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The Strange Energy Budget of Ethanol Production

timothy posted more than 9 years ago | from the subsidy-heaven dept.

The Almighty Buck 200

joeflies writes "The San Francisco Chronicle published an article regarding research on how much fuel is required to make Ethanol. The results indicate that it make take 6 times more energy than the end product delivers."

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Makes sense (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12924954)

It typically takes 6 tries before you actually succeed at getting first post!

comparisons? (5, Insightful)

TheClam (209230) | more than 9 years ago | (#12924967)

Compare this to gasoline and hydrogen and you've got yourself a real article.

Re:comparisons? (1)

zxnos (813588) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925103)

in the fourth paragraph the article says:

"The fossil energy expended during production alone, he concluded, easily outweighs the consumable energy in the end product".

so that base is covered. ethanol is just a way to keep some farmers in business. it does cut down on smog too. but at what price?

Re:comparisons? (1)

BoomerSooner (308737) | more than 9 years ago | (#12927386)

Bullshit, just use *naturally* supplied energy and put the processing plants where this energy is available. A la, hydroelectric dams (northeast?), solar farms (southwest), wind farms (oklahoma), and do the processing there. We have a choice locally to use *clean* electric for a slightly higher fee, so why not use renewable energy resources to generate ethenol?

Maybe people are over reacting. Solution seems logical to me, any different ones?

Re:comparisons? (1)

chinakow (83588) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925251)

I was about to say the same thing.

"(Ethanol production) may eat up far more energy during its creation than it winds up giving back."

Ok, sure, I won't dispute the findings. Ethanol gets us a 1/6 return in energy while with fossil fuels we get what return for investment? What's that, zero! You gotta be fucking kidding, me. When did zero become better than one sixth? How many investors would spend money on something guaranteed to not have any return on their investment over the possibility of getting 1/6th and the possibility that there could be improvements on that return in the future?

PLEASE SOME ONE THINK OF THE CHILDREN!!!1one

If we point out the fact that ethanol only gets a fractional return, and ignore that there is NO return on fossil fuels, what a great deal!!

Re:comparisons? (2, Informative)

WhiplashII (542766) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925376)

How it really works is this:

Scenario A: You dig up 1 barrel of oil. You burn the oil, VROOM-VROOM!

Scenario B: You dig up 6 barrels of oil, you use the oil to make 1 barrel of Ethanol, VROOM-VROOM!

What the article is saying is that wasting 6 barrels of oil to create one barrel of ethanol doesn't make any sense. And they are right - though you can argue whether their study is more valid than the USDA study which stated the opposite. I would look at the relative biases (the USDA gets money if they say ethanol is good), and look at the differences in the numbers (the USDA study did not include maintenance on the equipment, etc.) to see which one to believe.

Personally, I think the truth lies somewhere between the two - but is probably a net negative. Plants are horibly inefficient solar cells! (If it was simple, we would be burning trees instead of oil!)

Re:comparisons? (4, Informative)

kherr (602366) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925278)

Minnesota Department of Agriculture has a comparison of energy costs [state.mn.us] to produce different types of fuel. Treat this as a starting point for information.

People seem to forget that we don't pump oil out of the ground and into our gas tanks, it requires some serious refining. I've also heard that ethanol processing essentially removes the sugars from the corn, leaving a high-protein slurry that can be used as animal feed. Since it's high in protein and low in carbohydrates it's a more efficient feed and causes lower emissions from the cows. Heh.

Re:comparisons? (1)

TykeClone (668449) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925329)

've also heard that ethanol processing essentially removes the sugars from the corn, leaving a high-protein slurry that can be used as animal feed. Since it's high in protein and low in carbohydrates it's a more efficient feed and causes lower emissions from the cows.

It's called distillers grain and (interestingly enough), it has its own website: http://www.distillersgrains.org/ [distillersgrains.org]

And since no one will RTFLinkedA... (1)

Dragonfly (5975) | more than 9 years ago | (#12926266)

Summary - Energy Balance/Energy Life Cycle Inventory

Fuel Energy yield* Net Energy (loss) or gain

Gasoline 0.805 (19.5 percent)
Diesel 0.843 (15.7 percent)
Ethanol 1.34 34 percent
Biodiesel 3.20 220 percent

* Life cycle yield in liquid fuel Btus for each Btu of fossil fuel energy consumed.

Re:comparisons? (2, Interesting)

RevAaron (125240) | more than 9 years ago | (#12926633)

Speaking of cows- if people were so darned concerned about how much energy is spent producing another form of stored energy, then they wouldn't each so much damn beef and other meat. From this site: [britishmeat.com]
Conservation of Fossil fuel. It takes 78 calories of fossil fuel to produce 1 calorie of beef protein; 35 calories for 1 calorie of pork; 22 calories for 1 of poultry; but just 1 calorie of fossil fuel for 1 calorie of soybeans. By eating plant foods instead of animal foods, I help conserve our non-renewable sources of energy.

If there was ever an argument to get me to go veg*an, that'd probably be it.

*so i say, as i munch on a really tasty marinated beef tenderloin kabob*

Re:comparisons? (1)

metamatic (202216) | more than 9 years ago | (#12926849)

There was an article in Harpers a while back about the cost in fossil fuels of our agricultural system. Scary stuff--basically, Peak Oil means drastic increases in food prices. Not only do you have the effect of massively increased transport costs, but the materials used to fertilize the crops become much more expensive too.

Re:comparisons? (1)

slughead (592713) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925948)

It's all dependent on which stage of the energy cycle you focus on. Imagine the amount of efficiency in coal energy:

1) Sun feeds plant production (very inefficient)
2) plants die, form coal
3) Coal is burned (again, very inefficient)
4) Heat from coal boils water, powers turbines (Oh you'd better believe that's inefficient)
5) electricity from turbines goes into power grid to homes (lots of loss there)
6) electricity powers computer (inefficient) belonging to slashdot reader at work (inefficient)

Besides, as far as efficiency is concerned, solar might be better than gasoline.. doesn't make it cheaper though.

On a side note, the title should read "The Strange Energy Economics of Ethanol Production."

Hmm (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12924982)

as opposed to taking 6 times less energy to produce fossil fuels?

Oh hmm.. fossil fuels aren't renewable you say?

Re:Hmm (1)

ealfert (551051) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925064)

Am I reading correctly from your post that using 6x energy to make ethanol is worthwile then because it is renewable? So you are saying we should eat up fossil fuels even faster (6x faster) in order to make ethanol? That's doesn't make sense. If you are saying we should use some other energy source like sunlight to make ethanol, then that doesn't make much sense either because why not just use the energy created by the sunlight instead of wasting 80% of the captured energy in the creation of ethanol?

Re:Hmm (2, Informative)

TykeClone (668449) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925190)

According to TFA, they are including the energy used in producing the fuel used for growing and harvesting the grain and for making the fertilizers. This should probably be backed out of the equation because these activities will take place anyway - regardless of whether or not we're using ethanol.

The TFA also disregards the uses of the rest of the byproducts of ethanol production (distillers grain and industrial gases).

The useful thing about ethanol and biodiesel is that we already have an infrastructure available and ready to use it as a vehicle fuel now. With Hydrogen fuel we don't. Same with Fuel Cells.

Re:Hmm (3, Informative)

jcorno (889560) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925447)

According to TFA, they are including the energy used in producing the fuel used for growing and harvesting the grain and for making the fertilizers. This should probably be backed out of the equation because these activities will take place anyway - regardless of whether or not we're using ethanol.

No, they won't. Farmers don't grow corn they don't intend to sell, and manufacturers don't make fertilizer they don't intend to sell. Both have increased production expressly for this purpose. Without the ethanol market, the farmers would cut back to keep prices under control. Same for the fertilizer.

Re:Hmm (2, Interesting)

TykeClone (668449) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925572)

The corn acres come at the expense of soybean acres (for now). The amount of work, fertilizer, and chemicals that each crop requires is similar, so there isn't much difference in the amount of petroleum used regardless of whether ethanol is a market or not.

Corn (and soybeans) are commodity markets - so farmers will typically sell their crops into the market for what they can get. If there is an ethanol plant nearby, it reduces the basis (this is essentially the difference in the price of corn at the chicago board of trade and the price of corn locally - the price of transporting corn to where it will be used) and has only a slight affect on the price of corn.

Re:Hmm (1)

KagatoLNX (141673) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925250)

How much petroleum goes into petroleum production? Seriously.

Don't forget that fossil fuels had massive amounts of energy going into their production. Definitely more than 6x. It's just that we didn't have to do most of that work and that it happened on a million year time scale. I mean, we're talking millions of tons of biomass, millions of years, countless joules of solar energy, tectonic forces, etc. Not to mention the later drilling, excavating, pumping, hauling, etc. As such, the fact that Ethanol can be produced with 6x the energy it outputs is amazing, considering how how that number really is for fossil fuels.

That said, this just goes to show that more work needs to go into it (or something else) to get there. I don't see anybody posting the amount of energy that goes into CREATING fossil fuels (since we don't CREATE them at all).

There's more than just efficiency of production. Ethanol hold energy better, is more portable, and expends it more consistently than, say, electricity in a battery. So if you're talking solar panels, we can't use them for what we use ethanol for (not just energy, plastics too).

I don't think it is too out of reach that we will someday use abundant fusion, tidal, solar, or thermal (the oceans) sources of electrical power to still create hydro-carbon fuels for many smaller vehicles. I also would be willing to bet we may even get less efficient by using that same power to produce antimatter as a fuel--for the same reasons we need a hydro-carbon fuel (portability, energy density, ease of reaction, exciting explosions when our machines fail, etc).

Re:Hmm (4, Interesting)

jericho4.0 (565125) | more than 9 years ago | (#12926566)

" How much petroleum goes into petroleum production?"

Good question. In the early days of oil production, it took one barrel of oil to get ~50. Oil was easy to pump (not very deep), and of high quality (pick and choose your oilfield). Nowadays, one barrel of oil gets you somewhere around 5, less in some fields. The big exceptions to this are a few, very large, oilfields in Iraq, Saudi Arabia, and the former Soviet states. Some might find some insight into recent US foreign policy here.

Return On Energy is being affected by several factors. Oil is now deeper and stickier, and takes lots of force to suck out of the ground. The gushers have gushed. It is also of lower quality, and more energy is required to refine it.

The ROE calculation for a particular oilfield is difficult to do. Oil producers are very secretive about some numbers, so the margin of error is significant. But what is clear is that the ROE is dropping, and will continue to drop. When it hits 1:1, oil becomes useless.

I think the most interesting thing about this, is that we won't know until after the fact. Suddenly the worker will not have enough paycheck to get gas to go to work in the factory that makes refinery bits, or some convulted economic chain like that. Another reason the calculation is so hard to do.

If we were having an oil deathpool, I would guess 15 years.

Re:Hmm (1)

dasunt (249686) | more than 9 years ago | (#12927090)

When you are predicting your oil deathpool, you might want to google for shale oil, and its current cost/barrel.

If fuel prices stay as high as they are, shale oil starts to become competitive.

So? (1)

Fizzl (209397) | more than 9 years ago | (#12924988)

It's for you, not for car.

$$$ Money (1)

turtled (845180) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925083)

I read that as, it will cost you more in the end; if you think prices are high now, just wait..!

The real future is not in corn (5, Informative)

1967mustangman (883255) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925115)

Ethanol has long been a problem. The real insteresting prospect is the company up in Canada that is creating ethanol from the woddy portions of plants with a genetically modified bacteria see this slash dot story http://science.slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=05/01/0 7/1846247&tid=14 [slashdot.org]

Uh... "make take"? (1)

Cave Dweller (470644) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925128)

WTF is up with Slashdot lately? (Well, the past 3-4 months.)

Re:Uh... "make take"? (1)

Leroy_Brown242 (683141) | more than 9 years ago | (#12926630)

They outsourced the editing department.

The future of energy is in superconductors (1)

mister_llah (891540) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925172)

... the sooner we get off of our reliance of fossil fuels, the better off we'll be.... we need to focus more research efforts on improving our superconductor technology!

Currently we're far too low to be useful in an every day sort of way (around -211 deg. F I think) ... but the higher this goes, the more uses it has.

[Lower energy loss means longer energy storage and more effective energy generation]

===

Fossil fuels are fossils, its time to move on up!

Re:The future of energy is in superconductors (1)

ArsonSmith (13997) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925395)

when will i be able to fill my gas tank up with superconductors? Is it possible now? This would be great.

not particularly relevant... (1)

croddy (659025) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925189)

the advantage of ethanol isn't that it's more efficient than gasoline, or cleaner -- the adantage is that it's a drop-in replacement fuel for most internal-combustion engines that now burn gasoline.

sure, as long as there's oil, ethanol doesn't really look efficient or affordable except as a fuel oxygenator. but if the oil reserves were to run out sometime soon, ethanol could be poured into most of our existing infrastructure and ease the transition. that's why it's important -- not because it's inherently superior to petroleum, but because it can be manufactured (from scratch) much more quickly.

Re:not particularly relevant... (4, Insightful)

Mr.Sharpy (472377) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925388)

sure, as long as there's oil, ethanol doesn't really look efficient or affordable except as a fuel oxygenator. but if the oil reserves were to run out sometime soon, ethanol could be poured into most of our existing infrastructure and ease the transition. that's why it's important -- not because it's inherently superior to petroleum, but because it can be manufactured (from scratch) much more quickly.

Did you even read the article? You're missing the entire point! If the oil reserves run out you won't be able to get any ethanol to pour in your car either! Corn based ethanol requires far more energy in its production than it is capable of producing itself, almost all of which comes from fossil fuels. In fact, according to this article producing one unit of energy in ethanol requires 2.3 units of energy to produce. That's gotta come from somewhere, and right now its going to be fossil fuels.

The bottom line is that ethanol programs are, right now, nothing more than another farm subsidy. The politics such programs are beyond the scope of this article, but suffice it to say that touting ethanol as the solution to our energy problems is at best disingenuous, dishonest, and a potentially disasterous diversion from the real technologies we are going to need to maintain our current life styles in the future.

Re:not particularly relevant... (2, Informative)

TykeClone (668449) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925438)

That's gotta come from somewhere, and right now its going to be fossil fuels.

Fossil fuels != oil. Coal can be (and is being) used to fire ethanol plants. We have a larger supply of coal readily available - in the United States - than oil and essentially converting it to a liquid fuel (in the form of ethanol) would be useful for weaning the economy off of foreign oil.

Re:not particularly relevant... (1)

peaworth (578846) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925478)

Unfortunately, coal is a rather dirty alternative and not one I would go to voluntarily.

Re:not particularly relevant... (1)

Profane MuthaFucka (574406) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925782)

Solar, hydro, nuclear also could be used.

Re:not particularly relevant... (1)

Tumbleweed (3706) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925913)

True, but, you should investigate what happens in coal mining operations. It ain't pretty, and I'd rather have an oil derrick around than have a nice mountain stripmined for the layer of coal.

Re:not particularly relevant... (2, Interesting)

rabugento (457560) | more than 9 years ago | (#12927081)

Ethanol production from corn, you mean. If you use sugarcane as feedstock, there is a significant net energy outcome.

A more thorough article has been http://petroleum.berkeley.edu/papers/patzek/CRPS41 6-Patzek-Web.pdf> published by Mr. Patzek. It could also be argued that he is considering only the current practices in american industry. If best practices were adopted, the results would surely change somewhat.

Re:not particularly relevant... (1)

JVert (578547) | more than 9 years ago | (#12926786)

What in the blazes are you talking about?

Where do you think your going to get this ethenol during an energy crisis? If it takes 5 gallons of refined oil to make 1 gallon of ethanol your still going to run out of oil to make the ethenol. And when you switch to ethenol as your power source to grow the ethenol, you'll run out of energy even faster.

Re:not particularly relevant... (1)

croddy (659025) | more than 9 years ago | (#12927120)

It would be illogical to assume that all conditions remain stable.

The inefficiency of an existing manufacturing process is usually considered a reason to research it more, not to abandon it.

This is flawed. (5, Insightful)

EvilMagnus (32878) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925191)

"Taking grain apart, fermenting it, distilling it and extruding it uses a lot of fossil energy," he said. "We are grasping at the solution that is by far the least efficient.".

He ignores the fact that, if we wanted to, we *could* arrange the production chain so that it was not dependent on fossil fuel. You could build your farming and fermentation facilities to use solar or hydro power, for example.

Sure, it's fossil-intensive *now*. But it's also not a major energy source yet. If we needed to we could clean up the energy chain - there's no part of the process that requires fossil fuel sources.

Re:This is flawed. (1)

Scarblac (122480) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925238)

Still, why do it at all? If you use solar or hydro power to create six times as much energy as the ethanol produces, why not use that energy instead?

Re:This is flawed. (1)

Profane MuthaFucka (574406) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925357)

Because it's hard to stick a hydro plant in your car and drive with it. It's also hard to drive around with batteries. Ethanol is a nice energy density to fuel a car with, and the technology isn't terribly environmentally unfriendly.

Of course, if you're talking about industrial furnaces or other stuff that doesn't need to drive around, I agree with you. We don't necessarily need to convert the electricity to ethanol to use it.

Re:This is flawed. (1)

peaworth (578846) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925365)

Portability. Same reason that we accept loss in transmission lines of electricity, use other types of energy to create hydrogen, use diesel fuel to truck gasoline out to the various filling stations, etc.

Re:This is flawed. (1)

ArsonSmith (13997) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925368)

The problem with most energy expecially solar and to an extent hydro you have to use it right away. with this you get to keep it for effectivly as long as you'd like. I'm sure it has a shelf life but it is transportable and useable in a realistic way.

Re:This is flawed. (1)

Eric Smith (4379) | more than 9 years ago | (#12926756)

A much more efficient method of storing large amounts of energy is "pumped hydroelectric energy storage". This is simply conversion of electricity to gravitational potential energy by pumping water from a lower reservoir to a higher one while excess energy is being generated by another source (e.g. solar), and converting the gravitational potential energy back into electrical energy when it isn't (e.g., at night). With modern designs, the generator simply is used in "reverse" to act as a pump.

This process is over 90% efficient, as opposed to production of ethanol, which is under 20% efficient.

Even if you don't have suitable geography for pumped hydroelectric nearby, and even if you want to power a portable device by charging batteries, the overall system efficiency of transporting electrical energy through the grid to a pumped hydro plant, storing it, converting it back, transporting it through the grid again, and charging the battery for the portable device is STILL significantly more efficient than producing and distributing ethanol.

Re:This is flawed. (1)

EvilMagnus (32878) | more than 9 years ago | (#12926068)

Because you can't take the waterfall with you, and the sun doesn't shine at night. :)

The energy must be stored somehow for use on demand. Putting it into a combustible liquid is one way. Putting into a battery is another - although at the moment the process of making and disposing of the batteries is very environmentally unsound.

Re:This is flawed. (1)

Profane MuthaFucka (574406) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925307)

I think he knows that. His point isn't that ethanol doesn't make sense. His point is that *subsidizing* ethanol doesn't make sense, either financially or thermodynamically.

Re:This is flawed. (2, Insightful)

DerekLyons (302214) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925324)

"Taking grain apart, fermenting it, distilling it and extruding it uses a lot of fossil energy," he said. "We are grasping at the solution that is by far the least efficient.".

He ignores the fact that, if we wanted to, we *could* arrange the production chain so that it was not dependent on fossil fuel. You could build your farming and fermentation facilities to use solar or hydro power, for example.

And you ignore the fact that regardless of the energy source, ethanol is *still* a net sink of energy. *Regardless of the energy source*.

That's not to mention the other enviromental effects - from fertilizers and pesticides, as well as from the need to dispose of the solid and liquid wastes generated. But ethanol has strong backers across the political spectrum, and there is thus little incentive to look at it honestly.

Re:This is flawed. (4, Insightful)

WolfWithoutAClause (162946) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925992)

Nah. The real point behind all this is that in USA they make ethanol from corn, because they grow a lot of corn, and powerful lobbies have introduced a huge subsidy to use that source of ethanol to try to keep the cheap biofuel from Brazil off the market.

Of course the Brazilian biofuel comes from sugar beat and so forth, which actually is somewhat efficient and gives a net energy win; which is why Brazil have been able to run lots of their cars on it for quite a while now.

So what this paper is really saying is not that biofuel is a waste of time, but that 'The American Government are morons' with their stupid corn-based ethanol subsidy. But you knew that already, unless you're a corn farmer.

Re:This is flawed. (1)

EvilMagnus (32878) | more than 9 years ago | (#12926178)

Exactly.

The same reason we use high-fructose corn syrup for sweetener instead of sugar cane like the rest of the world. :)

It's a fixable problem, but we may have to endure a few years of the Brazilians laughing at us while we all push our cars to work for want of fuel.

Re:This is flawed. (1)

EvilMagnus (32878) | more than 9 years ago | (#12926143)

And you ignore the fact that regardless of the energy source, ethanol is *still* a net sink of energy. *Regardless of the energy source*.

Well, duh.

I'm not ignoring it - I know that energy is lost in state changes. But as I just pointed out to someone else, it's not the loss that's a bad thing - it's because the original Source of All our Energy, the Sun, doesn't shine at night.

We can't use solar or hydro power everywhere. We have no portable nuclear reactors for our Atom Cars. So we must used stored energy - the question is how do we store it, and how much (and what kind of) energy must be used to make it storable.

The article's author argues that because ethanol creation uses fossil fuel at the moment it's bad, and we shouldn't use it (and more fossile fuel is used to create it than we get out of it, so we should just burn gas directly).

I argue that we can fix that, and the loss of efficiency is worth it to have a stable, storable, environmentally friendly fuel.

There's no reason why hydro, solar or nuclear sources couldn't be used to produce ethanol. We just don't do it now. Sure, it's conversion and we lose efficiency with state changes, but the sun doesn't shine at night, you can't take a waterfall with you wherever you go, and batteries have their own environmental cost.

Article end statement ignores early Iowa primary. (2, Interesting)

rthille (8526) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925194)

"If government funds become short, subsidies for fuels will be looked at very carefully," he said. "When they are, there's no way ethanol production can survive."

Right there the article ignores the politics surrounding ethanol. The politics surrounding other energy sources/storage mechanisms don't have the power that ethanol backers do.

Re:Article end statement ignores early Iowa primar (1)

jcorno (889560) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925354)

It's because of our primary and electoral system. Nobody should give a shit about the corn growing states, but since they're sparsely populated, their votes are worth 3 of mine (in Georgia). And of course, the Iowa caucus has a ridiculously large voice in the selection of the President. All of this clout for corn farmers means everybody has to kiss their ass and promise to buy all the corn they can grow for ethanol. Add to that the benefit that you can pretend you care about the environment instead of just corn farmer votes, and you can be pretty sure ethanol has a secure future.

Re:Article end statement ignores early Iowa primar (1)

mc6809e (214243) | more than 9 years ago | (#12926162)


The only change you could make in our electoral system that would make a difference is to stop allowing people that receive federal money from voting for their state representatives.

Until then, people will continue to elect candidates that will give them money for their votes.

The journal article from Critical Reviews in Plant (1)

waynegoode (758645) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925226)

The study referred to in the story was published [tandf.co.uk] last year in Critical Reviews in Plant Sciences [metapress.com] . Abstract free, the article, like most journal articles, is probably very expensive.

This doesn't pass the smell test (2, Interesting)

WolfWithoutAClause (162946) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925236)

If it takes 6x as much energy to produce it, you would expect that it would cost more than 6x as much than the original fuel. So far as I'm aware it doesn't, nothing like. Ethanol costs about $1.50 a gallon... Compare that with the cost of gasoline for example; or aviation fuel (last time I checked, about $1/gallon- slightly cheaper).

Also, they've been making ethanol for vehicle fuel in Brazil for years... if it was so very uneconomic I wouldn't expect them to do that.

As in, what gives? I smell politics.

Yeah, right. (1)

porkchop_d_clown (39923) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925505)

did you forget that ethanol production is subsidized by the feds?

Re:Yeah, right. (1)

WolfWithoutAClause (162946) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925709)

Did you forget that 'the feds' don't actually own Brazil? Doesn't look like Brazil has any problems having to produce biofuel with a net deficit of energy.

Looks like they grow sugarcane and other plants rather than corn, presumably grows slower, but it's probably easier and less energy intensive to process.

Just a bit (1)

jgoemat (565882) | more than 9 years ago | (#12926805)

54 cents per gallon of ethanol, 5.4 cents per gallon of 90/10 blended gasoline. Did you forget that the oil industry is also subsidized by the feds?

Re:This doesn't pass the smell test (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12925541)

The government subsidizes companies that produce Ethanol. For instance, in my home state of Nebraska it is actually cheaper for me to fill up on gas with Ethanol in it than just "regular". Why? Because Nebraska has cows and CORN, so the State Government gives huge breaks on Ethanol so more people by it and thus more corn is sold.

Re:This doesn't pass the smell test (3, Interesting)

linuxwrangler (582055) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925802)

I smell politics.


Good nose. And when the politicians are bought and paid for by Archer Daniels Midland [admworld.com] and friends the result is government subsidies for corn-derived ethanol and a full-court press to keep Brazilian ethanol (sugar derived) out of the US (just google brazil ethanol imports).

Checking Slashdot's Sources (3, Informative)

Passman (6129) | more than 9 years ago | (#12926043)

I agree, this did smell funny. So I went out and did some research.

It seems that the "scientist" in this story, Tad Patzek (a geologist), has been working for the oil industry quite a bit over the last [lbl.gov] few [berkeley.edu] years [ilcorn.org] . Odd that he should suddenly be switching his interest to agriculture and begin attacking Ethanol.

Or perhaps it all makes sense if you look at it from the correct prospective.

Mod Parent Up! (1)

fname (199759) | more than 9 years ago | (#12926422)

Excellent point, it's the first thing that crossed my mind when I read the article. At 6x the energy to produce it than you get back, government subsidies would have to be huge. As a matter of logic, divide all government subsidies by the number of gallons of ethanol produced. Examine the subsidy-per-gallon (SPG) in comparison to the cost-of-gas (COG). Unless SPG is more than 5x greater than COG, there's no way it takes 6x as much energy to produce a gallon of ethanol than it creates. Otherwise, the makers of ethanol would lose money hand over fist. Anyone have the numbers?

Another respondent pointed that the study was conducted by a big-oil schill. With no facts presented in the article, I can only conclude it's a steaming pile of s***. So /.ers, before railing against government subsidies, try to examine the facts first, do some light math and see if the numbers make sense. This whole article looks like a big troll to me.

The Simple Solution. (1, Insightful)

Goalie_Ca (584234) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925243)

Don't drive gas guzzlers. Don't drive unless you need to. Maybe while you're at it you might as well bike or walk some places and lose some weight reducing the burden on health care.

Re:The Simple Solution. (1)

PolyDwarf (156355) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925344)

Talk to me when you do this in Phoenix Arizona in the middle of summer.

When the nightly LOWS don't go below 90.
When the daily HIGHS don't go below 110 or 115.

Then bike or walk even the mile or two to the grocery store, and see how you feel. I'll visit you in the hospital where you'll be taken when you keel over from heatstroke. Oh wait, you'll be placing a burden on health care. Whoops.

Re:The Simple Solution. (1)

Goalie_Ca (584234) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925815)

Surely the middle of the summer isn't year round and that still doesn't mean you need a gas guzzler.

Re:The Simple Solution. (1)

WhiteBandit (185659) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925827)

Talk to me when you do this in Phoenix Arizona in the middle of summer.

When the nightly LOWS don't go below 90.
When the daily HIGHS don't go below 110 or 115.

Then bike or walk even the mile or two to the grocery store, and see how you feel. I'll visit you in the hospital where you'll be taken when you keel over from heatstroke. Oh wait, you'll be placing a burden on health care. Whoops.


As someone who has spent a lot of time living in the desert and doing various field work there, I feel fairly confident in saying 115 degrees isn't that bad. ;) Granted, that it only if you have plenty of water (thank goodness for CamelBacks [camelbak.com] ) and a nice wide brimmed hat.

That said, the real problem isn't so much the temperatures involved. It's the distances. Phoenix, as well as many other urban areas throughout the Southwest (ie, Los Angeles) are just massive sprawling areas of concrete. The public transportation systems are not that suitable in getting you to where you want to go. And even if they DO go somewhere you want, it isn't in a very timely matter.

So "driving less" in these areas is not a practical solution to these problems. It'd be easier to just buy a more fuel efficient vehicle.

Re:The Simple Solution. (1)

Tumbleweed (3706) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925951)

Hey, if someone's stupid enough to live in the fucking _desert_, that's just too damned bad, isn't it?

Re:The Simple Solution. (1)

jericho4.0 (565125) | more than 9 years ago | (#12926694)

a) if it doesn't go below 110 or 115, it's a low

b) WTF are you doing living in a place you're so poorly adapted to?

Re:The Simple Solution. (1)

genrader (563784) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925486)

Sorry ,that doesn't work with my mom and 4 kids who live 5 miles from anywhere they want to go.

Re:The Simple Solution. (1)

mugnyte (203225) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925922)


Then I sure hope your mom like paying for gas. Oil prices seem to be trending up. Overall, there has to be a better method by just reducing one's radius of locality. Sleep/Work/Play in a smaller circle and you'll need your ass carted around less, and can bike/walk more.

Re:The Simple Solution. (1)

Goalie_Ca (584234) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925940)

Big gas guzzlers are for those who need one. This may be a case where a bigger car wouldn't hurt. But there are many cases where people can drive a small car, motorcycle, bike, walk, or take transit.

Apple, Oranges, and crosstalk (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12925292)

It's really hard to figure out who to believe in these things. One side says it's net loss, one side says it's net gain. One side says that the other isn't accounting for all the energy spent, one side says the other is using old efficiency data. Reading the article, I doubt the two sides care much to debate each other on the points of actual contention.

Where you end up on efficiency numbers depends heavily on what assumptions you make about the process - like what source are you using: corn grain, or waste wood/straw? How much fertilizer do you count? If you use cow manure, do you count the energy used to raise & feed the cows? What process for fermenting the feedstock? How pure do you need the ethanol. (It's easy to get 20% ethanol, a bit harder to get 95%, and much harder to get 100%, dry ethanol, like what's needed to mix with gasoline.) Where do you get the energy for the process? From the final, refined ethanol, from a raw intermediate, or from waste? All have an influence on how much energy you get out.

From my perspective, it's rather telling that the article is being published in "Critical Reviews in Plant Sciences", versus a more estemed journal like Science, Nature, PNAS or even a top tear energy journal (but Plant Sciences?). I haven't read it, but my guess is that the analysis isn't high enough quality to cut it somewhere better.

I rather like the idea of an "ethanol economy." Granted, I don't think the current production system is going to work, rather we'll need to switch over to using cellulosic (waste) feedstuffs, powering the process with waste/intermediates, and running fuel cells off of highly aqueous (~20-50%) ethanol. All will cut the energy needed for ethanol production dramatically.

Alternative Fuels (1)

ndansmith (582590) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925305)

There was a reason, back in the day, that gasoline was chosen to power vehicles. That is, its energy-density is very high. In fact, in terms of fuels that are stable enough to be in a vehicle, I am sure that gasoline is very very close to the top. That is why it became (and remains) the dominant fuel for automobiles. Alternative fuels (hydrogen fuel cells, ethanol) are simply to inefficient and expensive. Though gas is such a nasty pollutant, is the economically (think micro and short-term) smartest choice at the moment.

Re:Alternative Fuels (1)

Ensign Zatrole (895082) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925378)

Is this a troll or are you just misinformed? It's hard to tell sometimes. If it is a troll, excellent work. You caught me.

Anyway, the energy density of ethanol and biodiesel are comparable to the energy density of gasoline and petrodiesel.

In fact, I suspect that the energy density of ethanol is in fact slighlty higher than that of gasoline, since flexifuel cars (which run both on ethanol and gasoline as required) will give you more engine horsepower when fueled with ethanol.

Now with hydrogen compared to more complex fuels, you may have a point.

Re:Alternative Fuels (1)

ndansmith (582590) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925403)

Well we are both totally lacking sources to back up our ignorant/troll claims, so I guess this one is a draw until one of us does some research, or I give up and eat a taco.

Re:Alternative Fuels (1)

LWATCDR (28044) | more than 9 years ago | (#12926792)

No the energy density of ethanol is not higher than gasoline. You may get a better mileage out of ethanol only because you can run higher compression and a more ignition timing. Biodiesel and diesel are pretty close. My question is when you are talking energy density are you talking about per unit of volume or unit of weight. Race cars burn methanol because they can run a lot more boost but will burn a lot more fuel that a car using high octane gasoline. Methanol is safer for the driver as well since it burn a lot cooler.

Re:Alternative Fuels (1)

ameline (771895) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925409)

Diesel has a higher energy density than gasoline.

And don't forget that when you figure energy density, you'll want to take into account the mass and volume that its container takes up too. This makes hydrogen and LNG suck even more as fuels for vehicles as their fuel tanks are much heavier than those you can use for gasoline or diesel.

Dirty Little Secret (1)

stinkyfingers (588428) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925359)

corn is used to produce ethanol, ethanol is burned and gives off carbon dioxide, and corn uses the carbon dioxide as it grows

Ixnay. Politicians know ethanol is crap. It just gives them a better story when pushing for farm subsidies. For more information, see Homeland Defense Funding [answers.com]

In a nutshell (3, Interesting)

Linux_ho (205887) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925374)

The author is using data from thirty-year-old production techniques to shoot down the new "buzz" about tomorrow's efficient ethanol production. At the same time, he is ignoring the current research that is generating the buzz: researchers are just now coming up with efficient ways to produce enzymes that can turn raw agricultural waste into ethanol. That means stuff like sawdust, wood pulp, cardboard, corn stems, yard waste etc can be turned into ethanol instead of going into landfills.

Data about how much energy it takes to grow corn is irrelevant, because we won't be using corn. We'll be using lawn clippings, or pulverized construction waste, or re-re-recycled paper, or whatever.

Re:In a nutshell (2, Insightful)

Linux_ho (205887) | more than 9 years ago | (#12926553)

Oh, I almost forgot. Using sugar-based production techniques developed over the past 20 years, Brazil currently manufactures huge quantities of ethanol and sells it on the international market for approximately $30-$35 per barrel. Most of the ethanol the US imports comes from Brazil. If producing it was so inefficient, I'd expect it to be a lot more expensive, wouldn't you? Compared with current oil prices (>$50/barrel?), and the potential for efficiently producing ethanol from agricultural waste in the next 5-10 years, I'd say the case for ethanol's looking pretty good.

Re:In a nutshell (1)

mschaffer (97223) | more than 9 years ago | (#12927281)

"stuff like sawdust, wood pulp, cardboard, corn stems, yard waste etc." can already be used for many other things that would already keep them out of landfills. Sure, you can also turn it into ethanol, too, but that isn't going to necessarily keep it out of the landfills.

LEGAL NOTICE (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12925400)

It might be illegal to read this article if you are currently in Illinois or Iowa.

What about... (1)

TeknoHog (164938) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925600)

the energy required to produce gasoline?

No excuse (1)

vertinox (846076) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925648)

From Article:

"People tend to think of ethanol and see an endless cycle: corn is used to produce ethanol, ethanol is burned and gives off carbon dioxide, and corn uses the carbon dioxide as it grows," he said. "But that isn't the case. Fossil fuel actually drives the whole cycle.

I think he is failing to see that the problem lies with Fossil Fuels being electricity producers. It might not be as feasible as one thinks, but we might as well switch to as much nuclear power or some other alternative or spend billions (trillion if needed ) of dollars to actually get Fusion up and running.

Seriously, the oil gravy train at best can only last 100 years given the rate of expansion from US and China. (pessimists would say by 2020)

I don't know about global warming, but eventually if we rely on natural oil we'll be walking more.

I smell some thermodynamics errors (1)

The_Dougster (308194) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925682)

Six times the energy input does not necessarily work out, especially if the input energy is low level process heat, sunlight, or other "cheap" sources of energy.
"Taking grain apart, fermenting it, distilling it and extruding it uses a lot of fossil energy," he said. "We are grasping at the solution that is by far the least efficient."
Consider the process of making ethanol from corn. You plant some field corn and let it grow. There is some energy involved here but mostly human labor and sunlight is involved. Once your corn is ready to harvest you probably want to use some kind of farm machine to harvest it up, ok some more energy here but probably not all that much. Maybe your farm machine could use ethanol for fuel.

For processing, since this corn is not for consumption I would imagine you could let it dry on the cobs, soak it down to sprout it, and then toss it into some kind of grinder to pulverise it into a very coarse mash. By sprouting it you allow the natural process to create mashing enzymes and sugar similar to barley malt. I can't imagine grinding up corncobs would require that much energy.

Then you heat up your mash to the conversion temperature of around 160F and convert all remaining starches to fermentable sugars. There's no point in straining the mixture really so once it cools down some you toss in a cake of distiller's yeast and let it ferment out.

Finally, you draw off your liquid which will contain some portion of ethanol. If you stored it until winter, you could use partial crystalization to refine your alcohol. No energy required here.

And the final distillation. Again, if you wait until the winter, you can utilize process heat from the distillation to heat your building. Some energy required here but you could probably use some of the ethanol you are producing to run your process and/or burn left over stalks, corncobs, and organic materials.

Really with some clever use of waste streams, the whole process could run with zero net outside energy input other than human labor and sunlight.

Overall the energy input probably does exceed the content of the finished product, but you are essentially concentrating your energy into a much more useful form (read: you can sell it for cash).

This is nothing new, all industry involves taking large amounts of relatively worthless raw materials and condensing them down into some form which is more useful and valuable.

A million joules of sunlight is essentially worthless, but a hundred thousand joules worth of ethanol is something you can sell!

Re:I smell some thermodynamics errors (1)

pclminion (145572) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925884)

For processing, since this corn is not for consumption I would imagine you could let it dry on the cobs, soak it down to sprout it, and then toss it into some kind of grinder to pulverise it into a very coarse mash. By sprouting it you allow the natural process to create mashing enzymes and sugar similar to barley malt.

Nope. Corn doesn't contain amylase or other starch-splitting enzymes, and none are produced by sprouting it, either. In brewing, corn must be mashed with a diastatic malt like barley or you don't get any saccharification.

In order to get the sugar from corn starch you must either add artificial enzymes, or more realistically, you hydrolyze it using sulfuric acid. I imagine the hydrolysis route would be the most economical and efficient, since amylase is incredibly slow-acting at lower temperatures.

If you want a true "bioreactor" kind of setup, you'd probably want to use an organism which can saccharify starch, like the koji culture used in making Japanese sake. Then the free sugars would be moved to a fermentation vessel. Again, chemical processes are much faster and possibly more efficient. The goal here is fuel, not a tasty beverage.

further refinement (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12926932)

The Harvesting engine could be run using steam power generated by buring stalks, cobs and other 'waste' materials. Wood shoud be avoided as it typically takes a long time to renew. I remember seeing that white long grain rice is cleaned and polished using power from buring its' bran coat.

The Strange Substance of Slashdot Stories (1)

c0d3h4x0r (604141) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925705)

In other news, researchers have discovered that it takes six top stories being posted to Slashdot to get one piece of real news.

The killer ap for ethanol, right now. (1)

relaxrelax (820738) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925826)

Yes, it costs lots of power to make.

The point is, you can make ethanol anywhere you want, say from the leftover electricity that is not needed at the time by the power plants (this happens a lot when your locals don't need heating or air conditioning).

Use the leftover power to make ethanol. Sell ethanol as gas, usable anywhere.

Of course there are those who'd prever we waste leftover electricity and buy regular gas, and unfortunately they can afford to bribe a politician or two (or even get elected themselves - think Bush family).

My question would be, is it better than other ways to use/store leftover power from power plants?

Re:The killer ap for ethanol, right now. (1)

The_Dougster (308194) | more than 9 years ago | (#12926029)

I always thought that electrolyzing molten salt down into sodium metal and chlorine gas would be a cool way to store energy. There's no question that reacting chlorine and sodium would be *vigorous* and highly exothermic. Storing the chlorine would be problematic; I think you can bubble it into water to make hydrochloric acid but it would be a pain.

Other ideas would be to run a huge air compressor and then produce liquid nitrogen and bottled oxygen. Whatever your power plant uses for fuel, unless its nuclear, it would probably burn a lot cleaner and hotter with pure oxygen. Excess liquid nitrogen could probably be put to good use if one was clever.

Generally though anytime you convert electicity to another form of energy you are going to have terrible inefficiency. It would be much better to have a good computer controlled power plant which closely produces only as much power as necessary to keep the grid up to nominal voltage levels.

Re:The killer ap for ethanol, right now. (1)

TykeClone (668449) | more than 9 years ago | (#12926660)

Other ideas would be to run a huge air compressor and then produce liquid nitrogen and bottled oxygen.

Iowa has a proposal to do this - use wind turbines to compress air (I think) into underground caverns during the winter and spring (when we have lots of wind) and draw it out to produce power during the summer (when it is hot and still). http://www.iamu.org/isep/Overview%20April%20-%20Ma y%202005.ppt [iamu.org]

Flashy headline misses Meat of the article (2, Informative)

brandido (612020) | more than 9 years ago | (#12925901)

It is too bad that the person who wrote the title didnt bother to RTFA:
Shapouri's most recent analysis, which the USDA published in 2004, comes to the exact opposite conclusion of Patzek's: Ethanol, he said, has a positive energy balance, containing 67 percent more energy than is used to manufacture it. Optimistic that the process will become even more efficient in the future, he pointed out that scientists are experimenting with using alternative sources like solid waste, grass and wood to make ethanol. If successful on a large scale, these techniques could drastically reduce the amount of fossil fuel needed for ethanol production.
The analysis showing that Ethanol uses more energy that it produces is based on outdated farming and processing techniques. Using modern techniques, it is energy positive.

look at the wording (1)

Tumbleweed (3706) | more than 9 years ago | (#12926032)

Six times more energy than end product delivers, not six times more energy than gasoline; there's a big difference.

If you look at the site a previous poster mentioned ( here [state.mn.us] ), you'll see that ethanol's energy yield is 1.34, while gasoline's is 0.805. Obviously, that is nowhere near a 6x difference.

Also, the thing about portable fuel sources vs how much energy it takes to make them gets people thinking the wrong way. I'll put it in terms nerds can understand. It's like a desktop machine vs a laptop. A desktop machine is more powerful and a lot cheaper. So why would anyone ever buy a laptop? Because it's portable. Same thing with liquid fuels - it's not as efficient as plugging directly into the power grid, but guess what, extension cords don't run very far. You're giving up efficiency for an ability that you completely lack otherwise. The energy going into gasoline isn't 1:1, either. Think about all the energy that goes into drilling for oil, transporting said oil, refining said oil into gasoline, then transporting _again_ to the final destination.

Is the higher cost of ethanol & biodiesel directly attributable to its pump price? No, it's value to consumers reflects mainly two things: 1) much less production means economies of scale don't apply as well, and 2) better environmental impact. Much like the 'eco-friendly' brands of various products cost more. You pay for what you value.

Also to note about biodiesel: you get more power, better milage, and longer engine life than with diesel, so there is a long-term monetary benefit to using it.

Google for these guys, editors (1)

Paul Crowley (837) | more than 9 years ago | (#12926130)

It didn't take long to find two things:

(1) Making this case seems to be all Patzek ever does

(2) He may not be wholly unbiased.

Here's the Google search [google.com] and here's one of many interesting results... [ilcorn.org]

Re:Google for these guys, editors (1)

Paul Crowley (837) | more than 9 years ago | (#12926250)

(Of course the author of that letter is also biased. What trickiness! See also this article on Pimental [pacificviews.org] ...)

Re:Google for these guys, editors (1)

Linux_ho (205887) | more than 9 years ago | (#12927300)

Maybe you expect someone who doesn't care about the subject at all will spend days researching and verifying all the facts, and join the fray?

Why talk about energy, talk about money! (1)

jgoemat (565882) | more than 9 years ago | (#12926622)

Here in the U.S. we live in a capitalist society, but the ethanol industry enjoys a large government subsidy. How large is it and how much does the ethanol actually cost? The U.S. Federal government subsidizes ethanol with a 54 cents per gallon (gallon of ethanol, that's 5.4 cents per gallon of 10% ethanol fuel then) tax credit, and states also give credits individually.

1) Let's factor out those credits. Say someone wants to make 90/10 gas/ethanol to take advantage of the tax credit. How much will they actually pay for each gallon of ethanol, before taking into account the credit?

2) Ethanol is not as efficient as gasoline. I saw one figure that said 3% less efficient, but that was probably from an ethanol propaganda site. Wikipedia says gasoline [wikipedia.org] is more like a 48% gain in BTU over ethanol (104k BTU/gal versus 70.3k BTU/gal).

If we say that gasoline costs $2.00 per gallon, that's $1.92 for 100,000 BTU of energy ($2/1.04). To be competitive, the price of ethanol must be about $1.35 per gallon ($1.92 * 0.703). If we can get the price of ethanol below that, there would be no reason to buy gasoline.

Well, what is wrong with this picture then? This site [johnston-independent.com] says the cost of producing ethanol has dropped from $1.40 in 1980 to under $1.00 in 2001, with the average being $1.09 (since some plants use old equipment still). If ethanol costs less per unit work, why don't more cars run on it, or at least higher blends of it?

Can someone comment on these points? I don't have time to research them all...

  1. Is ethanol less powerful, therefore our SUV/muscle car culture that isn't interested in fuel efficiency doesn't care, they just want the power?
  2. Is it that the range of a car will be 30% less running pure ethanol that it would be with pure gasoline?
  3. Is ethanol more volatile? Wikipedia says it's flashpoint is pretty low, 17 degrees celsius I believe.
  4. Are my numbers wrong above?
  5. Is it a conspiracy of the oil companies?
  6. Is production too low? If more people bought it, would the price just go back up?

Re:Why talk about energy, talk about money! (1)

TykeClone (668449) | more than 9 years ago | (#12927109)

Some gas stations are starting to carry E85 at the pump (85% ethanol, 15% gasoline).

The problem with burning straight ethanol is that it will eat the rubber bits in the fuel system (at least that used to be the problem - perhaps newer cars can handle it?).

Eco-econo-thermodynamics (1)

DynaSoar (714234) | more than 9 years ago | (#12927134)

First, try thinking about it in the terms Bucky Fuller suggested: energy is the real value, and money is just an abstraction of it. They are interchangeable because they're inseperable.

Of course it's ineffecient. If it were efficient, it'd be cheap, and nobody could make money doing it, and so wouldn't do it on a scale useful to a population which is incapable of doing it for themselves.

Unaddressed is the complete cost of its use in terms of cleaning up the biosphere mess after. It's unaddressed because it's the same for both ethanol and petroleum, and so wouldn't serve his purpose. It'd make everything look equally bad. It's these after-costs that are the big hit against nuclear power, and the manufacturing costs (direct and long-term indirect) are frequently ignored by clean/green energy. What's it take to produce an acre of solar panels? A hundred windmills?

Why is it so surpising to people that thermodyamics works, and insists on the entire system be included?

Ginsberg's Theorem (The modern statement of the three laws of thermodynamics)
1. You can't win.
2. You can't even break even.
3. You can't get out of the game.

Well, you personally can get out of the game. But your organic molecules can't. They have to stay and get recycled in the constant fight against entropy. And here is where such biased reporting and reporters could be of use. Recycle all that paper they marked up, and their organic molecules. I mean, they DO want to make a difference, right?

Corn instead of tobacco (0, Offtopic)

lazy genes (741633) | more than 9 years ago | (#12927278)

Planting corn instead of an addictive product that kills people is a win win .The amount of energy spent on tobacco related problems is sickning.I smoke these addictive products.I am trolling for karma bich.
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