Corn growers urge Trump to reallocate SREs, uphold the RFS

By Erin Voegele | October 02, 2019

Corn grower leaders representing more than 300,000 corn farmers from across the U.S. recently sent a letter to President Trump urging him to uphold his commitment to U.S. farmers and the Renewable Fuel Standard.

“We are writing on behalf of the more than 300,000 corn farmer across the country who are being negatively impacted by a perfect storm of challenges in rural America,” they wrote, noting the 31 small refinery exemptions (SREs) issued by the agency in August could not have come at a worse time for agriculture.

“Ethanol plants in several states, including Iowa, Ohio, Wisconsin, Michigan, Indiana, Minnesota and Mississippi have closed or idled,” they continued. “These closures have cost 2,700 rural jobs and impacted demand for more than 300 million bushels of corn. Frustration in the countryside is growing.”

“Corn owners are not asking for a special deal,” the letter states. “We are simply asking, as we have been for the past two years, that your EPA uphold the law.”

The letter calls on Trump to account for projected SREs in annual RFS renewable volume obligation (RVO) rulemakings, beginning with the pending 2020 RFS rule. “Accounting for waivers in the annual RFS volume process restores integrity to the RFS,” the letter continues. “It also allows your administration to continue grating waivers, as allowed by the law, while keeping the RFS whole.”

Within the letter, the corn growers reference Trump’s recent White House meetings regarding an expected SRE reallocation deal. “Farmers across the country are anxiously awaiting the release of more details about this agreement,” the letter states. “Ethanol plants will continue to close if you don’t act soon, creating a rippling effect throughout the country.”

The letter is signed by representatives of the Alabama Soybean and Corn Association, Colorado Corn Growers Association, Georgia Corn Growers Association, Illinois Corn Growers Association, Indiana Corn Growers Association, Iowa Corn Growers Association, Kansas Corn Growers Association, Kentucky Corn Growers Association, Louisiana Cotton and Grain Association, Maryland Grain Producers Association, Michigan Corn Growers Association, Minnesota Corn Growers Association, Mississippi Corn Growers Association, Missouri Corn Growers Association, Nebraska Corn Growers Association, New York Corn and Soybean Growers Association, Corn Growers Association of North Carolina, North Dakota Corn Growers Association, Ohio Corn and Wheat, Pennsylvania Corn Growers Association, South Dakota Corn Growers Association, Texas Corn Producers Association, and Wisconsin Corn Growers Association.

A full copy of the letter is available on the Nebraska Corn Growers Association’s website