money floats on oil, part two
The Big Green Fuel Lie
Ethanol is nothing new in Brazil. It has been used as fuel since 1925. But the real boom came after the oil crisis of 1973 spurred the military dictatorship to lessen the country's reliance on foreign imports of fossil fuels.
But there is a darker side to this green revolution, which argues for a cautious assessment of how big a role ethanol can play in filling the developed world's fuel tank. The prospect of a sudden surge in demand for ethanol is causing serious concerns even in Brazil. The ethanol industry has been linked with air and water pollution on an epic scale, along with deforestation in both the Amazon and Atlantic rainforests, as well as the wholesale destruction of Brazil's unique savannah land.
Fabio Feldman, a leading Brazilian environmentalist (...) believes that Brazil's trailblazing switch has had serious side effects. "Some of the cane plantations are the size of European states, these vast monocultures have replaced important eco-systems," he said. "If you see the size of the plantations in the state of Sao Paolo they are oceans of sugar cane. In order to harvest you must burn the plantations which creates a serious air pollution problem in the city."
Another post card from our dark green future. One million "flex" cars a sold in Brazil in 2005, against 300k in 2005, and the results can be seen from space.
Sugar cane is the best natural bio-fuel crop, bar none. Best EROEI. And the best disaster.
Where, exactly, are these psuedo-green cars driving?
It seems important. Got to cross 15 miles, or 15 city blocks. It is hip to drive. Brazil is a big country, USA big. Gotta go - somewhere. Time to go.
Fops and technocrats point to Brazil as some kind of great green energy success.
I think not.
No one will understand what all those cars were doing, when they look back at our civilization from one hundred years hence. New fields of mathematics will be devised to uncover the truth. Mad fools will suspect an endless quest for cheese poofs and sex, and will propose unsolvable conjectures.
Negative trends in the world culture are not being reversed now that "Global Warming" is recieved wisdom. Earth services are being consumed with finality. Like the Middle East before, only faster. Desertification is the new black. The national bird of Brazil is a chainsaw.
Maybe this is the final solution. Maybe it is working.