Texas Cattle Feeders Commend Governorsí Support of RFS WaiverFri, 24 Aug 2012 17:10:34 CDT
Governors Rick Perry (R-Texas) and Susana Martinez (R-N.M.) have joined a growing list of bipartisan governors, including Mike Beebe (D-Ark.), Beverly Perdue (D-N.C.), Martin O'Malley (D-Md.), Jack Markell (D-Del.) and Nathan Deal (R-Ga.) in requesting a waiver of the Renewable Fuels Standard (RFS).
"TCFA appreciates Gov. Perry's steadfast support and leadership on this issue, and I'm pleased that Gov. Martinez and a growing number of other Governors and Members of Congress from around the country agree with him and are requesting a common sense waiver that will provide livestock producers and consumers with some relief from this ill-conceived, economically harmful federal policy," said TCFA Chairman Jim Peters.
"The RFS may have been a well-intentioned effort to move our country toward energy independence, but it has, predictably, done more harm than good. Not only is it driving up grocery prices for all families, it is also putting increasing strain on business," Gov. Perry said. "Good intentions and laudable goals are small compensation to the families, farmers and ranchers who are being hurt by the federal government's efforts to trade food for fuel. Any government mandate that benefits one industry to the detriment of millions of consumers is bad policy."
"New Mexico's agricultural economy is primarily composed of dairy and range livestock production. These two industries require large feed inputs for their animals due to the drought, resulting in an exponential increase in food costs," said Gov. Martinez. "Approving this waiver would help ease the burden of increased feed costs, food products supply and the continued hardships current economic conditions are inflicting on producers and consumers alike."
Earlier this week, EPA issued a request for public comment on the initial RFS waiver requests from Govs. Beebe and Perdue. The comment period will last 30 days from the date the notice is officially published in the Federal Register. TCFA will submit comments and provide members with information on how to do the same.
EPA has until Nov. 13 to make a decision on the waiver requests. In the meantime, livestock producers continue to pay high feed costs. "I'm not sure how anyone could still believe that the RFS isn't a market distorting government policy that props up the ethanol industry at the expense of livestock producers and consumers," Peters said. "Congress granted EPA the authority to waive the RFS because of severe economic or environmental harm, and it's clear that the RFS, exacerbated by the ongoing drought, is causing the type of economic harm that justifies issuance of a waiver."
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