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EDITORIALS

EPA shatters rural hopes with new refinery exemptions

Emily Skor
Growth Energy
President Donald Trump gives remarks after touring the Southwest Iowa Renewable Energy ethanol plant on Tuesday, June 11, 2019, in Council Bluffs, Iowa.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has approved a shocking 31 new refinery exemptions. The handouts give oil refiners a free pass under the Renewable Fuel Standard, threatening to destroy an additional billion gallons of critical biofuel demand – on top of the 2.6 billion gallons already destroyed over the last two years.

The EPA has proven beyond any doubt that it doesn’t care about following the law, American jobs, or even the president’s promises. Now farmers and biofuel producers are paying the price.

These exemptions are destroying demand for homegrown energy at a time when family farms are struggling, farm income is plummeting and many ethanol plants have been forced to close their doors or idle production. The impact on rural communities cannot be overstated. President Trump must move quickly if there is any hope of repairing the damage. If he won’t hold the EPA accountable, then he’s failing to uphold the commitment he’s made to rural America.

Skor is CEO of Growth Energy, an organization that represents producers and supporters of ethanol.