I got this from Rep. Sensenbrenner’s office.
Thank you for your recent communication regarding your opposition to the use of corn-based ethanol. I appreciate the opportunity to learn of your views.
Ethanol affects our energy, agriculture and environment sectors and is certainly a hot topic these days, on campaign trails, in local communities, and in Congress. You will be pleased to learn that I share your opposition of government subsidies and incentives for corn-based ethanol.
Although corn is abundant in the Midwest, the cost of converting corn to ethanol and the difficulties associated with transporting it has made it more expensive than traditional gasoline. This cost difference has been somewhat alleviated for consumers through large subsidies at the federal level and in several states. Despite the subsidies, ethanol increases the cost of gasoline.
Moreover, fuel made with ethanol is less efficient, resulting in fewer miles per gallon for consumers. The market for fuel ethanol, which utilizes 10 % of the nation’s corn crop, is heavily dependent on federal incentives and regulations. A major impetus to the use of fuel ethanol has been the exemption that it receives from the motor fuels excise tax. Ethanol is expensive relative to gasoline, but it is subject to a federal tax exemption of 52 cents per gallon of pure ethanol. This exemption brings the cost of pure ethanol, which is higher than that of conventional gasoline and other oxygenates, within reach of the cost of competitive alternatives. In addition, there are other incentives such as a small ethanol producers tax credit. It has been argued that the fuel ethanol industry could scarcely survive without these incentives.
In fact, the ethanol industry has been subsidized for twenty-seven years and claims to still need the subsidies to survive. If an industry cannot survive without government support after twenty-seven years, there are more serious problems in place, such as the economic viability of the product. I believe we should eliminate wasteful government subsidies and mandates, while focusing on reducing the cost of fuel through investment in alternative and renewable sources of energy.
While corn deserves a place on our dinner tables, it doesn’t belong in our motor vehicles. As the 110th Congress addresses energy policy and alternative fuels, be assured, I will oppose ethanol mandates and continue to oppose wasteful government spending and subsidization of private industries. Thanks again for contacting me.
“Oppos[ing] ethanol mandates…”
Is that remotely close to introducing legislation to REPEAL those mandates?
We may see some very bad “corn” news this year. My local talk radio station always gives farm news at noon and they have been reporting that corn planting is way, way behind schedule throughout the midwest because of all the rain, etc. If farmers can’t get their corn planted that’s not good. I’ve always wondered what would happen if the corn crop was damaged by weather or blight or something. We just might see that happen this year.
I’m also against corn ethanol, and any subsidization of it.
Always ignored by the politicos is the damage ethanol does to engines.
As long as the corn is in the ground by My 15th then things should be okay. Then the next big hurdle is rain from the 3rd week of July to the 3rd week of August. Those two things happen and a majority of the problems are negligible.
So… who is for corn ethanol? Just the receivers of the subsidies who can instead sell their crop in the increased cost of food market? Nice…
Anyone willing to take a bet that there is enough heat by this or next harvest to get large quantities of corn diverted to food source, but the receivers of ethanol subsidy money still get the money?
Here’s an interesting database on subsidies: