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EPA Administrator Meets with Ag Groups at Iowa State Fair

Agriculture Groups had an opportunity to meet with Acting Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency Andrew Wheeler at the Iowa State Fair on Monday.

He was invited to the fair by Iowa Congressman David Young and was joined by Iowa's Governor Kim Reynolds.

In the meeting, the biggest topic was the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS). Wheeler explained he wants to provide more certainty when it comes to EPA rules and renewable fuels. He has been meeting with different groups around the country trying to figure out what they can do with the RFS.

Wheeler tried to reassure farmers, "But the important thing is the Trump Administration wants to move forward with implementing the RFS in both the spirit and letter of the law."

Governor Reynolds continued, "So, 15 billion gallons needs to mean 15 billion gallons and I think that's the message that was delivered today in a very constructive manner "

The reassurance was only partly successful, farmers and ag groups felt there was not enough concrete statements on renewable fuels.

Dave Walton with the Iowa Soybean Association says, "He didn't quite get into some of the answers that we wanted to hear, especially when it comes to small refinery waivers. I think there's still some issues there that we need to work with the EPA on. But around ag chemical issues and some other things, I think they're on the right track. So, I feel a little more confident they're working in the right direction."

Congressman David Young also has confidence in the new EPA leader. He says there is a complete difference between Wheeler's EPA and the former administrator, they are gathering information to make sure decisions make sense and will stand up to court challenges.

Young adds Wheeler is much more accessible, "What I heard from the people I represent in the various commodity groups, the grain folks the livestock folks, the renewable fuel folks is they need an ear of this new EPA Administrator and they got the ear of that administrator today."