National Farmers Union passes resolution to support E30 use

By Tom Bryan | March 14, 2017

National Farmers Union called for the U.S. EPA to open the market to higher blends of ethanol in a landmark resolution passed during the group’s annual meeting held last week in San Diego.

"National Farmers Union, as an organization, considers increased ethanol use one of the most important demand drivers for American agriculture," said Doug Sombke, president of South Dakota Farmers Union. "Members are taking a stand against EPA regulations that limit the use of ethanol blends in non-flex vehicles.

"Ethanol is a critically important part of our future and higher ethanol blends are key to creating demand for ethanol and corn. EPA and all government regulators should immediately reverse statements and policies that unfairly limit the amount of ethanol we can put in our cars."

South Dakota Farmers Union, one of the organization’s 33 state affiliates, brought resolution forward at the convention. "We see this as a continued effort to continue to expand retail fuels infrastructure and to further support the Renewable Fuel Standard," Sombke explained.

In addition to actively supporting this policy during the National Farmers Union convention, South Dakota Farmers Union worked diligently during the 2017 legislative session to support the passage of a resolution which supports the use of Premium E30 in state-owned vehicles. Since the passage of a state senate resolution that urged the governor to promote the use of E30 (following the successful E30 Challenge demonstration in Watertown, S.D.), the South Dakota’s governor's office has begun to solicit bids for the supply of Premium E30.

"South Dakota Farmers Union has long been a leader in the development of ethanol," Sombke said. "Our state has produced many national leaders who have supported the ethanol industry over the years, including former U.S. Senate Majority leader Tom Daschle."

In a speech he gave to attendees of the Siouxland Ethanol Annual meeting, Daschle said public policy initiatives for ethanol helped create an industry that reduced U.S. oil imports by $20 billion in 2016 and contributed nearly $50 billion to the nation's economy.

"What I want to get across is how dynamic the ethanol industry is and how we need to build on our success of the past," Daschle said. "We passed the Clean Air Act Amendments and that gave us a threshold. We passed the Renewable Fuel Standard and that gave us an opportunity, catalytically, to see the explosion of the industry."

The National Farmers Union resolution comes at a time when there is increased interest nationally in the benefits of higher ethanol volumes such as E30.

Data shows E30 works in non-flex-fuel vehicles

Premium E30 is endorsed by the U.S. Department of Energy as a potentially optimum blend level. Furthermore, data collected during Glacial Lakes Energy's recent E30 Challenge showed that non-flex-fuel vehicles run better on E30 than flex fuel vehicles.

"This high octane, cleaner burning fuel is available at a lower cost and provides consumer choice while supporting local communities," said Brad Brunner, ethanol marketing manager at Glacial Lakes Energy.

"We also see this as a way to achieve reduced governmental regulation," Sombke added. "These actions by our state and national organization, highlight continued efforts to seek greater market access for higher blended fuels. It is the position of both organizations that rural economies and consumers across the nation have much to gain in such actions."              

 To learn more, visit http://www.sdfu.org.