The development of alternative feedstocks for ethanol doesn’t mean that corn ethanol will be thrown under the bus, according to Agriculture Secretary Ed Schafer.
Speaking to farm broadcasters in Washington on Tuesday, Schafer talked about the importance of ethanol today. “We’ve passed Renewable Fuels Standards in this country that are important,” he said. “We cannot meet those demands with (only) corn-driven ethanol as a feed stock,” But, he says corn ethanol is a “stepping stone” to get to alternative feed stocks. “If we pull it back, we can do all the research in the world and come up with new ideas for alternative feed stocks and you won’t be able to do anything with them. So we need to make sure that we continue to develop the ethanol industry based on a corn feed stock.”
Does that mean we throw corn ethanol under the bus after the cellulosic ethanol comes on line?
“Absolutely not,” Schafer says. “What happens then is you have alternative feed stocks, the market place chooses the feed stock, the market place sets the price, that’s what made this country great.”
Listen to some of Schafer’s comments here: [audio:http://www.zimmcomm.biz/audio/schafer-bus.mp3]