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Backs ethanol use

By Staff | Aug 26, 2011

To the editor:

These days it seems there are few issues that members of Congress can agree upon. But, if there is one thing that Democrats and Republicans must come together on, it is a strategy to create jobs in order to get this country back on track.

Ethanol, made right here in our backyards, has provided an unparalleled, value-added opportunity for agriculture and America. It has generated good paying jobs, spurred economic activity, and provided rural youth a reason and an opportunity to find jobs closer to home.

At roughly 10 percent of the fuels market in 2010, the ethanol industry contributed $53.6 billion to the nation’s economy, generated $8.6 billion in federal tax revenues and supported more than 400,000 direct and indirect jobs that can’t be outsourced.

And the industry can create even more economic opportunities in America with greater access to the market.

For instance, if every vehicle in the U.S. were Flex Fuel, and nearly every fueling station had Flex Fuel pumps, then Americans would have a genuine choice in the marketplace – a choice that includes a fuel other than gasoline refined from foreign oil.

Every year we pay $300 billion annually as a nation to foreign countries for oil. Increasing access to higher level blends of ethanol will reduce the role that foreign oil plays in our economy and keep more dollars in the U.S. economy, creating U.S. jobs.

By opening up the market to more ethanol, we could see the private capital investment move into next generation ethanol, generating new high-paying jobs, increased market opportunities for farmers, additional household income and tax revenues.

It’s time to invest in homegrown, renewable energy that will put Americans back to work and get our economy back on track. American ethanol is a critical tool for moving our nation forward.

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