The ethanol industry’s $6 billion Christmas gift

Big oil and gas conglomerates. They just got a little extra via the Volumetric Ethanol Excise Tax Credit. If you can believe it, this tax credit — one of the best examples of wasteful spending out there — was attached to the tax-cut deal President Obama negotiated with Republicans.

U.S. taxpayers will initially bear this boondoggle’s cost. Ultimately, the poorest people around the world — and our planet itself — will pay the bigger price.

Once thought to be a promising renewable fuel, evidence is mounting that corn ethanol and other basic biofuels are actually worse for the environment than the fossil fuels they’re supposed to replace. When you take into consideration the impact on the land and the deforestation that results from biofuel-driven agriculture, you see a rise in greenhouse gases.

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