At a hearing of the Senate Ag Committee on the importance of renewable fuels, NASCAR team owner Richard Childress was one of several voices to talk about the many benefits of corn-based biofuels, such as the higher fuel performance he has seen in more than five million miles of racing since the E15 ethanol blend was introduced in the 2011 racing season.
"I think expanding and growing our use of biofuels is a key component to helping farmers make a living, while at the same time delivering environmental benefits that can be enjoyed by all Americans," he said. "I think what NASCAR has done to show the performance side of ethanol is key."
Childress continued: "Biofuels like ethanol keep money we would normally send abroad for oil in the U.S., creating jobs and economic activity here instead of overseas. Studies show that moving the U.S. to the same fuel blend we use in NASCAR would add 136,000 new American jobs, limit greenhouse gas emissions even more and reduce the demand for gasoline produced from foreign oil by up to 7 billion gallons."
In his remarks, Childress also defended the Renewable Fuel Standard, just as he did at a recent teleconference set up by the National Corn Growers Association, to counter a proposal by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to cut the amount of corn ethanol in the RFS.
"The long-term certainty of the RFS has and continues to drive significant investment in the next generation of biofuels and new technologies both in ethanol production and in agriculture," Childress said at today's hearing. "By increasing yields, increasing efficiency, and deploying new technologies, ethanol and agriculture production continues to soften its footprint on the environment - particularly as fossil fuels like crude oil and natural gas become harder and harder to extract."
The National Corn Growers Association appreciates the leadership of Committee Chairwoman Sen. Debbie Stabenow, D-Mich., in scheduling the hearing today. Also on hand were representatives of DuPont and the Advanced Ethanol Council, who both talked about the importance of first-generation biofuels to support the development of the next generation of fuels.