The Iowa Renewable Fuels Association Executive Director Monte Shaw is calling out the U.S. House after the latest version of the Farm Bill attempts to modify the existing Rural Energy for America Program (REAP) to specifically exclude blender pumps from eligibility:
“It was very disappointing to see the blender pump exclusion maintained in the House Ag Committee Farm Bill. IRFA’s number one priority for this farm bill will be to ensure the final version includes blender pumps… All too often over the past year, the House seems more interested in carrying the water to protect Big Oil’s near monopoly on fuel than in providing American consumers with the freedom to choose their own fuel – perhaps a lower-cost ethanol blend – at the pump.”
Shaw pointed out that while the House has voted against renewable fuels, it has done nothing against Big Oil monopolies and subsidies. He says it’s embarrassing for the House and Iowa voters will be taking note.
During the debate, Rep. Leonard Boswell (D-IA) pushed for specific money to be allocated for REAP and the blender pumps. “Without mandatory funding levels, these rural development programs are more than likely to be left out in the cold by the Appropriations Committee,” he said. Rep. Kristi Noem (R-SD) said today’s consumers should have the choice to put in their cars the blend of ethanol they want, “whether that’s 0 percent or 15 percent.” Both of their amendments were withdrawn.
Listen to Boswell and Noem, as well as Ranking Member Collin Peterson (D-MN), talk about blender pumps during debate in the House Agriculture Committee here: Blender Pump Debate in House Ag Cmte