There’s an anti-ethanol rant in an Australian newspaper blog today.
Glenn Butler from drive.com is currently testing one of Saab Australia’s BioPower fleet and he’s not happy with the mileage he’s getting. This has prompted a rant that takes in several contentious points.
Firstly, the mileage.
Glenn’s mileage reading of 26 litres per 100km is, rightly, of some concern. He notes the extra power coming from the 104 octane fuel, but doesn’t mention whether his exploration of the extra power offered has contributed to the mileage readout, simply saying that it’s mostly city driving.
Second, the resource.
Glenn notes that ethanol is currently made from what are mostly food crops and doesn’t like the food vs fuel choice that a growing ethanol industry points towards. In a drought-stricken country such as Australia this is a fair point, too, though it ignores the potential for cellulosic ethanol production in the future.
Third, the beer!
Glenn’s words, not mine:
The bulk of ethanol we currently produce goes into alcohol. Yep, ethanol is the intoxicating substance in liquor. According to www.wikipedia.com, beers, wines, whiskies, vodkas, brandies, rums and others all contain a percentage of ethanol, in some drinks up to 20 per cent
Now, I’m no brewer. I’m not even much of a drinker, actually. But I’m pretty sure that any ethanol content present in alcoholic drinks is the result of the fermentation process of the source material. As far as I know it’s not a case of make beer, add ethanol.
What I need from you is:
1) If you’re in Sweden and own a BioPower Saab then can you please let us know in comments about the mileage you’re getting when you run it on E85? If you don’t own a BioPower Saab but know someone that does, then please ask them to get in touch (or relay the results through you).
2) Correct me if I’m wrong about the brewing process.
Thanks to Turbin for the tip.