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On biofuels, Lester Brown has a frown

Supermarkets and Service Stations Now Competing for Grain

By Lester R. Brown, Earth Policy Institute

July 17, 2006
Cars, not people, will claim most of the increase in world grain consumption this year. The U.S. Department of Agriculture projects that world grain use will grow by 20 million tons in 2006. Of this, 14 million tons will be used to produce fuel for cars in the United States, leaving only 6 million tons to satisfy the world’s growing food needs.

In agricultural terms, the world appetite for automotive fuel is insatiable. The grain required to fill a 25-gallon SUV gas tank with ethanol will feed one person for a year. The grain to fill the tank every two weeks over a year will feed 26 people.

[cont’d]

Check out the rest of the story. There’s a lot of reader comments at the bottom as well, a surprising number of which are not utterly foolish.


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