Responding to an amendment (#220) filed by Sen. Tom Coburn (R-OK) to the small business reauthorization bill currently under consideration on the Senate floor that would immediately repeal a tax incentive for ethanol use known as the Volumetric Ethanol Excise Tax Credit (VEETC), the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) issued the following statement:


"Given Sen. Coburn's interest in what he deems unnecessary subsidies, we would encourage him to offer an amendment that would eliminate subsidies to oil companies posting tens of billions of dollars in profit quarterly. In lieu of that, the RFA urges the Senate to ignore this frivolous amendment.

"Just last December, Congress extended the tax incentive for ethanol use and provided the kind of stability, albeit brief, that investors and markets demand. Reneging on that stability just four months after voting to provide it is the kind of job-killing, innovation-stalling policy that will keep America addicted to foreign oil.

"America imports nearly $1 billion worth of oil each day. In just one week, we will spend more on imported oil than we will on biofuel-related tax incentives in an entire year. And what do we get for that transfer of wealth?  Each time a terrorist threatens a pipeline, our gas prices go up. Each time a tyrant turns violent against his peaceful countrymen, our gas prices go up. Each time a hurricane forms in the Gulf of Mexico, our gas prices go up.

"America's economy and its energy policy should not be at the mercy of the whims of dictators and the pique of those who may not fully appreciate the value of domestic renewable fuels. We should be investing in all renewable fuel technologies to give America more control over its energy future. The RFA is committed to such a path forward, working with those in the renewable fuels industry equally committed to establishing sound policy that address both economic and market access concerns, while providing for the commercialization of new ethanol technologies."