Press Release

Illinois Soybean and Corn Growers Urge President Trump to Reconsider Proposed Biofuels Cap

March 09, 2018

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Illinois Soybean and Corn Growers Urge President Trump to Reconsider Proposed Biofuels Cap

 

BLOOMINGTON, ILL. – March 9, 2018 – Today Illinois soybean and corn growers are raising their concerns about Trump Administration plans to cap the value of Renewable Identification Numbers (RINs) within the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS). Any action to stifle biofuels production would negatively impact commodity use and would drive down corn and soybean prices. As a result, this could have a dramatic effect on farm income and the rural communities that depend on that support. The Illinois Soybean Growers (ISG) and the Illinois Corn Growers Association (ICGA) have issued the following statements:
 
“Should the Trump Administration’s proposed caps on biofuels come to fruition, the ag economy will be severely impacted and the fiscal strains already impacting our industry would only be exasperated. Illinois soybean growers understand the importance of sound RFS policy that encourages biofuels production, particularly for biodiesel. During this policy’s tenure the amount of biofuels introduced to the fuel supply has doubled since its establishment in 2007. These proposed caps would severely restrict market access and opportunities for biofuels and the economic impact would result in a negative ripple effect throughout our ag economy. Illinois soybean growers would particularly feel the strain as Illinois is one of the largest biodiesel-producing states, supporting nearly 7,500 jobs in all sectors of the Illinois economy. Between 2004 and 2010, the Illinois biodiesel industry generated $1.5 billion of household income and was responsible for more than $2.6 billion of Illinois Gross Domestic Product. We encourage the Trump Administration to consider that a strong RFS would equate to a stronger rural economy and stronger renewable energy policy,” said Lynn Rohrscheib, chairwoman of the Illinois Soybean Board and soybean farmer from Fairmount, Ill.
 
“Any deal that has its origin in Senator Cruz’s mission to undermine the RFS is no deal for corn farmers. We appreciate the Administration’s stated interests in considering how a deal would impact farm country, but we really need the White House to hear that we will not accept any deal that caps RINs prices or values. Alternatively, we can get behind plans that would make RFS compliance less costly to refineries through greater biofuels production and market access. Clearly, more RINs on the market will drive down compliance cost. Artificially capping RINs would drive down costs, no doubt, but it would also drive down ethanol blending rates and that is one hundred percent unacceptable to the Illinois Corn Growers Association. Illinois corn farmers are great at what they do. The Illinois ethanol industry produces a high value fuel from our Illinois-grown corn. Together, we provide an annual contribution to Illinois’ economy in the value of goods and services of $17.5 billion, with 98,836 jobs, $4.58 billion in employment compensation/proprietor income, and $7.05 billion in value-added GDP. Gutting the RFS to benefit the oil industry, which continues to experience profits while farmers are facing years of declining income and below cost of production prices, is not what the President promised rural America,” said Aron Carlson, Illinois Corn Growers Association President and farmer from Winnebago, Ill.
 
By the numbers, in separate economic analyses by the National Biodiesel Board, the World Agricultural Economic and Environmental Services, and Iowa State University, it was found that capping the price of conventional ethanol RINs would lead to:
 
A reduction of up to 300 million gallons in biomass-based diesel volumes each year—in part, because these volumes would no longer be utilized for compliance with the conventional biofuels requirements;
 
An expected reduction of 750 million gallons of ethanol due to decreased blending, even in regular unleaded gasoline that has typically been E10;
 
$185 million more in feed costs for livestock producers—likely leading to an increase in food costs for consumers; and
 
$.16 less per bushel of soybeans; and
 
$.25 less per bushel in price of corn.
 
As these discussions continue in the coming days, we ask our leaders to say no to a RINs cap and to grow market access for biofuels.
 
About Illinois Soybean Growers
 
Illinois Soybean Growers (ISG) is a membership organization serving more than 43,000 Illinois soybean growers. ISG provides advocacy in Springfield and Washington, D.C., to promote the interests of Illinois soybean farmers and programs that enhance soybean production and demand. Voice for Soy, the online action center supported by ISG, allows growers to easily connect with legislators and regulators to advocate for Illinois agriculture. For more information about ISG, visit the website www.ilsoygrowers.com.
 
About the Illinois Corn Growers Association
 
Illinois Corn Growers Association is a state based organization that represents the interests of corn farmers in Illinois, maintaining a high profile on issues in Washington, DC, and Springfield, IL. They aim to create and maintain opportunities for Illinois corn farmers to capture more value for their product. In order to fulfill this mission, the organization conducts governmental affairs activities at all levels, market development projects, and educational and member service programs. For further information regarding their work and involvement, visit their website www.ilcorn.org.
 
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For more information, contact:
 
Amy Roady
Director of Communications
(618) 535-7937
 
Rachel Peabody
Senior Communications Specialist
(217) 825-7654
 
Tricia Braid
Communications Director
(309) 557-3257