U.S. Senators introduce an anti-ethanol bill
February 26, 2015
Sens. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., and Pat Toomey, R-Pa., today reintroduced the Corn Ethanol Mandate Elimination Act, but members of Growth Energy, an ethanol group meeting here quickly criticized the move.
Sen. Jeff Flake, R-Ariz., is also a co-sponsor, Feinstein and Toomey noted in a news release.
Groups that have opposed the RFS in the past — including the National Chain Restaurants Association, the National Turkey Federation and the Environmental Working Group — praised the move, while Growth Energy, the Renewable Fuels Association and the National Farmers Union quickly issued statements in opposition.
"This measure recognizes that the Renewable Fuel Standard is broken and that Congress should act before the mandate does even more damage to the U.S. economy," the chain restaurants association said.
Noting that Feinstein had sponsored the bill last year, Growth Energy CEO Tom Buis said during his group's conference that the senator and her colleagues "didn't get the votes to kill our industry. We are winning this battle."
Buis added, however, that the industry would vigorously fight the latest effort.
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"This bill would eviscerate the RFS — the most successful energy policy enacted in the last 40 years," Buis said in a news release.
"It will continue to keep us addicted to foreign oil and more than anything, it seems like this legislation is appeasing the wishes of Big Oil and Big Food."
"Additionally, this legislation is based on false, misleading information," Buis said.
"To blame ethanol for an increase in the price of food may make for good rhetoric, but it is completely devoid of any facts to back it up. Corn ethanol is not the cause of higher food prices; it is the price of oil that is responsible."
House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte, R-Va., and other House members have already introduced a companion measure in the House.
–The Hagstrom Report