The following is a statement from Maryland farmer Chip Bowling, president of the National Corn Growers Association, in response to today’s announcement by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency of the proposed renewable volume obligations under the Renewable Fuel Standard.
“EPA has moved in a better direction, but we are disappointed that they set the ethanol number below statute. The Renewable Fuel Standard is working for America. It has made our air cleaner. It has spurred investment in rural communities and created high-tech jobs. It has given drivers more choices at the gas pump. And it has reduced our dependency on foreign oil. Any reduction in the statutory amount takes America backward – destabilizing our environment, our economy, and our energy security.
“In the past, the EPA has cited a lack of fuel infrastructure as one reason for failing to follow statute. Our corn farmers and the ethanol industry have responded. Over the past year, we’ve invested millions of dollars along with the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Biofuel Infrastructure Partnership to accelerate public and private investment in new ethanol pumps and fuel infrastructure. The fact is, today’s driver has more access than ever to renewable fuel choices.
“America’s corn farmers and the ethanol industry have done their job. NCGA will continue fighting to hold the government accountable for its promises. We call on the EPA to follow the law, and raise the ethanol volume to statute.
“In the coming weeks, the EPA needs to hear from all of us: farmers, neighbors, community leaders and anyone who cares about stability for our rural economy. If you want clean air, a strong economy and vibrant rural communities, and energy independence, we need you to help stand up for the Renewable Fuel Standard. Ask the EPA to raise the RVO to statute.”