George Will has a great article in Newsweek titled "The Biofuels Follies" on the unintentional consequences of America's environmental policies. In short, they're killing the environment:
To avoid drilling for oil in ANWR's moonscape, the planet savers evidently prefer destroying forests, even though they absorb greenhouse gases. Will ethanol prevent more carbon-dioxide emissions than would have been absorbed by the trees cut down to clear land for the production of crops for ethanol? Be that as it may, governments mandating the use of biofuels are one reason for the global rise in food prices, which is driving demand for more arable land. That demand is driving the destruction of forests—and animal habitats. In Indonesia alone, 44 million acres have been razed to make way for production of palm oil.As Will points out, even if the entire U.S. corn crop were to be converted to ethanol it would reduce gasoline use by a whopping 3.5%. Meanwhile, food prices around the world are already soaring.