Results 1 to 3 of 3

Thread: Biofuels: driving in the wrong direction?

  1. #1
    just me duncan drennan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Cape Town
    Posts
    2,642
    Thanks
    119
    Thanked 94 Times in 77 Posts

    Biofuels: driving in the wrong direction?

    Things don't always appear to be exactly what they are. Slowly this seems to be the growing realisation with biofuels (as described in this article)

    Earlier this year, two important scientific studies were published that pulled the rug out from under the biofuels movement, and market. First, a Swiss government study (Zah, et al.) determined that biofuels were worse than fossil fuels in terms of total environmental impact, because cultivation of biofuels was driving the destruction of natural ecosystems for agriculture. Even my Brazilian sugarcane ethanol, according to this assessment, was directly to blame for destroying natural systems. Rising demand for ethanol generally was also causing major indirect, but even worse, destruction. For example, US farmers have been switching from soy to corn, for which they get special biofuel subsidies as well as increasingly high prices. Then Brazilian farmers cut down rainforest to meet the increased demand for Brazilian soy. I stared at the graphs for a long time, but there it was, in hard-to-deny numbers: overall, my ethanol car was hurting the environment, much more than I had previously known, and more than my neighbors' "normal" cars, on which I had been looking with such negative judgment.
    It is a nice human perspective which covers the different angles without delving into the scientific detail (which can all be found by googling).
    [SIGPIC]Engineer Simplicity[/SIGPIC]
    Turn ideas into products | The Art of Engineering blog

  2. #2
    Site Caretaker Dave A's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    Durban, South Africa
    Posts
    20,979
    Thanks
    3,055
    Thanked 2,462 Times in 2,067 Posts
    Blog Entries
    12
    Not to mention what Biofuel is doing to food prices...

    Food inflation is beserk globally at the moment.
    The trouble with opportunity is it normally comes dressed up as work.

  3. #3
    just me duncan drennan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Cape Town
    Posts
    2,642
    Thanks
    119
    Thanked 94 Times in 77 Posts
    Quote Originally Posted by Dave A View Post
    Not to mention what Biofuel is doing to food prices...

    Food inflation is beserk globally at the moment.
    Yes! So far that has been my main problem with biofuels, but when I saw an article in the Sunday Times (similar to this one), it was just another reason to be suspicious of the claimed benefits.

    What I find quite interesting is how often a comment is made to the effect of, "Some poor family can't afford food." I think what people need to start realising is that it directly affects them, and their food security.
    [SIGPIC]Engineer Simplicity[/SIGPIC]
    Turn ideas into products | The Art of Engineering blog

Similar Threads

  1. Do our tax laws subsidise driving?
    By duncan drennan in forum Tax Forum
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 02-Oct-07, 08:44 PM
  2. Driving in SA?
    By Dave S in forum General Chat Forum
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 25-Jul-07, 11:38 AM

Tags for this Thread

Did you like this article? Share it with your favourite social network.

Did you like this article? Share it with your favourite social network.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •