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Ernst Demands Biden EPA Remove Regulatory Barriers on Ethanol, Provide Certainty for Farmers and Consumers

This move follows the request of Midwest governors, including Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds. Biden’s EPA is past due for action on E15.

WASHINGTON – As the 2023 summer driving season quickly approaches, U.S. Senator Joni Ernst (R-Iowa) is leading a bipartisan, bicameral letter to the Biden administration demanding they remove regulatory barriers for gasoline-ethanol blends—like E15—and implement the long-awaited request of Midwest governors, including Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds. This move would provide much-needed certainty to farmers, producers, and consumers who are directly impacted by the decisions and actions of the Biden administration.


The entire Iowa Congressional delegation signed onto this letter.


In the letter, Ernst and 30 of her fellow Senate and House colleagues write: “Relying on an annual emergency waiver is not a permanent solution for fuel retailers, consumers, or the environment…By working swiftly to finalize the Governors’ requests, you will bring much needed certainty to our corn growers, fuel retailers, and consumers to enjoy the clean-burning, lower cost benefits of year-round E15 through the 2023 summer driving season.”


Ernst’s letter would grant a common-sense request from Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds, as well as several other Midwest states, who formally urged the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to remove the 1-psi volatility waiver and allow their states to sell E15 year-round.


The Clean Air Act states that after the EPA administrator receives a notification from a governor – like the one from Governor Reynolds – they must respond with regulation within 90 days. Governor Reynolds sent her letter on April 28, 2022, and EPA and OMB have not taken action – putting them past the statutory deadline.

Joined on the letter, led by Senators Ernst and Duckworth (D-Ill.), are Senators Baldwin (D-Wis.), Brown (D-Ohio), Fischer (R-Neb.), Grassley (R-Iowa), Klobuchar (D-Minn.), Marshall (R-Kans.), Ricketts (R-Neb.), and Smith (D-Minn.), and Representatives Alford (R-Mo.), Bost (R-Ill.), Budzinski (D-Ill.), Craig (D-Minn.), Davids (D-Kans.), Emmer (R-Minn.), Feenstra (R-Iowa), Finstad (R-Minn.), Fischbach (R-Minn.), Flood (R-Neb.), Hinson (R-Iowa), Johnson (R-S.D.), Kaptur (D-Ohio), LaHood (R-Ill.), Mann (R-Kans.), Miller-Meeks (R-Iowa), Nunn (R-Iowa), Pocan (D-Wis.), Smith (R-Neb.), Sorensen (D-Ill.), and Stauber (R-Minn.).


Read Ernst’s full letter here.



Last year, Senator Ernst joined a bipartisan group of Midwest senators on a push to expand the year-round sales of E15 nationwide. The Consumer and Fuel Retailer Choice Act would extend the Reid vapor pressure (RVP) volatility waiver to ethanol blends above ten percent.