McCain amendment would prohibit federal funds for blender pumps


“In these tight economic times when we are asking families to do more with less, we should not be subsidizing gas pumps at retail gas stations. The ethanol industry needs to prove it can prosper on its own and quit asking for taxpayer handouts,” said Brian Rogers, communications director, Office of Senator John McCain (R-Ariz.).


Rogers responded to Farm Industry News’s questions about Senator McCain’s proposed amendment (H.R. 2112) that would “prohibit the use of appropriated funds to construct, fund, install, or operate certain ethanol blender pumps and ethanol storage facilities.”


This would include funds in any trust fund to which funds are made available by federal law, and funds made available under the Rural Energy for America Program (part of the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002).


The Renewable Fuel Association (RFA) shot back, saying that “with tens of millions of Americans still unemployed or underemployed, Senator McCain is seeking . . . to limit the increased use of domestically produced ethanol and the job creation that goes with it.”


The RFA added, “Policies like this are a relic of a bygone era in which oil was the only game in town. America’s ethanol and biofuels industries are rapidly evolving to include a wide range of feedstocks and developing groundbreaking technologies. By specifically singling out the ethanol molecule for exclusion, this amendment is seeking to kill new technologies using algae, wood waste, garbage and other feedstocks that would produce ethanol in their infancy. America needs jobs and domestic ethanol production is a proven method to create those opportunities. We already know what we get by outsourcing our energy future.”


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