Farmers meet at White House regarding RFS

Letter signed by supporters from 41 states call for presidential action to restore biofuel markets.

December 18, 2019

2 Min Read
Farmers meet at White House regarding RFS

On Tuesday, farmer leaders of the met with National Economic Council director Larry Kudlow at the White House to discuss the integrity of the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS). This meeting focused on the importance of upholding the strength of the RFS and reaffirming the deal reached and agreed to by President Donald Trump on Oct. 4, 2019, regarding the small refinery exemption (SRE) issue with the Environmental Protection Agency.

In a statement, the Iowa Corn Growers Assn. (ICGA) said the organization specifically asked the President and White House leaders to stand by the Oct. 4 deal because it would base SRE gallon reallocation on a three-year rolling average of previous actual exemptions to achieve the 15 billion gal. blending requirement of the RFS.

The meeting was attended by ICGA president Jim Greif and Industrial Usage & U.S. Production Committee chair Kelly Nieuwenhuis.

“Our top priority of ICGA is long-term corn grower profitability, and an important way to reach that priority is with the success of the RFS. We are not giving up on the fight to uphold the RFS and are tirelessly working to ensure the deal that was agreed to on Oct. 4 is implemented to the benefit of American farmers and consumers,” Greif said. “The current EPA proposal could eliminate the use of more than 580 million gal. of ethanol each year, potentially impacting over 200 million bu. of corn demand. Bottom line, with many market troubles corn farmers faced this year, Iowa’s corn farmers just want the White House to honor the commitments they have made.”

Related:Ethanol industry upset over RFS proposal

Additionally, during this meeting, a letter signed by 1,726 ethanol and biodiesel supporters across 41 states was hand delivered to the White House by Greif, Nieuwenhuis and other members of ICGA.

The letter notes that EPA’s draft 2020 plan under the RFS accounts for only a fraction of the biofuel demand lost to the agency’s abuse of SREs.

“Farmers and biofuel producers across the country are simply asking that the EPA enforce the law,” the biofuel supporters wrote. “A solution based on actual gallons waived will offer the certainty needed for plant owners to resume production and for farm communities to recover from the EPA’s unprecedented use of oil refinery waivers.”

They added, “It’s clear to us that only your direct intervention can stop the EPA from sabotaging this important rule, and we are counting on you to fully restore the markets that have been taken away from American farmers and biofuel producers.”

A final rule is expected this month.

Related:RFS deal may not offer saving grace

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