Nation’s Governors Debate Corn For Fuel Issue

The debate over using corn for fuel — and whether it's driving up food prices — has been one focus of the nation's governors meeting in Philadelphia.

At their summer meeting, they talked about moving beyond ethanol that is made just from food sources. They're not talking about doing away with the corn-based fuel, but instead about supplementing it with products made from materials such as switchgrass or wood waste.

The ethanol industry says there are already 134 ethanol plants in 26 states, with dozens more under construction or expanding.

But some are blaming high food prices on the push for ethanol. The Agriculture Department says it's one factor, along with growth in developing countries and tight global grain supplies.

Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty says ethanol has been a “success story'' for states like his. But he says he recognizes that it “has to now move to phase two.''

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