Cinnamon Stillwell

I’m the West Coast Representative for Campus Watch, a project of the Middle East Forum that focuses on Middle East studies. I was a political columnist for SFGate.com (San Francisco Chronicle online) from 2004-2008. I've written for the American Thinker, Frontpage Magazine, Family Security Matters, Accuracy In Media, Newsbusters, Israel National News, The Jewish Policy Center, J-The Jewish News Weekly of N. CA, Intellectual Conservative and many others. More info at CinnamonStillwell.com.

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Fuel or Folly? Ethanol and the Law of Unintended Consequences

My latest SFGate column looks at the unintended, and very destructive, consequences of the ethanol/biofuel craze:
In the pantheon of well-intentioned governmental policies gone awry, massive ethanol biofuel production may go down as one of the biggest blunders in history. An unholy alliance of environmentalists, agribusiness, biofuel corporations and politicians has been touting ethanol as the cure to all our environmental ills, when in fact it may be doing more harm than good. An array of unintended consequences is wreaking havoc on the economy, food production and, perhaps most ironically, the environment.
Continue reading "Fuel or Folly? Ethanol and the Law of Unintended Consequences"

Update (4/6): Proving that this is an issue that crosses all political lines, Bill Maher, writing for Huffington Post, questions "The Biofuel Boom."

Update (4/7): Kavanna provides a detailed look "Inside the Biofuels Craze," as well as some kind words for yours truly. Much appreciated.

3 Comments:

Blogger zombie said...

Interesting article. But there was one key point left out that I thought was the main argument against ethanol: that when you take into account all the energy required to grow, transport, process and distill ethanol, it actually ends up taking $1.08 worth of oil to produce $1.00 worth of ethanol -- a losing proposition. Not only are all the issues raised in your article true, but we'll ending up using more gas anyway! Completely crazy.

Wednesday, April 02, 2008 11:10:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Does corn fuel ethanol policy increase oil use and oil profit?

* Some folks think so

* Clean Air Performance Professionals

Thursday, April 03, 2008 1:49:00 AM  
Blogger The Gentle Cricket said...

I agree with Zombie (the king of bay-area photojournalism) that this is a great article. Certainly one of your best.

You touched on the fact that the use of corn based ethanol leads to deforestation, but there is another environmental pitfall....because you get a smaller amount of energy out of ethanol than gasoline, you end up burning disproportionately more! This means that to go the same distance using ethanol as with gasoline, you end up producing more carbon dioxide!

Thursday, April 03, 2008 10:14:00 AM  

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