The Bush Administration today is turning down the Clean Air Act waiver Californians wanted, ensuring ethanol will be sold in California. Iowa’s entire Congressional delegation is elated, including Senator Charles Grassley. He says it’s a big huge win for Iowa’s corn growers.Grassley says it’s been a long lobbying effort for pro-ethanol forces that stretches back to the Clinton Administration. He says they’ve been hearing good and bad rumors for months.In May, Grassley got a heads-up as to President Bush’s thoughts on the issue. The President had telephoned to thank Grassley for passing the tax bill out of committee, as the President told Grassley the Senator would be happy with the decision.M-T-B-E ethanol’s competitor in California, is being phased out because it has contaminated water supplies. Monte Shaw of the Renewable Fuels Association says by 2003, when the phase-out is complete, California gas stations will need about 580-million gallons of ethanol.Shaw says it should raise the average price of corn 12 cents a bushel– adding a billion dollars extra in farmers’ pockets each year. Shaw, though, is worried Californians will try another route to try to get out of using ethanol. Senator Tom Harkin says farmers in Iowa and across the nation have scored a “major victory” today with the E-P-A announcement. Congressman Greg Ganske calls the decision “environmentally correct” as there’s no need to sacrifice clean water for clean air.
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