Today, Rep. Randy Feenstra (IA-04), a member of the House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology (SST), led an effort to bolster bioenergy and biofuels production in an amendment to H.R. 5781, the National Wildland Fire Risk Reduction Program Act.
His effort would allow biomass collected through wildfire mitigation efforts to be utilized to produce bioenergy, including biofuels. The proposal passed with unanimous support.
“The recent surge in fuel prices highlights the importance of research and development on cost-effective biofuels,” Feenstra said, later adding, “Researching new ways to create bioenergy from excess vegetation has the potential to not only provide a new fuel source, but to create an additional economic value for smart wildfire mitigation.”
Additionally, Feenstra participated in a Commodity Exchanges, Energy, and Credit Agriculture Subcommittee hearing on renewable energy. Since the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has yet to release Renewable Volume Obligation (RVO) levels, and as reports indicate the Biden administration is considering cuts, Feenstra discussed the importance of maintaining strong RVOs.
“Ensuring that our biofuels producers are prioritized through strong RVOs is not only critical for the industry, but also for my constituents who engage with an economy built on its success,” Feenstra said. “Biofuels like ethanol are a low cost, low carbon solution and can be a carbon negative fuel in the next decade. An announcement for strong RVO levels will encourage further investment and innovation.”