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Ethanol test for Obama on climate change, science

Posted Monday, May 4, 2009, 1:36 pm in Employee News

President Barack Obama’s commitment to take on climate change and put science over politics is about to be tested as his administration faces a politically sensitive question about the widespread use of ethanol, the Associated Press reported.

The Environmental Protection Agency is close to proposing ethanol standards, the AP said. But two years ago, when Congress ordered a huge increase in ethanol use, lawmakers also told the agency to show that ethanol would produce less pollution linked to global warming than would gasoline, the news service reported.

Environmentalists, citing various studies and scientific papers, say the agency must factor in more than just the direct, heat-trapping pollution from ethanol and its production, the AP said. Ethanol manufacturers and agriculture interests contend the fallout from potential land use changes in the future, especially those outside the United States, has not been adequately proven or even quantified, and should not count when the EPA calculates ethanol’s climate impact, the story said. (Associated Press/Detroit News)
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