Fueling Freedom Plan Will Redirect Government Support to Create Open Fuels Market
WASHINGTON, DC – Growth Energy, a coalition of U.S. ethanol supporters, today called for the redirection and eventual phasing out of government support for ethanol in return for a level playing field – infrastructure investments that will create competition in the fuels market and give consumers true freedom to choose their fuel.
“We are confident that in a fair and open market, ethanol can and will compete successfully against oil,” said Tom Buis, CEO of Growth Energy. “Creating that competitive market will save money for both taxpayers and motorists, since it takes the control out of the hands of Big Oil and puts it into the hands of the consumer.”
The “Fueling Freedom” plan calls for the phasing out of current ethanol supports over time, by redirecting a portion of those funds to build out the infrastructure for the distribution and use of ethanol, and shifting the remaining portion away from the oil companies to opening the market. The primary elements of the plan include:
- Funds currently going to the oil industry as an incentive for blending ethanol into gasoline (the VEETC) would be redirected to provide backing for the build out of distribution infrastructure for ethanol – such as tax credits for retailers to install 200,000 blender pumps and federal backing of ethanol pipelines. This will provide Americans the access to choose ethanol in an open and free market, and would allow for the elimination of the tax supports over time in exchange for that level playing field.
- Requiring that all automobiles sold in the U.S. be flex-fuel vehicles – as many as 120 million. This requires no additional cost to taxpayers and a minimal cost (about $120 per vehicle) to vehicle manufacturers.
Growth Energy’s Fueling Freedom plan, once implemented, would build out the infrastructure in the United States to create a path that leads to a genuinely free market – an open market that is free of government supports. Redirecting monies currently paid to oil companies to blend ethanol into gasoline toward infrastructure improvements would enable consumers to choose between gasoline and renewable, homegrown ethanol.
“Fifty five years ago, President Eisenhower, himself a former general, proposed an Interstate Highway System to give Americans the freedom to travel our country,” said Growth Energy Co-Chair Gen. Wesley K. Clark (Ret.). “Today, Growth Energy is proposing to give Americans the freedom to choose an American fuel to travel those highways. By creating an open fuel market, we can break OPEC’s monopoly, improve our national security and create jobs here at home.”
About Growth Energy
Growth Energy is a group committed to the promise of agriculture and growing America’s economy through cleaner, greener energy. Growth Energy members recognize America needs a new ethanol approach. Through smart policy reform and a proactive grassroots campaign, Growth Energy promotes reducing greenhouse gas emissions, expanding the use of ethanol in gasoline, decreasing our dependence on foreign oil, and creating American jobs at home. More information can be found at GrowthEnergy.org.