Politicians and farmers from Iowa were among those to testify Thursday before the Environmental Protection Agency in Washington, D-C over the agency’s proposal to cut the amount of ethanol required to be mixed with fuel by three-BILLION gallons. Mark Wigans, a livestock producer from Renwick, spoke with Radio Iowa from the capital after testifying and says he tried to stress the economic impact of ethanol production that he says has helped keep unemployment in western Iowa low. He was not asked anything beyond the statement he gave E-P-A officials.
Mark Leonard raises cattle and is also a banker in Holstein. Leonard says those who testified did a good job of presenting the facts for ethanol. Rick Hansen, a cattle feeder and crop farmer from Hinton says he also stressed the economic impact of the ethanol industry. Hansen believes opponents believe the ethanol benefits only go to those who raise the corn. Hansen believes supporters made a good case with the E-P-A, but he doesn’t know if it will change their minds.
The three men were joined by representatives of the Iowa Renewable Fuels Association in Washington for the testimony. Governor Terry Branstad also testified before the E-P-A, as did members of the Iowa Congressional delegation.