Ethanol Leader Responds to Perry Energy Plan

Cindy Zimmerman

Texas Governor and Republican presidential hopeful Rick Perry donned a hard hat at a Pennsylvania steel plant on Friday to announce his “Energizing American Jobs and Security” plan that he says will create over a million jobs and “reduce dependence on hostile foreign oil.”

“We are standing atop the next American economic boom – energy – and the quickest way to give our economy a shot in the arm is to deploy American ingenuity to tap American energy. But we can only do that if environmental bureaucrats are told to stand down,” said Perry.

“I believe in an “all of the above” energy plan that encourages the development of all our conventional and renewable sources,” he said, calling for the elimination of all “subsidies and mandates that punish consumers and skew the energy marketplace, leveling the playing field for all energy industries.”

The Perry plan would expand energy exploration offshore and on federal and private lands across the country by executive order and basically eliminate the EPA. However, while it touts an “all of the above” approach, some ethanol leaders believe it would promote oil above alternatives.

Iowa RFA“The Perry plan would leave America dependent on that single fuel – petroleum – with OPEC in charge of its price,” said Iowa Renewable Fuels Association President and CEO of Golden Grain Energy Walt Wendland. “The Perry plan would leave intact the federal petroleum mandate. The Perry plan would leave in place the fuel distribution monopoly of oil companies.”

Wendland continued. “But the most indefensible part of the Perry plan is that it would lock in tax subsidies for petroleum while eliminating them for all other competing fuels. That might make sense in Texas, but it’s a stupid policy for America. Governor Perry has said he doesn’t want the government to pick winner and losers. But the Perry energy plan does just that – and foreign oil is the winner.”

The Perry plan would “phase out direct subsidies and tax credits that distort the energy marketplace” but “preserve tax incentives for research and development.” IRFA notes that the tax credits for ethanol and biodiesel are set to expire at the end of the year while petroleum tax subsidies are in the tax code permanently with no scheduled expiration dates and some have existed since 1913.

Energy, Ethanol, Ethanol News, Oil, politics