EPA's ethanol decision hurts Michigan farmers, consumers and communities

Michigan Corn Growers call on EPA to protect Renewable Fuel Standard

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Representatives from the Michigan Corn Growers Association (MCGA) traveled to Washington, D.C. today to call on the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to protect the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) for ethanol.

Michigan corn growers scheduled to testify at today's EPA hearing said the EPA's proposed reduction of the RFS would drive up the price of gasoline, rob Michigan's communities of jobs and economic opportunities and increase our dangerous dependence on foreign oil.

"The Renewable Fuel Standard is a successful, forward-looking policy that benefits American consumers, businesses and communities," said Scott Lonier, president of MCGA. "When we make more of our transportation fuel here, we create jobs, spark new businesses and drive investment in our local communities. The EPA should protect the current targets for ethanol because they're good for Michigan and the United States."

The statement comes after the EPA proposed reducing the target for renewable fuels from 14.4 billion gallons to 13.01 billion gallons next year. Oil companies and their lobbyists falsely claim that targets have to be reduced to avoid hitting the "blend wall," the point where fuel blends higher than 10 percent ethanol are needed to reach biofuel targets.

"The blend wall is a fictitious concept that oil companies invented to try and protect their massive profits," said Lonier. "The U.S. is more than capable of achieving current RFS targets while still producing enough corn to feed consumers and livestock. The EPA should protect the RFS because using more home-grown fuel keeps more of our money in the U.S. instead of using it to buy oil from foreign countries, many of whom are hostile to America and our way of life."

In October, a Michigan State University economic impact report found that eliminating the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) would result in $433 million in lost economic activity and hundreds of lost jobs in Michigan.

The EPA will accept public comments on the proposed rule until January 28, 2014. You can learn more, or find out how to submit your comments by visiting the Michigan Corn Growers Association website at www.micorn.org.

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