June 27, 2022

Homegrown fuel is good for Iowa

Iowa has a generous supply of energy producing resources. In addition to wind and our emerging solar industry, Iowa is a leader in homegrown biofuels, which expand markets for farmers, support rural jobs and economies, give drivers choices at the pump and reduce our reliance on foreign oil.

This year, the Legislature voted to continue promoting the production and use of ethanol and other Iowa-grown motor vehicle fuels by keeping their price down (SF 257). We also voted to generate more locally produced energy by allowing yard waste disposal in landfills with methane collection systems (HF 266).

Now Iowa is receiving a competitive grant from the United States Department of Agriculture to add 100 new fueling sites across the state to provide Iowa drivers with access to higher blends of ethanol. This funding will allow the Iowa Department of Agriculture to expand its Renewable Fuels Infrastructure Program, which provides grants to help fueling stations upgrade their equipment to dispense renewable fuels.

At the same time, Iowa is encouraging the federal government to continue its support for the Renewable Fuels Standard. The federal RFS ensures transportation fuel contains a minimum amount of renewable fuel. This has helped create a healthy rural economy by providing more opportunities for farmers to sell their agricultural commodities.

However, proposed changes by the Environmental Protection Agency could limit further growth of Iowa jobs and our economy by lowering the required volumes of renewables in motor fuel. That's why I joined my legislative colleagues this year in unanimously supporting a resolution calling for the EPA to reconsider its rule change.

The EPA is expected to take final action on its new RFS rules by the end of November. To learn more about the RFS and to review the EPA's proposed changes, go to www.epa.gov/otaq/fuels/renewablefuels.

Contact Sen. Allen at 641-521-6297 or email him at chaz.allen@legis.iowa.gov