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GOOD: Chevron Invests In Biofuel Research

BAD: It's a Start, But They Need To Do More

UGLY: Puppies and Kittens (This Has Nothing To Do With Chevron - It's Just Our Opinion)

Chevron Corporation has announced the creation of a unit specializing in ethanol and biodiesel fuel. The stated goals of this new project include:

-- Refining existing technology to make [biofuel] quality more reliable.

-- Researching new ways to make biofuels, such as cellulosic ethanol, fuel derived from crop waste or switchgrass.

-- Producing and distributing biofuels using a new plant under construction in Texas.

This is good news, and we at Better World Club and driving Change applaud their efforts. However, Chevron's efforts have (understandably) been met with skepticism from many environmentalists. Chevron spends about $300 million per year on alternative sources of energy, including biofuels. This sounds like a lot, until you compare it with $15 - $16 billion Chevron will be spending next year on fossil fuel exploration.

Many environmentalists are claiming that Chevron's interest in biofuels is merely a publicity stunt, and that they're merely "greenwashing"- researching biofuels, as a means to blunt criticism over high oil prices and global warming, and to improve their public image.

Driving Change encourages Chevron's research into biofuels, regardless of their motives. We also encourage Chevron to spend even more on this vital research. For a company that last year made $14.1 billion in profits from pumping and selling oil, biofuels represent a small investment.