Finally. A new crop farmers can grow - even in the third world - that the industrialized nations a desperate to get their hands on. But all is not well with biofuels. We should have heeded the warning of The House Martins from twenty years ago:
Me and the farmer get on fine,Actually, I have no idea what that song means except it's the only theologically anti-farmer song I know.
Through stormy weather and bottles of wine,
If I pull my weight he'll treat me well
But if I'm late he'll give me hell.
And though it's all hard work no play,
Farmer is a happy crook,
Jesus hates him everyday,
'Cause Jesus gave and farmer took.
The pinch is being felt in the land of beer where prices are rising as there has been a shift from planting barley to malt to other crops to turn into automobile fodder. There has been some indication that there may be an increase in general planting as the marketplace adjusts in response but the effect on food crops has caused the UN to warn a year ago and now scramble to find enough for people to eat at an affordable price. And our Canadian House of Commons is grappling with how last year's darling has so quickly turned into this year's curse:
When the legislation was briefly debated in the House on Monday, NDP MPs were overwhelmingly negative toward the government's approach, expressing concern that biofuels could trigger "a global food catastrophe." The Bloc is supporting the government bill, but that party's environment critic literally squirmed this week when asked whether he supports his party's position. "We have a party line. The vote will be in a few days. I don't support corn-based ethanol," said Bernard Bigras. Asked whether he was uncomfortable with his party's position, he offered a polite "no comment" and left.A tragic if stunning dynamic is noting how a "green" and "sustainable" principle has caused harm to the poor, thus causing a clash on the left - where 100% of Canada's public debate is occurring.
So what to do? In the new price range and future expectations nuke, hydro and wind power fueling electric cars (like the forbidden Toronto one) are looking better and better. Maybe also regulations requiring expanded crop production for biofuels is matched by expanded crop production for food. Babbitts and Randian nutjobs will say it is none of government's business, that if people starve - well, that's the market! What do you want to burn in your tank? Do you care?