Addressing a renewable-energy conference, the president fretted that the ethanol boom he set in motion is “beginning to affect the price of food.” He added: “So we got to do something about it.”
And what we “got to do,” evidently, is throw more cash at cellulosic ethanol. Here’s how The New York Times summed up his statement:
[Bush said] the solution was not to back away from ethanol, but to develop ways to make ethanol from agricultural wastes, wood chips or similar materials. The Energy Department has spent nearly $1 billion trying to incubate a “cellulosic ethanol” industry, he said.
He also marveled that Richard Branson of Virgin Airlines had flown a 747 with biofuel. “It’s amazing that it helped power an airplane the size of a 747,” he gushed. The audience, the Times reports, erupted in applause.