Vet group launches ad in support of renewable fuel mandate

Source: Amanda Peterka, E&E reporter • Posted: Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Progressive veterans organization today rolled out a $110,000 television campaign to rally support for biofuels.

The TV ad that is being aired for one week in Iowa and Washington, D.C., begins with an explosion rocking a military convoy. A veteran of the Iraq War appears in the foreground, urging consumers to fill their gas tanks with ethanol and push back against the recent proposal by the Obama administration to scale back the nation’s renewable fuel mandates.

“More renewable fuels like the kind grown here in Iowa mean we use less foreign oil, and that means less money for our enemies,” Michael Connolly, the vet, says as an American flag is burned in the background. “But the oil companies are trying to kill renewable fuels. Tell the EPA to stand up to Big Oil.”

In November, U.S. EPA proposed for the first time to lower the amount of corn ethanol and advanced biofuels that refiners will be required to blend into petroleum-based fuel under the federal renewable fuel standard. Days later, VoteVets and left-leaning activist group Americans United for Change launched a campaign to rally support for the standard (E&ENews PM, Nov. 19, 2013).

VoteVets today said the ad is the first in a series; more ads will be revealed in the coming weeks. EPA is accepting public comments on its proposal through the end of the month.

Refiners have called for the full repeal of the renewable fuel standard, arguing that the 2007 policy has grown unworkable because it forces them to blend more ethanol into gasoline than is technically feasible.