Monday, January 07, 2008

Battle Royal for Alternative Fuel

Corn and Sugar lobbies battle it out for ethanol fuel.

Yet it’s not an issue in Iowa even though big business and major campaign donors are jumping into alternative fuels. Bill Gates invests in ethanol refineries and Paul Allen in ethanol powered space ships.

This is an excellent article on it from a year ago:

Turns out sugar based ethanol is 7 times more efficient than corn, which produces little more power than it does to refine, a big reason why Richard Branson may invest in sugar and general cellulose based ethanol.

Too bad the media let the candidates stick to their message instead pushing them on a real issue for Iowa. Currently, the US government imposes a 54 cent / gallon tax on sugar based ethanol to keep corn competitive. Brazil has already proven a sugar based ethanol industry is viable.

It’s not simple though. Any organic waste can be efficiently turned into either ethanol or oil. There’s a huge race to develop these technologies. Why haven’t the gas and auto industries developed this yet? Not enough profit in it yet.

More in the tried and true department.

All the experiment in electronic voting machines is a wasted effort and frankly too big a risk. Simple optical scan technology and the equivalent of scan-tron forms to count paper votes are tried and true. It has over a 99% accuracy rate and anonymous paper trails using simple technology that’s been around for 30 years. And is used in well run elections in some Florida counties.

This is an excellent review of the whole mess. Our states need to get it together and adopt something that works instead of throwing contracts to campaign donors.

It goes to show you that nothing is sacred in our democracy not even holding fair elections and counting every vote. Ion Sancho who runs elections in Florida knows what he’s doing.

No comments:

Post a Comment