Tuesday, 3 June 2008
Food vs. fuel
“We need to feed the stomach before we need to feed our cars,” said Rattan Lal, an Ohio State University soil sciences professor. Seems obvious enough. The use of grains to produce fuel for cars has played a large role in the upward surge in food prices. A World Bank study has estimated that corn prices rose by over 60 per cent from 2005-07, mainly due to the U.S. ethanol program combined with market forces.
Joachim von Braun, who heads the International Food Policy Research Institute in Washington, D.C estimated if we were stop growing grain crops for vehicle consumption and start growing these grains for people consumption then corn prices would fall 20% and wheat prices would go down 10%.
So considering top international food scientists are making the recommendation to feed people first, logic would follow that the U.S. government would be at least calling for the reduction of crops for cars? Nope… never letting a little thing like logic get in the way George W. Bush is calling for the increase of ethanol production and thereby diverting even more grain from the food supply. All in an effort offset the rising price of gasoline.
"And the truth of the matter is, it's in our national interest that our farmers grow energy” said Bush
Food supply instability continues to be an issue for aproximately 1 billion people worldwide.
Reference: Stop biofuels to fight world hunger, food scientists say