Ethanol; Is It Worth the Cost as Renewable Fuel?

Ethanol; is it worth the cost as renewable fuel?
Over the last couple of decades the biofuel known as ethanol (corn-based ethanol) has grown into a political issue in the United States and other developed nations, Brazil for example. Many believe it can be a replacement for gasoline that will prevent the world from global warming, or freezing, or whatever the current fate has been thrown into main stream media outlets. Others see it as an alternative for when the gasoline supply runs out, which is unavoidable and other replacement fuels must be found.
Ethanol or ethyl alcohol is a fuel made from organic materials such as corn, switchgrass, sugar cane, grains, and forestry waste materials. Ethanol is blended with gasoline at different percentages. E10 (which contains 10% ethanol) is gasoline for conventional cars, whereas, E85 (which contains 85% ethanol) cannot be used in conventional cars. Vehicles must be specifically designed to accept E85; this type of vehicle is called flex fuel vehicles also known as (FFVs).
Ethanol can be produced from just about any crop and/or plant that produce large quantities of sugar or sugar components. An example of this would be starch. Corn contains starch which is why corn has been mainly used to create ethanol. About one-quarter of all corn grown in the United States is now used to produce ethanol. (13.1 billion bushels harvested, 3 Billions used to produce ethanol)
In a little more than 10 years the use of ethanol as fuel has risen sevenfold. Production of ethanol rose by 34 percent between the years of 2006-2007 and 42 percent during 2007-2008. In 2009, ethanol has only reduced gasoline consumption by 4 percent and greenhouse gases by less than 1 percent. Looking at the potential efficiency of ethanol, ethanol falls short in every test, no matter which way the efficiency is measured, ethanol finishes behind oil. With many different ways to measure a fuel’s efficiency, different scientists generate different statistical...