July 27th was the last day to submit comments to the Environmental Protection Agency over the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) proposed rule.
The rule changes the RFS ethanol volume obligation levels and has been strongly opposed by Iowa leaders and farm groups.
The Iowa Renewable Fuels Association sent 90 pages of their own comments touching on a number of issues. Executive Director Monte Shaw says their activities in Iowa generated tens of thousand comments.
He says the EPA is pushing the pause button on something that's working, "And so there's really two paths they're going to go down. They're going to go down one, where we crack the monopoly, get those higher ethanol blends, and biodiesel blends in front of consumers. That's going to boost farm income, it's going to reduce farm income costs, it's going to boost rural economies, it's going to reduce our dependence on foreign oil and reduce harmful emissions. On the other hand, you know, we're really looking at going back into the 90s here in rural America. It might not be the farm crisis of the 80s but the 90s weren't really good either. The only reason they looked even halfway decent is they weren't the 80s."
In a joint letter, Iowa Gov. Terry E. Branstad was joined by Lt. Gov. Kim Reynolds, Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey, Director of the Iowa Economic Development Authority Debi Durham, Director of the Iowa Department of Transportation Paul Trombino and Director of the Iowa Department of Natural Resources Chuck Gipp all encouraged the administration to revise the proposal.