corn en A closer look at the future of ethanol and our renewable energy future <p>It’s been seven years since America hit the accelerator on corn-based ethanol fuels. Homegrown corn became the centerpiece of a push to find an alternative to foreign oil.</p><p>President Bush signed this expansion of the Renewable Fuel Standard in 2007, promising it would make us “stronger, cleaner and more secure.”</p><p>But, as is so often the case, something that offers great promise on one hand, takes its toll on the other hand. So the view of corn-based ethanol very much depends upon which side of the fence you’re standing on.</p> Tue, 07 Jan 2014 22:28:55 +0000 Stateside Staff 15924 at A closer look at the future of ethanol and our renewable energy future Michigan farmers waiting to plant their crops <p>The weather may seem perfect to a lot us right now.</p><p>But not so perfect for farmers, many of whom have yet to plant their spring crops.</p><p>Michigan has been enjoying beautiful sunny skies during the month of May, but the state’s farmers are still waiting for their fields to dry out from April’s heavy showers.</p><p>Fields are so soggy that only about 5% of Michigan’s corn crop has been planted.&nbsp; Compare that with 2012 when 42% of the crop at this time last year.</p><p>“I don’t think we’ve got a lot of nervousness right now,” says Ken Nye, with the Michigan Farm Bureau, “It does mean we’re ….going to compress this thing a little bit…and it does mean that we could be a little bit late before everything gets finishes up depending on the weather from here.”</p><p>Nye says by contrast Michigan’s fruit crops are doing well this year.&nbsp; Especially compared with 2012.&nbsp;&nbsp; More than 90% of Michigan’s tart cherry crop was lost after unusually warm weather in February led the trees to bloom early and more than a dozen freezes between March and May killed it. Tue, 07 May 2013 21:59:00 +0000 Steve Carmody 12459 at Michigan farmers waiting to plant their crops USDA responds to spreading drought with more help for farmers <p>Today, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack declared four additional Michigan counties natural disaster areas due to continuing dry conditions.</p><p>Branch, Cass, Hillsdale, and St. Joseph counties have all joined the list.</p><p>This brings the number of counties experiencing drought up to 38 in Michigan, and 1,234 nationally, as counted during the 2012 crop year.</p> Wed, 25 Jul 2012 17:46:17 +0000 Michigan Radio Newsroom 8436 at USDA responds to spreading drought with more help for farmers Early season frost threatens Michigan crops <p>&nbsp;An early season cold snap is threatening to seriously damage Michigan&rsquo;s corn crop.&nbsp;&nbsp; Temperatures are expected to slide into the 30&rsquo;s tonight and into the weekend.&nbsp;&nbsp;</p><p>This year did not start well for Michigan farmers.&nbsp;&nbsp; A cold, wet Spring delayed planting for nearly two months.&nbsp;&nbsp; Now, an early season frost could damage corn, soybean and other crops just a&nbsp;few weeks from harvest.&nbsp;</p> Wed, 14 Sep 2011 20:15:48 +0000 Steve Carmody 4156 at Early season frost threatens Michigan crops Ethanol subsidies & Michigan corn growers <p>Michigan corn farmers may be losing a &lsquo;safety net&rsquo;.&nbsp;&nbsp; The Congress is expected to vote soon on <a href="">ending ethanol subsidies.</a>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; The move is expected to save the federal government $1.3 billion&nbsp;this year.&nbsp;</p><p>Ethanol in the United States is mainly produced using corn.&nbsp; Michigan farmers increased their corn production in recent years as federal mandates required ethanol in gasoline.&nbsp;&nbsp;</p> Sat, 09 Jul 2011 20:01:01 +0000 Steve Carmody 3223 at Ethanol subsidies & Michigan corn growers Farmers want to take land out of conservation to grow more corn <p>Leaders in Michigan&rsquo;s farm community are urging Senator Debbie Stabenow and the U.S. Department of Agriculture to change the rules for a land conservation program on farms. They say the current program could lead to higher food prices.</p> Thu, 12 May 2011 14:41:54 +0000 Rebecca Williams 2463 at Farmers want to take land out of conservation to grow more corn Michigan farmers waiting for fields that are too wet to plant <p>Michigan farmers hope to get their <a href="">Spring planting season</a> underway this week.&nbsp; Till now, farmers&rsquo; fields have been too wet to plant <a href="">corn</a> and <a href="">soy beans</a>.&nbsp;</p> Sun, 01 May 2011 05:30:30 +0000 Steve Carmody 2288 at