The one point I missed in my previous blog is that corn ethanol production in the USA is also down since last year. In the first 45 days of 2013 the quantity corn ethanol used for blending into gasoline dropped by some 145,000 barrels a day compared with the same period last year. This is due to the drought, the poor corn crop, and the high price of corn.
The cellulosic ethanol pipedream has turned into a nightmare with almost none of the alchemic cellulosic ethanol produced. In the past few months Dr. Chu therefore has presided over increased shale gas and oil production in the lower 48 states, reduced bio-ethanol production, virtually no cellulosic ethanol production, increased domestic gasoline usage, and increased exports of refined petroleum products.
Dr Chu not only did you blow DOE money on lithium ion batteries and electric cars, blow money on Solyndra and Ivanpah, you also got played like a cheap violin by the oil companies who are increasing shale oil and gas production, increasing refined petroleum exports, charging Americans more for refined products, and using less bio ethanol. The results are 180 degrees out of sync with your intended policy of producing energy from anything other than fossil fuels. The only stated goal you achieved is to make gasoline expensive and you certainly did.
Who will replace Chu? I have no clue who President Obama will nominate. If I had the choice I would ask Boone Pickens to take the job for a maximum of 18 months and let him hire and fire like crazy and bring some order to the chaos at the department of entropy. President Obama will probably choose another scientist who has no managerial skills and the department of entropy will continue to remain clueless if not Chuless.