Farmers Unions praise Governors Noem & Walz for support of ethanol industry

Source: By Capital Journal • Posted: Friday, October 11, 2019

In an Oct. 9 letter, South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem and Minnesota Governor Tim Walz outlined a path forward for presidential administration when it comes to supporting the country’s family farmers and the ethanol industry.

“On behalf of our members, I want to say thank you. Governor Noem and Governor Walz have shown great leadership on behalf of our family farmers and the ethanol industry our rural states depend upon,” said Doug Sombke, SDFU president and fourth-generation crop and cattle producer.

In their letter the governors urge the president and administration to hold the Environmental Protection Agency accountable to enforce the Renewable Fuels Standard (RFS) in 2020. The RFS requires refineries to blend a minimum of 15 billion gallons of biofuels, like ethanol. The letter also encourages the EPA to embrace higher ethanol blends, like E30.

Farmers Union leaders said this is a positive step. “President Trump and his administration broke the Renewable Fuels Standard when they permitted an outrageous number of small refinery exemptions. The governors’s suggestions help correct the overreaching activities of the EPA,” said Iowa Farmers Union president, Aaron Lehman.

Looking to 2020, the leaders of South Dakota and Iowa Farmers Union will join with their nearly 17,000 family farmers in watching to see how the President and Administration respond to the Governors’ request.“One of our most important jobs right now is to be vigilant,” Sombke said. “We have no doubt that the petroleum lobby will do all it can to tamper with the forthcoming proposed regulations.”

Walz and Noem are chair and vice chair of the Governor’s Biofuels Coalition. View their letter at