To the editor:

I write today regarding a problem that continues to negatively impact farmers across the state. Wisconsin is the nation’s eighth-largest producer of ethanol, but decisions made by bureaucrats in Washington have only added to our struggle.

EPA refinery exemptions have been granted to major oil corporations like Exxon and Chevron and continue to reduce the market for renewable biofuels. This causes a decrease in the demand for Wisconsin corn and adds to the uncertainty already hurting the nearly 30,000 Wisconsin families that fuel Wisconsin’s ethanol industry. Thankfully, a unanimous ruling from the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals calls for an end to the rampant abuse of these exemptions and brings needed relief at a critical time. As expected, however, big oil interests are applying heavy pressure and asking the EPA to appeal that ruling at the expense of farm communities.

2020 is a critical year for grain producers and farmers across the state. The president and his administration must hold true to their commitments to rural America and let hard-working Wisconsinites continue to benefit from competition at the fuel pump. That starts with rejecting an appeal to the 10th Circuit ruling.

— Zeb Zuehls, Montello