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Editor's Note: "Getting the Job Done, One Round at a Time"
by Kristin Brekke

At press time, with about a week to go until Memorial Day, we’re not far away from wrapping up spring planting here on our farm. The wheat’s in, the corn’s in, and now to finish up the soybeans. From my desk I can hear my husband’s tractor across the road, disking corn stalks on one of the final fields. Another of the fields is still too wet, but with this strong South Dakota wind, it shouldn’t take long to shape up. All in all, we’ve been fortunate weather-wise and we pray that will continue.

Matt and I were talking one evening about how spring fieldwork is something that, no matter how much of a hurry you’re in, you can’t hurry – it’s a process that just has to play out. Even though what you want most is to be at the other end of that field, a tractor will only go so fast and you just have to sit and make those rounds. Frustrating but true.

This is not unlike where ethanol finds itself today – in the middle of the Environmental Protection Agency’s consideration of the E15 waiver.

No matter how much we want to hurry to the other end of that field where E15 is a reality, we have to let the process play out. We know the science is there to support the use of blends beyond 10 percent, so it’s hard to be patient, especially when we know the extended public comment period gives ethanol’s opponents more time to manufacture excuses why E15 won’t work.

But going along with the process doesn’t mean we sit idly by. We can make the most of this time, and we are.

The online petition, for one, has been a tremendous success. In just over a month, more than 5500 people have signed on in support of E15. That number is significant, but even more so is the fact that these ethanol supporters come from all 50 states. We know the EPA will take notice of this.

The public comment period is open – now extended through July 20 – and EPA is hearing from hundreds, perhaps thousands, in support of E15. We appreciate everyone’s efforts to sign the petition and send comments to the EPA – if you haven’t done so yet, there is still time to do so at Ethanol.org.

Ethanol support is being communicated in other ways as well. Ethanol producer Glacial Lakes Energy of Watertown, South Dakota hosted E15 rallies in two communities last month where people lined up for a chance to fill up on ethanol-blended fuel and sign the E15 petition. ACE leadership is meeting with newspaper editorial boards to explain the waiver process and the importance of consumer choice at the pump.

Round after round, ethanol is showing up to fight. Active grassroots support will win the day.

 
© American Coalition for Ethanol, all rights reserved.
The American Coalition for Ethanol publishes Ethanol Today magazine each month to cover the biofuels industryís hot topics, including cellulosic ethanol, E85, corn ethanol, food versus fuel, ethanolís carbon footprint, E10, E15, and mid-range ethanol blends.
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