October 24, 2012
Noem vists Groton biorefinery
Published in Aberdeen News
GROTON — Paying attention to domestic sources of renewable energy is a priority, U.S. Rep. Kristi Noem, R-S.D. said.
"We should be incentivizing any energy we can produce here in this country," she said.
Noem toured the Poet Biorefining plant in Groton for the first time Monday and met with general manager Kelly Kjelden.
"It's a win-win for South Dakota when we have these jobs, can increase this fuel source and helps us utilize that corn we produce," Noem said.
Alternative sources of energy includes, not only ethanol, which the plant produces, but also biodiesel and wind energy, she said.
"We'll have to stay on top of new technologies and policy going forward for renewable fuel resources," Noem said.
They spoke about the challenges that pieces of ethanol-related legislation are facing, she said.
The Volumetric Ethanol Excise Tax Credit, a federal subsidy for ethanol that expired at the end of 2011, has affected the industry.
"The most important issue that we discussed was the Renewable Fuel Standard waiver request," Kjelden said.
Possible changes to the Renewable Fuel Standard program, which regulates how much renewable fuel has to be blended in with gasoline, pose a problem.
A mandate from the Environmental Protection Agency to introduce more ethanol into gasoline could be suspended.
"It's important to not only the industry but to the country for energy independence," Kjelden said of the Renewable Fuel Standard program.
Noem has received $5,000 from the Poet political action committee this election cycle, according to Federal Election Commission filings. She is running for re-election to the U.S. House of Representatives. Her challenger is Democrat Matt Varilek.