Numerous biofuels representatives testified at a day-long hearing Tuesday in Washington DC on the Environmental Protection Agency’s proposed rulemaking for the Renewable Fuels Standard.
National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) testified that corn growers have serious concerns about assumptions in the proposed rule regarding indirect land use changes. Ethanol Committee Chairman Steve Ruh says EPA has failed to take into account modern agricultural practices and biotechnology that are increasing both corn yields and ethanol production.
“Over the past nine years, a time when ethanol production grew dramatically, for every bushel required for the increased ethanol market, 2.89 new bushels were grown on the same acres, thus requiring no additional acres be brought into production for the purpose of ethanol,” Ruh testified.
POET VP for science and technology Dr. Mark Stowers told EPA that the model for calculating indirect land use changes is “flawed and has no basis in law or science.”
Stowers urged EPA officials to visit a modern ethanol plant to “obtain real data about the industry, rather than relying on unproven models, hypotheses and assumptions.”
About 60 people testified at the hearing yesterday, split about evenly between those who supported the rule and those who wanted to see changes.