Even ignoring all that, tax-supported ethanol flunks its fans' first premise--of cutting the flow of oil from abroad. As the Manhattan Institute’s Robert Bryce explains:
Despite Billions in Subsidies, Corn Ethanol Has Not Cut U.S. Oil ImportsRead the whole thing to see how subsidized ethanol falls short of the promised benefits.
In the next few weeks, the Environmental Protection Agency is expected to rule on a proposal to increase from 10 percent to 15 percent the amount of ethanol that may be blended into gasoline. If the EPA approves the move, the U.S. motor-fuel market would yet again become the victim of misguided federal intervention.
Since the 1970s, Congress has justified subsidies to the corn ethanol industry with the oft-repeated claim that boosting domestic production of ethanol will increase America’s energy security by reducing U.S. oil imports.
That claim has no basis in fact.
Between 1999 and 2009, U.S. ethanol production increased seven-fold, to more than 700,000 barrels per day (bbl/d). During that period, however, oil imports increased by more than 800,000 bbl/d. . . Data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration show that oil imports closely track domestic oil consumption. Over the past decade, as oil demand grew, so did imports. When consumption fell, imports did as well. Ethanol production levels had no apparent effect on the volume of oil imports or on consumption.
So despite more than three decades of subsidies costing taxpayers tens of billions of dollars, the ethanol industry cannot point to any decline in oil imports during the period when it experienced its most rapid growth.
(via Planet Gore)