Governor Tom Vilsack says he wants to be the broker who seals a deal that would see greater use of ethanol in Iowa. Some legislators propose a mandate that would see every gas pump in Iowa dispensing an ethanol-blended fuel. Others propose grants for gas stations that convert one pump so it dispenses E-85 — the fuel that’s 85 percent ethanol. “I see my role in this particular area as a facilitator,” Vilsack says. “There are a lot of good ideas out there and I think it’s going to be necessary to bring for us to bring people together to arrive at a consensus.”
Vilsack says Iowa has become the number one producer of ethanol and soydiesel, the question is how to build on that. Vilsack is not criticizing any of the ideas that have been offered, or coming forward with an alternate plan. Researchers from Iowa, Iowa State and U-N-I are delivering a special lecture on ethanol this (Thursday) morning, and the “students” are legislators sitting in the Iowa House of Representatives, watching and listening to the presentation.