American Coalition for Ethanol (ACE) CEO Brian Jennings highlights the scientific and economic opportunities U.S. farmers and biofuel producers hold to support climate change mitigation and get the rural economy back on track in a letter to Senate Agriculture Committee Chairman Pat Roberts (R-KS) and Ranking Member Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) as the Senate Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry Committee hold a hearing on climate change and the agriculture sector today.
“As the committee begins this timely discussion about the role of agriculture in climate change, the current economic stakes intensify the need for policies which can provide a meaningful return on investment,” the letter stated. Jennings noted, U.S. farmers are under tremendous financial stress from collapsing net farm income, rising expenses, ongoing trade tensions, weather-related disasters, and the undermining of the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) with demand destroying small refinery waivers.
As Congress tackles climate change, Jennings believes one way to thread that needle would be by providing “rural America with concrete benefits from climate-centered policies that outweigh potential negatives, such as recognizing the role agriculture can play to mitigate climate change and increasing the use of low carbon fuels.”
The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) has made it clear agriculture can play an important role in mitigating climate change through soil carbon sequestration. “ACE believes unlocking the marketplace for low carbon fuels creates the economic driver to help farmers adopt practices that maximize atmospheric carbon sequestration in soil,” the letter stated.
To underpin the scientific and economic opportunity for ethanol use to increase via low carbon fuel markets, last year, ACE published a White Paper titled “The Case for Properly Valuing the Low Carbon Benefits of Corn Ethanol” that highlights how U.S. farmers and ethanol producers are improving efficiencies, investing in technologies, and adopting practices to dramatically reduce lifecycle greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from corn ethanol.
The full letter is available here and ACE’s White Paper is available online by visiting https://ethanol.org/ethanol-essentials/low-carbon-benefits-of-corn-ethanol.