Iowa Governor Culver Seeks EPA Waiver for E15 Ethanol

May 1, 2009 07:00 PM

via a special arrangement with Informa Economics, Inc.

Cites jobs impact and nation's dependence on foreign oil as reasons for waiver request

NOTE: This column is copyrighted material, therefore reproduction or retransmission is prohibited under U.S. copyright laws.

Iowa Governor Chet Culver on Friday requested a waiver from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to allow the sale of E15 ethanol in Iowa. Culver made the request Friday to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

Reasons for the waiver request: Culver said boosting the amount of ethanol that can be blended into the nation's fuel supply will create jobs and help eliminate the nation's dependence on foreign oil.

Culver sent a letter to Lisa Jackson, Administrator of the EPA. “Iowa has led the nation in the development and use of ethanol,” said Culver. “By lifting the artificial cap on ethanol blends, we can increase the demand on ethanol, reduce our dependence on imported oil, and create new good-paying green collar jobs. As Governor, I have never wavered in my commitment to ethanol, and believe that when combined with other homegrown energy efforts like wind and biodiesel, can play an integral role in building a brighter, stronger, greener future for Iowa, and America.”

The following is the text of Governor Culver’s letter:

The Honorable Lisa P. Jackson
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
1200 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20460-2403

Dear Administrator Jackson:

On behalf of the State of Iowa, I respectfully ask that the United States Environmental Protection Agency approve a waiver to increase the allowable ethanol content of gasoline to 15 percent (E15) as recently requested by a consortium of ethanol producers under 211(F) (4) of the Clean Air Act. The people of Iowa know that increasing the amount of ethanol that can be blended into the nation’s fuel supply will create green jobs, environmental benefit and help eliminate our nation’s dependence on foreign oil.

The combination of the current economic challenges, lower oil prices and the near saturation of the 10 percent ethanol blend market are weakening the foundation of an industry that saved the nation hundreds of billions of dollars in oil imports in the past several years, while reducing greenhouse gas emissions. The impact of today’s recession and these market conditions on the existing ethanol industry is great. The real threat is to the future of biofuels — cellulosic, bio-oils, advanced biofuels. Declining private investors’ support for biofuels projects, and the focus, resources, and talent needed to achieve an advanced biofuels future will be lost without a market for the fuels.

I respectfully ask you to act quickly to take this critical step to address the immediate struggles of the ethanol industry. The State of Iowa stands committed to working with you and your agency to ensure the success of biofuels in the future.

Thank you for your leadership and support.

Chester J. Culver
Governor of Iowa

NOTE: This column is copyrighted material, therefore reproduction or retransmission is prohibited under U.S. copyright laws.


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