The American Coalition for Ethanol (ACE) welcomed the phase four stimulus proposal, the Health and Economic Recovery Omnibus Emergency Solutions (HEROES) Act, that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi introduced, which includes a provision that would establish a new Renewable Fuel Reimbursement Program at the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA).
Senators are expected to consider similar legislation. ACE thanks Representatives Cheri Bustos (Ill.) Cindy Axne (Iowa), Angie Craig (Minn.) and Abby Finkenauer (Iowa) for leading a letter to help encourage the inclusion of biofuels in this legislative relief package. ACE CEO Brian Jennings issued the following statement in reaction to the draft language and in appreciation of the letter:
“This is the first time Congress has introduced a stimulus bill that would provide aid directly to biofuel producers and for that we are extremely appreciative. ACE members are grateful for this show of support from the Members of Congress who stepped up this week to call on congressional leadership to include emergency assistance for ethanol producers suffering the economic fallout of COVID-19, as well as all the Members of Congress on both sides of the aisle who have been working on financial aid. It’s important that securing aid for the biofuel sector continues to be a bipartisan goal. This is one important step in the process but until a bill is signed into law by the President that contains direct aid, we need to stay in constant contact with Members of Congress.”
The letter was also joined by Representatives Mark Pocan (Wisc.) Collin C. Peterson (Minn.) Dave Loebsack (Iowa), Kenda Horn (Okla.), Lauren Underwood (Ill.), and Ron Kind (Wisc.). You can access the letter here.
ACE’s top priority during this pandemic is securing financial aid to retain the ethanol industry’s skilled workers and keep the lights on during these unprecedented times. Efforts at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the USDA, and the White House have so far not yielded the urgent response the ethanol industry needs. An immediate cash infusion is needed to help producers survive this catastrophic downturn.
Following the release of the bill text, ACE launched a grassroots advocacy campaign calling on ethanol advocates to express their support for the funding assistance contained in the House legislation and to urge their Members of Congress to keep working on direct aid until legislation is enacted by both the House and Senate and signed into law by the president. Let your Congressional leaders know this issue is critical to the economic survival of many U.S. renewable fuel producers, farmers, and rural communities. Take part in the call to action by utilizing ACE’s Action Center.
ACE is powered by people who have built an innovative industry that sustainably delivers clean fuel and valuable food for a growing world. These farmers, ranchers, Main Street businesses, scientists, investors and renewable fuel producers work together to inform consumers and elected officials that in addition to helping keep gas prices low, creating jobs, improving the economy, displacing foreign oi and reducing greenhouse gas emissions, ethanol delivers a great deal of human good.