The Minnesota Corn Growers Association (MCGA) commends Governor Tim Walz for issuing an executive order establishing the Governor’s Council on Biofuels. The announcement is a first step to reduce carbon emissions and improve air quality through renewable fuels, helping Minnesota reach their environmental goals while benefiting rural communities.
Governor Walz, Agriculture Commissioner Thom Peterson, Heartland Corn Products CEO Gary Anderson and MCGA President Brian Thalmann held a media event at Thalmann’s farm on Monday to commemorate the signing of the executive order. The 15-member council will be tasked with recommending actions to foster growth in the production and use of biofuels.
Minnesota’s collaborative approach to promote renewable fuel production and infrastructure have made the state a national leader in biofuels. Yesterday’s executive order is another example of state agencies working with key stakeholders to form a strategy that will reduce greenhouse gas emissions benefitting all Minnesotans.
The executive order also comes at a time when Minnesota’s ethanol industry has been greatly impacted by Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) actions that have undermined the Renewable Fuel Standard. Minnesota’s corn farmers appreciate Gov. Walz’ leadership to promote biofuel production while efforts at the federal level add unnecessary barriers.
“As farmers and renewable fuels continue to face challenges on the federal level, I couldn’t be more proud of our state,” MCGA President Brian Thalmann said. “Minnesota has long been a national leader in renewable fuels and we have a tremendous opportunity to again be an example for the rest of our country to follow to meet the environmental goals we all deeply value while maintaining a strong rural economy.”
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Through their investment in the corn check-off, the state’s corn growers have invested more than $25 million since 2008 in ethanol research, infrastructure and education. Increased access to homegrown biofuels benefit Minnesota’s farmers and their families, who continue to be impacted by a challenging ag economy. Actions promoting renewable fuels to meet environmental goals are improving the economic vitality of Minnesota’s outstate communities.
Ethanol-blended fuels reduce greenhouse gas emissions by as much as 45 percent, which is equivalent to removing 11.4 million cars from the road for an entire year, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. To learn more about the benefits of ethanol-blended fuels, including addressing misinformation around ethanol-blended fuels, click here.