Growth Energy: Ethanol the Answer to Middle East Oil, Not the Problem

Critics of Ethanol Distort the Truth

WASHINGTON, DC – Critics of America’s only viable alternative to Middle East oil – U.S.-made ethanol – are sinking to all-new lows of Twister-like distortions in an effort to smear ethanol with links to Middle East street protests.

“These are people who want to play parlor games instead of looking at the facts and really finding out how markets work, or what’s motivating protestors in the Middle East. Seeing some of the distortions and pretzel logic these folks are going through, I’d encourage them to pick up Twister, instead,” said Chris Thorne, Director of Public Affairs at Growth Energy, the coalition of U.S. ethanol producers.

One controversial TV commentator and a few fringe-element bloggers have recently deployed intellectually-weak arguments in an effort to blame ethanol for rioting and upheaval in Cairo, Egypt, and elsewhere. They attempt to link wheat prices in the Middle East with demand for corn starch for ethanol in U.S. ethanol production – ignoring the following, undisputed facts:

Steve McNinch, CEO of Western Plains Energy, in Oakley, Kan., and a member of the Growth Energy Board of Directors, pointed out that there were “millions of bushels of grain piled on the ground” in Northwest Kansas because the region’s entire grain elevator system were full.

“At one point, there was at least one elevator company out here that had as much as 22 million bushels of corn on the ground, because it was at storage capacity. Any of these so-called ‘experts’ who are claiming there’s a short supply of grain are welcome to come out to the farm and see firsthand that there’s no problem producing all the grain we need,” McNinch said. “People who are blaming ethanol for what’s happening in Egypt need to check their facts. If anything, ethanol can replace oil from OPEC – and we can make more of it because of all the excess grain we have in this country.”


About Growth Energy
Growth Energy is a group committed to the promise of agriculture and growing America’s economy through cleaner, greener energy. Growth Energy members recognize America needs a new ethanol approach. Through smart policy reform and a proactive grassroots campaign, Growth Energy promotes reducing greenhouse gas emissions, expanding the use of ethanol in gasoline, decreasing our dependence on foreign oil, and creating American jobs at home. More information can be found at