Big Oil Using Senate Committee Hearing to Smear Ethanol, Again

Press Contact: Monte Shaw


Ethanol Lowers Gas Prices, the Proof is at the Pump

JOHNSTON, IOWA – The Iowa Renewable Fuels Association (IRFA) stated that Big Oil is using today’s U.S. Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources hearing on fuel prices to blame ethanol for recent increases in gas prices, when it’s really high oil prices that are causing Americans to pay more at the pump.

IRFA Executive Director Monte Shaw released the following statement:

“In Big Oil’s relentless effort to maintain its near-monopoly over transportation fuels, smear ethanol, and dismantle the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS), they’re now attempting to blame ethanol for high gas prices. Americans need only to look at the nearest pump prices to see straight through this false argument. The lowest-cost fuels are ethanol blends. In fact, the lowest pump prices are higher ethanol blends, like E85, that come directly from an ethanol plant and pass the RIN savings on to consumers. For example, yesterday’s wholesale price for E85 from Absolute Energy was $1.70 while the average wholesale price for straight gasoline was $3.03 according to OPIS.

“This is only Big Oil’s latest desperate move to maintain market dominance at the expense of the American consumer. University studies show that ethanol lowers gas prices by more than $1 a gallon nationwide.  Big Oil would like Congress to believe that with fracking we don’t have to worry about foreign oil anymore.  Yet even with domestic oil production at one of the highest levels in 30 years, crude oil is over $100 per barrel and Americans are paying near record-high prices at the pump. It’s obvious that Americans not only need higher ethanol blends like E15 and E85 to take the pressure off their lungs, but to take the pressure off their wallets as well.”

Iowa is the leader in renewable fuels production.  Iowa has 41 ethanol refineries capable of producing over 3.7 billion gallons annually, with one wet mill and two cellulosic ethanol facilities currently under construction. In addition, Iowa has 12 biodiesel facilities with the capacity to produce nearly 315 million gallons annually.

The Iowa Renewable Fuels Association was formed in 2002 to represent the state’s liquid renewable fuels industry. The trade group fosters the development and growth of the renewable fuels industry in Iowa through education, promotion, legislation and infrastructure development.