January 14, 2006

Wisconsin AB 15: Coalition Mounts Support Campaign

Wisconsin has an ethanol bill AB 15 under consideration by their State Legislature. Their Wisconsin Ethanol Coalition has developed a website and a grass-roots campaign to solicit support for the bill. Below is an article from WisBusiness.com that describes the campaign.


Wisconsin Ethanol Coalition: Wisconsin Farm Bureau Launches Mailing

MADISON – The Wisconsin Farm Bureau is reaching out to members of its organization this week in the form of a mailing that asks members to contact their legislators and encourage them to support the ethanol bill. Assembly Bill 15 will spur new jobs, lower emissions, and lower gas prices.

“The general public has really begun to engage on this legislation,” said Tom Thieding, Executive Director of the Wisconsin Farm Bureau. “We have been hearing a lot from our members who support this legislation, and they want to know what they can do to help.”

The Farm Bureau targeted a number of specific State Senate districts to let those legislators know how much support the bill has in their districts. “We know what kind of support this legislation has. Now we’re asking our members to take it to the next level and tell their legislator how important it is,” Thieding said.

Some of the Senators whose constituents received mailers include Senators Rob Cowles, Scott Fitzgerald, Mark Miller, Carol Roessler, Julie Lassa, and Dave Hansen.

There are currently four ethanol plants on line in Wisconsin and two more under construction. The Wisconsin Farm Bureau is part of a long list of businesses and organizations that support renewable energy and the passage of legislation that promotes this initiative. For a list of additional supporters, to view a copy of the mailer, or to find out more about the ethanol industry, please visit www.wisconsinethanol.com.

“The buzz around the benefits of ethanol is really starting to pick up,” said Bill Oemichen, President & CEO of the Wisconsin Federation of Cooperatives, a lead partner in the Wisconsin Ethanol Coalition. “We’re excited to work in coordination with such a diverse coalition of members to support legislation that will grow Wisconsin’s economy and help lower gas prices.”

The Wisconsin Ethanol Coalition is a diverse group of businesses, environmental, statewide groups and local organizations that have come together to build both public and legislative awareness of ethanol issues in Wisconsin. The ethanol industry is proud to have the support of both Republican and Democratic legislators, as well as Wisconsin Governor Jim Doyle.

Governor Doyle supports this legislation and has pledged to sign it into law once it reaches his desk.


Anonymous said...

If ethanol means lower gas prices, how come ethanol costs more per barrel than oil? Why does my car get worse milage with ethanol that without? Why do I need to prematurely replace fuel injectors on my car that mechanics claim is due to the ethanol in the gasoline?

Ethanol is only costing me more money - are you going to reimbures me for the fuel injectors or poor fuel milage?


P.S. If I were you I would not admit that I were proud to have the support of Gov. Elmer Fudd (Doyle). This can only hurt your cause!

C. Scott Miller, EDP said...

Ethanol doesn't necessarily mean lower gas prices although, in general, it is priced lower than gasoline - particularly when oil prices spike, which happens all too frequently. Check out http://www.fueleconomy.gov/feg/byfueltype.htm - there is a calculator for comparing prices with customizable input.

Ethanol does usually get worse mileage than gasoline - roughly 20% depending on the vehicle and the driving habits of the driver.

Ethanol should not require modification to existing models of automobiles at blends of 10% or less (California is 5.6% using ethanol as an oxygenate). Ethanol has higher octane than gasoline.

The need to find an alternative to gasoline is why the adoption of ethanol as a new alternative fuel is getting support. Transition from an all-gasoline paradigm to a renewable fuel paradigm will take time.

You are welcome to keep your current automobile and continue to buy gasoline as you wish. But wouldn't you like to have an alternative should the time come that the price of oil spikes again, or ethanol technology takes a giant leap forward (which, I submit, is happening) - or, God forbid, we get embroiled in more political turmoil overseas? Brazil is energy independent, capable of exporting oil and ethanol, because it adopted a national ethanol production policy 30 years ago.

In my view, the attendant costs of gasoline (pollution, national defense, more expensive extraction, military, contamination) makes it much more expensive than pump numbers indicate.

How would you improve the status quo - aka, our "addiction to oil"?