Another slap at ethanol

This just in from Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey, a Republican, about the slap forces in the Republican Party took at ethanol in the party’s platform:

Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey issued the following statement on the Republican Party Platform approved at the party’s convention in St. Paul, MN that calls for ending of the renewable fuel standard for ethanol.

The convention schedule was changed at the last minute due to Hurricane Gustav, as a result there was no discussion of any planks in the platform.  Sec. Northey and other Republican leaders would have strongly opposed the plank’s inclusion and remained committed to renewable fuels, including ethanol and biodiesel.

A comment from Sec. Northey follows here:

“Ethanol has created real saving at the pump for drivers.  We have gotten to this place of skyrocketing fuel prices because of a lack of fuel alternatives, and this would make the problem worse.

“It also has the potential to undermine the next generation of renewable fuels that are still in the development stage.  If they see ethanol undermined by government policy, it is going to make investors very hesitant to finance still developing alternative fuels, such as cellulosic ethanol.

“The platform does call for more flex fuel vehicle, and I fully support that, but we need to make sure we have fuel to run in those vehicles.

“And, the platform does continue to express Republican support for increasing trade opportunities for agriculture and promoting a common sense regulatory environment for farmers.  Both of these issues are very important to Iowa agriculture.”

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About O.Kay Henderson

O. Kay Henderson is the news director of Radio Iowa.


  1. GM ‘s sudden stewardship of the environment is simply a way to continue to make gas guzzlers thanks to E85 an extremely inefficient fuel. The CAFE standards call for all car companies to achieve an average MPG for all vehicles. I believe the most recent number is 27 MPG. Well if you make the biggest money off of 10 miles per gallon SUV’s you would hate to say good bye to them wouldn’t you?
    The CAFE standards has a loophole, that being that an E85 vehicle operating on E85 miles per gallon are ONLY figured against the actual amount of gasoline in the blend (15%) if you divide 100% fuel by 15% gasoline you get the multiplier to the mpg (666) therefore a gas guzzling 10 MPG SUV is given credit for 66.6 MPG. If you sell one SUV like this you can have 5 vehicles only achieving 20 MPG and this gas guzzling SUV and you average more than 27 MPG overall while not one of their vehicles really met the standard.
    GM is not the only one taking advantage of this free ride Ford and Chrysler are too. The big three are heading down the toilet and this is just their hands clinging to the rim.

  2. Iowans with flexibile fuel vehicles can protest the GOP plank change in a more practical way today by going to Utility Biofuels at 302 E. School Road in Olds, Iowa and filling up on E85. They will be reducing the price of E85 to $1.85 per gallon from noon until 5 p.m. on Friday, September 5, 2008. The event is being organized by the Iowa Clean Air Choice Team.