Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA) hosted officials from the Environmental Protection Agency last week for a tour of agriculture and biofuels in Iowa. Gina McCarthy, Assistant Administrator for the Office of Air and Radiation, and Margo Oge, Director of the Office of Transportation and Air Quality, represented EPA on the visit that included the BioCentury Research Farm in Boone, an Iowa family farm and the Renewable Energy Group‘s (REG) Central Iowa Energy plant in Newton, which included an overview and update from the ethanol and biodiesel industries.
“The EPA has tremendous power and authority, and the decisions it makes on several issues will have a major impact on the rural economy, from the family farm to opportunities in value-added agriculture industries, including renewable energy. It is absolutely essential that the government officials in charge understand the issues and the impact of their rules, regulations and directives,” Grassley said.
EPA is in the process of taking comments on implementation of the renewable fuels standard (RFS2) under the 2007 Energy Independence and Security Act. In their comments to EPA, REG chairman Jeff Stroburg said, “We firmly believe that the intent of policy makers and the administration to reduce our dependence on foreign petroleum supplies, support American agriculture, and reduce harmful greenhouse gas emission can be successfully achieved with the implementation of RFS2.”
Thanks to REG for the photo of the Grassley/EPA tour. More photos can be viewed here.