West Michigan corn growers want renewal of federal ethanol subsidies
A recent article from the Grand Rapids Press considers the impact on Western Michigan corn growers if Congress does not extend federal ethanol subsidies. A $60 million plant where a work force of 40 churns out 50 million gallons of ethanol annually is good for business in this rural area halfway between Grand Rapids and Lansing, the newspaper says. The plant’s demand not only pushes up the price of corn, it creates a close-to-home market that reduces freight costs. Most of the plant’s 50,000 bushels of daily corn supply come from within 80 miles.
But the impact of the subsidies — a 45-cents-per-gallon tax credit for “blenders” who add ethanol to gasoline and a 54-cents-per-gallon import tariff — extends much further, to motorists and taxpayers.
Read the full story from the Grand Rapids Press.
Meanwhile, a blog post from a Cedar Rapids, Iowa newspaper shares how the Union of Concerned Scientists is floating a proposal to revamp the nation’s biofuels incentives that is sure to upset some corn growers. The group's "Billion Gallon Challenge" would shift tax credits from regular corn-based ethanol to biofuels that provide an even greater reduction in global warming emissions.