Ethanol Leaders Urge Noem, Trump to Open Door to “E30 by 2030” Compliance with Existing Law Would Inject $8 Billion Per Year into South Dakota Economy

Posted on: August 5, 2020   |   Category: News Releases

Huron, South Dakota:—In a Rapid City Journal ad, a Sioux Falls Argus Leader editorial, and a letter to Governor Kristi Noem, South Dakota ethanol leaders said that a transition to “E30 by 2030 Nationwide” would more than double the corn ethanol’s contribution to the state’s economic activity—to $8 billion per year—while saving urban Americans billions each year in health costs and premature mortalities. 

In an advertisement that ran while President Trump visited Mt. Rushmore, supporters underlined the multibillion dollar economic boost the ethanol industry could bring to the South Dakota economy if EPA’s unlawful regulatory barriers are removed. Today the state’s corn ethanol industry contributes more than $4 billion in economic activity. Increasing ethanol volumes would provide a much-needed boost to farmers throughout the Midwest, according to South Dakota Farmers Union President Doug Sombke.

“Fifteen years ago, when Tom Daschle and John Thune led the successful charge for the first RFS and nationwide E10, all of the naysayers said it could never happen,” said Sombke. “The ‘experts’ were wrong about nationwide E10 then, and they are even more wrong about nationwide E30 now.”

In their letter, Sombke and Jim Seurer, Glacial Lakes Energy CEO, commend the strong leadership of South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem who previously declared Feb. 25, 2020 Premium E30 Day. Noem is part of a group of Midwest Governors who are implementing EPA-approved E30 demonstration programs in their state fleets. Much of this momentum, according to ethanol producer Glacial Lakes Energy (GLE) in Watertown, stems from the successful E30 Challenge championed by GLE and SDFU.  “We recently saw how much influence Governor Noem has with President Trump during his recent visit to Mt. Rushmore”, Seurer noted. “If he would listen to Governor Noem, the President could remove EPA’s illegal regulatory barriers and open the floodgates to a much needed, multi-billion-dollar economic revitalization of South Dakota and other Midwestern states with just a stroke of his pen.”

South Dakota’s economists are concerned about the adverse effects a surging pandemic could have on the state’s other primary industry: tourism. Sombke and Seurer noted that another extremely important issue higher ethanol blends can address relates to the coronavirus. There is a substantial body  of evidence that if EPA were to substantially reduce the toxic compounds in gasoline as they are required to do under the Clean Air Act, it would significantly reduce fine particulates that may be carriers of the coronavirus.

“This is about allowing America’s farmers and ethanol producers to create greater freedom of choice for American consumers while supporting agriculture and protecting our health,” said Sombke. “EPA has illegally manipulated data to erect barriers that unfairly protect petroleum refiners while harming the entire nation’s health and welfare and rural communities’ ability to make a living. With a stroke of his pen, Mr. Trump can tear that wall down by directing his EPA to enforce the laws now on the books.”

The National Farmers Union and a number of biofuel and environmental groups are challenging EPA in court to reverse its refusal to increase octane