Researchers at two U.S. universities say it requires 29% more fossil energy to make ethanol from corn than the level of fuel produced by the process, and the percentages are worse for switch grass and wood as source material. While soybeans use slightly less energy, the researchers say, the country would be better off investing in solar, wind and hydrogen energy. Ethanol producers and other researchers say the data used in the research was old and ignores profits that offset costs.

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