Planet Gore

Ethanol-Global Warming Link Claim Refuted

 Energy Victory author Robert Zubrin writes in with some good news for Iowa:

On February 7, a team led by Environmental Defense Fund staff attorney Tim Searchinger published a paper in Science Express in which they alleged that the US corn ethanol program was causing global warming. Searchinger et al, conceded that the “direct effects” (i.e. the measurable effects) of the corn ethanol program are anti-global warming, since it replaces petroleum fuel with that produced from biomass. However they alleged that the overall effect of corn ethanol was pro global warming because “indirect analysis” of “indirect effects” (i.e. not verifiable effects) by their computer model said that the program was inducing third world farmers to burn down their forests in order to clear land to grow grain to replace the reduced American corn exports. As might be expected, given its conclusions, the study received rave reviews from both the pro oil cartel and anti-agriculture extreme environmentalist press.However, as also might be expected, considering its methodology and its source, the study has been shown to be complete bunk within two weeks of being subjected to scientific scrutiny.The refutation has been published on the Argonne National Lab Web site by ANL scientists Michael Wang and Zia Haq. One of their key points, which utterly devastates the Searchinger paper’s claim that the reduction of US corn exports due to the ethanol program is causing third world deforestation, and thus global warming, is:”On the basis of our own analyses, production of corn-based ethanol in the United States so far results in moderate GHG emissions reductions. There has also been no indication that U.S. corn ethanol production has so far caused indirect land use changes in other countries because U.S. corn exports have been maintained at about 2 billion bushels a year and because U.S. DGS exports have steadily increased in the past ten years.”Their entire article can be found here. It makes interesting reading. The question now is: Can the truth catch up with a lie after it has been set loose to race around the world?


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