Reuters reports on a rare moment of honesty and candor from the left’s favorite ex-VP and failed candidate for President Al Gore:
ATHENS, Nov 22 (Reuters) – Former U.S. vice-president Al Gore said support for corn-based ethanol in the United States was “not a good policy”, weeks before tax credits are up for renewal.
U.S. blending tax breaks for ethanol make it profitable for refiners to use the fuel even when it is more expensive than gasoline. The credits are up for renewal on Dec. 31.
Total U.S. ethanol subsidies reached $7.7 billion last year according to the International Energy Industry, which said biofuels worldwide received more subsidies than any other form of renewable energy.
“It is not a good policy to have these massive subsidies for (U.S.) first generation ethanol,” said Gore, speaking at a green energy business conference in Athens sponsored by Marfin Popular Bank.
“First generation ethanol I think was a mistake. The energy conversion ratios are at best very small.
“It’s hard once such a programme is put in place to deal with the lobbies that keep it going.”
He explained his own support for the original programme on his presidential ambitions.
“One of the reasons I made that mistake is that I paid particular attention to the farmers in my home state of Tennessee, and I had a certain fondness for the farmers in the state of Iowa because I was about to run for president.”
Doug Powers translates:
Translation: I promoted something I knew couldn’t work and ultimately cost taxpayers a fortune, all for my own political, and ultimately financial, gain.
What else is Al lying about? Let’s start with “everything” and work backwards.
Read the update to Ed Morrissey’s post at Hot Air for more on how Al Gore works hard to protect Al Gore Inc. under the guise of saving the planet.
Now, I suspect the Goracle will claim his comments were “taken out of context” – but if I’m not mistaken, this Athens conference was set up just like many other global warming shindigs Gore speaks at/keynotes: the press is prohibited from using electronic equipment to record either video or audio Gore’s of remarks. So don’t be surprised if he issues a “correction” or “clarification” claiming he said no such thing.
More from Fox News:
Ethanol production this year will reportedly consume 41 percent of the U.S. corn crop and 15 percent of the global corn crop. Last month, the Agriculture Department said corn crop production would fall this year and attributed the decline to the increase in the price of corn.
More than half of all corn production in the U.S. goes to feeding livestock. On Monday, Agrinet news reported that the USDA’s world outlook board has found that the quality of corn production, despite the lower production level, had improved livestock weights, making beef, pork and chicken healthier and therefore able to feed more people.
Reuters reported that Gore had less concern about second-generation ethanol production, which does not compete with food since it uses chemicals or enzymes to extract sugar from fiber in wood, waste or grass.
“I do think second and third generation that don’t compete with food prices will play an increasing role, certainly with aviation fuels,” Gore reportedly said.
The Media Research Center’s Noel Sheppard noted that as vice president, Gore was the tie-breaking vote in 1994 when the Senate voted to authorize ethanol production. Sheppard said that those who question Gore’s motives behind the climate change movement that landed the former vice president a Nobel prize and Oscar should also look to his comments on ethanol.
“So more than 10 years ago, Gore supported an expensive, ‘not good policy’ because he thought it would help him get elected president. Yet media don’t believe he’d misrepresent the threat of manmade global warming in order to become extremely rich,” Sheppard wrote Monday.
Al Gore: Liar, liar – mouth on fire.
- Ronald Bailey – Let Ethanol Subsidies Die