[NASW] Obama and corn ethanol

by Stephanie Chasteen on October 26, 2008

[CASW New Horizons Briefing:  Sharon Long, PhD]

We were treated to a surprise visit from one of Senator Obama’s science advisors, Sharon Long of Stanford University.  She spoke for a while about bama’s science policies — nothing that hasn’t been written about ad-nauseum on the blogosphere already.  But there was one question, asked by David Ehrenstein of Physical Review Focus, that I found interesting.

He asked about Obama’s support of corn ethanol.  Scientists say that corn ethanol is a bad way to deal with energy issues — you create more carbon dioxide harvesting the corn than you save by using the ethanol.  Yet it tends to be supported because it helps farmers in corn states.  What is Obama’s vision, why is he supporting ethanol?  Dr. Long responded that, of course, Senator Obama currently represents the state of Illinois, so his platforms are influenced by the interests of that state.  She can’t speak to his campaign plans, but as a scientist she does agree that corn ethanol is not a sustainable solution.  There is too much energy input for amount of energy output. No scientist thinks that massive monoculture is a good idea.  As science advisor, she would give advice that supports the overall stability of croplands in the U.S.

I just thought that was interesting.

{ 1 comment }

krissy November 6, 2008 at 1:05 am

I was alarmed at the Obama campaigns choice of Sharon Long as a science advisor. Although I like her work with plants and reciprocal relationships, I am disgusted that she was on the board of directors for Monsanto.

Monsanto is diabolical. They create sterile seeds and sue organic farmers when the gmo product takes hold tainting otherwise organic and productive crops. But far worse is their darling Roundup. I was a gardener. I had a pesticide license, My boss was a previous employee of Monsanto. They say that its as safe as coffee, but people die from pesticide exposure. The concentrations of the unlabeled “inert” ingredients that make up 90% of the product are known carcinogens and do adversely affect the reproductive cycles of animals including humans. Think dangerous levels of sterility.

Basically Monsanto creates sterile seeds and sterile human beings. I beg Obama not to bankroll Monsanto’s dystopian philosophy.

Its scary that Obama would even think of befriending such a hideously unregulated and favored player of the Bush administration.

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