Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Too High on the Food Chain

This opinion piece exhorting U.S. energy policy not to divert corn for use in manufacturing of fuel has got me harping on a topic I've long though about. To me, the very idea of using corn (my people call it maize) as fuel is an asinine plot by the multinational agribusiness interests to push product while providing a red herring to lead away from viable biofuels production. Maize plants are too high on the food chain to make sense as a fuel stock, they are large vascular plants that require too much energy and water to produce. For viable biofuel production, we should turn to algae or small vascular plants such as duckweeds. With their fleetingly short generations, these organisms can be selectively bred in order to result in higher oil content more quickly than corn could be. Additionally, they can be grown using sewage and waste water. Our need for fuel should not compete with our more pressing need for food.

Of course, the root cause of our predicament is overconsumption, but I decided to focus on the insane fact that even our proposed solutions to our problems tend to be dead ends. If I were a more cynical person, I'd suspect that this was a feature, not a bug. HA!


zombie rotten mcdonald said...

If I were a more cynical person

Thunder may be willing to become your sensei.

Big Bad Bald Bastard said...

Sensei of cynicism? Cynsei?

ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®© said...

I'm the Minister Of Optimism, MOO!

Helmut Monotreme said...

Overconsumption is also a red herring. The elephant in the room is overpopulation.