Prepared Floor Remarks by U.S. Senator Chuck Grassley of Iowa
On Supporting Biofuels and American Energy Independence
Tuesday, June 15, 2021

 
It’s no secret that I have been a leader in promoting renewable energy sources. Iowa has done even more to lead the nation in biofuels production. This leads to a cleaner environment and increases America’s energy independence.
 
Last week, Reuters reported the Biden administration is considering ways to allow U.S. oil refiners to not meet their biofuel blending requirements. 
 
This same Administration has proposed hundreds of billions in subsidies for electric vehicles but failed to include any support for biofuels infrastructure, which play a vital role in our nation’s transportation sector.
 
Need I remind my colleagues, President Biden promised in his campaign to “promote and advance renewable energy, ethanol, and other biofuels to help rural America and our nation’s farmers.”  He’s not keeping his promise.
 
Unfortunately, despite the Administration’s emphasis on the environment and climate, their recent actions contradict that and undermine their entire credibility.
 
The biofuel industry has proven that ethanol reduces greenhouse gas emissions from motor fuel by almost half.
 
Almost every vehicle on the road can run on at least E-10 ethanol. Many retailers are now selling more E-15 ethanol and other higher blends like E85.
 
According to the Energy Information Administration, by 2050, 81 percent of new vehicle sales will still be gas-powered or flex fuel.
 
In my introductory telephone conversation with EPA Administrator Regan when he was nominated, he told me that biofuels are a major tool in the Biden administration’s plan to combat climate change. I stressed to him the importance of the biofuels industry to both agriculture and energy.
 
No matter what the EPA or Big Oil says about the impact of its waivers to oil companies making billions in profits, farmers and biofuels producers know and feel the negative impact.
 
Any attempt to exempt oil refiners from their biofuels obligation is a blatant bailout.
 
The law is simple – blend biofuels or buy credits from those who do.
 
By adding more biofuels to our energy mix, we can reduce emissions from dirty oil while keeping transportation costs low for working families.
 
Unfortunately, despite the Administration’s emphasis on environment, it seems like biofuels don’t appear to be much of a priority.
 
And now, it looks like labor unions have been co-opted by Big Oil and are doing their bidding with the White House.
 
President Biden is now faced with a decision.
 
He can lower greenhouse gases with biofuels or he can side with Big Oil to destroy biofuel demand by illegally tampering with the RFS, just as the Obama and Trump administrations did with Small Refinery Exemptions.
 
Whether it is labor unions or Big Oil companies, I won’t tire in standing up for homegrown clean biofuels.  I will continue to advocate for Iowans and biofuels because it strengthens U.S. energy independence, makes for a cleaner environment and creates jobs in rural America.
 
I encourage President Biden, EPA Administrator Regan and my colleagues from across the aisle to keep it clean.
 

Does President Biden want to be known as Big Oil Biden?