(AV17197) Biorenewables Helping or Hurting the Environment? 1/2

we’ll see additional makers brought in arguably somewhere between 85 and 92 million acres nationwide translating that back to Iowa that puts us in the 13 and a half 14 billion 14 million acres of corn roughly a million acre increase from where we’re at last year so we are seeing a substantial increase but how does that compare to where we’ve been at in the past it’s a lot of one long catalyst this is historical Iowa corn acreage looking back to 1926 as far back as I can go with USDA paper and what you’ll notice is we stay within a somewhat narrow path we’ve had some extreme we’ve been down to nine billion million acres before we’ve been up as high as 14 point 4 so having 13 and a half to 14 million acres worth of corn planted here in Iowa is not outside our historical bounds we’ve been there before and it hasn’t been that long you know throughout the late 1970s and early 1980s we planted 14 million acres of corn here in this state we have seen that number of corn acres and likely we’re going to be there this coming year and in years to come a lot of what you see there and that run-up arguably is tied to what was going on in the nineteen seventies we did fairly strong oil prices going on which helped pull AG prices up those AG prices were attractive enough to induce more acreage we also had strong government supports back through the 1970s and 80s helping induce an additional acreage into corn especially in cases of 1970s out of favor with teens so we beans have now been added to the farm bill and so that imbalance as far as government support is no longer there between those two crops again looking at what we’re seeing coming out of our models on what farmers are indicating their surveys looking at the 2007 crop year we do expect in Iowa thirteen and a half to fourteen million acres or 15 so we’re at the high end of our history but we’ve been there before in looking at futures prices as well three more movies when we’re looking up here for corn right now we’re staring at $4 corn the futures market in Chicago is indicating that $4 corn will remain not only for 2007 but going out into 2018 and slightly dropping in 2009 so this is not a temporary phenomena at least the markets are not impeding it is for inducing more corn acreage both in Iowa and nationwide now the other thing I wanted to look at was how AG policy to play into this and this is one of the areas when we talk about how this corn acreage when it comes in how is it going to impact the environment I think one key factor here is how the farm bill is going to be shaped up for the next round here for the next five years we are right now in the midst of the debate for the next farm bill which will be voted on later this spring or summer and put in place for the 2008 through arguably 2012 crops so this will shape the AG policy that will influence corn over the next five to six years and arguably will have the biggest impact on the ethanol industry as it continues to grow and I see two key titles to the farm bill where is going to have the largest impact on how the bio renewals industry is going to impact the environment and those two key titles are the conservation title in the energy title the conservation title has been part of the farm bill basically as long as the farm bills been around the energy title was new in 2002 but it’s likely going to taking center stage as we look forward to the 2007 farm bill and looking at those areas I’m going to talk about what we did in 2002 and sort of the chatter what we’re hearing this going to happen for the 2007 2008 farm bill in 2002 we did see a stronger push on the conservation title there were more defenders in Congress for having stronger conservation programs within the farm bill the biggest movement was in working lands programs land that still kept in agricultural production but there are environmental bounds put on that production there are incentives to bring an environmentally sensitive practices into farming so we saw a much greater effort in working lands than we have ever in the past arguably before the 2002 farm bill the concentration was on the land retirement pulling land out of production so 2002 represented a major shift in how Congress looked at conservation programs looking forward for the 2007 farm bill given the strong push we’re seeing for increased corn production to fulfill some of this energy demand arguably as these working

lands Pro that can serve and capture some of that production and put upon its and bounds to protect our environment one of listed here as well are some of the working lands programs that we have in place today such as the Environmental Quality incentives program also known as quip the idea is that this program is set up it’s targeting both crop and livestock producers but it provides incentives for them to bring in to their practice some conservation practices to help hold quality to the soil to maintain water quality to minimize the environmental impact of their production practices the new program of the conservation security program introduced by our own senator Parkin this is one that I see that has great potential as far as addressing some of the concerns as we ramp up corn production to fulfill by our little fuel needs because it is a program that is tiered it allows the producer to choose the environmental practices with which they want to support for our incentives for but at the same time maintain their production to feed to eat and there are other programs there as well again looking at what we’re seeing in 2007 many of the same congressmen that were pushing conservation in 2002 are back in 2007 and they’re in leadership roles for example senator Harkin is taking over as chairman of the Senate Agriculture Committee so I expect a stronger push and conservation than even that we saw in 2002 and that will help mitigate some of the effects of the increased corn acreage that we see coming online the other title again was the energy title again brand-new in 2002 and we’ve seen a lot of action on energy from this administration and from this Congress you don’t you – we had this in 2005 we had a separate energy act going there but this act basically is saying that agriculture is becoming more and more tied to what we’re seeing within energy markets it recognizes that we’re going to be if you pull act to be pulled by what’s going on in the area to market and arguably that’s what we’re seeing with corn when we look at that $4 corn price it’s because a new demand driven by an energy market outside of our traditional agricultural markets and it’s going to be that pull from the energy markets between the heaven probably the greatest impact on agricultural markets looking at it from the next five to ten years and so this is the explicit manifestation of that the idea it provides additional support from the federal government to bio-based products be those fuels or other types of bio-based products and in this case Senator Harkin again has been a champion as far as introducing AG into the energy sector providing by our noble grants both for producers and consumers of those products since that we’re seeing a strong push at least on the federal government side to try to address some of the issues as the by renewable fuels industry grows and how those impacts are going to affect not only traditional agriculture but how they’re going to impact the Lootera to set on panels like this in the last couple of years not too long ago I sat on a panel our charitable that consisted of representatives of various ethanol producing companies and I asked them like Hold’em how many of you are producing a renewable fuel and of course all of them raised their hands and I challenged them I said you know you’re not you’re producing it partially renewable fuels and that’s because you’re using a lot of fossil fuels in the production of your renewable fuel and the the trend and moving away from natural gas to coal is going to just make that problem even worse and I suggested that if they wanted to keep the environmental groups on their side and most of them are or at least least neutral is to make it work toward a truly renewable fuel can be done another opportunity I had recently was to speak to the governor’s ethanol polish and I brought to them a message that the goal is not ethanol now that that’s a tough audience to sell that to but I would bet most people in this audience would agree with me the goal is not ethical the goal we’ve got to decide what those goals are and I have my own four personal best and I’ve heard a lot of politicians recently list

those as well so I think the message is getting out and I just wanna make sure you would agree with me the first one is improved energy security or some would call it national security this is not energy independence by the way but it is improving our energy security that’s a no-brainer the second one is improved environmental performance I mean that’s a no-brainer as well sometimes people don’t think through all the implications oh there’s many reduce mercury emissions reduce sulfur emissions but you know the big one is intentional to reduce carbon dioxide emissions and it is a tremendous opportunity for agriculture in many ways and I think that’s one we need to explore the other two don’t generate as much excitement on the east and west coast but they should be exciting to us and what is new markets for commodity crops you can imagine on the East Coast they say we really don’t care about but you know II I if we can get the price of corn high enough we don’t need a subsidy on corn anymore and that means the American taxpayer is not paying for that subsidy farming becomes probably and it’s alright I think we’ve lost that side of that long time ago but let’s get back to that point I think the fourth point is the notion of rural economic development and we have a tendency in this state right now to be creating jobs in places like Des Moines I guess Ames – but Des Moines the the Bioeconomy as we call it is all about producing jobs in out state I when other out state locations and other agricultural states and it’s it’s very important the people that live in places outside of Des Moines Ames we think that’s a very important tool so that’s my list of four you may have others as well I think there’s a tremendous opportunities force energy through the the development of biofuels and Bombay’s products for example if you’re interested in conservation and energy efficiency then by Renewable Fuels you know why because we’re not going to be producing inexpensive renewable fuels my goal was not to provide you a dollar gasoline equivalent with renewable fuels we just can’t do it you know for a long time we’ve had essentially gasoline sitting in the ground we pump it out and do a little bit of processing of it and your fuel tank we can produce very and expensive motor fuels when those those kinds of petroleum reserves exist they’re disappearing there’s still lots petroleum but it’s not those pristine kinds of petroleum reserves we’re going to have to put more energy more dollars into getting something that we we’re willing to put in our gas tanks so I think we need to accept the fact we’re going to be paying more for transportation fuels and when that happens people won’t have to be forced to buy more efficient automobiles or live closer to work you know you hear about people that commute two hours each way right people are going to be less do things like that and renewable fuels will help make that possible another synergy that I see is um if you um if you support renewable fuels and support by greenhouse gas reduction programs why because I if we do it right renewable fuels will have a tremendous impact not only on the amount of carbon dioxide that goes into the atmosphere but how much we can actually take out of the atmosphere there’s some real interesting proposals on using agriculture to sequester carbon in the soils we can do it if we have an incentive to do it and biofuels will if we had these uh something like a cap-and-trade program and carpet then you would see advanced biofuels so we call this the Bioeconomy the emotion that are going to substitute renewable sources of not only energy but carbon for non renewable for fossil sources of energy and carbon both of those important by the way and that was a lesson I learned in working with Michael – they always talk about these bacteria in what it took them to thrive and grow they said it needed two essential things a source of energy and a source of carbon you know in our society we tend to think we just need the energy we also need a source of

carbon and right now we’re using a non-renewable source of fossil source petroleum producing things like carpets and plastic bottles and and just about anything that you can think of that isn’t concrete or wood seems to be produced from petroleum today our metal and we need to look at a renewable source we’ve got lots of renewable energy sources wind solar you name it biomass but we’ve only got one source of renewable carbon and that would come from agriculture so again agriculture is going to play a very important role the Bioeconomy is actually a time for dreamers i we’re seeing people come in young people come in with big ideas an opportunity to dream about things that i’m just a few years ago there wasn’t an opportunity to dream in that fashion and they include things like this I’ve already mentioned using agriculture as a way to sequester carbon dioxide to recycle nutrients between the production system and the processing system there’s opportunities there was some talk about water usage how about producing renewable fuels that doesn’t require distillation step and that’s where most of that water is going there’s some work being done it I would State University to do that I mean my favorite is how about getting the fossil fuels out of ethanol production we can do that too and I’m working with the company that is is building that technology today to make that happen so there’s lots of opportunities but we do have to keep in mind about what our goals are in achieving these trees thank you okay there any questions from the audience there’s a microphone in the center here or you don’t have a cordless microphone I’m sorry my name is John Chivington I want to congratulate the panel here I enjoyed especially the first one and the last one I think they made the health issues very much I have three comments which you could interpret them as a question the first one as a former regulator as the one who wrote some of their super funny rules something that nobody realizing based on buying sufficient knowledge what is going on with regard to the rapid expansion of ethanol and it is illegal and I tell you what under the environmental and energy rules of federal registry and also the National contingency plan which they have 12 very a specific group they call the 12 commandment which is super funds and other environmental rule based on and we may think okay the politician and Senator Harkin made lobby to change them but I tell you what that would create and not only national and international a warrant or thermal this is something that I don’t know since 1964 everybody has been working to put that 12 commandments together I’m not making any a specific position on that just your question what is the status of that is it just this is a comment but again that should be considered has anybody look at the legality of not having a comprehensive environmental study which also when I say I have to emphasize on a comprehensive which also look at all the legal aspect I appreciate your comments but I would prefer if you had a question no that’s the question I said anybody just going out and building look at it be building refineries what is a difference between the plan and let’s just take one question does anybody have any response to that at all well the the ethanol plants are coming under increased scrutiny you’re you’re correct that they were built in an environment possibly that didn’t include all the possibilities for example when they just they have a residue stream called distillers dried grains and when they dry it it’s kind of like baking bread and some people call it the baking bread smell of an ethanol plant some people find it offensive close up and every day

in its volatile organic compounds VOCs being emitted and now there’s a EPA’s rule that they have to put in essentially afterburners to eliminate that that creases their energy usage so it’s one of those vicious circles types thing terms of these twelve points I don’t know I can’t say I can say that a respond specifically to those but they are under scrutiny gotten by the EPA for example that is not C EPA right right to rule doesn’t write the codes right like any regulatory agency so I see the potential let’s say from all producing a state such as Texas and other places who push those low years to come up north and create problem that was a mix of question and comment thank you and the second one is again the last speaker you mentioned that we creating an easy path of resistant basically rain and push back for decades as happened you since the time of Eisenhower and the Nixon and Carter the delayed our R&D for efficiency and alternative technology are taking away any resources have anybody done any study to see that how much of these resources you kind of briefly mentioned to that how much of those researches are being put on a back burner well at the Department of Energy all of that work is done under what’s called the energy efficiency and renewable energy so they get both of those areas the new sources and the efficiency efforts in terms of the district distribution between those I can’t comment I certainly know the budget of EERE is ramping up specifically because of the the interest in biofuels and whether there’s a ramp up in the in the energy efficiency issue I don’t know but I do think we’re gonna see it play out where it’s it’s going to become more important because consumers are going to start saying we need more efficient vehicles because we’re paying too much for gas or they could say let’s substitute subsidize ethanol and biofuels to even a greater extent so we don’t have to pay so much the pump I think that would be a mistake my last question and I apologize to have question see the panel in general mission that Iowa and he didn’t know I have perhaps the Brasco becoming a leader but shouldn’t we also be the front-runner for the moral reasoning and social responsibility as for example a Stanford University not have a step a step in to look at our ethical responsibilities with regard to this issue when I was listening to the gentleman who was giving example of why diesel fuel in afrikaans Africa it sort of made me to shake to see that oh we burning source of protein with South Africa why millions millions in other part of the continent are suffering are you going to look at that moral reasoning past social responsibility I think people here in the state are taking that responsibility very seriously people like Fred and the folks at the Leopold Center and so Fred well you know I think that we’re we’re making some small efforts in those directions but not anything near what we have to be doing in order to face the kind of challenges that were facing as a global community you know the number of my friends who have been writing about this in recent years are saying that the real the real agenda before us now is to reinvent the human it’s not it’s not adjusting the environment to meet our needs it’s that we have to adjust ourselves to meet to be consistent with with the you know the resources of the planet I mean we have for the last two centuries been living on our ecological capital and as the UN Millennium ecosystem assessment report pointed out and this was you know put together by almost 1400 scientists from 95 countries that we have now so compromised our ecological capital that 60 percent of the Earth’s ecosystems are at the point of collapse and that includes our ocean which we sometimes forget contain 90% of the biological life on this planet which is absolutely essential to you know to the resilience of the planet so you know for us to simply talk about how are we going to meet our energy needs as humans you know in the context of those realities is in my view I mean while important but a little silly if we don’t you know attention to these larger issues so I think you’re right I mean we’re not we’re not taking seriously our real situation at this point of our existence on the planet and and the really big elephant in the room as we all know now

is climate change and because we don’t that that’s when we can’t come back from you know we’re at three and 380 parts per million now and and what we already have in motion now will continue to increase that for at least the next thirty or forty years and at least Jim Hansen said a year ago we had ten years to turn this around and that meant major changes in terms of the amount of co2 and other greenhouse gases were putting into the environment that means we’ve got nine years left now and if we cross that point then there’s no return me that the climate will fundamentally change for a hundred two hundred thousand years and at least James Lovelock is saying that that means the planet will probably be able to support about a half a billion people and we’ll all be living on the on the Arctic caps because that’s the only place that will sustain you in life now he could be wrong about that to some extent but most of the climate dollars that agreed now so this is a serious problem and we’re not really addressing it in any kind of comprehensive way I don’t think yeah thank you thank you for again please look let’s just to clarify a point when I product the issue about Assad Africa in brasilia i had looked at that as a historic what has happened in terms of using vegetable oils which is not currently being used in south africa that happened during the the oil embargo during the apartheid regime South Africa right now is cautiously looking at at promoting pioneer polls but the biggest concern that is they said how can you diversify what’s being pulled for the food chain for human consumption to oil so that is a consonant that especially in some of the countries of including South Africa they are looking to that issue whatever you use for for for for oil that does not compromise what’s been used for human consumption thank you and I don’t want to just lead by bringing question which may appear to be criticism and what you mentioned the kind of chair you say that well the issue being mentioned and this is why I brought up that question I read Fred’s commentary under the old journals but that is worth the only place I see being reflected we should see more of France comment and also the last gentleman unfortunately I can’t remember his name in the front page of the Des Moines Register and other people rather than to be cheerleader for what is going on and one last comment you two go to the lady from Sierra Club to be protected of the environment you should we should be more vigilant not vigilant people the house for me coming up here I’m losing millions of potential clients for our groups we should go out and talked about against something that down the road are hurting the human being our plan and this position to say Oh be not gonna shake that shake the boat and not to make the people who are in the production of pecking order the Sierra Club not gonna do that we have to be basically telling them what is the truth no matter who is feelingly gonna hurt and that presentation was kind of hurtful for me who is support thank you very much question he would like to respond this comment well I think we do tell the truth but it’s just we’re not we are telling the truth about it but we we just haven’t come out and said we oppose it or we support it I think you saw we are trying to educate people and what can happen and then hopeful I mean it can’t just be Sierra Club you know bang in the dremel endures it has to be everyone there’s no question we’re going to be putting a lot more acres into row crop production and there’s no question that that’s going to have a very serious effect on water quality in our rivers lakes and streams in the past our water quality strategy for the agricultural industry has been based upon incentives and voluntary measures even for regulatory programs in essence allowing the agricultural industry to externalize the cost of protecting water quality from the consequences of choices and production methods and I have often called this the curse of voluntary compliance as kind of an oxymoronic choice of words my question is with the increased profitability of the commodity crop production as the time finally come when we can call for mandatory water quality

protection measures to apply to the agricultural industry like The Economist yeah I think we will see some discussion of mandatory implementation there within the farm programs themselves there are conservation compliance and we receive program payments now but arguably those are minimal standards compared to some of the environmental protections we would need to put in place given the expansion we’re going to see in real crop production over the next few years and it is true that when we look at what congressional leadership is offering out there now we will probably see more continuation of voluntary request for stronger environmental moves as opposed to mandatory but likely with higher incentive packages put forward to induce that voluntary reaction the gentleman who showed the graph of the number of acres in tillage and how we had a high of 40 million in the early 70s and then a drop and a drop corresponds to the time when we enrolled a lot of acres in CRP and I can tell you without any doubt the one thing we’ve done in this state to improve water quality has been CRP and if we tinker with that and take lands out of production Odyssey are being put in the row crop production we’re going to see serious effects on our rivers lakes and streams and so I think the time has come if we’re going to continue to subsidize this industry that we call for mandatory water quality protection measures for the AG industry I had a quick question and then a more general question I’m afraid I’m gonna have to address you generically because I forgot but The Economist I was wondering if we’re kind of setting ourselves up a bubble in the corn market that could potentially dropped and leave a lot of farmers stranded with all these acres of production I guess there’s always a potential for that to happen I’m going to argue this is probably stronger than a temporary bubble just because we are tied to an energy market which is ever-increasing as it was mentioned here not only in the US but worldwide and with the especially with the I guess short-run we’ve seen in ethanol over the past few years are you really a lot of the plants that were built in 2002 have been able to pay themselves off by now and so they’ll be able to survive if you will and much tighter energy markets than they would have been in the past and so that will help maintain what we’re seeing in the corn market today okay let me respond to that too cuz then you know among other things I’m a farmer and I I left a career in higher education to go back to our farm in North Dakota to manage it in 1976 and those of you who are old enough to remember will recall that we had a somewhat similar kind of economic bloom in the mid 1970s and then it was driven by exports and I you know I I knew about farming when I went back to manage the farm because I grew up on it but I had not really you know can’t ruined with what was happening in the market and so I wanted to inform myself about what these and what these prices meant and you know we were selling a hard red spring wheat for $7 a bushel winter wheat for nine dollars a bushel in the mid 1970s and if you adjust that for inflation you can figure probably twice that if we had prices now and so I subscribe to all of the professional journals I talked to our AG economist at North Dakota State University and everybody was saying the same thing the demand for exports are going to remain because we’ve got an increasing human population and so you know these parenthese prices are now going to stay in place and and that and I was told even that the 80s were going to be boom years for agriculture and that if nothing else this was a good time to expand and so even if he needed to borrow money to expand this was the thing to do so I went and talked to my father who had a sixth grade education and said said dad you know this is what I’m learning what do you think and he said well he said you’re going to manage the farm now so it’s your responsibility but he said for one thing I don’t think I’d borrow a lot of money and I said whoa why why is that the case and he said well he said I’ve been farming here for 50 years now you’ve never been able

to dictate the price of anything that I’ve sold her the cost of anything that I buy when you’re in that situation it’s not a good idea to borrow a lot of money okay good advice and then he said something really important he said you’ll notice if you’ve paid attention you’ll notice that as these prices have gone up for everything that we sell the price of everything that we have to buy has also gonna land rents have gone up price of combines have gone up price of tractors have gone up even the parts that we buy have gone up and when you looked at the data it was exactly right and then he said I think that this is the worst thing that could ever happen to us as farmer said what do you mean you know finally we’re getting paid for you know our labor and you know making some money he said yeah but he said when the price of wheat goes down again and it will he said then the price of everything that went up that we buy is not going to come down to that same level and to coincide with the price we’re going to get four-week will be worse off than we were before and of course it was that not entirely but in part that general the crisis of the agricultural crisis of the 1980s now I have to tell you I worry a little bit I’m not saying these are exact parallels but we do know that the oversupply of ethanol at ten percent usage we will emit all of all the projections are we’re going to hit that you know probably in the next couple of years and eighty-five vehicles are not going to come on you know fast enough in order to so we so will reach an oversupply situation so we should expect that there’s at least the potential for a price crash but if that happens do you think land rent so going to go back 250 dollars an acre that 240 now and probably probably you know at least some of my friends who are economists are saying that could very easily hit $400 by the time this writes itself out so I think that there is good reason for caution which I think you’re you’re suggesting in your question and I think my father 6th grade education advice was pretty good and we ought to at least pay a little bit of attention to it today the other question I had was perhaps one of the underlying themes of this or what I was taking from it is that the future of the energy economy is going to be very broad-based or at least that would be the ideal and I was wondering and all of you had suggestions about changes in infrastructure behavior policy faster if that’s a desirable goal faster okay oh yeah well I handed it some of them with young a cap-and-trade program in carbon would would have a big impact in the biofuels economy I know that because I’ve talked to the economists about that and I they seem to think that would be a big impact on clearly I think if we went to improving efficiency of higher cafe standards for automobiles the miles per gallon would be important to it but I do think it is there is a lot involves individuals and decisions that they make on how they use energy and it is hard to make a wise decision when wind fuel is very inexpensive I think we start to think more about it as the price goes up so again I’m not and I think the worst thing for us is for gasoline to go back to a Gallup dollar gallon i when it came to $3 a gallon and because I’m paying for gas like everybody else but I knew that it meant there were going to be opportunities to move into these renewable fuels and people were going to start making decisions about how they what kind of automobiles they bought cetera the scarcity of our upcoming scarcity of water is a concern of mine I personally think that we will be fighting over water like the way we fight over oil now sometime in the future and one of your statistics concerning the three-to-one ratio when creating ethanol I guess in the distillation process this might be either a naive question but I wonder water sewage and are there ways for it to be recycled returned maybe have a self-contained system where you keep the water draw most plants today are are considered zero discharged in other words they do not discharge any water from the plant they do have various by-product streams that they’re able to use it you’d be fast in if you have an opportunity to visit an ethanol plant

and see how all these streams diverging and they converge into a few products most that water does go up in smoke in the sense that it evaporates now you could recover that but it takes energy to recover that energy you’re going to pull up coal ground groundwater to to cool that evaporated water to recover it and then you’re increasing your water usage so most of them right now take the view is it just it just leaves it evaporates from the plant yeah you know another thing that concerns me about the water issue is not just the amount of water that’s used in the ethanol plants but you know think with me for a minute here your farmer and so you’re now paying 240 dollars an acre for rent and some protections are that before this plays its out will be at 300 or 400 dollars an acre okay now if you’re paying $400 an acre for rent can you afford a crop failure I mean if corn is four or five dollars what does make any difference you’ve got a failure you got all these costs so what’s the rational thing to do well the rational thing to do is to install the center pivot here patience system – as a hedge against drought particularly because climate change is going to bring us more unstable climates and so more droughts and more floods etc so even in Iowa with 30 percent average rainfall I think you’re going to see senator pivot irrigation systems go up that’s going to be an additional drain and then when you go to continuous corn you’re not creating the kind of soil system which retains which absorbs and retains more water so you’re going to have an additional need for irrigation so I think again we have to think about all these in terms of whole systems and try to figure out you know how we put and I again I’m not a I’m not a PO I hope you understand I’m not opposed to biofuels I think they have a place in our system I think this notion that we have at least in the popular media that all we got to do now is shift from fossil fuels to biofuels and then we can all just continue to live the way we always have and I think that’s that’s a fantasy three other questions I’m old enough like many of you to remember the first energy crisis the energy crisis we have now is actually a crisis of demand we’re using huge amounts for more than we used to using and that has got to somehow come to center stage in this discussion I don’t know how to do it I would like suggestions from panelist who are part of this larger community of people considering this ethanol thing there’s we’ve got to we have to demand the discussion be brought in some very significant way and there needs to be some way to get this university to help us to do that now I think you’re exactly right I mean an energy conservation has to be a part of this and I think one of the things that that frightens us about energy conservation will you automatically think this is going to require a reduction in our quality of life right you know no we don’t want to you know I don’t want to lose their quality of life but there’s a lot of evidence out there that that’s simply not the case you know we have increased our energy consumption just in the last 10 years by something like 25 percent now life wasn’t that bad ten years ago and if you recall in the 1970s energy crisis the city of Los Angeles because they felt that we were not going to be able to secure all of our oil resources from the Middle East to replace you know our having reached peak oil in the United States and so the city of Los Angeles in 1973 mandated a 12% decrease in energy consumption within 12 months and they actually put in place some fairly stringent penalties if segments of the city did not comply with that well at the end of 12 months they have actually reduced their energy caption consumption by 17% and no one had to be and in penalties leveled against them and how did they do it well they did it with things like the baseball stadium decided to start the games at 7:30 instead of eight o’clock reduced their energy consumption by 10% you know there are a lot of solutions out there that do not have to affect our quality of life it’s a different way of doing things and ultimately I think I think one of the cultural issues in this gets you know this is a conference sponsored by the humanities and the arts and one of the cultural things that I think we have to come to terms with and Bill McKibben spoke to this little bit right before last and that is that wealth does not automatically equal quality of life its well-being that equals quality of life and well-being as we know from all kinds of examples on this planet it is being

achieved by communities of people who really don’t have a lot of wealth in fact they’re more successful at it than we are so we have some major again this reinvention of the human is I think the big agenda for the next couple of decades before us and and this doesn’t mean that we don’t need to deal with some of these technological issues and figure out our energy sources we’ve got we’ve got to move from stored energy to current energy that’s very clear we’ve got to move from externalizing our waste to converting waste into useful systems and that’s all part is going to happen we’ve got to maintain biodiversity because that’s the assult ultimate resilience of the planet so these are the big agendas we’ve got to make those changes but we’ve also got to reinvent ourselves because we cannot live on the assumption that continuing this extractive economy is the only way to maintain a quality of life because all the evidence is that it’s not my question is concerning it’s my understanding that despite the map shown by the Sierra Club there’s actually very little information about our oil resources especially so my question I guess is about the new farm village has major implications and if there’s any language in it to address research about the current state of our water resources and perhaps monitoring of how they will be effective that one I don’t know about the farm bill but in the legislature right now and with the governor we’re trying to push to get a new water plan written up so we’ll have all of that information I think a lot of the data is available through the DNR but it’s and the USGS but it’s just not combined in one spot but the last time we had a water plan in Iowa was in 1985 I believe and so we feel like that’s crucial now especially with this onslaught of ethanol plans that I mean we do know exactly how many water resources we have where they are you might check the DNR website there is a presentation that was done by Bob Lieber that has a lot information about water resources of the state in terms of the farm bill there’s not anything specific as far as measuring water quality you know as far as a program metope set up there but within some of the conservation programs there are if you want general guidelines looking at how to implement those programs to improve water quality without setting necessarily any specific standards upon that that’s typically done at the regulatory stage as opposed to within the legislation are there any other questions well thank you so much for attending today