E85 Boondoggle of the Day: Sorghum Rocks!

Robert Farago
by Robert Farago
e85 boondoggle of the day sorghum rocks

The Florida Department of Environmental Protection’s Renewable Energy Technologies Grants Program is forking-over $1.5m of residents' hard-earned tax dollars to an incipient E85 producer making ethanol from sweet sorghum juice– rather than corn squeezins. Discounting all the Starbuckian Fair Trade blather– the Renergie company wants to build small local plants, give farmers a royalty from [theoretical] E85 sales, etc.– sorghum's advantages over corn include less pesticides and water requirements, higher yield (4700 to 7500 liters per hectare), rapid growth and the ability to grow marginal soil. Yes, well, as Checkbiotech reports, the song remains the same: subsidies! "Once state approval is received, Renergie’s variable blending pumps will be able to offer the consumer a choice of E10, E20, E30 and E85. Via use of the Blender’s Tax Credit, Renergie will be able to ensure that gas station owners are adequately compensated for each gallon of fuel-grade ethanol that is sold via Renergie’s variable blending pumps at their gas stations."

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