DES MOINES, IOWA—Growth Energy CEO Emily Skor delivered the keynote address to the Iowa Renewable Fuels Association’s Renewable Fuels Summit today. Speaking alongside Governor Kim Reynolds, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, former United Nations Ambassador Nikki Haley, U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack, and former Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson, Skor updated the crowd on the state of the U.S. bioeconomy and outlined the biofuel sector’s policy agenda for the new year.
Among other priorities, Skor discussed the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) and ongoing efforts to secure year-round nationwide access to E15, as well the U.S. Treasury Department’s recent guidance on administering tax credits under the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) and next week’s Iowa Caucuses.
Highlights are available below, and Skor’s full speech, as prepared for delivery, is available here.
On the bioeconomy:
“The bioeconomy is our entire mission at Growth Energy: cultivating it, expanding it, accelerating its growth by breaking down barriers and securing policies that recognize our innovations and advancements. We are making sure our members get the attention and the credit they deserve for investing in science and talent—for producing an endless variety of renewable, plant-based fuels and products.”
On the RFS:
“Opponents are challenging us with all kinds of litigation — from endangered species to refinery exemptions to blending obligations. Fortunately, after years of our hard work, the EPA has largely taken our side. But those decisions need to stand up in court. The RFS will need a clear and accurate defense. And we are there, alongside the agency — marshalling facts, presenting research, and deploying legal arguments — until this fight is won. Alongside allies like Iowa RFA, we will ensure that America’s most successful clean energy policy keeps delivering the market access we need to expand the bioeconomy.”
“Last summer, E15 saved drivers an average of 15 cents per gallon compared to standard E10 fuel choices. In some states, drivers saw savings reach 40 to 60 cents per gallon. As you well know, continuing this momentum depends on federal decisions to let consumers access E15 year-round.
“Midwestern states – led by your own Governor Reynolds and Attorney General Bird – have stepped up to show real leadership on this issue. Over nearly two years, they have demanded EPA act on a rule that would allow year-round E15 in eight states, including Iowa.”
On the IRA tax incentives:
“We need the Treasury Department to implement tax credits in ways that allow bioethanol producers to accelerate our climate progress while expanding economic opportunity across rural America. We cannot let the tax code put agriculture on the sidelines.”
On the Presidential campaign:
“We’re working to cultivate allies and maximize the number of office holders who make firm commitments to bioethanol. The proof is right here on this stage, where major candidates—Governor Hutchinson, Ambassador Haley, Governor DeSantis—are presenting detailed, nuanced agendas for expanding the bioeconomy. And I’m confident they will continue supporting the bioeconomy regardless of whether they capture their party’s nomination.
“To that end, I am especially grateful for those of you who have opened your doors to candidates as they barnstormed Iowa. You showed them the full potential of the bioeconomy. And Iowa is just the tip of the spear. Growth Energy members will continue the push in other states over the next 10 months.”