The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released its proposed supplemental rule to the Renewable Fuels Standard (RFS). The proposal is getting a lot of push back from biofuels supporters and lawmakers who say this isn’t what was agreed to during meetings in the Oval Office. Today, Iowa Senator Joni Ernst told reporters the President is upset about this turn of events.
Many Midwestern lawmakers, including Senator Joni Ernst, filed their formal comments against the EPA’s proposal to use the Department of Energy numbers to base their granting of Small Refinery Exemptions (SRE’s) and how they reallocate the gallons lost.
Ernst says when she talked to the President earlier this week, she said he was, “upset this isn’t the formula we agreed on in the Oval Office.”
The question was asked if the President could intervene on behalf of the biofuels industry. Senator Ernst said with the public comment period open, it may not be so easy to do. She urges Iowans to use the process to get the proposal defeated.
On Thursday, Ernst released her official comments to the EPA:
“Plain and simple, if the market for biofuels does not trust EPA to implement the proposal President Trump negotiated, the market will not make investments in biofuels – a dangerous spiral for our industry which will only lead to more plants closed and jobs lost in the heartland. It is time again for the EPA to get this policy right, respect the President’s intent, and uphold the law as it was written. This means providing certainty that they will ensure that 15 billion gallons of ethanol will be blended each year.”
Read Senator Ernst’s full letter here.
Senator Grassley says,
“As the number one producer of corn, ethanol, biodiesel and cellulosic ethanol, the renewable fuels industry is an important sector of Iowa’s economy. It generates nearly $5 billion of Iowa’s GDP, over $2.4 billion in household incomes and supports 47,000 jobs across Iowa. President Trump made a commitment to Iowa and other biofuels producing states, and I look forward to seeing this promise fulfilled. The EPA shouldn’t undercut President Trump’s support of the Renewable Fuels Standard. I urge EPA to adjust the proposed supplemental rule to account for actual waived gallons using hard data from past practice to provide certainty to the marketplace.”
Read Senator Grassley’s full letter here.
Governor Reynolds writes:
“I write today to implore the EPA to consider the real-world ramifications of these decisions,” said Gov. Reynolds in her letter. “These rules have a real and tangible impact on the people of Iowa and across the country. Rural communities in Iowa, like Crawfordsville, Emmetsburg, Merrill and Sioux Center, are especially feeling the effects first-hand. These communities have had to endure the shuttering of biofuels facilities, a detrimental blow that is a direct result of the EPA’s actions.”
Read Governor Reynolds’ full letter here.