Sen. Chuck Grassley

(Washington, D.C.) -- Iowa Senators Chuck Grassley and Joni Ernst – along with 12 of their Senate colleagues – have sent a letter urging the EPA to modernize its rulemaking for biogenic carbon emissions.

In a conference call with farm reporters this week, Senator Grassley said they are seeking a “common-sense” clarification that would align EPA policy with the biogenic emissions standards applied by every other regulatory authority worldwide.

“The letter asks for EPA to issue a rule to classify emissions from biogenic sources differently than from fossil fuels,” Grassley said. “While burning fossil fuels actually releases carbon that has been locked up for millions of years in the ground, a burning biomass emits carbon that will be reabsorbed as part of the natural carbon cycle.”

“Every other regulatory body in the world, besides our country, recognizes these differences,” Grassley continued. “This kind of change would remove a heck of a lot of red tape at the EPA and would allow more products to be made from plant-based products and materials.”

Joining Grassley and Ernst in sending the letter to the EPA are Republican Senators Deb Fischer (Nebraska), John Thune (South Dakota), Todd Young (Indiana), Mike Braun (Indiana), Richard Burr (North Carolina), Kevin Cramer (North Dakota), Mike Rounds (South Dakota), John Hoeven (North Dakota), Jerry Moran (Kansas), Pat Roberts (Kansas), Roy Blunt (Missouri), and Josh Hawley (Missouri).

“Senator Ernst has been a leader in removing red tape that can help add value to Iowa’s farm economy,” Grassley said. “I thank Senator Ernst for her leadership on this. I’m glad to join her. I hope EPA will recognize the difference in emissions in their rulemaking and get the United States lined up with other countries that do it entirely different than we do”

Grassley says forcing EPA to be consistent with its treatment of biogenic CO2 will boost the US bioeconomy which ultimately helps rural America.

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