Just How Far Will That Bushel of Corn Take You?
For information on what is up on ethanol and flex fuel vehicles I rely on Corn Dog who stays up on just what is happening. If you go see Corn Dog, he would be glad to sell you the keys to a flex fuel car. He drives a flex fuel Tahoe on E85 (Ethanol 85 percent).
Ethanol will not be our total answer, although it is an important component in our quest for energy independence. Popular Mechanics points out the problem with total reliance on ethanol:
One acre of corn can produce 300 gal. of ethanol per growing season. So, in
order to replace that 200 billion gal. of petroleum products, American farmers
would need to dedicate 675 million acres, or 71 percent of the nation's 938
million acres of farmland, to growing feedstock. Clearly, ethanol alone won't
kick our fossil fuel dependence--unless we want to replace our oil imports with
But ethanol will provide a good dent in our oil use. And, Corn Dog I believe would dispute the 300 gallon figure, pointing to the constant progress being made, in ethanol conversion. And I imagine, we will get a good deal more than 300 gal. per acre. For an appraisal of the viability of these options, Popular Mechanics has offered an in depth analysis of alternative fuels. If I were in the market for a car today my choice would be flex fuel.