Last week, a bipartisan bill was introduced to the Justice Department and Federal Trade Commission to investigate anticompetitive practices by oil companies regarding the Renewable Fuel Standard. Introduced by senators Amy Klobuchar, a Democrat from Minnesota, and Chuck Grassley, a Republican from Iowa, the bill hopes to address some of the fraudulent business practices oil companies are employing to influence the opinions of various political and consumer groups in a bid to artificially inflate gas prices and limit access to non-petroleum based fuels (like ethanol).
“NCGA firmly supports efforts to ensure that Americans have options at the fuel pump,” said Pam Johnson, president of the National Corn Grower’s Association (NCGA). “America’s farmers work diligently to provide renewable, environmentally responsible biofuels, and we applaud the efforts of Senators Klobuchar and Grassley to help ensure that consumers can choose to use those government approved fuel options.”
In addition to lobbying against ethanol blends and blatant, GOP-sponsored lies about ethanol production raising global food costs, the NCGA says that gas station owners’ franchise agreements have been changed in order to force gas stations to remove E85 and E15. In a letter to Attorney General Eric Holder and FTC Chairwoman Edith Ramirez, Klobuchar and Grassley wrote “We have heard allegations that the oil industry is mandating retailers to carry and sell premium (grades of) gasoline, thereby blocking the use of the current retail infrastructure to sell renewable fuels. Station owners who wish to sell renewable fuel would bear the cost and logistical burden of having to install additional infrastructure to do so.”
Every once in a while, these politicians get something right!
Here’s hoping the anti-ethanol know-nothings who keep mis-quoting AAA’s claims about ethanol get some sense in them … or, at least, find something better to do on election day.