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MRAA asks marine retailers to support Goodlatte "Dear Colleague" letter on RFS

Wednesday, October 09, 2013   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Larry Innis
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Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-VA) is asking Members of Congress to sign his letter to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), "Dear Colleague,” to lower the renewable fuel standard. MRAA supports this letter and has asked retailers and trade associations to encourage their Member contacts to also sign the Goodlatte letter.

The RFS mandates that 36 billion gallons of renewable fuels be used in our nation’s fuel supply by 2020, with as much as 15 billion gallons of the mandate being fulfilled by corn ethanol. In 2014, the mandate is estimated to be 18.15 billion gallons of renewable fuel of which approximately 14.4 billion gallons will be made up by ethanol.

The government has one tool that can provide immediate relief from the RFS. The law gives the EPA Administrator flexibility to reduce the required volume of renewable fuels in any year. While the EPA has consistently refused to use this authority, the supply realities should be the impetus for long awaited action by the EPA when setting volume levels according to the Goodlatte letter. Prompt action by the EPA can help to ease the short supply concerns.

Other concerns with the current EPA RFS mandate include increases to food prices, feed prices, and transportation costs.Due to the dramatic expansion of corn ethanol, volatile corn prices have led to the conversion of millions of acres of sensitive land into the production of corn. Despite promised environmental benefits when the RFS was implemented, the National Academy of Sciences has noted the overall ethanol production and use lowers air and water quality.

"MRAA supports Rep. Goodlatte’s efforts to prevent further damage to inboard engines and outboard motors,” said Matt Gruhn, President of the MRAA. The MRAA believes prompt action by the EPA can help to prevent further marine engine damage and save many jobs. It’s time for the EPA to take the necessary steps to protect American consumers and the economy.