"Where Fillmore County News Comes First"
Online Edition
Monday, December 29th, 2014
Volume ∞ Issue ∞
 
<< | < | 66 | 67 | 68 | 69 | 70 | > | >>

How about some common sense


Fri, Feb 12th, 2010
Posted in Commentary

Imagine that you've legally parked your car on a city street. When you return, a stack of traffic citations rests on the windshield even though your tires are in the lines and your meter shows time remaining. You have been fined because other parked drivers throughout the city might have parked illegally if you weren't occupying that space.

Being held responsible for the irresponsible actions of others hardly seems fair, but that's exactly what proponents of a theory known as indirect land use change (ILUC) are trying to do to corn farmers and ethanol producers.

The parking ticket analogy comes courtesy of the agricultural-advocacy group The Hand That Feeds U.S., and is a good illustration of the absurd logic of ILUC. In a nutshell, ILUC theory alleges that corn used for ethanol here in the U.S. displaces other crops, like soybeans, decreasing exports and causing farmers in Brazil to cut down rainforests and grow soybeans to fill the demand.

While the idea that planting a row of corn in Minnesota is responsible for deforestation in the Amazon sounds absurd on its face, a cursory look at actual facts will tell you it is untrue.

First, using corn for ethanol has not lead to sharp decreases in grain exports and is unlikely to in the future. According to USDA projections, exports for corn and soybeans are likely to remain steady or even grow slightly through 2015. American corn farmers continue to find ways to get more bushels per acre as evidenced by this year's record harvest.

Second, data from Brazil's National Institute of Space Research shows that even while U.S. ethanol production has dramatically increased, deforestation in the Amazon has significantly decreased. If ILUC were true, wouldn't just the opposite be happening?

Even though both common sense and concrete data have poked plenty of holes in the ILUC theory, that hasn't stopped government regulators from applying an ILUC penalty on ethanol when calculating green house gas emissions.

Here's how it works. Both the federal government and many states are looking to pass laws to require cleaner, greener transportation fuels. Recent studies show corn ethanol lowers greenhouse gas emissions by as much as 59 percent over oil-based gasoline, making ethanol the cleanest fuel widely available today.

However, if you ascribe the greenhouse gas emissions associated with clearing rain forests to ethanol, the ensuing ILUC penalty makes ethan .....
[Read the Rest]

Pick Your Heroes

Fri, Feb 5th, 2010
Posted in Commentary

l Graham Nash wrote a song in about 1970, and I hope he won't sue me for sharing a few lines:

Teach your children well/Their fathers hell/will slowly go by.

And feed them on your dreams/the one they pick's/the one you'll know by.
< ..... 
[Read the Rest]

What Makes A Good Politician

Fri, Feb 5th, 2010
Posted in Commentary

Members of Congress play a central role in our lives. They shape our health-care system, make crucial decisions about the U.S. economy, and represent the hopes and interests of every American in Washington. Given this fact, I'm always surprised that ..... 
[Read the Rest]

How To Be A Better Lover?

Fri, Feb 5th, 2010
Posted in Commentary

"Love your neighbor as yourself." Mathew 19:19 NIV

Many think of love as something that comes easy. Usually it is because people misunderstand the term "love." To be a really loving person can be challenging. Can you think of a command in th ..... 
[Read the Rest]

The Cause of the Recession

Fri, Jan 29th, 2010
Posted in Commentary

The root cause of our recession is very simple. Government and politicians created this mess. Not the market system, not greed, not a misalignment of the stars and planets, not even a conspiracy of big bankers, industrialists, or trivial Hollywood a ..... 
[Read the Rest]

One Moment Please

Fri, Jan 29th, 2010
Posted in Commentary

Publisher of the Fillmore County Journal, cell phone number 507-251-5297

With this issue of the Fillmore County Journal, officially the one year anniversary since my wife and I purchased the newspaper in 2009, we have received overwhelming fe ..... 
[Read the Rest]

When it comes to Atrazine, farmers & rural communities deserve a science-driven review

Fri, Jan 22nd, 2010
Posted in Commentary

During the past half-century, atrazine has become one of the most widely used herbicides in Minnesota and the rest of the Midwest. Unfortunately, it is also top of the list in another category: it is the most commonly detected pesticide in our state ..... 
[Read the Rest]

A glass half full for 2010, a way forward

Fri, Jan 15th, 2010
Posted in Commentary

As we begin a new year and a new decade, we should reflect on the past and move forward. It is hard to imagine what the next year could bring and impossible to imagine how the next ten years could impact our lives. We do have the tools to look back ..... 
[Read the Rest]

One moment, please... Social Media: The good, the bad and the ugly

Fri, Jan 8th, 2010
Posted in Commentary

Publisher of the Fillmore County Journal, cell phone number 507-251-5297

[Read the Rest]
<< | < | 66 | 67 | 68 | 69 | 70 | > | >>