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Honorable Tim Walz

Representing the 1st District of MINNESOTA

Walz Calls for Meeting with the White House to Discuss RFS

Jan 24, 2014
Press Release

Washington, DC [1/24/14] – Today, Representative Tim Walz joined a group of his colleagues in calling for a meeting with President Barack Obama to discuss the unacceptable proposed renewable fuels volume obligations (RVOs) for the Renewable Fuels Standard (RFS). Walz was joined by Reps. Collin Peterson (MN-07), Rick Nolan (MN-08), Dave Loebsack (IA-02), Bruce Braley (IA-01), Cheri Bustos (IL-17), and William Enyart (IL-12), in sending the letter. The same group of Representatives recently met with the Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Gina McCarthy and shared their strong concerns about the devastating impact this cut will have on farmers, rural communities, and future investments in biofuels.

“Our top priority remains working to create good jobs and keep our economy moving forward. The proposed RFS volumes threaten to pull the rug out from under our rural economies that are already experiencing a 40 percent decline in the price of corn from last year, the biggest single year drop since 1960,” the Representatives wrote to President Obama. “We believe the RFS plays a critical role as an alternative to foreign oil while simultaneously benefitting the U.S. economy and our rural communities. Thank you very much for your time and consideration, and we look forward to scheduling a meeting soon.”

The full text of the letter can be found below:

January 24, 2014

 

President Barack Obama

The White House

1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW

Washington, DC 20502

 

Dear President Obama,

Recently, we had the opportunity to meet with Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Gina McCarthy to express our concerns regarding the proposed renewable fuels volume obligations (RVOs) for the Renewable Fuels Standard (RFS). We are pleased to have had the opportunity to meet with Administrator McCarthy and greatly appreciate her time.

However, we also know that the White House has taken an active role in developing the RFS rules and we believe it’s critically important that we have the opportunity to share the concerns of our constituents with you as well.  As the deadline for comments on the proposed RFS volumes quickly approaches, we are requesting a meeting with you or your top advisors to discuss the importance of the RFS to our districts.

Just like you, our top priority remains working to create good jobs and keep our economy moving forward. The proposed RFS volumes threaten to pull the rug out from under our rural economies that are already experiencing a 40 percent decline in the price of corn from last year, the biggest single year drop since 1960. Additionally, we are very concerned about the message that the proposed volumes sends to investors in the biofuels industry, especially as we move to the next generation of cellulosic and advanced biofuels. A number of our districts have new biofuel production facilities in the works or being planned that will create valuable jobs in our communities, and the proposed RFS volumes threaten their success.

As a Senator, you supported the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 which increased the RFS volume requirements, and you have long touted the importance of energy security and independence. We believe the RFS plays a critical role as an alternative to foreign oil while simultaneously benefitting the U.S. economy and our rural communities. While we recognize concerns about a potential “blend wall,” our rural communities should not have to solely bear the burden of the inflexibility of Big Oil, leading to a lack of consumer choice. 

Thank you very much for your time and consideration, and we look forward to scheduling a meeting soon.

 

Sincerely,

 

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