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Sensenbrenner Joins Effort to Repeal Ethanol Incentives
Wisconsin Ag Connection - 05/01/2008

A Wisconsin congressman is joining an effort to repeal government incentives for producing ethanol. Rep. Jim Sensenbrenner says he's always opposed reformulated gasoline that includes ethanol. The Menomonee Falls Republican says he is co-signing a bill with Rep. Jeff Flake of Arizona that would repeal the tax credits for ethanol producers, among other moves.

Sensenbrenner says ethanol is less efficient, giving consumers fewer miles per gallon, and has added costs because it's made from corn that is converted to ethanol and then has to be transported. He also says biofuels are part of the reason that food costs are going up in grocery stores.

Meanwhile, many groups are defending ethanol. Farmers and ethanol producers were in Washington, D.C. this week in an effort to share the message that the 'biofuel industry is not the culprit' behind skyrocketing corn and wheat prices.

"While we do have some role in higher corn prices, we're closer to a Little Bo Peep than an ax murderer," said Rick Tolman, President of the National Corn Growers Association at the National Press Club.

The ethanol industry puts the cost increase at four percent, while the Department of Agriculture says the figure is closer to 20 percent. International aid groups, including the World Bank, say ethanol accounts for a much larger chunk of the food price surge.

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