The Wall Street Journal ran an article yesterday on "How Brazil Broke Its Oil Habit." The article attempts to draw lessons for the U.S. from the Brazilian experience, where sugarcane-based ethanol supplies 18 percent of the transportation market. The author, David Luhnow, seeks to apply "lessons from the sugar fields of Brazil to U.S. cornfields." The first problem I see here -- and more scientifically sophisticated Gristmillers like biodiversivist and greenstork are invited to weigh in here -- is that sugarcane seems a much more efficient way to create ethanol than corn. Ethanol is just alcohol, right? The process of …
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Tom Philpott was previously Grist's food writer. He now writes for Mother Jones.
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