The Biofuel Follies

Why don’t more Americans get ticked off by the ethanol debacle? Our government is spending billions propping up a pointless industry that’s doing real damage to the world’s poor. After all, ethanol will do little to really decrease our reliance on oil in general. The monomaniacal desire of some to punish the MidEast is resulting in the destruction of the our own Midwest. And for what?

As George F. Will writes: “If the entire U.S. corn crop were turned into ethanol— it might have to be to meet the goal of 35 billion gallons of biofuels by 2017—it would displace 3.5 percent of gasoline use, just slightly more than would be displaced if drivers properly inflated their tires.”

I have a few questions:

How much gasoline use (and oil dependence) would be displaced if Americans just drove less, spending more time around home and with their neighbors, and carpooling when necessary?

…if Americans just drove slower?

…if public schools shortened their school year, or their school week?

…if more businesses allowed work from home?

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