RFA President: Gulf Of Mexico Accident A ‘Teaching Moment’

Addressing the tragedy hitting the Gulf of Mexico and coastal areas requires both an aggressive short-term response and an equally aggressive long-term energy and environmental strategy. Prior to attending the White House Clean Energy Economy Forum last week, the Renewable Fuels Association President Bob Dinneen wrote President Obama urging him to use this accident as a “teaching moment” to address the underlying problem that made this oil spill possible: America’s reliance on petroleum.

As Dinneen noted, “The juxtaposition of a green American farm field and the copper-toned oil slick spreading across the Gulf is striking.” America’s farmers are more productive than ever, using fewer acres and inputs to produce record crop after crop. Likewise, ethanol production is adopting new technologies making the process more efficient and expanding the basket of feedstocks from which ethanol is made. This improving productivity and efficiency makes renewable fuels like ethanol a critical component of a long term plan to address America’s oil use. Specifically, Dinneen noted three proactive steps the Obama Administration could take to address this issue.

First, Dinneen wrote, “…the EPA should immediately move to allow for the blending of 12% ethanol by volume in each gallon of gasoline. EPA has to date ignored our counsel that the Agency’s own oxygenate stacking rules, allowed by the Clean Air Act, gives refiners and marketers the flexibility to blend up to 12% oxygenate today (as you know, ethanol is classified as an oxygenate along with additives such as MTBE). While this is a good interim and immediate step, it does not address the need for a longer term vision."

Second, Dinneen continued, “EPA should grant a full waiver for the use of 15% ethanol blends as soon as the Department of Energy testing on catalytic converters is completed early this summer. Current EPA guidance on the issue suggests it is only considering a partial waiver for E-15 used in vehicles model year 2001 and newer. Such a bifurcation of the market would create unnecessary confusion for retailers and consumers, and may severely limit the benefits of increased ethanol blending. To date, EPA has provided no scientific justification for such a limit on the waiver. We believe no such restriction exists and as such EPA should move as expeditiously as prudent to approve the full waiver.”

Third, Dinneen concluded, “…the Department of Energy (DOE) must reevaluate current loan guarantee programs to make them more accessible to next generation ethanol technologies, such as cellulose-to-ethanol conversion. This largest obstacle facing the commercial deployment of these cleaner and more sustainable technologies is access to capital. The Renewable Fuels Association and its cellulosic and next generation ethanol producer members have met with DOE to express dissatisfaction with the current program structure. Unfortunately, DOE still has yet to award a loan guarantee to any cellulosic ethanol producer. Having a functional loan guarantee program that is fair and available to companies seeking to deploy these technologies is essential.”

“Increasing America’s ability to fuel itself through the use of domestic renewable fuels in and of itself will not solve all our problems,” Dinneen stated. “Nor would it have prevented this most recent oil tragedy from occurring. But with sound policies and forward thinking, it can greatly reduce the likelihood of such an event occurring again by reducing demand for oil. I encourage you to unleash the ingenuity and productivity of American farmers and ethanol producers to help end America’s dangerous addiction to petroleum.”

The complete letter can be read here.

(Source: RFA)

Topics:

Leave a Reply

Management Stories

StewardshipOhio Water Quality Project To Determine How Much Phosphorus Is Leaving Fields
July 27, 2015
Researchers with the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences at The Ohio State University are looking for farmers in Read More
ManagementFCI Trade Summit Update & Precision Tank Turns 50
July 23, 2015
Editors Dave Frabotta and Eric Sfiligoj discuss the upcoming FCI Trade Summit in Las Vegas, NV, and how Precision Tank Read More
ManagementUpdates On UAV Rules & Crop Conditions
July 16, 2015
CropLife’s Paul Schrimpf and Eric Sfiligoj provide updates on the ongoing UAV regulations debate and how the nation’s crops are Read More
StewardshipOhio Farmers Improving Water Quality Through Fertilizer Applicator Training
July 15, 2015
Since last fall, 6,586 growers and producers responsible for farming some 1 million acres of Buckeye State farmland have gone Read More
Top 100 Articles
CropLife 100Pinnacle Purchases California-Based Specialty Crops Retailer
July 20, 2015
Pinnacle Agriculture Holdings has successfully acquired California-based NH3 Service Co.  Operating as part of Pinnacle’s Performance Agriculture brand, the new locations Read More
Asmus Farm Supply liquid fertilizer facility features 20,000 square feet
CropLife 100Slideshow: Asmus Farm Supply Shows Off Its New Liquid Fertilizer Facility
July 15, 2015
Asmus Farm Supply, Rake, IA, recently added a new liquid fertilizer facility to its company operations. The new liquid fertilizer Read More
CropLife 100Wilbur-Ellis Feed Division Facilities Receive Safe Feed/Safe Food Certification
July 13, 2015
Wilbur-Ellis Co.’s Feed Division, a marketer and distributor of value-added feed ingredients for the aquaculture, livestock and pet food industries Read More
CropLife 100BRANDT Expands To Brazil With Acquisition
July 8, 2015
BRANDT has acquired a majority interest in Target Brasil Fertilizantes Ltda. through its Brazilian subsidiary. Target Brasil manufactures, distributes and Read More
Milan Kucerak, president/CEO, West Central
CropLife 100West Central Cooperative And Its New President Are A Match Made In Deviation
June 29, 2015
To appreciate just how unique West Central Cooperative is in the world of ag retail, an observer need only consider Read More
Winter Wheat
CropLife 100South Dakota Co-op Member Owners Vote No On Unification
June 26, 2015
The Boards of Directors for North Central Farmers Elevator (NCFE) and Wheat Growers (WG) have announced that member-owners have voted Read More
Latest News
StewardshipOhio Water Quality Project To Determine How Much Phosph…
July 27, 2015
Researchers with the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences at The Ohio State University are looking for farmers in Read More
FertilizerKoch Agronomic Services Launches N-TEGRATION Technology
July 27, 2015
Koch Agronomic Services, LLC (KAS) has launched  N-TEGRATION Technology, a process technology platform designed to enable production of enhanced efficiency fertilizers at Read More
HerbicidesExpert: IARC Herbicide Classifications Leading To Confu…
July 24, 2015
Few people in the crop protection industry had heard of the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) before this Read More
ManagementFCI Trade Summit Update & Precision Tank Turns 50
July 23, 2015
Editors Dave Frabotta and Eric Sfiligoj discuss the upcoming FCI Trade Summit in Las Vegas, NV, and how Precision Tank Read More
Palmer pigweed seedhead in cotton
HerbicidesUSDA Deregulates Dow AgroSciences’ Enlist Cotton Trait
July 23, 2015
The USDA today issued its decision deregulating Dow AgroSciences’ Enlist cotton trait in the U.S. The USDA has now completed its Read More
Industry NewsVerdesian Life Sciences Showcases Versatile Product Por…
July 23, 2015
Technology has revolutionized agriculture by bringing farmers, retailers and distributors to the forefront of the digital age. To meet the Read More
FertilizerWSJ: Cf Industries Exploring Merger With Dutch Chemical…
July 23, 2015
U.S. fertilizer maker CF Industries is in advanced merger talks with Amsterdam-listed chemical company OCI NV, the Wall Street Journal Read More
HerbicidesNufarm Releases New Panther SC Herbicide
July 23, 2015
Nufarm has announced the availability of new Panther SC herbicide. Panther SC is the first liquid formulation of flumioxazin available Read More
EquipmentFarmLink Launches Farm Equipment Sharing Program
July 23, 2015
FarmLink has introduced a new online farm equipment sharing community – MachineryLink Sharing – leveraging this new economy business model Read More
HerbicidesCould The South’s Most Troublesome Weed Represent A Thr…
July 22, 2015
Palmer amaranth is undoubtedly the most troublesome weed in the southern United States, taking a devastating toll on both cotton Read More
Industry NewsH.J. Baker Hires New Director Of International Sales
July 22, 2015
Global Agriculture firm H.J. Baker announced today that Steve Langley has joined the company’s Crop Performance Division and Animal Health Read More
InsecticidesSyngenta Recommends Soybean Scouting To Prevent Economi…
July 22, 2015
Proper soybean insect pest control begins with scouting. As the warm weather continues, Syngenta encourages growers to implement a scouting Read More
Crop InputsH.J. Baker Launches Fall Sulphur Campaign
July 22, 2015
H.J. Baker has launched their “Keep Your Future Green – Use Tiger This Fall and Win Big” campaign. The campaign Read More
Central Valley Ag Randolph, NE
Retail FacilitiesStueve Construction Builds Fifth Facility For Central V…
July 21, 2015
Central Valley Ag partnered with Stueve Construction Co. to successfully design and build its Monroe, Oakland, Wakefield and Royal hub facilities Read More
FertilizerNew Research Could Lead To Less Reliance On Nitrogen, E…
July 21, 2015
Farmers often are required to apply nitrogen fertilizers to their crops to maintain quality and improve yields. Worldwide, farmers used Read More
Seed/BiotechMonsanto Targets Farmers, AFBF In Syngenta Takeover
July 21, 2015
As Monsanto Co. struggles to convince rival Syngenta AG to discuss a potential merger, the seed and agrochemical giant is Read More
CHS Building exterior
Retail FacilitiesSackett Helps CHS Expand Blending Facility, Improve Acc…
July 21, 2015
CHS needed a blend plant that could vastly expand their capabilities in St. Charles, MN. The A.J. Sackett & Sons Read More
Industry NewsH.J. Baker Adds To HR Team
July 21, 2015
H.J. Baker announced today that Barbara Sullivan has joined the company’s executive team as Vice President of Human Resources. Prior Read More