National Farmers Union supports use of E30 in all fuel-injected vehicles
National Farmers Union called for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to open the market to higher blends of ethanol in a landmark resolution passed during the National Farmers Union annual meeting held in San Diego March 5-8, 2017.
“National Farmers Union, as an organization, considers increased ethanol use one of the most important demand drivers for American agriculture,” said Doug Sombke, president of South Dakota Farmers Union. “Members are taking a stand against EPA regulations that limit the use of ethanol blends in non-flex vehicles.”
South Dakota Farmers Union is one of 33 state affiliates which make up the grassroots National Farmers Union organization.
“Ethanol is a critically important part of our future and higher ethanol blends are key to creating demand for ethanol and corn,” Sombke said. “EPA and all government regulators should immediately reverse statements and policies that unfairly limit the amount of ethanol we can put in our cars.”
The resolution brought forward by the South Dakota Farmers Union delegation to the convention promotes the use of higher blended fuels, like Premium E30. “We see this as a continued effort to continue efforts to expand retail fuels infrastructure and to further support the Renewable Fuel Standard,” Sombke explained.
In conjunction with these efforts, National Farmers Union has recently filed legal comments challenging EPA’s invalid, arbitrary and capricious overreach with its interpretation of the Clean Air Act, which limits ethanol volumes to 10 or at most 15 percent.
In addition to actively supporting this policy during the National Farmers Union convention, South Dakota Farmers Union worked diligently during the 2017 Legislative Session to support the passage of a resolution which supports the use of Premium E30 in state-owned vehicles.
Since the passage of Senate Concurrent Resolution 14, the governor’s office has already begun to solicit bids for the supply of Premium E30.
“South Dakota Farmers Union has long been a leader in the development of ethanol,” Sombke said. “Our state has produced many national leaders who have supported the ethanol industry over the years, including former U.S. Senate Majority leader Tom Daschle.”
In a speech he gave to attendees of the Siouxland Ethanol Annual meeting, Daschle said public policy initiatives for ethanol helped create an industry that reduced U.S. oil imports by $20 billion in 2016 and contributed nearly $50 billion to the nation’s economy.
“What I want to get across is how dynamic the ethanol industry is and how we need to build on our success of the past,” Daschle said. “We passed the Clean Air Act Amendments and that gave us a threshold. We passed the Renewable Fuel Standard and that gave us an opportunity, catalytically, to see the explosion of the industry.”
The National Farmers Union resolution comes at a time when there is increased interest nationally in the benefits of higher ethanol volumes such as a 30 percent volume blend (Premium E30).
Premium E30 is endorsed by the U.S. Department of Energy as a potentially optimum blend level.
Data collected during a recent Glacial Lakes Energy’s E30 Challenge, Watertown, S.D., showed that non-flex fuel vehicles run better on E30 than flex-fuel vehicles.
“This high octane, cleaner burning fuel is available at a lower cost and provides consumer choice while supporting local communities,” said Brad Brunner, ethanol marketing manager Glacial Lakes Energy.
“We also see this as a way to achieve reduced governmental regulation,” Sombke added. “These actions by our state and national organization, highlight continued efforts to seek greater market access for higher blended fuels. It is the position of both organizations that rural economies and consumers across the nation have much to gain in such actions.”
Former House Agriculture Committee Chairman Rep. Frank Lucas, R-Okla., and 80 of his colleagues last week introduced the Protect Farmers from the SEC Act.