By Dan Shapley
Foreign tankers full of biofuel are docking in the United States long enough only to benefit from a U.S. tax credit -- not to unload any fuel -- before turning toward Europe, where overseas drivers benefit from the cost savings. This is the "biofuel boondoggle" identified by a Christian Science Monitor investigation. The unintended consequence of a policy designed to boost production of renewable fuels, the tax credit has instead been used to line the pockets of a few businesses that add enough petroleum -- less than one percent -- to each tanker full of biofuel to win the $1 per gallon tax credit. That $1 per gallon sounds huge with gasoline prices near record highs. The tax break might just encourage American drivers to make the switch to a diesel engine that can burn biodiesel -- if only the benefits of their tax dollars were being realized domestically, according to a story in the June 8 Christian Science Monitor.