Former Vice President Al Gore has reversed his support of corn-ethanol subsidies. He even went one step further by admitting his original endorsement of them was nothing more than political pandering. Or at least, that’s what he told a green energy conference sponsored by the Marfin Popular Bank in Europe.
In a display of unexpected candor, Gore told the audience, “It is not a good policy to have these massive subsidies for first-generation ethanol…First-generation ethanol I think was a mistake. The energy conversion ratios are at the best very small.”
Ethanol is a biofuel in the United States that is made by extracting sugar from corn. In the past, it has been linked to rising food prices. Diverting corn – which is a standard ingredient for a wide variety of food products — from feeding livestock and producing food, to manufacturing ethanol has resulted in a trickle-down effect throughout supermarkets.
In 1994, however, Vice President Gore was the tie-breaking vote when the first bill to authorize ethanol production was in the Senate.
The corn ethanol tax credits are up for re-authorization on December 31.