Monday, March 26, 2007

Save the corn

Jim Rowen takes another look at ethanol made from corn, and discovers corn ethanol stinks.
Now there's a more down-to-earth objection from a major dairy products factory in Sparta.

It's complaining that a newly-approved nearby ethanol plant will churn out four-smelling air emissions that will taint the taste of the dairy company's products.
Rowen also notes reports on the relative need for water and fertilizer for corn-based ethanol. Meanwhile, other ethanol fuel alternatives are less polluting and consume less resources.

Meanwhile, the State of Illinois Department of Revenue isn't interested in the future nearly as much as they are interested in past revenue.
The agents informed the Wetzels that they were interested in their car, a 1986 Volkswagen Golf, that David Wetzel converted to run primarily from vegetable oil but also partly on diesel.

Wetzel uses recycled vegetable oil, which he picks up weekly from an organization that uses it for frying food at its dining facility.

"They told me I am required to have a license and am obligated to pay a motor fuel tax," David Wetzel recalled. "Mr. May also told me the tax would be retroactive."

Since the initial visit by the agents on Jan. 4, the Wetzels have been involved in a struggle with the Illinois Department of Revenue. The couple, who live on a fixed budget, have been asked to post a $2,500 bond and threatened with felony charges.
Reminds me of the joke by the comedian Gallagher, "Just what is the standard deduction for watermelons?"