- DTN Headline News
Ethanol Campaign Ramps Up
Tuesday, April 22, 2014 2:04PM CDT

By Todd Neeley
DTN Staff Reporter

OMAHA (DTN) -- With potentially just weeks to go before the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency could announce a final decision on the renewable fuel standard, U.S. ethanol and agriculture interests Tuesday launched a television and digital advertising campaign to counter months of national advertising by the U.S. oil industry attacking ethanol.

The Fuels America coalition announced what it calls the "Oil Rigged" campaign that includes the purchase of a 30-second television advertisement to air on cable for the next two weeks along with a website, oilrigged.com.

Just last week, Charles T. Drevna, executive vice president of the National Petrochemical and Refiners Association, told reporters during a news conference that he is concerned EPA will change its mind and actually increase the ethanol volumes in the RFS instead of cutting them as offered in the current proposal.

The proposal has drawn tens of thousands of public comments, mostly from opponents of the EPA proposal to cut RFS volumes in all biofuels based on concerns that available fueling infrastructure would be unable to handle RFS increases in 2014.

"EPA received more than 330,000 comments, most of them in opposition to the proposal," said Bob Dinneen, president and chief executive officer of the Renewable Fuels Association. "EPA will have to evaluate those. Based on what I've seen, they will definitely have to increase the number.

"Really, all this is about market share. If the president is serious about climate change, then don't roll back the only program that is showing consistent benefits on carbon emissions. I am certainly hopeful they will read the comments they received and will adjust."

Though biofuels industry officials declined to tell reporters during a news conference Tuesday how much the ad campaign cost, Growth Energy Chief Executive Officer Tom Buis said "it is extensive. It's important to remind everyone how oil has rigged the system."

"We certainly hope EPA and Congress will get the message that the system already is rigged, and we certainly shouldn't go out of the way to rig it further. I think we've learned they will stop at nothing to end the RFS. This is about market share and they know that."

The claims made by the oil industry in recent months about ethanol include that it is driving up the price of gasoline at the pump, that it is harmful to vehicles, and that demand for corn for ethanol has led to more row crops planted on grasslands, among other claims.

As part of the new campaign, the ethanol industry lists on the new website the ways it believes the oil industry has "rigged" the system.

Among those, the website says the oil industry spent $885 million on lobbyists and in campaign contributions and made $100 billion in profits last year, "but have refused to pay for infrastructure to sell more renewable fuels in spite of a law requiring them to do so."

The ethanol industry said in a news release that renewable fuels have saved the U.S. as much as "$50 billion in a single year and support over 400,000 jobs across the country."

While possible legal action against EPA hasn't been taken off the table, Dinneen said he is hopeful the agency will stick to the letter of the law when it comes to the RFS.

"The RFS was intended to force marketplace change," he said. "It also has to drive marketplace change so higher blends are available to consumers. This is driving the oil industry to do something they don't want to do. It's not all about the numbers. There's lots of concern about EPA's authority to make the waiver. It will be important that they not introduce a demand component" into the RFS.

"If they do that, they would have turned the act on its head and that will be problematic," Dinneen said.

View the new oilrigged.com website and television spot here, oilrigged.com

Todd Neeley can be reached at todd.neeley@dtn.com.

Follow Todd Neeley on Twitter @toddneeleyDTN.

(AG/SK)


blog iconDTN Blogs & Forums
DTN Market Matters Blog
Katie Micik
Markets Editor
Friday, April 18, 2014 5:53PM CDT
Monday, April 14, 2014 9:46PM CDT
Thursday, April 10, 2014 7:35PM CDT
Technically Speaking
Darin Newsom
DTN Senior Analyst
Sunday, April 20, 2014 1:10PM CDT
Friday, April 18, 2014 11:49AM CDT
Sunday, April 13, 2014 3:54PM CDT
Fundamentally Speaking
Joel Karlin
DTN Contributing Analyst
Thursday, April 17, 2014 1:04PM CDT
Wednesday, April 16, 2014 2:53PM CDT
Thursday, April 10, 2014 2:53PM CDT
DTN Ag Policy Blog
Chris Clayton
DTN Ag Policy Editor
Wednesday, April 23, 2014 9:48PM CDT
Wednesday, April 23, 2014 2:15PM CDT
Wednesday, April 23, 2014 12:27AM CDT
Minding Ag's Business
Marcia Taylor
DTN Executive Editor
Tuesday, April 22, 2014 8:11PM CDT
Friday, April 4, 2014 10:27PM CDT
Wednesday, April 2, 2014 8:52PM CDT
DTN Ag Weather Forum
Bryce Anderson
DTN Ag Meteorologist and DTN Analyst
Thursday, April 24, 2014 3:47PM CDT
Wednesday, April 23, 2014 3:30PM CDT
Monday, April 21, 2014 10:19PM CDT
DTN Production Blog
Pam Smith
Crops Technology Editor
Monday, March 31, 2014 10:38PM CDT
Monday, March 17, 2014 7:36PM CDT
Wednesday, February 19, 2014 1:02PM CDT
Harrington's Sort & Cull
John Harrington
DTN Livestock Analyst
Friday, April 18, 2014 8:13PM CDT
Wednesday, April 2, 2014 9:50PM CDT
Monday, March 24, 2014 9:59PM CDT
South America Calling
Alastair Stewart
South America Correspondent
Thursday, April 24, 2014 3:55PM CDT
Wednesday, April 23, 2014 7:42PM CDT
Tuesday, April 22, 2014 4:51PM CDT
An Urban’s Rural View
Urban Lehner
Editor Emeritus
Saturday, April 19, 2014 5:56PM CDT
Monday, April 14, 2014 12:33PM CDT
Friday, April 11, 2014 7:00PM CDT
Machinery Chatter
Jim Patrico
Progressive Farmer Senior Editor
Wednesday, April 16, 2014 3:55PM CDT
Monday, April 7, 2014 3:42PM CDT
Wednesday, April 2, 2014 7:25PM CDT
Canadian Markets
Cliff Jamieson
Canadian Grains Analyst
Thursday, April 24, 2014 6:01PM CDT
Wednesday, April 23, 2014 10:04PM CDT
Tuesday, April 22, 2014 8:58PM CDT
Editor’s Notebook
Greg D. Horstmeier
DTN Editor-in-Chief
Tuesday, April 22, 2014 1:39PM CDT
Friday, April 11, 2014 6:19PM CDT
Wednesday, April 2, 2014 4:56PM CDT
 
Copyright DTN. All rights reserved. Disclaimer.
Powered By DTN