UK Columnist George Monbiot has turned his gaze on the global bifofuels business, and doesn’t like what he sees.
He makes some pretty good, if uncomfortable points about wealthy people’s ability to pay more for food than the poor. He does miss the point that in Swaziland, where there is a shortage of food and cassava is being grown for fuel, the argument may not be quite as simple as he put it.
Using cassava ethanol would enable the country to import less oil based gasoline, which would leave the government with more money to subsidise staples or to buy food from overseas. Alternatively, farmers could sell the crop themselves.
Of course people have to have the land to do it and their legal title to that land has to be respected.