The agriculture and biofuel industry has been dealt a blow according to Adam Nielsen, director of legislation and policy development for the Illinois Farm Bureau. Nielsen, who spends a significant amount of time promoting the agricultural industry in Washington, D.C., said the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) proposed 2014 reduction of the amount of corn ethanol blended as part of the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) is of great concern.
Nielsen expressed his concern to Representative Cheri Bustos (D-IL) during her recent visit to Patriot Renewable Fuels located in Annawan, Illinois. As Nielsen aptly points out, agriculture is the number one industry in the state of Illinois.
“We’re hoping to see an upward revision,” said Nielsen, “and we’re going to try to activate our members over the next couple of months and try to get as many comments as we can into the Federal Register.” He stressed that his organization is going to participate in as many forums and areas they can to try to get the proposed rule changed.
“It’s a blow to the renewable fuels industry and a blow to agriculture. There are so many things attached to the Renewable Fuel Standard,” explained Nielsen. “It’s been so significant in recent years that we need to do whatever we can to protect it.”
As a policy Nielsen said the RFS has done a lot to improve the lives of those in the agriculture industry and especially in the area around Patriot Renewable Fuels. He noted that biofuels and agriculture are completely intertwined. “It’s provided a market where there wasn’t one prior to the Renewable Fuels Standard,” he said.
“It is so intertwined right now that any time you make decisions like this it’s going to have wide ramifications. So that’s the message we need to get through to the U.S. EPA in the next couple of months,” added Nielsen.
Listen to my interview with Adam Nielsen here where he discusses both the RFS as well as the need for a Farm Bill and how the two bills are intertwined: Ag, Biofuel Industries Dealt a Blow from EPA
Check out the Patriot Renewable Fuels photo album.