Food or Fuel: A Coming Dilemma?

After reading this article on rising food prices due to the use of corn for ethanol-blended fuel, it struck me that those engaged in any movements to “save the planet” could soon be fighting counterproductive battles.

On the one hand, we have those who seek to rid the world of fossil fuels that emit greenhouse gases and replace them with cleaner burning forms of energy, and on the other hand, we have those involved in any number of “feed the world” groups.

The latest craze is food-for-fuel. Right now, the big thing is corn. I see it firsthand every day. In the 50 acres of field far behind my house, the owner of that property has plowed under the land to grow corn for ethanol.

If demand for biofuels continues to grow, the price of corn and soybean oil will rise further. Throw other potential sources in the mix, and we could, quite literally, end up putting dinner in our gas tanks.

In the U.S., food prices are already being affected by biofuels:

A study released in May from Iowa State University shows increased prices for ethanol have already led to bigger grocery bills for the average American — an increase of $47 US compared to July 2006.

In the United States, as elsewhere, ethanol is made from corn. But corn is also used to feed chickens, hogs and cattle, which means a rise in prices for meat, eggs and dairy.

The coming dilemma could be this: Which is more important? The environment, or people? Is there a way to balance the two?

This is why it’s so important to not mindlessly jump on any junk-science bandwagon, or Gore’s Ark, as it concerns the unproven man-made global warming panic-for-profit push.

Because of some phoney “crisis,” our grocery bills might go through the roof and a plate of food that might have ended up feeding a starving Somalian might instead go toward heating Al Gore’s pool.

Author: Doug Powers

Doug Powers is a writer, editor and commentator covering news of the day from a conservative viewpoint with an occasional shot of irreverence and a chaser of snark. Townhall Media writer/editor. alum. Bowling novice. Long-suffering Detroit Lions fan. Contact: