Vilsack on RFS

Source: BY MATTHEW CHOI AND JOSH SIEGEL, Politico • Posted: Sunday, December 12, 2021

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack had a rebuttal to corn-state lawmakers alarmed by the lowered blending targets for 2020 under EPA’s RFS proposal this week . The latest proposals include lowered targets for 2020 but higher levels for 2022, taking into account the consumption slump last year due to the pandemic.

“It’s hard for me to understand why these policymakers didn’t make any reference to the impact that the pandemic had on transportation… We were all hunkered down. So as a result, less fuel was used,” he told Morning Agriculture’s Ximena Bustillo, who’s trailing Vilsack in Ohio this week. “What the EPA has done is it sent a strong message about the validity of the rule and the validity of the standard by saying this is the real world. This is what really has happened by setting these numbers.”

Vilsack also said EPA’s decision to raise 2022 levels to the “highest volume ever” sent a “very strong message about the growth potential of this industry.” USDA is also proposing financial assistance for ethanol producers to account for the lower 2020 targets.