May 4, 2009

California carbon rule may hurt Nebraska’s ethanol industry

An article in the Grand Island Independent highlights concerns the Nebraska Corn Board has with a recent decision by the California Air Resources Board to enact low carbon fuel standards.

The Board is concerned the rules could alter the market for corn-based ethanol.

For the full article, click here.

Jon Holzfaster, chairman of the Nebraska Corn Board, said: Although we support initiatives that look at reducing greenhouse gases, we cannot support initiatives that include very questionable science and do not take into consideration modern-day efficiencies.

Holzfaster told the Independent that the inclusion of indirect land use change penalizes corn ethanol and offers no alternatives to petroleum. He said the lack of inclusion of current efficiencies in corn production, distillers grains livestock rations and ethanol production may ultimately become a huge barrier for the use of corn-based ethanol in the California market.

Kelly Brunkhorst, ag program manager for the Nebraska Corn Board, noted that: The science behind this theory is uncertain. Not only have U.S. exports kept up with demand, but there is more corn in storage today than at any time in the last two years. To attribute additional growth in farmland around the world to U.S. corn ethanol seems shortsighted and ignores the fact that one-third of that corn is being returned as livestock feed.

For a previous post on the subject, click here.

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