Our ethanol FOE, Friends of the Earth, is back in action with a new TV campaign, “No Sense,” designed to encourage policymakers in DC to dump ethanol subsidies. The campaign was launched just in time for the first Republican presidential debate set to take place in New Hampshire next Monday at St. Anselm College. The campaign is a joint effort between Friends of the Earth and Taxpayers for Common Sense, another organization that has been vocal for months regarding the end of subsidies.
“Corn ethanol is not living up to its promise,” said Erich Pica, president of Friends of the Earth. “Ethanol production requires tons of petrochemicals and diverts land that could be better used for growing traditional food. This country’s ethanol tax credits have increased food prices around the world and made climate pollution even worse.”
Friends of the Earth note that presidential hopefuls Tim Pawlenty and Rick Santorum have already come out of the gates with plans to phase out subsidies. In fact, Pawlenty was bold enough to announce this during his first official campaign stop in Des Moines, Iowa. On the flip side, Mitt Romney and Newt Gingrich favor keeping them in place while Ron Paul and Herman Cain want them ended immediately. The ethanol industry has also agreed that the subsides, such as VEETC should be phased out, but to eliminate them immediately would cause undo harm to the ethanol industry.
Ryan Alexander, president of Taxpayers for Common Sense added, “Ethanol subsidies are a ridiculous waste of taxpayer dollars and do little more than line the pockets of big oil companies. Republican candidates have to decide whether they put America’s taxpayers before their personal political gain.”
If early actions are any indication, then ethanol subsidies should be a hot topic in upcoming election (you can agree or disagree in this week’s poll).
So for all of you DF readers who don’t favor ethanol, here is your chance to voice your opinion – Friends of the Earth has a site for you to send letters to your local newspapers expressing your opinions.