More corn grown in U.S. this year than ever before. Thanks, biofuels.

argylesock says… We can hope for more ‘advanced biofuels’ but just now, biofuels in the USA are mostly from corn (maize, Zea mays).

Grist

Cars and cows are slurping up the largest corn crop ever grown in the U.S.

With the fall corn harvest three-quarters done, traders are anticipating a yield of about 14 billion bushels, Bloomberg reports. That exceeds forecasts and is 30 percent greater than last year. Growers are thanking agreeable weather for this year’s early and bountiful harvest, a notable shift after last year’s drought woes.

The amount of land used to cultivate corn has been growing during the past 25 years, displacing grasslands and other crops. Meanwhile, the amount of corn grown per acre has tripled since the 1950s due largely to new varieties and heavy doses of herbicides and fertilizers, which have been polluting waterways and fueling algae blooms.

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About argylesock

I wrote a PhD about veterinary parasitology so that's the starting point for this blog. But I'm now branching out into other areas of biology and into popular science writing. I'll write here about science that happens in landscapes, particularly farmland, and about science involving interspecific interactions. Datasets and statistics get my attention. Exactly where this blog will lead? That's a journey that I'm on and I hope you'll come with me.
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2 Responses to More corn grown in U.S. this year than ever before. Thanks, biofuels.

  1. Littlesundog says:

    Excellent article. It is very eye-opening how big the biofuel industry has gotten… chewing up our natural resources.

    • argylesock says:

      Yes it seems to me that this good idea has grown way out of hand. Perhaps it was a vote-winner at first but is that the case now? Here in Britain there’s little enthusiasm for biofuels because we don’t have enough land for them. Also, perhaps, because we’re less enamoured with big petrol-guzzling cars.

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