FarmPolicy

November 21, 2019

Biofuels; Climate Change; and Senate Hearing on OMB Nomination

Biofuels

Richard Harris reported on Sunday at National Public Radio Online that, “Getting fuel from green plants seems like a great idea. But scientific research over the last few years shows that biofuels aren’t necessarily helpful in combating global warming. Based on this data, the EPA has drafted new, tighter regulations that could make it harder for the biofuels industry to grow.

“In theory, biofuels themselves don’t add any extra carbon to the atmosphere. Green plants take carbon dioxide out of the air, so when you burn them, the carbon dioxide just goes back to where it came from.

“But an industry based on this idea turns out not to be so green. For one thing, when the ethanol industry took off in the United States, so did the price of its main raw material — corn. So farmers in places like Brazil planted corn on their pasturelands to cash in, but they still needed land to graze their animals on.”

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