Lords a Leaping! UK Gov Shuns Ethanol Subsidies… For Now

Robert Farago
by Robert Farago

Mind you, there's plenty of ethanol action in The Land of Hope and Glory. As just-auto [sub] reports, the UK is now home to its first sugar beet-based ethanol factory. In a light reworking of a breathless press release ("Last week, British Sugar was proud to announce…"), just-auto's crack editorial team revealed that BS' new Norfolk plant will produce some 550k tonnes (70 million litres) of bioethanol per year. At the opening of same, their intrepid reporter asked The Minister for Sustainable Food and Farming and Animal Health– working for the Government's Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA)– whether the UK gov would do its part to bolster British sugar's bottom line– I mean, "incentivise further UK production of biofuels." Lord Rooker's reply: not on your Nelly [paraphrasing]. So what about offering some kind of "help" for manufacturers peddling E85-compatible vehicles? "'There shouldn't be any reason to do this,' was Lord Rooker's rather surprising answer. 'As long as the motoring public has absolute confidence in the fuel and sees other cars and buses running on these new types of fuels such as bioethanol E85, there won't be any problem transferring over.'" Ah, another refreshing free market eccentric buried deep within the British government's bowels! Look for that policy to change.

Robert Farago
Robert Farago

More by Robert Farago

Join the conversation
4 of 5 comments
  • Kevin Kevin on Nov 27, 2007

    Can we elect this guy president?

  • Reginald b hartfordshire Reginald b hartfordshire on Nov 27, 2007

    gee, look what happens when you don't have a big farm/corn lobby. what a surprise.

  • Landcrusher Landcrusher on Nov 27, 2007

    Kevin, I clicked over to say the exact same thing!

  • Jthorner Jthorner on Nov 27, 2007

    The UK hardly has an excess of farm land beyond that needed to feed, clothe (cotton) and house (wood) its people. Certainly they don't have enough left over to provide a primary fuel by turning beets or corn into Moonshine85.