SIRE receives RFA’s 2020 Industry Award

By Renewable Fuels Association | February 12, 2020

The Renewable Fuels Association presented Southwest Iowa Renewable Energy in Council Bluffs, Iowa, with the 2020 Industry Award Feb. 12 at the National Ethanol Conference in Houston, Texas.

RFA’s Industry Award is presented annually to a member company that has provided a unique contribution to the industry’s success through technological, marketplace, or advocacy excellence.

SIRE is being recognized this year for its critical role in hosting President Donald Trump, along with multiple cabinet officials, federal, state and local officials and national news media, for a tour of its facilities and a celebration of new regulations permitting summertime sales of E15. The event convened industry leaders and policymakers, providing an opportunity for the Trump administration to hear first-hand accounts of the positive impact of expanding the use of E15, as well as accounts of the damage being done to the renewable fuels industry by the unprecedented number of small refiner exemptions to the Renewable Fuel Standard.

Cooper noted the importance of SIRE’s leadership in getting the ethanol industry’s message to political leadership in a year that presented the ethanol industry with a challenging and politically charged environment.

“SIRE did not just provide a tour of the facility and tell them how ethanol is made,” Cooper said. “They engaged these officials in a frank and honest dialogue about the devastating impact of small refiner waivers, the need to restore the integrity of the RFS, and the potential benefits of moving toward a high-octane, low-carbon future. The hard work that the men and women of SIRE put into this unforeseen leadership role is paying off—and we salute them for their strong effort.”  

In addition to the E15 celebration and facility tour, SIRE hosted an April news conference on refinery waivers with Iowa Agriculture Secretary Mike Naig and others, and a bipartisan press conference in August with Rep. Cindy Axne, D-Iowa, to call for a federal investigation into the U.S. EPA’s RFS waiver process. The press conference featured speakers including SIRE CEO Mike Jerke, Iowa State Sen. Tom Shipley, Iowa Soybean Association Board Member Jeff Jorgenson, and CEO of Quad County Corn Processors Delayne D. Johnson. SIRE also hosted a roundtable discussion on issues facing rural America with Axne and Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., in October.

SIRE is a state-of-the-art dry-mill grain processing facility that produces over 130 million gallons of fuel grade ethanol per year along with over 365,000 tons of dried distillers grains annually and approximately 90,000 pounds per day of corn oil. The facility consumes more than 44.6 million bushels of corn feedstock annually, grain that originates from a large portion of southwest Iowa and several counties in southeast Nebraska.