On Monday representatives from Fuels America and other advocates for clean, secure, American energy delivered over 200,000 comments to the EPA in support of a strong final rule under the Renewable Fuel Standard. This show of grassroots support comes on the final day of the comment period, and after widespread grassroots voices have come out in force to support the RFS. The 200,000+ comments delivered by Fuels America do not paint the full picture; tens of thousands of additional pro-biofuels comments are expected by the close of the comment period as well.
Scores of farmers and biofuels producers hosted rallies this summer in Kansas City and Washington, DC to elevate their voices, joining numerous elected officials in bipartisan calls for the EPA to protect America’s rural economies and green innovators over foreign oil profits.
“The Renewable Fuel Standard represents a promise to rural America—a promise that, when kept, helped rural economies across America make a strong comeback,” said Roger Johnson, president of the National Farmers Union and one of the Fuels America members who dropped comments off at the EPA this morning. “Today’s tremendous show of support for a strong RFS shows that it is time for the EPA to stop choosing foreign oil over rural America, and start getting the RFS back on track.”
Across the nation, Americans displayed their anger over the EPA’s continuing problems putting out a strong rule under the RFS; many authored op-eds editorializing in favor of a strong rule, imploring the EPA to stand up for rural America and not cave to the oil industry. Several of the pieces are linked to below.
The widespread activism and comments, from hundreds of thousands of Americans, speak to the collective outrage toward EPA’s proposal to allow oil companies to take charge of our renewable fuel supply, and effectively permit them to block competition from cleaner, less expensive, homegrown fuel. These actions could potentially weaken a biofuels industry that has helped enhance our national security, strengthened rural economies, and improved America’s climate impact.
Erick Lutt, Director of Industrial and Environmental Policy at the Biotechnology Industry Organization, said: “Today, Americans are sending a strong signal to the EPA that its proposal to lower RVOs under the RFS is unacceptable. The EPA’s misfires and delays have pulled the rug out from the American investors and innovators who have brought the next generation of biofuels online in the U.S. The EPA is already responsible for $13.7 billion in frozen investment in advanced and cellulosic biofuels, and we’re risking sending jobs, innovation, and investment overseas. We can’t afford any more setbacks. The EPA must set RVOs consistent with Congress’ original intent in order to bring investment back to America and allow our country’s innovators to continue developing clean, secure American energy.”