Renewable fuel industry leaders convened in Washington D.C. this week at the 2014 Growth Energy Advocacy Conference. With the EPA considering a rollback for the Renewable Fuels Standard, Growth Energy members took their message to Congress and the EPA. The message is keep the RFS intact. Steve Pittman of Poet Biorefining in North Manchester Indiana says the RFS is an important piece of our nation’s energy policy.
“It came out in 2005 and we believe it’s the best piece of legislation that Congress has ever developed for our energy policy for the country. So we want them to leave it alone and let it work. We don’t see a reason to modify it and we’d love to see it stay intact.”
Pittman says the RFS encourages farmers to produce a product and gives them a secondary market.
“That helps to encourage him to not put his land into subsidy banks, but to actually produce on that land and sell that product and contribute to us not only getting off of foreign oil and more domestic fuel supply, but it also allows for a co-product that we make for the production of dried distillers grains that goes back into the animal feed market. So we produce food and fuel and we help the American farmer to be profitable and to have a bigger market to sell their products.”
The annual fly-in conference ended Wednesday and Pittman was joined by Dave Hudak, General Manager of POET in Alexandria, Matt Tomano, POET in Portland, and Kosciusko County farmer Kip Tom. They met with many of Indiana’s elected officials while in DC.
The POET managers and Growth Energy leaders, including CEO Tom Buis and Co-Chairman of the Board General Wesley Clark (Ret.), had a series of meetings on Capitol Hill.
“Our message was clear, the RFS is a crucial tool that allows market access for cleaner, renewable fuels. I was pleased to join several other ethanol supporters in Washington to meet with Congress about our nation’s energy security and future,” said Hudak. “This is an exciting time for POET and the renewable fuels industry. I would like to thank each office for taking the time to meet and I look forward to working with them in the future.”
(Pictured from left to right: Garrett Screws, Novozymes; Abe Hughes, New Holland; Tom Buis, Growth Energy; Matt Tomano, POET Biorefining – Portland; Dave Hudak, POET Biorefining – Alexandria; Senator Joe Donnelly; Kip Tom, Tom Farms; Gunner Greene, Iroquois Bio-Energy Company; Steve Pittman, POET Biorefining – North Manchester; Dennis Pasko, U.S. Water)