RFA Mourns Sen. Dole as Ethanol Champion

Cindy Zimmerman

Bob Dole at the 2008 World Food Prize

The Renewable Fuels Association paid tribute to former Sen. Robert Dole (R-KS), who passed away Sunday at the age of 98, as a great patriot, war hero, national statesman, friend of farmers, and a champion of America’s renewable fuels industry.

“Throughout his distinguished career in public service, Senator Dole always put his country first and worked tirelessly to improve the lives of all Americans,” said RFA President and CEO Geoff Cooper. “He was one of the first elected officials in Congress to vocally champion ethanol as a value-added market opportunity for America’s farmers.”

Cooper notes that Sen. Dole worked across the aisle in the 1990s with Democratic Leader Tom Daschle to push legislation that ultimately resulted in the successful passage several years later of the Renewable Fuel Standard. Dole and Daschle would also go on to found the Bipartisan Policy Center, which focused on fostering bipartisanship and bridging political divides.

In 2008, Dole was honored with the World Food Prize, along with the late Democrat Sen. George McGovern, for their work in creating the McGovern-Dole international school feeding program.

Both of the senators took questions from the media at the World Food Prize on a variety of topics, including the production of biofuels, since food versus fuel was a trending topic and the 2008 presidential election was just weeks away.

Dole noted the importance of new energy sources in the election that year and the issues that the ethanol industry was facing and stressed the all of the above approach to energy. “There’s switchgrass and other biofuels, and there’s nuclear energy and drilling off-shore,” Dole said. “We gotta do everything we can, it’s not all going to be ethanol.”

Listen to McGovern and Dole comment on food versus fuel in 2008:
2008 World Food Prize press conf - biofuels

Audio, Ethanol, Ethanol News, food and fuel, politics, Renewable Fuels Association, RFA