The US is currently heading in the direction of producing ethanol as an alternative to gasoline. There are lots of articles all about the wisdom (or not) of this choice.
One gallon of ethanol requires about 5 gallons of fuel to produce it:
That’s because ethanol is made from heavily tilled and fertilized crops that then are shipped hundreds of miles to ethanol plants where the process of conversion begins. Corn-based ethanol uses 29-percent more fossil fuel than it produces.
Ethanol production plants use a lot of water:
Most plants today are 50 million gallons. At five gallons per, that’s 2.5 billion gallons of water for one year of ethanol production. That water typically comes from regional aquifers.
Since we know there will be water shortages, it seems unbelievably backwards to go the ethanol route for fuel. Part of it has to do with the corn mono-culture that is developing in this country and it’s a good way to use up a lot of corn.
No easy answer on this topic.