A coalition of ethanol producers is pitching a plan to give up federal tax credits for the fuel made from corn, but it wants something in exchange. Growth Energy C.E.O. Tom Buis says his group wants the government to shift support for the ethanol industry.
“What we’re suggesting is take the tax credits that are available, that we hope get extended for…five years and shift some of these funds into building out the infrastructure so we can compete in the marketplace,” Buis said. Growth Energy co-chairman Jeff Broin says he’d like to see 200,000 pumps capable of blending ethanol with gasoline and 120-million flex-fuel vehicles within the next five years.
“I believe it’s time to transition to an open market where consumers can choose their fuel,” Broin said. “With a blender pump in every neighborhood and a flex-fuel vehicle in every garage, ethanol can compete against oil without the tax incentive.” Currently, ethanol producers receive a tax credit of 45-cents for every gallon of ethanol blended into gasoline.
Congress is deciding whether to extend the credit in the next energy bill. Another ethanol group, the Renewable Fuels Association, has joined the National Corn Growers Association and the American Farm Bureau Federation – calling for the credit to be extended in it’s current form.