Clean Air Benefits of Ethanol Focus of S.D. Farmers Union President Presentation to United Nations Foundation
HURON, S.D. – Ethanol lowers carbon emissions by 40 percent and reduces the need for carcinogenic gasoline additives. These health and clean air benefits will be the focus of South Dakota Farmers Union President Doug Sombke’s presentation to the United Nations Foundation in D.C. today, February 6, 2020.
“I’m eager to share how, through increased ethanol use, rural farmers can provide urban citizens with clean air and better health. And how, in turn, through increased ethanol use, urban citizens can help farmers remain viable,” explains Sombke, a fourth-generation farmer who leads one of South Dakota’s largest agriculture organizations.
For more than three decades, Sombke and South Dakota Farmers Union have advocated for increased ethanol use. Rural America has benefited from the more than 17 million jobs and local corn market the industry provides.
“Since the beginning we have seen ethanol as the road to energy independence. Today’s higher ethanol blends work in nonflex-fuel vehicles, provide clean air and health benefits, while at the same time bolstering rural America’s economy,” Sombke says.
Invited by Senators Chuck Grassley of Iowa and Timothy Wirth of Colorado, Sombke joins a bipartisan group of industry experts, presenting to the United Nations Foundation.
“The question of how best to address environmental challenges has increasingly become a partisan flashpoint. So, when there is a green solution on which many Republicans and Democrats see eye-to-eye, as we do, it’s worth paying attention,” the Senator’s wrote in an August. 14, 2019 The Hill article on the topic titled: Environmental advocates should take another look at biofuels.
Joining together for solutions is a focus of S.D. Farmers Union’s work for family farmers and ranchers. “Today’s family farmers and ranchers are facing challenging times. Whether it is the markets or weather or both, many are not seeing a profit this year. We need all the help we can get. We need to work together to find solutions,” Sombke says. “And increased ethanol use is a solution we can all work on together.”
To learn more about South Dakota Farmers Union and the work they do to support family farmers and ranchers, visit http://www.sdfu.org. To watch a full-day livecast of the February 6, 2020 meeting, visit: http://www.eesi.org/livecast.
–South Dakota Farmers Union
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Drought stressed forages can be high in nitrates and may be potentially toxic to cattle. Photo credit Troy Walz.