Donate Bitcoin

Donate Paypal


PeakOil is You

PeakOil is You

THE Ethanol Thread pt 3

Discussions of conventional and alternative energy production technologies.

Re: Republicans call for end of ethanol mandate

Unread postby benzoil » Tue 02 Sep 2008, 12:30:33

burtonridr wrote:
benzoil wrote:
burtonridr wrote:
benzoil wrote:I guess what I'm after is a plan where we shift all that corn ethanol subsidy money into venues that will actually work, rather than just cutting the program to save money.
Dont hold your breath on that one :lol:
I can dream, can't I? :-D
It would be nice, but unless it makes money.. They wont buy it :cry:

I know. I know. Big ag already has money, so it will lobby (successfully) to get more. Meanwhile, the wind and solar industries are either tiny or foreign, so they won't get a shot at the big money.

I was reading an interesting history of the Byzantine Empire (hmmm...that might be an oxymoron) in which the author maintained that the empire consistently had money problems because the ruling elite had exempted themselves from taxes. As time wore on, the middle/trading/peasant classes were exhausted financially. Even in the face of encroaching Islamic (in the south) and barbarian (north) threats, none of the Emperors even considered reforming that part of the tax code because they'd lose the support of the elite and be murdered in their sleep or get their nose cut off (a uniquely Byzantine punishment).

In other words, the envelope of "acceptable" solutions was drawn so as to exclude the solutions most likely to actually work. Sound familiar?
TANSTAAFL
User avatar
benzoil
Heavy Crude
Heavy Crude
 
Posts: 443
Joined: Fri 26 Aug 2005, 02:00:00
Location: Windy City No Longer

Re: Republicans call for end of ethanol mandate

Unread postby CarlosFerreira » Tue 02 Sep 2008, 12:54:06

This is the main problem with subsidies, I guess. When a government makes a wrong decision, and gives money away to that project, the development turns there and, soon, you're addicted to it. Then, one fine day, it is clear the thing is unsustainable, and must die. Of course, by then people won't be able to live without it. Soylent green, anyone?
Environmental News and Clippings:
http://www.google.co.uk/reader/shared/1 ... 4898696533
Environmental Economics and Systems
http://enviroecon.wordpress.com/
CarlosFerreira
Intermediate Crude
Intermediate Crude
 
Posts: 734
Joined: Wed 02 Jul 2008, 02:00:00
Location: Canterbury, UK

THE Ethanol Thread pt 3

Unread postby Novus » Tue 02 Sep 2008, 13:19:02

benzoil wrote:In other words, the envelope of "acceptable" solutions was drawn so as to exclude the solutions most likely to actually work. Sound familiar?

That is a quintessential part of the human story repeated dozens of times throughout history. Those in power will continue to live set in their ways even as their entire world crumbles.
User avatar
Novus
Fission
Fission
 
Posts: 2451
Joined: Tue 21 Jun 2005, 02:00:00

Re: Republicans call for end of ethanol mandate

Unread postby Plantagenet » Tue 02 Sep 2008, 13:25:09

Obama is a big supporter of "big ag" and the ethanol subsidies, and voted for the the big pork bill mandating an huge increase in ethanol production the dems passed through Congress earlier this year.
User avatar
Plantagenet
Expert
Expert
 
Posts: 20527
Joined: Mon 09 Apr 2007, 02:00:00
Location: Alaska (its much bigger than Texas).

Re: Republicans call for end of ethanol mandate

Unread postby vtsnowedin » Tue 02 Sep 2008, 16:02:03

benzoil wrote:I'll buy the food prices bit, but I don't think that the level of oil use is significantly high enough beyond normal ag usage to push oil prices on its own. I don't like ag subsidies (for ethanol or other reasons), but the US dropped wind and solar subsidies in the early 80's and lost any ability to lead in solar and wind technologies after that. If we drop ethanol subsidies right now, might it not have the same effect - discouraging investment in alternative sources of energy? If food prices come down, wouldn't that make local agriculture less competitive?I guess what I'm after is a plan where we shift all that corn ethanol subsidy money into venues that will actually work, rather than just cutting the program to save money.

Subsidies to protect a new technology from the preditory actions of competeing industries may well be worth the taxpayes investment but once you know the technology is a loser its a pure waste. Once you stop wasting it on a known loser you can redirect the funds to something that still shows potental.
If you want to promote wind all you need to do is kick some butt at EPA and isssue some permits , Now, not twenty two mounths from now. Maybe exempt the sites from property taxes but beyond that if they can't make power competitively I don't want them.
Methanol just uses too much energy to grow ,haul , refine , ship and store it. Post peak you might use some other type of energy say solar and ev tractors to grow corn and make ethanol but that would be converting one type of energy into a liquid one where a liquid one was required. The fact that your EROI was less than one wouldn't matter then.
User avatar
vtsnowedin
Anti-Matter
Anti-Matter
 
Posts: 8029
Joined: Fri 11 Jul 2008, 02:00:00

Re: Republicans call for end of ethanol mandate

Unread postby TreebeardsUncle » Wed 03 Sep 2008, 00:41:29

Good, this should drive out competitors for oil and increase profits for drillers, and servicers.
g
TreebeardsUncle
Intermediate Crude
Intermediate Crude
 
Posts: 683
Joined: Thu 15 Jun 2006, 02:00:00

Re: "Our gas contains NO alcohol"

Unread postby WetStuff » Fri 03 Oct 2008, 06:24:14

Down under we are spoiled for choice.
We have 5 types of fuel -
ULP - standard unleaded petrol RON 89-93 depending on which way the wind blows,
PULP- premium unleaded petrol RON 95-96
UULP- ultra unleaded petrol RON 98-100
E10 - ULP+1o% ethanol RON 91-95
E10P- PULP+10% ethanol RON 96-98
variation is across batch and brand.

Pricing is also a nice spread. E10 1-2 c/l less than ULP; PULP at 6-8c/l above ULP; UULP 8-12c/l above ULP and E10P 1-6c/l above ULP

I have a MY06 subaru forseter. I get consistantly 10-10.5 l/100km on one brand of E10 [95RON]. Trialed over same route per week for 8 months. I switched to PULP of another brand 300m down the road and get, consistantly, 8.2-8.7 l/100km. By buying a better fuel I burn less petrol as a component of the fuel i.e. better than 10% improvement. To cap it off, at $1.50/l I get better km/$ using PULP over E10. :shock:
It pays to shop around, and do Km/$ calculations on the petrol portion of your fuel. :lol:
Schroedinger's mouse: a cat can't live on probability alone.
User avatar
WetStuff
Coal
Coal
 
Posts: 7
Joined: Wed 26 Dec 2007, 03:00:00
Location: australia

Re: "Our gas contains NO alcohol"

Unread postby Loki » Fri 03 Oct 2008, 12:52:23

I see a lot of silliness around here about ethanol. I haven't noticed any fuel mileage decrease in my truck, certainly nothing approaching the 20%+ that jbrovontf claims (sounds more like a fuel leak---I'd check your hoses). My boat is paddle powered, so no experience there.

Eastbay, any idea how much food is wasted here in the US? Ethanol is a drop in the bucket. It certainly does not bear primary responsibility for food shortages in the Third World. Look more at "free trade" policies that gut the local food industry, corrupt dictatorships and bureaucracies, and especially the growing demand for meat in the US, Europe, and Asia. FerFAL mentions on his blog that some people in Argentina are still starving despite Argentina being one of the biggest food exporters in the world. It ain't because of ethanol, it's because of meat production, i.e., the export of soy and other livestock feed to the First World and China.

Selective outrage, I guess.
A garden will make your rations go further.
User avatar
Loki
Expert
Expert
 
Posts: 3509
Joined: Sat 08 Apr 2006, 02:00:00
Location: Oregon

Re: "Our gas contains NO alcohol"

Unread postby eastbay » Fri 03 Oct 2008, 14:54:13

Loki wrote:I see a lot of silliness around here about ethanol. I haven't noticed any fuel mileage decrease in my truck, certainly nothing approaching the 20%+ that jbrovontf claims (sounds more like a fuel leak---I'd check your hoses). My boat is paddle powered, so no experience there.

Eastbay, any idea how much food is wasted here in the US? Ethanol is a drop in the bucket. It certainly does not bear primary responsibility for food shortages in the Third World. Look more at "free trade" policies that gut the local food industry, corrupt dictatorships and bureaucracies, and especially the growing demand for meat in the US, Europe, and Asia. FerFAL mentions on his blog that some people in Argentina are still starving despite Argentina being one of the biggest food exporters in the world. It ain't because of ethanol, it's because of meat production, i.e., the export of soy and other livestock feed to the First World and China.

Selective outrage, I guess.


Poor guess.

On numerous occasions right here on this website I've expressed my concerns about the large degree of food waste involved in factory-style meat production.

The ethanol insanity is the most recently added food waste getting underway in a serious and mandatory fashion just in the past few years. No selective outrage at all! All food waste is very poor public policy and as it's killing effects become widely known maybe someday people will answer for it.

ps. I went to Washington (an extra four mile drive) to gas up with real gas and it's all ethanol... at least at the places I used to find real 100% gas. So now my quarterly fill-up will have to include some ethanol. I too now participate to a small degree in the mandatory mass-starvation program.
Got Dharma?

Everything is Impermanent. Shakyamuni Buddha
User avatar
eastbay
Expert
Expert
 
Posts: 7186
Joined: Sat 18 Dec 2004, 03:00:00
Location: One Mile From the Columbia River

Re: "Our gas contains NO alcohol"

Unread postby Loki » Fri 03 Oct 2008, 15:23:09

I don't see how gasoline is any less morally objectionable than ethanol. The world is burning (literally), yet we continue to burn gasoline obliviously (I'm as guilty as the next guy, though I try to keep my driving under 2500 miles/year).

There is one good reason to gas up in Washington, though---self service. I freaking HATE having to wait for someone else to pump my gas. It's so ridiculous.
A garden will make your rations go further.
User avatar
Loki
Expert
Expert
 
Posts: 3509
Joined: Sat 08 Apr 2006, 02:00:00
Location: Oregon

Re: "Our gas contains NO alcohol"

Unread postby mgibbons19 » Fri 03 Oct 2008, 15:39:45

Might as well burn up the real gas. The sooner it's gone, the sooner we switch.
mgibbons19
Light Sweet Crude
Light Sweet Crude
 
Posts: 1105
Joined: Fri 20 Aug 2004, 02:00:00

Re: "Our gas contains NO alcohol"

Unread postby eastbay » Fri 03 Oct 2008, 18:03:50

Loki wrote:I don't see how gasoline is any less morally objectionable than ethanol. The world is burning (literally), yet we continue to burn gasoline obliviously (I'm as guilty as the next guy, though I try to keep my driving under 2500 miles/year).

There is one good reason to gas up in Washington, though---self service. I freaking HATE having to wait for someone else to pump my gas. It's so ridiculous.


Well, if one delves deeply enough into this, I suppose our mere presence on this Earth ... but the thing about ethanol that is finally seeping into our collective consciousness is that burning ethanol DIRECTLY destroys top soil, water, diesel fuel, and (domestic and exported) food.

Burning gasoline just burns, well, gasoline and whatever fuel it takes to transport the stuff. Well, plus a bit of war, but the oil wars don't actually increase oil supply. :shock:
Got Dharma?

Everything is Impermanent. Shakyamuni Buddha
User avatar
eastbay
Expert
Expert
 
Posts: 7186
Joined: Sat 18 Dec 2004, 03:00:00
Location: One Mile From the Columbia River

Re: "Our gas contains NO alcohol"

Unread postby Loki » Fri 03 Oct 2008, 18:38:24

I was referring to global climate change, but one could also point out the devastating impact petroleum production has on aquatic ecosystems (the Exxon Valdez was just one of many such disasters around the world), not to mention the fact that petrodollars prop up all sorts of nasty tyrants around the world. I'm not at all convinced that gasoline is more ethical to use than corn-based ethanol, either from an environmental perspective or a social perspective. On the contrary, I think a case could be made for the superiority of corn-based ethanol.

I emphasize corn-based because I think it's pretty clear that corn won't be the feedstock forever. I agree that corn-based ethanol is not a good thing from an environmental perspective (the social impact has been ridiculously overemphasized IMHO), but I think it will help grow the industry to the point where we can use other feedstocks that have a lower environmental impact. Biofuels are a part of the solution for the United States, though probably a fairly small part, certainly nowhere near a 1 to 1 substitution for petrofuels.

As for "burning food," I don't see how this is immoral in and of itself. The starving peoples of the world are not starving for lack of agricultural production, they're starving because of corrupt political and economic systems. Systems, for example, that take food out of the mouths of poor children in Argentina so middle-class Europeans can eat beef everyday. As FerFAL writes in the blog entry I linked to about Argentina: "Yes people STILL starve to death in this country, a country with 44.000.000 inhabitants, that produces food for more than 300.000.000."

That's the harsh reality of it. But many here at PO.com refuse to acknowledge these basic facts (I'm not accusing you of this, Eastbay), primarily because of some silly ideological hatred of vegetarians as far as I can tell. God forbid anybody should point out the social impacts of the average First World diet. I've had this conversation many times before, and rarely does anybody concede these inconvenient facts.
A garden will make your rations go further.
User avatar
Loki
Expert
Expert
 
Posts: 3509
Joined: Sat 08 Apr 2006, 02:00:00
Location: Oregon

Large corn ethanol producer files bankruptcy

Unread postby frankthetank » Sat 01 Nov 2008, 13:37:14

SAN FRANCISCO (MarketWatch) -- The recent retreat in corn prices came too late for one of the nation's biggest ethanol producers, as the twin blows of high costs and less credit pushed VeraSun Energy Corp. into bankruptcy.
In a statement late Friday, the Sioux Falls, S.D.-based company said it planned to maintain operations while the company and 24 of its subsidiaries reorganizes. VeraSun (VSE:15.8%) said it expects to reach a deal with lenders on additional financing to fund its operations before a hearing Monday. It also expects to get court approval at this hearing to keep paying employees without interruption


Hopefully this is a trend.

[url=http://www.marketwatch.com/news/story/VeraSun-files-bankruptcy-after-corn/story.aspx?guid={8CD623A9-C82E-42D1-892F-1EFA43A53306}&dist=hplatest]MW[/url]
Last edited by Ferretlover on Tue 21 Apr 2009, 22:08:25, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Merged with THE Ethanol Thread.
lawns should be outlawed.
User avatar
frankthetank
Fusion
Fusion
 
Posts: 6188
Joined: Thu 16 Sep 2004, 02:00:00
Location: Southwest WI

Re: Large corn ethanol producer files bankruptcy

Unread postby eastbay » Sat 01 Nov 2008, 17:55:40

Great find Frank. This is wonderful news. It made my day!

I hope every last one of the companies turning food into gas goes bankrupt.

This will be one very positive and happy outcome from the current and temporary period of low energy prices.
Got Dharma?

Everything is Impermanent. Shakyamuni Buddha
User avatar
eastbay
Expert
Expert
 
Posts: 7186
Joined: Sat 18 Dec 2004, 03:00:00
Location: One Mile From the Columbia River

Why ethanol will never work out

Unread postby sirrom » Sun 16 Nov 2008, 06:31:13

The punch line here is obvious: The corn ethanol scam cannot, has not, and will not significantly reduce overall oil use or significantly cut oil imports because it only replaces one segment of the crude-oil barrel. All the talk about "cellulosic ethanol," a substance that, in theory, can be profitably produced in commercial quantities from grass, wood chips, or other biomass, is largely misplaced because, like corn ethanol, it will only supplant gasoline.


http://www.tampabay.com/news/perspectiv ... 902562.ece

a great article,well worth a read.
what did YOU do in the eco-war?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ayz1SK4KbX4
User avatar
sirrom
Tar Sands
Tar Sands
 
Posts: 197
Joined: Thu 08 Feb 2007, 03:00:00
Location: England

Re: Why ethanol will never work out

Unread postby 3aidlillahi » Sun 16 Nov 2008, 06:52:31

Sorry but no matter how a good a read it is, pretty much everyone here can go into pretty good detail as to why ethanol hasn't worked and never will. This stuff is a few years old for most of us. Nearly everyone, not just here, knows that it's a scam and useless.
Riches are not from abundance of worldly goods, but from a contented mind.
User avatar
3aidlillahi
Light Sweet Crude
Light Sweet Crude
 
Posts: 1416
Joined: Tue 25 Mar 2008, 02:00:00

Re: Why ethanol will never work out

Unread postby JustaGirl » Sun 16 Nov 2008, 18:34:43

Obviously ethanol will never work out on the large scale. But I have to wonder why some agriculture sectors can't use it. Maybe wishful thinking.
JustaGirl
Tar Sands
Tar Sands
 
Posts: 208
Joined: Wed 09 Apr 2008, 02:00:00
Location: Petoria

Re: Why ethanol will never work out

Unread postby NoahsDove » Sun 16 Nov 2008, 19:37:52

I'm not too sure if the person that wrote that article really understand the problem. In the near future, we will be forced to use whatever fuel source we can get. This is not a matter of choice or luxury, we will simply run out of options.

It seems like this is still a major problem with a lot of people in this country: a self-delusion that cheap oil will last for ever. This reality has yet to sink in.
User avatar
NoahsDove
Coal
Coal
 
Posts: 54
Joined: Sun 06 Jul 2008, 02:00:00

Re: Why ethanol will never work out

Unread postby Plantagenet » Tue 18 Nov 2008, 00:14:59

Somebody better tell President-elect Obama that ethanol "will never work out." Obama has consistently supported increases in US ethanol subsidies and production:

------------------------

"U.S. Sen. Barack Obama urged Congress [to support] ethanol, a corn-based fuel additive that he says could create more than 200,000 new jobs and ease the nation's dependance on foreign oil.

The freshman Democrat says higher ethanol production targets should be broken out of a federal energy bill that has repeatedly stalled over disputes about drilling and liability for water supplies contaminated by the gasoline additive MTBE.

Boosting ethanol production has broad, bipartisan congressional support, but has been "held hostage" by other concerns over the energy bill, Obama said.

"Now is the opportunity to get this done-- not only for the future of our farmers, the future of our economy and the future of our environment, but to make our country a place that is independent and innovative enough to control its own energy future," Obama said in a statement after touring an ethanol plant in Pekin."

from the WaPo.
User avatar
Plantagenet
Expert
Expert
 
Posts: 20527
Joined: Mon 09 Apr 2007, 02:00:00
Location: Alaska (its much bigger than Texas).

Next

Return to Energy Technology

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 9 guests