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Good Intentions Gone Wrong: Can Congress Admit A Mistake?

"Good Intentions Gone Wrong: Can Congress Admit A Mistake?" is a Special Report prepared by The Washington Times Special Sections Department.

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Fixing past missteps on biofuels

For 40 years, I championed environmental protections and solutions to climate change in Congress. I'm proud of my work to strengthen the Clean Air Act, make drinking water safer, reduce pesticides in food, and cut oil consumption through strong fuel efficiency standards.

RFS reform outlined in Welch, Udall bills

Unprecedented bicameral legislation seeks to reform the nation's fuel standard by reducing corn ethanol in gasoline, stepping up pursuit of "next generation" biofuels and returning some U.S. cropland back to natural wildlife habitat.

RFS reform: One of few issues with bipartisan support

"The federal mandate for corn ethanol is both unwise and unworkable. Roughly 40 percent of corn in the United States is currently used for fuel, which increases the price of food and animal feed while also damaging the environment. Additionally, oil companies are unable to blend more corn ethanol into gasoline without causing problems for some gas stations and older automobiles.

Cruz battles ethanol industry over national biofuels mandate

Sen. Ted Cruz has emerged as Washington's leading critic of the ethanol industry, holding up federal nominees over his opposition to the national biofuels mandate, lambasting the sector in fiery Senate floor speeches, and leading a coalition of oil-friendly lawmakers to the Oval Office in hopes of weakening the Renewable Fuel Standard.

The ethanol quagmire

As it does every fall, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced it is mandating even higher levels of ethanol in our transportation fuel supply while ignoring market realities and the negative impact of the federal Renewable Fuel Standard on American consumers.

Why America's recreational boaters need RFS reform

As acting Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Andrew Wheeler will soon learn, if he hasn't already, reforming the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) is critical to the economy and boaters. The recreational boating industry supports 650,000 American jobs and contributes $39 billion to the economy each year. And, approximately 142 million boaters take to the water annually.

Washington, DC, USA - May 5, 2015: National Retail Federation Staff Photos.       Photo by Ian Wagreich /  U.S. Chamber of Commerce

EPA report cites damaging impact of Renewable Fuel Standard

The Environmental Protection Agency recently released a report on the impacts of the federal Renewable Fuel Standard that requires billions of gallons of ethanol be blended into the nation's gasoline supply each year. And the report — which is four years late — comes to the same conclusion that we've known for years: The RFS isn't working.

Even in the Midwest, ethanol mandate hurts more than it helps

The federal Renewable Fuel Standard, aka the ethanol mandate, is often assumed to be a boon for the Midwest. Surely, the grain belt must benefit, even if everyone else has to suffer with inferior fuel at the gas pumps.

Renewable Fuel Standard: This 'dog' won't hunt

We support regulations that benefit the economic vitality of our capitalistic nation and serve no threat to our national security. The Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) was a program that seemed to be consistent with that mission. However, it is without a doubt a program that is filled with "unintended consequences."

Taxpayers tell Congress: Stop meddling in fuel markets

More than 10 years after the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) was expanded and finalized in 2007, policymakers are still wrestling with how to implement this big-government boondoggle. Unintended consequences litter the past decade of the RFS regime, but reform has been hard to achieve even as the toll to consumers and taxpayers mount. As we near the 2022 horizon, when the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is set to become the sole arbiter of the RFS, Congress needs to act while it still can.

An outdated mandate that drives up gasoline prices

Only in Washington do we call expanding a program "reform" and more special-interest handouts "fixes." That's precisely what's happening with the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) — an outdated ethanol mandate that drives up gasoline prices and puts refiners out of business.

Choose Your Fuel at the Pump Illustration by Greg Groesch/The Washington Times

Ethanol policy: A government failure that should stop

Almost everyone reading this is aware that government interventions in the marketplace usually fail. From attempts to limit inflation in the 1970s to the sub-prime housing bubble in 2008, "government failure" is as real a threat to American prosperity as any "market failure" that's occurred in the past half-century.

Renewable Fuel Standard is a dead end

A decade ago Congress created the current federal Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) to jump-start the alternative fuels marketplace. The goal was to spur the production of billions of gallons of cellulosic biofuels derived from perennial grasses, agricultural residues, and other non-food sources. The hope was that blending these biofuels with U.S. gasoline and diesel would significantly reduce harmful emissions and improve U.S. energy security. However, more than 10 years later, it is clear the RFS is hopelessly ineffective.

Choose Your Fuel at the Pump Illustration by Greg Groesch/The Washington Times

Ethanol policy: A government failure that should stop

Almost everyone reading this is aware that government interventions in the marketplace usually fail. From attempts to limit inflation in the 1970s to the sub-prime housing bubble in 2008, "government failure" is as real a threat to American prosperity as any "market failure" that's occurred in the past half-century.