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Biofuels and the Lessons of Easter Island

Saint Anselm’s Abbey School / 4501 South Dakota Avenue, NE Washington DC 20017, USA
Sustainability 2009, 1(3), 335-345;
Received: 27 April 2009 / Accepted: 14 July 2009 / Published: 20 July 2009
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Renewable Energy and Sustainability)
The return to land-based biofuels ignores the lessons of the past that led to the collapse of civilizations such as that of Easter Island. Even the more efficient ethanol feedstocks such as sugar cane and switchgrass can greatly worsen the environmental damage associated with agriculture because they would require enormous amounts of land to meet US demand for transportation fuel. Too often, style wins over substance because most citizens do not know the basics of well-to-wheel analysis. Therefore, the incorporation of energy literacy into the high school curricula should play a significant role in any comprehensive plan for addressing the energy crisis. View Full-Text
Keywords: biofuel; deforestation; electric vehicle; ethanol; flex-fuel; switchgrass; well-to-wheel biofuel; deforestation; electric vehicle; ethanol; flex-fuel; switchgrass; well-to-wheel
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Chaves, A.R. Biofuels and the Lessons of Easter Island. Sustainability 2009, 1, 335-345.

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