Two members of Iowa’s Congressional delegation are calling on the Obama Administration to boost the amount of biodiesel that will be made next year. Congressman Leonard Boswell, a Democrat, and Republican Senator Chuck Grassley say the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recommends raising the biodiesel requirement within the Renewable Fuel Standard, or RFS.
Grassley says the time is now. “Late last year, the administration delayed a decision saying it needed further review and indicated a final rule would be coming within weeks,” Grassley says. “Well, the weeks have passed and nothing’s happened.” This shouldn’t be a difficult decision for the president to make, Grassley says, it ought to be a no-brainer to boost biodiesel production.
“It’s in line with goals to expand renewable energy and lower energy costs,” Grassley says. “Biodiesel being clean-burning is good for the environment. Obviously, there’s 23,000 jobs in the industry out there right now and more jobs can be created.” Iowa is the nation’s leader in the production of biodiesel, made primarily from soybeans. Iowa’s also the number-one producer of ethanol, the corn-based biofuel.
Last June, the E.P.A. proposed raising the RFS volume requirement for biodiesel from one-billion gallons this year to 1.28 billion gallons next year. Grassley says, “Since the president is for green energy, since he’s for improving the environment, since he wants jobs, it seems a very simple matter that we ought to get these rules approved.”
Boswell is echoing Grassley’s comments. In a news release, Boswell says: “Following suit with the President’s call for an ‘all of the above’ approach on energy policy, 33 of my colleagues in the House have joined me to voice support for finalizing a strong biodiesel requirement without delay.”
Increasing the biodiesel volume requirement “by a modest 280-million gallons will create 10,000 American jobs, boost the economy and help curb our country’s dependence on foreign oil and these rising gas prices,” Boswell says. “To delay this decision any further would risk it all.”