Virginia’s mild winters, by New England standards, are fine; it’s the stretches of hot, still and humid weather in July and August that get to me. Summer 2015 was quite pleasant, but 2016 was a scorcher. We had long spells when being on the water provided little relief unless we could take an air-conditioned saloon with us, an act that seems contradictory to the en plein air aspect of boating. As I write this, the weather pattern is beginning to break, and none too soon.
A Better Use for Corn
In an effort to act like a real journalist occasionally, I am pleased to offer a follow-up report on some actual news discussed here a few months ago: ethanol and marine fuel.
Virginia’s legislature and governor have enacted a law to request a waiver from the federal Environmental Protection Agency to allow the sale of non-ethanol gas at marinas throughout the state. Non-ethanol gas is currently available in many areas that meet certain air quality standards. Now it is up to the EPA to make it available everywhere in Virginia for off-road use.
In North Carolina, “no-E” is the standard on the water, and it’s available in many filling stations for on-road use, as well. North Carolina may be a little tangled up about which head to use, but it is quite clear in the marine fuel department.
Here in Portsmouth, we got some great news regarding a higher use for corn. Despite our city council’s best efforts to scare people away from living here, there is an economic revitalization occurring in Olde Towne Portsmouth. Four new upscale apartment buildings are now leasing in downtown, and long-shuttered storefronts are coming alive again.
The news included a craft distillery and tasting room coming to High Street, just blocks from the city docks and downtown marinas. One of its first products will be moonshine. I see it as a riff on Isaiah 2:4 (the swords into plowshares thing): Turn thy evil fuel additive into alcohol for sailors. Click here to link to full article