November 10, 2015

Contact: Andrew Jerome, 202-314-3106

WASHINGTON (November 10, 2015) – National Farmers Union (NFU) President Roger Johnson today highlighted the tremendous success of the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) and urged the administration to reject a recent letter from members of Congress that was revealed to have been drafted by a lobbyist for the petroleum industry.

“The RFS has been an unqualified success since its passage in 2005,” said Johnson in a letter to President Obama. “Wavering from our commitment to the RFS would be a grave mistake for both America’s family farmers and this nation as a whole. We urge you to reject Big Oil’s talking points and stay the course on the RFS.”

Johnson noted that the RFS has boosted incomes for family farmers by creating new and well-paying jobs in rural America and helped to reduce this nation’s dependence on foreign oil while making  important strides in mitigating climate change through the use of biofuels. “In short, the RFS is working exactly as planned,” he said.

Johnson noted that the RFS has given family farmers the opportunity to help mitigate climate change, a serious threat to both farmers’ operations and, in turn, the nation’s food security.

“The RFS has helped family farmers and the nation make tangible steps toward mitigating our impact on climate change by driving the U.S. to make real reductions in greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions,” said Johnson. “Corn ethanol reduces GHG emissions by 34 percent, and more substantial gains can be made through new types of biofuels.”

Johnson noted that, unfortunately, most popular public policies face a small but vocal group of critics, and the RFS is no different.

“Earlier this month, a minority of House members sent a letter requesting that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) curb the growth of this promising industry by backing off volume targets set forth in the statute,” said Johnson. “These members are reversing themselves by asking for less ethanol production than was signed into law by President Bush.”

“We deeply appreciate your administration’s demonstrated commitment to mitigating climate change for the sake of domestic and global food security among other things. On behalf of America’s family farmers, we ask you to stay the course on the RFS, maintaining your commitment to biofuels and to fully implementing the statutory volume targets laid out in the law.”

National Farmers Union has been working since 1902 to protect and enhance the economic well-being and quality of life for family farmers, ranchers and rural communities through advocating grassroots-driven policy positions adopted by its membership.


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