Ethanol on My Mind
I have been thinking about ethanol lately because the hotel with which our office building shares a parking garage seems to be hosting some type of conference that has brought down some people from Iowa. Our garage contains several cars marked as belonging to “Iowa State” or “Iowa Department of Transportation,” and they all sport large bumper stickers proclaiming that they run on ethanol fuel. Good for them. I am glad they are visiting Missouri, where they get ethanol in their gas whether they like it or not. (I am pretty sure they like it.)
This is topical because just the other day the Government Accountability Office released a report recommending that we do away with the ethanol tax credit. The Post-Dispatch‘s “Political Fix” has the story here. Now, the bad part is that the tax credit is no longer needed because another government mandate is forcing ethanol on us:
But the GAO said the tax break is no longer needed now that the industry has prospered under a government mandate for ethanol use, called the Renewable Fuel Standard.
So, the ethanol industry “prospers” because of a federal mandate, a federal subsidy, and an additional state mandate. But I guess getting rid of one of them amounts to some progress, at least.
Here is some of the work we have done at the Show-Me Institute about ethanol.