Wednesday, May 24, 2006

White lightning for the greased lightning

Rednecks and technology. Being part redneck myself, I understand only too well that those are two good tastes that go great together. So it only stands to reason that this is the next big wave in alternative energy. The moonshine still. I mean, ethanol maker. But note to all you rednecks out there: you have to add poison so people can't drink the product! Promise you'll do it. Cross your heart!

There she is - ain't she a beauty? I call her Nandine.

In all seriousness, though, this new ethanol still - brought to you by the good people at Dogwood Energy - looks kind of cool. All I have to do is buy the $1,400 still, get a bunch of fermented starch crops like apples and corn and sugar cane (and honestly, what was I gonna do with all that sugar cane anyway?), distill it in the still for two days so it becomes two gallons of grain alcohol, then add the poison that makes it non-potable, then mix it with my gasoline. If I add 15 percent ethanol to my $3-a-gallon gasoline, I'll save 60 cents per gallon! Can you believe it? MANNA FROM HEAVEN!

Oh, and you have to get a federal permit first in order to do this. But I'm sure that's no bother.

What was I saying? Ah, yes. I'm sure people will add the poison to make it undrinkable. Why would they not add in that step? I feel like this is really the best way to combat our little gasoline/emissions problem. I would totally have already bought one and put it into use, but I don't have a car. So you buy one, and let me know how it turns out. I'll be eagerly awaiting your response.

Houston Chronicle story link

(Photo Credit: Dogwood Energy)

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