Here’s another reason to think there’s a better way to produce ethanol than by converting corn.
Sweet sorghum, used in the United States mostly as animal feed, offers a 10-foot (3 meter) stalk that can be turned into ethanol without damaging the food grain that grows at its top, Mark Winslow said in an interview.
Unlike corn-based ethanol, which uses one and a half times as much energy in its production as it offers as an end product, sweet sorghum produces eight units of fuel for every unit of fuel used to make it in developing countries, Winslow said.
The days when corn is actively grown in order to be used as a fuel are going to end up as a blip in history. Blink twice and it will be as if it never happened.