Governor Hopeful after call from President Trump

PELLA, Iowa (KCRG TV9) -- Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds says she had a "productive" phone call with President Donald Trump and EPA administrator Scott Pruitt Wednesday morning. But no promises were made yet about the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS).

Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds addresses a crowd at Two Rivers Cooperative in Iowa. The governor spoke with President Trump Wednesday morning about the Renewable Fuel Standard that requires adding ethanol to the nation's gasoline supply.

Following that conversation, Governor Reynolds, Lt. Governor Adam Gregg and ag leaders met at a cooperative in Pella to discuss concerns about where the federal government is going with the requirement refinaries add a certain amount of ethanol to the nation's gasoline supply.

In a news conference, the governor was reminded that President Trump had expressed support for ethanol during campaign swings in Iowa.

Reynolds said the President remembered those remarks but stopped short of promising to eliminate any cuts in the RFS.

"I feel very good after the conversation with both him and the administrator. That's why I'm going to continue to meet next week (in Washington) to continue the conversation. I'll never let down," the governor said.

What had concerned some ag leaders were reports the EPA was considering as much as a 10 percent cut in the RFS. Currently, ethanol plants nationwide produce about 15 billion gallons of ethanol a year.

More than 40 plants in Iowa alone produce more than four billion gallons. That's double the amount from Nebraska, the state in second place.

Monte Shaw, director of the Iowa Renewable Fuels Association, says with planned expanions, Iowa will soon have more than 53,000 jobs tied to the biofuels industry.

"I think Governor Reynolds said it just right. We've gotten their attention," Shaw said after the news conference.

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