative fuel. April 18, 1977 President at the time Jimmy Carter went to the media to inform America that balancing energy demands with domestic sources would be an effort the “moral equivalent of war”. Several tax breaks and subsidies helped. Overtime despite all of the various measures the U.S. became more dependent on imported petroleum and ethanol stayed marginal.
Corn-based ethanol has become the new rage due to the high oil prices and more government subsidies. In the end of 2006 there were 110 refineries operating in the U.S. and it was reported an additional 73 were under construction and completed by 2008. Before long it is estimated 11.4 billion gallons will be produced per year. President George W. Bush request that 35 billion gallons of renewable fuel be generated by 2017 that is almost five times more than what is currently being produced.
Ethanol and other biofuels created an industry that depends on taxpayers, subsidies, and billions of dollars. This is not just in the U.S.; Brazil has produced 45.2 percent (from sugarcane) and 44.5 percent (from corn) in the U.S. global production was 9.66 billion gallons in 2005. Most global production of biodiesel is in Europe, made from oilseeds, and that was almost one billion gallons alone.
With the industry growing that means more and more corn production is being used to feed the huge mills that produce ethanol. Some believe ethanol plants will burn up to half of the U.S. domestic corn supplies in a few years. The demand of ethanol will bring 2007 inventories of corn to an all-time low since 1995 when there was a drought even 2006...