(Posted Thu. May 10th, 2012)
May 10: This week, Representatives John Shimkus (R-Ill.) and Collin Peterson (D-Minn.) sent an email and fact sheet refuting allegations about corn ethanol made by several of their colleagues. The National Corn Growers Association applauds their efforts to supply their colleagues with accurate information about the importance of both the Renewable Fuels Standard and corn ethanol to our nation.
“On behalf of NCGA’s more than 37,000 farmer-members, I thank Representatives Shimkus and Peterson for working across party lines to disseminate factual, accurate information about corn ethanol,” said NCGA President Garry Niemeyer. “These distinguished Representatives demonstrated that they understand what corn growers have long known; corn ethanol provides important benefits to our economy, our energy security and to our environment.”
The Shimkus-Peterson letter reminded their colleagues in the House of Representatives that, “as originally envisioned by Congress in 2005, the multiple purposes of the RFS were to enhance energy security, reduce consumer fuel prices by diversifying our energy portfolio, create jobs and stimulate economic activity, and improve the environment.”
It went on to assess the performance of this legislation in stating that, “by any measure, the RFS is achieving these goals and providing tangible benefits to the American public.”
The letter pointed out other benefits of corn ethanol as well stating that oil import dependence has fallen from 60.3 percent in 2005 to 45 percent in 2011. Additionally, the ethanol industry contributed more than $42 billion to the nation’s gross domestic product in 2011 and generated nearly $30 billion in household income.
This letter was sent in response to an email issued by Representatives Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.), Jim Matheson (D-Utah), John Sullivan (R-Okla.) and Jim Moran (D-Va.) last month urging members of the House Commerce, and Agriculture and Energy Committees to provide relief from alleged unintended consequences of the RFS. This message also contained a “fact sheet” explaining the problems that they claim this legislation causes.
In their allegations, this letter claimed that, “the RFS is a de facto mandate for corn ethanol, which is damaging our economy, driving up food prices, and degrading our natural resources, without achieving the energy independence once promised.”
For a copy of the fact sheet that accompanied Representatives Shimkus and Peterson’s email, click here.