Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Taxpayers Fork Out $82 Million to Range Fuels Inc. for Another Dubious Ethanol Project

More of our tax dollars are being wasted on another government-sponsored hope for utopia, as Range Fuels received $76 million from the U.S. Department of Energy, and another $6 million from the state of Georgia to help build its commercial cellulosic ethanol plant close to Soperton, Ga.

Some even have the nerve to call it "private funding." My question is: Where did the state of Georgia and the U.S. Department of Energy get their money from? So let's call it what it is: taxpayer funded.

Now the true private sector has also gotten involved, as Series B round of financing led by Passport Capital has landed another $130 million for the project.

All of this for an increasingly controversial, unproven source of bio-fuel, which is viewed by a growing number of people as causing more harm than good.

Concerning cellulosic ethanol, Range Fuels asserts its K2 process can use woody biomass for its source of ethanol, which uses 75 percent less water than corn-based ethanol. They also claim the K2 process yields far more ethanol per ton of biomass than biochemical processes.

They also say they will be able to produce ethanol at a cost far below the almost $2 per gallon it's currently produced for with corn ethanol production costs, as well as enzymatic processes.

Of course anyone can assert something in order to justify tax dollars being wasted on them.

The truth is the existing ethanol fiasco is already being discovered that it isn't worth the consequences and costs. This is why the government and others are desperately searching for an alternative before their failure is made open to the public.

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