Axne, Klobuchar urge USDA to study economic impact of SREs

By Erin Voegele | October 03, 2019

Reps. Cindy Axne, D-Iowa, and Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., sent a letter to U.S. Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue Oct. 1 requesting the USDA study the economic impact of the 85 small refinery exemptions (SREs) approved by the U.S. EPA for compliance years 2016, 2017 and 2018. The study would focus on how those SREs have impacted farm income, commodity prices and renewable fuel usage.

The letter references a recent statement by an EPA spokesperson that “there is zero evidence that EPA’s congressional mandated [SRE] program…has had any negative impact on domestic corn ethanol producers.”

“We strongly disagree and believe a study from USDA on the impact to farm income, commodity prices, and renewable fuel usage for the small refinery waivers granted by the EPA will help inform the decision making process when the EPA evaluates future waiver petitions,” Axne and Klobuchar said the the letter.

Axne and Klobuchar sent the letter ahead of a roundtable discussion they hosted Oct. 3 at Southwest Iowa Renewable Energy to hear directly from farmers, producers and plant workers.