Farm country tires of waiting for EPA ethanol ruling

Jul 18, 2014

Ethanol pump detail
Credit File Photo / KBIA

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in November proposed a reduction in the amount of ethanol made from corn in the nation’s gas supply, much to the dismay of Corn Belt farmers. The agency has twice postponed its ruling, and the delay is vexing many Midwest farmers and politicians.

The EPA wants to reduce the amount of corn-based ethanol in the nation’s fuel supply—though the exact amount of this reduction hasn’t been decided.

Iowa Governor Terry Branstad is tired of waiting. "We were assured that it would be decided by June, and here we are, mid-July," he said. "Who knows when they’re gonna finally make a decision? But, this is just typical of the EPA and the federal government and the fact that they’re really damaging America’s competitiveness."

Supporters of the changes say the renewable fuel rules raise the price of animal feed. But the governors of Kansas, Nebraska, Minnesota and North and South Dakota have all joined Branstad in opposition to the proposed changes.

The EPA says it will announce its decision on the renewable fuel standard by September 30.