Still riding the high of hearing from former President George W. Bush, Renewable Fuels Association President and CEO Geoff Cooper addressed attendees of the 25th annual National Ethanol Conference in Houston today with his annual State of the Industry remarks.
“2019 marked just the third time in the last three decades where output fell from the preceding year,” Cooper said. “Previous decreases in annual output—in 1996 and 2012—were both tied to historic droughts, short crops, and record high corn prices. The drop in ethanol output this time was caused by a disaster of an entirely different sort: policy uncertainty, bureaucratic meddling, and aggravating marketplace barriers.”
In the face of demand-destroying regulatory barriers and political uncertainty, Cooper highlighted how the ethanol industry continued to serve as a vital source of good-paying jobs and economic activity in hard-hit rural communities in 2019, citing key statistics from RFA’s annual study on the economic contributions of the ethanol industry. Released on Monday, the study measures the industry’s sizable economic footprint.
Cooper also touted the removal of regulatory barriers that had banned the sale of E15 during summer months and the marketplace’s enthusiastic response as a win attributable to the industry’s tenacity and ability to “focus forward.” He went on to point out that 2020 is already off to a good start with US Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit ruling in favor of RFA in a decision that could ensure the EPA is finally held accountable for their abusive practices in issuing small refinery waivers.
You can watch the video of Geoff’s remarks from our Facebook Live video here: