Bio fuels foolishness
It just seems as though we will never learn. We really do want our cake and eat it too and history has shown us, that time and time again this cannot happen. The latest instance of this nonsense is the biofuels silliness that seems to be just about everywhere. And so much of this has to do with the media, technology, business/political triumvirate. Not much of this has to do with science or ethics.
The latest, local addendum to this story, is the development of biofuels at Saint Mary’s University in Halifax. Dr. Vessey and his research team were awarded $30,000 to help further develop an inoculant to optimize sugar beet growth capacity for low cost, for what is being touted as an “environmentally sound” bioethanol production, a biofuel alternative to gasoline. They received the early Stage Commercialization Fund award from Nova Scotia’s Office for Economic Development and InNOVAcorp Inc. Who writes this stuff? Environmentally sound? Environmentally sound and anything to do with the automobile or the fuel that goes into it, cannot in any way being used in the same sentence! Where is any understanding of science, the environment and the issues behind the automobile. Forget the fact that GM, Firestone and Standard Oil were collectively and illegally responsible for the dismantling of almost all the urban rail transit systems in North America 50-70 years ago and the impetus for our modern auto addiction and resultant urban blight and global environmental disaster.
I have always been a fan of developing our expertise locally. What I am not a fan of is ramming the same garbage down the same pipe, in spite of what the science says, under the same old political and business imperatives. There are a few serious issues with this story. One is that we have an agricultural crisis happening in the world today. World wide agricultural production is declining for a host of reasons, water shortages, top soil loss and degradation, and increased heating due to climate change. And genetically modified crops, no matter what Monsanto would have you believe, have zero chance of making any difference to this statistic. Number two is that we have 80-million new mouths to feed each and every year. Number three is the car. We continue to add millions and millions of these awful things to our roads each and every year in spite of the auto company crisis, not to mention the global carnage of accidents, which kills more people each year than do all the wars on our planet. One tank of biogas for an SUV can feed a third world person for one freaking year!
Add to this the politicians’ and business’ total lack of understanding of anything past their collective noses, buried in the dollars and self congratulatory media spin they foist on these projects to gore their own oxen while the rest of the planet is dying for real solutions. Then there is the media. They are so bereft of any understanding of science, chasing ambulances and acting as business shills, hawking this latest story like we have discovered penicillin anew, that I wonder how they can put their collective pants on each morning.
Why do we continue to insist that this kind of stuff is environmentally sound? Why is InNovacorp acting as a handmaiden to the auto industry. Why do we continue to hitch out collective environmental wagons on these obviously deficient and morally bankrupt avenues? If we have researchers out there studying biofuels, fine. But this is not a green story. It is not an planet saving story in any way shape or form. If we grow sugar beets to fuels our cars we will hurt ourselves, our children and do not one thing to better the planet. We take food that is desperately needed to feed the new babies being born at the rate of almost 3 per second and stuff it in the deep, dank hole of our selfish wants, sugar beet coat it and add to the misery that is already out there.
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