The American ethanol industry, comprised of farmers and small businesses, is ready and willing to help the U.S. “win the future” for the sake of our economic security, national security, and environmental protection.
President Obama delivered the State of the Union address to a joint session of Congress last night, and we are grateful for his statement “clean-energy breakthroughs will only translate into clean-energy jobs if businesses know there will be a market for what they're selling.”
The American ethanol industry couldn’t agree more. If Congress and the Administration take steps to remove Big Oil’s status-quo grip on the fuel market, corn ethanol and advanced biofuel will finally have the certainty to supply safer and more affordable fuel choices to consumers while creating jobs for the U.S. That is why the E10 blend wall must be overcome with an approval for E15 in all cars and why policies that deploy more Flexible Fuel Vehicles (FFVs) and blender pumps should be implemented.
We are pleased that President Obama declared “we can break our dependence on oil with biofuels,” and note that American ethanol, the most widely available biofuel, is already displacing approximately 350 million barrels of foreign oil – essentially eliminating the need for the U.S. to purchase oil from Saudi Arabia.
The President rightly pointed out that Big Oil companies are profiting on their own, let alone the billions in taxpayer dollars they benefit from each year. Redirecting oil company subsidies toward cleaner, safer, and better alternatives – such as American ethanol – is the kind of investment that will create the domestic jobs we need for the economy to recover and grow.
Finally, because there is no silver-bullet solution to reducing oil use, we appreciate the President’s goal to have 1 million electric vehicles on the road by 2015. Nonetheless, there are already nearly 9 million FFVs on the road. These FFVs can run on any blend of ethanol and gasoline, and should number nearly 20 million by 2015.
Steps to ensure there are more FFVs and that the owners of these vehicles have the opportunity to use ethanol-blended fuel need attention this year .
Posted by: Brian Jennings, Executive Vice President, American Coalition for Ethanol