Iowa Gov. Branstad Expands “Fueling Our Future”

Iowa Governor Terry Branstad’s “Fueling Our Future” program has recognized two retailers for their innovative plans to increase accessibility to higher ethanol and biodiesel blends. Farmers Cooperative based in Mount Ayr, Iowa and Oak Street station based in Inwood, Iowa both received $125,000 to offset the cost of adding renewable fuel infrastructure for biodiesel and ethanol. In addition, he has committed to expanding the program.

I’ve long been an advocate for increasing consumer access to locally-produced, environmentally-friendly renewable fuels,” said Iowa Governor Terry Branstad during a press conference. “The two retailers receiving funding as part of the ‘Fueling Our Future’ program will provide Iowans with additional access to higher blends of ethanol and biodiesel, supporting Iowa products and jobs, while also improving air quality.”

The Farmer’s Cooperative station in Mount Ayr will offer E10, E15, and E30, E50 and E85 as well as B5, B10 and B20. “Based on the consumer response to higher levels of renewable fuels at our Creston location, Farmers Cooperative wants to add more blender pumps where they are needed,” said Farmers Cooperative Creston Location Manager Darin Schlapia. “Mount Ayr is the hub of Ringgold County and we want to capture that customer base by offering more American-made fuel options. We’re pooling the Coop members’ resources to drive profitability and offer more competitively priced fueling options not otherwise available.”

Oak Street Station received a grant for its new fueling site set to be built in the Northwest Iowa town of Inwood. The station will offer E10, E15, E30, and E85, as well as B5 year-round and B99.9 during the summer months for independent jobbers and special use customers such as tractor pullers.

Oak Street Station Accountant Lisa VanRegenmorter said, “At Oak Street Station, we have a passion for renewable fuels and want to help grow the industry. Putting in blender pumps and biodiesel will continue our support for biofuels, provide fuel choices for our customers, and supply customer data to support the state’s Fueling the Future initiative.”

The “Fueling Our Future” program is administered by the Iowa Department of Transportation and the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship. The purpose of the program is to gain better consumer information regarding fueling preferences, expand the use and availability of higher blends of ethanol and biodiesel, and provide a pathway to reduce particulate matter in Iowa.

Lucy Norton, Managing Director of the Iowa Renewable Fuels Association applauds the program. “We commend Gov. Branstad for his unwavering support in making Iowa a model state for fuel choice and consumer access to clean-burning renewable fuels. With the help of Gov. Branstad, IDALS, and the Iowa DOT, Iowa is raising the bar to show the nation that higher blends of ethanol and biodiesel are the preferred fuels.”

Iowa Senate Votes for Renewable Fuels

The Iowa State Senate has voted unanimously (48-0) to pass Senate File 2344. The Iowa Renewable Fuels Association (IRFA) commended the Senate and noted the policy move showed tremendous, bipartisan support for renewable fuels.

“I applaud the Iowa Senate for voting unanimously to protect Iowa jobs and access to homegrown, clean-burning renewable fuels,” said IRFA Policy Director Grant Menke. “This vote sends a clear message that Iowans are serious about increasing renewable fuels Iowa fuel pumpproduction and use, expanding consumer fuel choice and growing Iowa’s economy.”

With renewable fuels producers facing significant federal policy uncertainty, Senate File 2344 protects Iowa’s renewable fuels industry by extending the state’s biodiesel production tax credit that is set to expire at the end of this year, and enhancing the state’s E15 retailer tax credit to help alleviate extra costs to Iowa retailers who want to offer E15 as a registered fuel during the summer driving season. The bill also updates Iowa Code to define biobutanol as a legal renewable fuel option for Iowans.

Iowa’s biodiesel producer incentive offers a $.02 per gallon refundable credit on the first 25 million gallons of biodiesel produced in any single plant. The incentive is set to expire at the end of calendar year 2014, but the legislation passed by the senate would extend the credit through 2019.

An amendment added to the bill would also extend an Iowa retailer credit of 4.5 cents per gallon for 5 percent biodiesel (B5) through 2019. It was set to expire in 2017. The amendment also extends retailer tax credits for biodiesel, E15 and E85.

The Iowa Biodiesel Board (IBB) commended the vote. “This state policy will encourage biodiesel production to remain in Iowa, which benefits Iowa’s economy and reputation as an American energy producer,” said Grant Kimberley, executive director of IBB. “It will also help shelter our state’s biodiesel industry from the impact of uncertainty over the federal Renewable Fuel Standard and other federal policies.”

IRFA: Strong Plantings Report Calls for Strong RFS

IowaRFAlogoExpected big plantings of corn and soybeans underscore the need for a strong Renewable Fuels Standard (RFS). New estimates from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) show a possible record amount of soybeans expected to be planted this year and the fifth largest corn acreage to be planted as well. The Iowa Renewable Fuels Association (IRFA) says these factors show why a strong and growing RFS is needed this year.

“The past eight years were prosperous for agriculture because the RFS was allowed to act as a sponge, soaking up additional corn and soybeans when needed,” stated IRFA Executive Director Monte Shaw. “The vast amount of corn and soybeans expected to be planted in 2014 demonstrates the importance of a strong and growing RFS. If the EPA’s proposal to essentially gut the RFS is allowed to become final, we could see huge carryovers, crop prices plummet below the cost of production, and family farms placed in jeopardy.”

Nearly 92 million acres is expected to be dedicated to corn this year and a record 81.5 million acres for soybeans, a six percent increase from last year.

Iowa RFA’s Shaw Has Ag Support for Congress

shaw-congressIowa Renewable Fuels Association Executive Director Monte Shaw is one of several Republican candidates vying to replace the retiring Tom Latham as Iowa’s representative in the Third Congressional District, but he may have more grassroots agricultural support than most of them.

Shaw has just announced the formation of his Iowa Agriculture Team, which includes key ag leaders from across the district. “It takes more than just great land and good weather to make Iowa the leading agricultural state – it takes great leaders,” Shaw said. “As a farm boy, I’ve still got the dirt under my fingernails and with the help of these experts I will be up to speed on the challenges facing Iowa’s farmers. I also appreciate their willingness to take our message out to the countryside and the city. Folks connected to and interested in agriculture will play key roles on our path to victory in June and November.”

Among the members of his team are Grant Kimberley of Ankeny, a 6th generation corn and soybean farmer who was just named executive director of the Iowa Biodiesel Board, and Julius Schaaf of Randolph, chairman of the United States Grain Council and a 4th generation farmer.

Shaw officially launched his campaign for Iowa’s 3rd Congressional District last month. He intends to remain in his position with Iowa RFA during the campaign with the full support of the organization’s board of ethanol producers.

Watch his campaign announcement below.

IRFA: Obama Misses Chance to Help Biodiesel

IowaRFAlogoAs President Obama unveiled his FY 2015 Budget Proposal, the Iowa Renewable Fuels Association (IRFA) says he missed his chance to level the playing field for biodiesel. IRFA Policy Director Grant Menke points out that while the President included the reinstatements of several currently expired tax provisions, such as tax credits for cellulosic biofuel and wind energy production, he seemed to forget about the federal $1-a-gallon biodiesel tax credit, which expired at the end of 2013.

“While we are pleased the President seeks to reinstate the cellulosic biofuel tax credit and several other important tax incentives, we are disappointed he did not include the biodiesel tax credit among these extensions. As America’s leading advanced biofuel, biodiesel has made great strides in production, distribution, and use. However, faced with the enduring effects of the petroleum industry’s continuous Century of Subsidies, reinstating the biodiesel tax incentive is a vital part of leveling the energy playing field and allowing true consumer fuel choice.”

IRFA points out that the Hawkeye State is a leader in renewable fuels production, with 42 ethanol refineries capable of producing over 3.8 billion gallons annually, three cellulosic ethanol facilities currently under construction, and a dozen biodiesel facilities able to produce nearly 315 million gallons each year.

It Pays to Shop for Ethanol

An informal survey of gasoline retail locations in greater Des Moines, Iowa, revealed that while 87-octane gasoline prices remain relatively uniform across several retail brands, the price a consumer pays for premium gasoline varies greatly depending on whether the retailer blends its premium gasoline with ethanol. The Iowa Renewable Fuels Association (IRFA) reports that using premium gasoline blended with E10 (10 percent ethanol) can save up to 25 cents.

IA-pump-photoIRFA says the savings of ethanol are so great that consumers can pay approximately the same price for E10 premium gasoline as they would for 87 octane gasoline with no ethanol.

Here at the IRFA, we support consumer fuel choice, and consumers can save 25 cents per gallon by shopping at retail locations that offer premium blended with 10 percent ethanol,” said IRFA Executive Director Monte Shaw. “Fuel blended with 10 percent ethanol is approved for use in all cars, trucks and off-road motors available today, and vehicles that carry a recommendation for premium gasoline use are no different. By simply shopping for ethanol blended premium gasoline, consumers can save a lot of money while supporting Iowa’s economy.”

Speaking of E10, the Iowa Department of Revenue published January data for gasoline use and IRFA said that Iowa motorists saved more than $23 million in January by filling up with E10 – 103 million gallons of E10.

Shaw noted, “Priced at least 23 cents less than its 87-octane no ethanol counterpart, E10 is providing Iowans with huge savings. And those savings add up for both consumers and Iowa’s economy. The use of E10 is keeping at least $23 million in Iowa instead of sending it out of state or out of the country for petroleum. In fact, the true savings is likely more than $30 million for the month. Simply using ethanol is not only saving consumers some of their hard earned money, it’s also cleaning up our air and supporting Iowa jobs.”

According to IRFA, actual savings are even greater than $23 million because the Iowa Department of Revenue data does not account for ethanol blending that occurs outside of pipeline fuel terminals. In addition, while the typical E10 savings in the Des Moines metro area is 23 cents per gallon, E10 is priced at a more than 30-cent discount to E0 in many parts of Iowa.

RFS is Revitalizing Rural Iowa

The United State Department of Agriculture (USDA) has released its Preliminary 2012 Farm Census data and according to the Iowa Renewable Fuels Association (IRFA), it’s easy to see that increased in the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) have revitalized rural Iowa.

Iowa-FarmThe USDA data shows that since the increase in the RFS in 2007, Iowa has experienced nearly a 51 percent increase in the value of Iowa farm products, with a more than 67.7 percent increase in crop values and a more than 33.5 percent increase in livestock values. These value increases took place during a time when the amount of land being farmed in Iowa actually dropped 132,193 acres to 30.6 million acres.

“It’s no coincidence the increases in the RFS since 2007 have coincided with the most impressive run of rural prosperity in Iowa history,” said IRFA Executive Director Monte Shaw. “Throughout history, farmers have been so innovative and productive they usually produce themselves out of profitability. This time, the growth in renewable fuels provided new markets for increased production, resulting in the positive economic results detailed by the USDA. However, if the Obama Administration’s proposal to slash the RFS is allowed to move forward, we could see a complete reversal in this rural revitalization.”

Iowa was not the only state to benefit from the growth in renewable fuels. Nationally, farm product values increased 32.8 percent from 2007 to 2012, with crop values increasing 47.9 percent and livestock values increasing 18.7 percent. Meanwhile, U.S. land devoted to farming declined by nearly 7.5 million acres.

Iowa E85 Sales Set Record in 2013

Iowans have purchased a record number of gallons of E85 (85 percent ethanol, 15 percent gas) in 2013. According to the Iowa Renewable Fuels Association (IRFA), total E85 sales in 2013 reached 10,854,117 gallons, up nearly 20 percent from 2012 and an increase of more than 130,000 gallons from the previous record in 2011. The sales figures were reported by the Iowa Department of Revenue. manning_ia_pumpE85 sales in Iowa finished strong in 2013 setting a fourth quarter record at 2,784,326 gallons, up more than 67 percent from fourth quarter 2012 and an increase of more than 700,000 gallons from the previous fourth quarter record in 2010.

To learn more about Iowans choice of ethanol blends, I spoke this afternoon with Grant Menke, policy director for IRFA. My first question: how much more can we do with E85 and higher blends of ethanol in Iowa. “We can do a whole lot more,” answered Menke. Iowa is a 1.5 billion to 1.6 billion gallon gasoline market and the state is at 11 million gallons for E85. “So there is clearly a lot of growth that needs to take place there. With a strong growing RFS (Renewable Fuel Standard) we really think this can happen.”

Menke noted that consumers who purchased E85 last year did so at very competitive prices. He said he remembers buying E85 during the third quarter at $1.10 per gallon less than a gallon of E10. He said ethanol is a homegrown fuel, good for the economy, good for farmers, and good for the environment. It’s a win-win-win. “If we can continue to price this fuel well, which the RFS allows us to do, we’re going to continue to break records in the future,” stressed Menke.

I asked Menke why it was so important to not only keep the RFS in tact, but moving forward. He noted that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) comment period for the 2014 RFS has been completed and the ball is now in the EPA and White House’s court. They have heard from tens of thousands of RFA supporters as to why a reduction in the RFS would be devastating to this industry: first generation, biodiesel and cellulosic ethanol. “If we want to continue to diversify our fuel supply with cleaner, homegrown, renewable fuels, we need a strong growing RFS,” added Menke.

IRFA aids retailers who want to offer consumers more choices at the pump, and noted that retailers who diversify their fuel offering (biodiesel, higher blends of ethanol) can have financial success in this space. Menke said they are hoping to break records in 2014.

Listen to my interview with Grant Menke here: Iowa E85 Sales Set Record in 2013

DuPont: “Future Fuel” Cellulosic Ethanol Here Today

Steve MirshakCellulosic ethanol is not just a fuel of the future; it’s here today. And at the recent 8th Annual Iowa Renewable Fuels Summit held in Altoona, Iowa, Steve Mirshak from DuPont’s cellulosic division talked with Joanna about what this fuel will soon bring.

“This is a real fuel,” Steve said, pointing out that DuPont is on track to commercializing the world’s largest cellulosic ethanol facility in Nevada, Iowa this summer… a project worked on for nearly 15 years and will produce 30 million gallons a year. He went on to say that cellulosic ethanol has zero net carbon emissions, contributes to energy independence, and is great for economic development. Plus, Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) goals are being achieved today. “This is the second generation [of biofuels]. It’s here. We’ve been talking about it for a long time, and in 2014 it’s here.”

Steve said, though, the only thing that could stop the momentum now seems to be the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) proposal to cut the amount of ethanol and biodiesel to be blended into the Nation’s fuel supply.

“Clearly the policy debate in the United States is dampening investors’ commitment to build out this industry. We don’t need [our leaders in Washington] to change anything. We need Washington to reinforce their commitment to the [RFS]. With stable policy, we’ll see rapid growth [in the advanced biofuels industry], and we’ll meet the bi-partisan goals Congress already passed,” Steve said.

Listen to Joanna’s interview with Steve here: Steve Mirshak, DuPont

View the 2014 Iowa Renewable Fuels Summit photo album.

Farm Service Co-Op Offers E15

E15 signFarm Service Cooperative (FSC), located in Harlan, Iowa, is now selling E15 for 2001 and newer vehicles. The entry of this new station brings the Iowa total to 15. FSC also offers E30, E50 and E85 to flex-fuel vehicle (FFV) owners.

“Being farmer-owned, we wanted to support the agriculture industry by offering more ethanol options to our customers,” said FSC Energy Manager Mike Evers.

Farm Service Cooperative is located in Western Iowa at 2050 Chatburn Avenue in Harlan.

Lucy Norton, managing director of the Iowa Renewable Fuels Association, said, “While Big Oil continues to spread misinformation on E15, Iowa’s list of registered E15 stations continues to grow as retailers see the value E15 provides. E15 saves their customers money, plus it supports local jobs and makes our air healthier to breathe.”

Iowa RFA President Steve Bleyl Seeks Advocates

The new Iowa Renewable Fuels Association (Iowa RFA) President Steve Bleyl is seeking advocates for biofuels. Iowa RFA President Steve BleylWhile giving his remarks to kick off the 8th Annual Iowa Renewable Fuels Summit held in Altoona, Iowa, he had people who were driving flex-fuel vehicles, using E15 or mid-level ethanol blends and driving biodiesel vehicles stand up. Most of the 600 plus attendees were still sitting.

Thus, said Bleyl who works for Green Plains Renewable Energy (they have three ethanol production facilities in Iowa), the industry and consumers need to become better advocates for renewable fuels such as ethanol and biodiesel.

Bleyl noted that Iowa is a motivated state to have higher ethanol blends. The state incentivizes retailers to blend over 10 percent ethanol (E10), and he said you’re starting to see that effect take off. He noted that the IRFA board has given his staff some pretty lofty goals. They want E15 in the state and his goal is to have 100 E15 pumps in Iowa by the end of this year.

I asked Bleyl, so how exactly do we make this goal happen? “I’m in a unique situation. l  will actually write someone at a retail gas chain and tell them, hey, I was at your gas station today and your E85 is not competitively priced. I know what the price should be,” answered Bleyl. But he said he’s not doing it in a way to tell them how to price their fuel, but in a way that let’s them know he realizes they want to do more and he wants to help.

He challenged me and all those at the conference as well as in his interview to be better advocates and call retail chains and write letters and ask for E15 and E85 and biodiesel. He stressed that if retailers know consumers want these fuels, then most of them will offer the fuels to their customers.

His last piece of advice, “Fight globally, but act locally.”

Listen to my interview with Bob Dinneen here: Iowa RFA President Steve Bleyl Seeks Advocates

View the 2014 Iowa Renewable Fuels Summit photo album.

Economic Impact Study Released During IRFA Summit

A new economic impact study was released this week during the 8th Annual Iowa Renewable Fuels Summit hosted by the Iowa Renewable Fuels Association (Iowa RFA). The study was conducted by ABF Economics economist John Urbanchuk highlighting the impact of the renewable fuels industry on Iowa’s economy. During 2013, spending on new cellulosic plant construction and research and development offset reduced spending on inputs due to lower commodity prices.

“The environment facing the renewable fuels industry improved modestly in 2013 and the economy of Iowa benefitted accordingly,” said Urbanchuk about the report findings. “Ethanol and biodiesel producers are part of a manufacturing sector that adds substantial value to agricultural commodities produced in Iowa.”

Based on the size and scope year-end, the renewable fuels industry had the following impacts on Iowa’s economy in 2013:

  • Accounts for more than $5.5 billion, or about 4 percent, of Iowa GDP;
  • Generates $4 billion of income for Iowa households; and
  • Supports more than 62,000 jobs through the entire economy.

IRFA Summit 2014 Monte Shaw2Iowa RFA Executive Director Monte Shaw touched on the huge impact that the renewable fuels industry has on Iowa. He noted that Iowa’s renewable fuels industry has taken the best punches its opponents can throw and is still fighting back to preserve a strong and growing federal Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS).

“While production and profits were sound, the renewable fuels industry took a pounding politically in 2013,” said Shaw in his state of Iowa address. “But I stand before you today to declare that the Iowa renewable fuels industry can take their punches and we are fighting back! No one here ever thought it would be easy to earn market share away from the world’s most powerful and profitable industry. The fact is, the world needs oil, but consumers also deserve the chance to choose lower cost renewable fuel blends. So, we will never stop fighting to put the option of E15, E85 and biodiesel in front of every American consumer.”

Even though the comment period has ended for the 2014 proposed RFS rules, Shaw stressed that President Obama needs to keep his promise about supporting cleaner fuels, consumer choice, and cutting oil dependence. He needs to pick up the phone and call the EPA and simply state: Don’t mess with the RFS.”

View the 2014 Iowa Renewable Fuels Summit photo album.

Iowans Show Passion for Renewable Fuels

Iowans were pleased to hear from Iowa Lt. Governor Kim Reynolds and Governor Terry Branstad during the 8th Annual Iowa Renewable Fuels Summit. The two focused their remarks on one very iIA Lt Gov Kim Reynolds at 2014 Iowa Renewable Fuels Summitmportant policy for Iowa: the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS). The legislation is under attack by Big Oil and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) took a step back for the country when they released their proposed 2014 renewable fuel volumes for the RFS.

Reynolds noted that Midwesterners are passionate about the RFS. “From our farm fields to our Main Streets to our Legislative Chambers, Iowans understand how important it is to maintain a strong RFS,” said said.

There are tremendous benefits that currently flow from the RFS explained Reynolds, including: diversifying our nation’s energy portfolio and reducing our reliance on overseas oil; giving consumers lower cost choices at the fuel pump; and, raising family incomes and driving growth in rural America.

“We need to let people know that the ethanol industry supports more than 38,000 jobs and the biodiesel industry supports 62,000 jobs. We need to let people know that this one proposed rule by the EPA would directly jeopardize an estimated 37,400 ethanol jobs and 7,500 biodiesel industry jobs,” said Reynolds.

She stressed that the 2014 RFS proposal would place an unnecessary hardship on families throughout Iowa and throughout rural America. That one purposed rule would place an unnecessary hardship on families throughout rural America.

Listen to Iowa Lt. Governor Kim Reynolds remarks: Kim Reynolds Remarks

Iowa Governor Terry Branstad continued the call to continue the course of the RFS. He noted that in 2012, during the drought, corn prices were $8 a bushel, but now they are actually close to $4 a bushel. “The EPA’s proposed rule would result in corn prices below the cost of production and a reduction in agriculture land values. In addition, the misguided proposal would hurt farm equipment dealers, manufacturers and would cause significant loss of jobs throughout rural America.” Continue reading

EcoEngineer’s Jim Baker Wins Coveted FFV Mower

irfasummit-E85 John Deere riding mowerIf there was one item that was coveted above all others at the 8th Annual Iowa Renewable Fuels Summit, it was the E85, flex fuel riding lawn mower donated by John Deere. Attendees who submitted comments to the EPA were registered to win and people were jockeying for position to run up to the podium when their number was announced….and the winner is…Jim Baker with EcoEngineers who noted that he is going to have to buy a new house with a bigger yard to get the full value out of his new toy.

Jim was so excited he was hoping to drive it home but, well, it was a tad cold out. EcoEngineers, who is based in Des Moines, is a company specializing in biofuel compliance issues such as RIN management, plant registrations and more. EcoEngineers also hosts webinars for the industry as well as workshops. It is anticipated that when the weather gets warmers Jim will ride to work on his E85 John EcoEngineers Jim Bakers ticket to FFV John Deere mowerDeere riding mower and as a gal about town, I will be sure to get a photo and tweet it out.

Want to get a peek at this bad boy? Jim is taking applications for lawn mowing jobs. I suspect there will be a lot of people lining up to mow his lawn this summer.

Monte Shaw, the executive director of the Iowa Renewable Fuels Association (Iowa RFA) who was the host of the event, said that he wanted to give special thanks to John Deere for their support of the event and the industry. John Deere has been selling agricultural equipment designed to use biodiesel for years.

Listen to my interview with Jim Baker here: EcoEngineer's Jim Baker Wins Coveted FFV Mower

View the 2014 Iowa Renewable Fuels Summit photo album.

Bob Dinneen: Consumers Want Choice at the Pump

Bob Dinneen, president and CEO of the Renewable Fuels Association gave a legislative update during the 8th Annual Iowa Renewable Fuels Summit and spoke of the efforts of Big Oil to quash the renewable fuel industry. The Summit took place on the last day of the EPA comment period for the 2014 proposed Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) and Dinneen told a funny story.

irfasummit-dinneen-14In December when the EPA hosted its public hearing, that lasted nearly 10 hours, the American Petroleum Institute (API) hired young kids to ride around in support of oil. However when Iowa Governor Terry Branstad gave his comments (he also gave an impassioned speech during the Summit) the kids hired by API cheered for renewable fuels. Needless to say, Dinneen noted that API was none too happy, but he said that shows that consumers do want the choice and they will choose renewable fuels like ethanol.

So I asked Bob why this fight is this happening. Why did the EPA go backwards on its 2014 RFS proposal?

“Well it’s happening because some bean counter in the Office of Management and Budget decided to take API’s talking points and accept them as fact,” answered Dinneen. “That somehow the rising price of renewable fuel credits (RINs) was going to drive up the price of gasoline. “Now there is no credible evidence to make that suggestion. Indeed if you were to plot the price of RINs versus the price of gasoline, there is actually a negative correlation suggesting that gasoline prices will be driven down by higher RIN prices.”

Dinneen noted that the EPA has become confused by the issue and hopes as the agency reviews all the comments will have a better understanding in RINs and what they were supposed to do – incentivize investment in E85 refueling infrastructure, allow E15 to be offered and provide consumer choice at a reasonable cost.

This fight is about access to the consumer, its about market share said Dinneen. API has been losing battles and is trying to re-litigate the RFS. Yet Dinneen said the RFS is doing everything it is supposed to do. He believes that at the end of the day, API will lose again.

This process will take several months. “I wish they would come to their senses sooner. The marketplace could certainly use the certainty that that would provide. But the reality is its going to take a while,” explained Dinneen.

I asked him what consumers should do after the comment period closes. “Consumers should recognize while farmers have a lot of stake here, they do as well,” answered Dinneen. “Because without ethanol, without the RFS, there price of gasoline goes up. So consumers should recognize they have as much at stake in all of this as the ethanol industry itself.”

Listen to my interview with Bob Dinneen here: Bob Dinneen: Consumers Want Choice at the Pump

View the 2014 Iowa Renewable Fuels Summit photo album.