Michigan Farm Bureau (MFB) urges members to voice concern with the Environmental Protection Agency’s proposal to modify the nation’s Renewable Fuel Standards (RFS).
You can help by texting the phrase “MI CORN” to the number “52886,” then following the instructions provided to send a pre-written or customized message to the agency before the comment period closes on Nov. 29.
Theresa Sisung, MFB’s associate field crops specialist, explained why the change would hurt the state’s farmers and agriculture economy.
“EPA’s proposal is problematic because they want to use a three-year rolling average of recommended Small Refinery Exemptions instead of the actual average, which is much higher,” she said.
Read our related story to understand how the exemptions work: EPA’s Small Refinery Waiver Proposal – a classic ‘bait and switch’?
“We have five ethanol plants in Michigan that serve as strong economic drivers because they purchase corn from farmers, employ local workers, and utilize area contractors and vendors,” Sisung added. “Last year, approximately 37% of our state’s corn supply went into ethanol production.”
She explained that the dramatic increase of Small Refinery Exemptions from the EPA – 85 in the last three years – has been devastating.
“The market for corn used in ethanol has shrunk substantially, falling 229 million bushels in the last year alone,” Sisung added. “This leaves farmers with fewer options to market products and undermines our goals to achieve greater energy independence, which was Congress’s original intent with the RFS standards.”