Economical Advantages and Disadvantages of Ethanol Fuel

in Ethanol

One of the most debated topics of today is ethanol fuel.  Some say we should start using ethanol fuel, while others say we shouldn’t.  Ethanol fuel could be the greatest break through yet, not only for environmental reasons but economical reasons as well.  With the way our economy is today, the economical reasons could out weigh the environmental reasons, even though there might be more environmental reasons out there.  Many economical advantages and disadvantages come along with producing and using the ethanol fuel.

To start off, what exactly is ethanol fuel?  Ethanol fuel comes from an organic origin.  It is primarily a plant-based fuel, which can be produced from such sources as sugar cane, corn, waste paper, and grains like wheat or sorghum.  They use these sources in a distilling process, which ferments the vegetable into the ethanol fuel.  This fuel can than be used by itself as an alternative fuel or can be combined with regular gasoline to use as fuel.

The biggest economical advantage of ethanol fuel is that we wouldn’t need to be dependant on our foreign oil suppliers or the big oil companies.  We could be dependent on our domestic farmers here in the United States.  In the process of buying crops from our domestic farmers instead of buying oil from foreign countries we will be keeping money in our own economy instead of dumping our money into the Middle Eastern economies, where our own money could be used against us.

Another advantage of ethanol fuel would be the creation of more jobs in the United States.  To produce mass quantities of ethanol fuel, the oil industry would need to build large processing and distilling plants or facilities in order to produce this type of fuel.  Not only would more jobs be created in these plants or facilities, but other jobs would be created in the transportation of these fuels since the ethanol fuel wouldn’t be capable of running through the pipelines due to the erosion factor of the alcohol based fuels.  With the way our unemployment rate is raising, this would definitely boost more job openings into our economy and lower the unemployment rates.

Not only will it cut out our dependency on foreign oil and create more jobs, it will also cut out some of the gas taxes that are imposed on us today, which would lower the costs of fuels. This will also give other industries in our nation the opportunity to succeed. For example, the United States auto industry has already started to develop cars and emission kits to run with the use of ethanol fuels.  The auto industry is failing miserably right now, but possibly with the transfer from regular gasoline to ethanol fuels it would give them the advantage to create new cars that would run on ethanol fuels, which in turn could bail them out of the situation they are in now.  This too would create more jobs for the U.S. citizens.

Now that you see some of the advantages to ethanol fuel we can take a look at some of the disadvantages of it.  Before the U.S. can make a complete switch from gasoline to ethanol, millions of dollars need to be spent in the research and development of the fuel and in the transformation of facilities and infrastructure such as pipelines, gas station facilities, etc.  If our nation would become dependant on domestic farmers instead of foreign oil suppliers, the crops that would be used to produce the ethanol fuel would eliminate fields and crops used for our food, such as corn, which is the main ingredient to ethanol fuel.  This would hike up the costs of foods for us, making it more expensive to buy groceries.  Another disadvantage of ethanol fuel is the way it burns in cars, it would take an average of 1.5 gallons of ethanol fuel compared to 1 gallon of regular gasoline to travel the same distance.  This could become more expensive depending on the cost of ethanol fuels.

It is still too early to determine whether ethanol fuel will be good for our economy.  It is all a matter of opinion right now on whether it will be good or bad.  Like before some say its good and others say its bad, but now that there are a couple of advantages and disadvantages shown, hopefully people will be able to understand just how important the topic of ethanol fuels really is.


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Michael Ketch has 1 articles online
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Economical Advantages and Disadvantages of Ethanol Fuel

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This article was published on 2008/11/28
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