WASHINGTON — Plant managers, general managers, and CEOs from 150 biofuel production facilities, including nearly every Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) producer member, sent a letter to President Trump today, urging him to continue to “stand strong in defense of the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS).”
President Trump met last week with ethanol and oil industry stakeholders, including RFA members, to discuss the RFS and Renewable Identification Numbers (RINs). Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) has proposed capping RIN prices at 10 cents, potentially in exchange for allowing the year-round sale of E15.
“We’ve seen Texas Senator Ted Cruz attempt to confuse stakeholders about the RFS, claiming that his attack on Renewable Identification Numbers (RINs) is not an attack on our jobs. Nothing could be further from the truth,” wrote the plant managers. “There is no way to cut, cap, or eliminate RINs without cutting, capping, or eliminating gallons of homegrown fuel. These gimmicks would eliminate market access for higher ethanol blends, and they are deal-killers for rural America.”
Indeed, as new economic analysis released Tuesday found any action to artificially cap RIN prices in exchange for an RVP waiver to allow the year-round sale of E15 would result in reduced ethanol consumption, a drop in corn prices, and an effective cut of 5% to the RFS conventional renewable fuel requirement. In turn, some of the more than 350,000 jobs supported by the ethanol industry would be lost and some facilities would undoubtedly close or reduce production.
“After four straight years of declining agricultural income, your steadfast support of homegrown biofuels has been a lifeline for the farm economy, and we are deeply grateful to you for upholding the campaign promises made to our workers, our families, and all our rural neighbors. We ask that you send a clear and final signal that this administration will no longer entertain misleading schemes designed to kill the RFS,” the managers wrote to President Trump.
“The president has reiterated numerous times his support for the RFS, workers in our manufacturing sector, and America’s farmers. Just last evening, USDA Secretary Sonny Perdue again affirmed the administration’s support for a robust RFS,” said RFA President and CEO Bob Dinneen. “The U.S. ethanol industry is asking the President to continue honoring his commitment to Rural America by rejecting efforts by Sen. Cruz to destruct renewable fuel demand and harm consumers across this country.”
In addition to today’s effort, last year, scores of military veterans working in the ethanol industry sent President Trump a letter, reminding him that his “continued commitment to the RFS and pledge to ‘end restrictions that keep higher blends of ethanol from being sold’ are among the strategies that will help free our economy from the influence of OPEC oil ministers once and for all.”
To view a copy of today’s letter, click here.