The ethanol situation is a moving target that bears watching says Shawn Bartholomae, CEO of Prodigy Oil and Gas Company in Irving, Texas. The financial impact on US citizens has not all been good, with the price of corn dramatically driving up the cost of beef, cereals, etc. The battle goes on as engine manufacturers say damage will be done to cars at higher level of ethanol mixed in with gasoline. Now it is even beginning to be a State vs. Federal legal battle. Where will it all end?
Shawn Bartholomae’s speech about Ethanol
Missouri lawmakers took a step today that seems to intensify the confusion and heighten the tensions surrounding the proposals for the higher ethanol blends called E-15. The conflict centers on whether or not to burn the newer blend of ethanol and gas.
The E-15 which is essentially a 50% increase in the amount of ethanol required to be blended into our gasoline. The Missouri legislative body blocked a proposal that would have allowed this 15% blend of ethanol to be sold in the state’s retail gasoline outlets. The state’s lawmakers cite existing state law that requires gasoline to contain a 10 percent blend.
This puts the motorist who is filling up his car or truck in the position of violating either the state law or the federal law as he cannot abide with both.
Shawn Bartholomae also says, associations for the gasoline outlets, as well as petroleum suppliers and automakers have raised the issue of damage to the engines many smaller engine manufacturers have claimed that the use of this higher blend would cut the useful life of their engines in half. The ensuing legal problems could even lead to the nullifying of the warranties of the manufactures.
Shawn Bartholomae also said that, a bigger issue seems to be looming. The question is whether the state laws can supercede the federal laws. If the separate states are allowed to determine their own blend ratios, or even the legalities of the usage of ethanol, then compliance issues are headed for a giant sized muddle.
Proponents of the newer blend ignore the mountains of studies and reports revealing the unfavorable aspects that are highly unfavorable towards ethanol. These studies are focused on the environmental impact and the cost of making the ethanol.
University studies are reporting that a gallon of ethanol consumes more fuel, more energy in its production that it could ever possibly save. Environmental aspects become highly questionable when wetlands and water systems are destroyed by the millions of acres lost to the enterprise.
Proponents turn a blind eye towards these reports and even accuse the media of “sniping”, lazy journalism, and the blatant use of non-proven statistics.
The proponents plow ahead with strong centralized non-detailed sentiments claiming “Expanding the use of renewable fuels is a proven (?) Strategy for boosting our nation’s energy independence and bringing more dollars back to farming communities across Missouri”
The dollars going back to the farming communities is the most believable part of that statement.
The issue has many billions of dollars at stake and as the complexities of the rulings unfold, the scene bides extremely important implications for both the corn growers, the ecology and the oil and gas industry.