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Johnson slams EPA proposal to cut RFS for ethanol

Senator Tim Johnson (D-SD) - Public domain photo
Senator Tim Johnson (D-SD) - Public domain photo

Washington, D.C. (KELO AM) - U.S. Senator Tim Johnson (D-SD) today slammed the Environmental Protection Agency’s proposal to reduce the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) levels for ethanol and other biofuels.

“I’m very disappointed in the EPA’s announcement today proposing to lower the RFS targets below current levels,” said Johnson. “The ethanol industry has a $3.8 billion economic impact in South Dakota. This proposal will negatively affect farmers, ethanol producers and communities throughout the state.”

“Big oil has been waging a fierce campaign against the RFS and unfortunately it looks like the EPA is listening to them. If finalized, this proposal would be a step backward for energy security and it could harm our ability to continue developing and commercializing advanced and cellulosic biofuels, which promise even greater environmental benefits.”

“This is just the start of the rule making process. As this process moves forward, I will continue working to expand the development of ethanol, biodiesel, as well as advanced and cellulosic biofuels.”

The EPA proposal would cut the RFS for ethanol and other renewable fuels to 15.21 billion gallons, a cut of more than 1.3 billion gallons.  This would be about 8 percent below the 2013 requirements. The EPA proposal now goes out for public comment.