A little late Al -- some of us realized this way back when it could have done some good, like before we spent billions of tax dollars and subsidized a stupid industry into being:
ATHENS, Nov 22 (Reuters) - Former U.S. vice-president Al Gore said support for corn-based ethanol in the United States was "not a good policy", weeks before tax credits are up for renewal.
"It is not a good policy to have these massive subsidies for (U.S.) first generation ethanol," said Gore, speaking at a green energy business conference in Athens sponsored by Marfin Popular Bank.
"First generation ethanol I think was a mistake. The energy conversion ratios are at best very small.
"It's hard once such a programme is put in place to deal with the lobbies that keep it going."
He explained his own support for the original programme on his presidential ambitions.
"One of the reasons I made that mistake is that I paid particular attention to the farmers in my home state of Tennessee, and I had a certain fondness for the farmers in the state of Iowa because I was about to run for president."
Gore said a range of factors had contributed to that food price crisis, including drought in Australia, but said there was no doubt biofuels have an effect.
"The size, the percentage of corn particularly, which is now being (used for) first generation ethanol definitely has an impact on food prices.
"The competition with food prices is real."
A couple of thoughts here. First, many detractors like myself have made the link between Iowa's role in the Presidential nomination process and support for corn ethanol, but it is nice to see a supporter confirm the link. Second, I wonder how many other scientific opinions Gore holds where political expediency blinds him to the reality of the data? I can think of at least one big one....