Based on their assumptions and analysis, ethanol carries a positive energy balance (i.e., yielding more energy than directly required to produce it). That conclusion will be somewhat contentious on its own, as the academic debate over ethanol continues to volley back and forth over that precise question....Mike has posted his usual stellar array of charts and graphs that demonstrate the findings of this study. The ultimate conclusion: ethanol probably should be a part of the mix in the short term, but "...that substitution of alternatives to fossil fuel cannot be done using one option alone."
The energy comes with a fairly steep ecological footprint, however, based on extrapolation from modeled vehicles.
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