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Senate votes to end $6 billion giveaway for corn ethanol

Posted Jun. 16, 2011 / Posted by: Kelly Trout

For Immediate Release
June 16, 2011

Contact:
Matthew Cain, 202-222-0751, mcain@foe.org
Kelly Trout, 202-222-0722, ktrout@foe.org

Bipartisan decision called a win for the public and for the environment, signals waning congressional support for wasting tax dollars on dirty and outdated fuel

WASHINGTON, D.C.—The Senate voted 73-27 this afternoon to end ethanol blender tax credits, a $6 billion dollar annual giveaway for dirty corn ethanol.

“Senators scored a win for the public and for the environment by voting to end this $6 billion giveaway,” said Kate McMahon, biofuels campaign coordinator at Friends of the Earth.

“Ending this subsidy will help reduce the deficit, have almost no impact on jobs and limit support for this polluting industry. We thank the senators for reaching across the aisle to send a decisive message that the ethanol industry’s days of living high off the taxpayers’ hog have come to an end,” added McMahon.

The bipartisan vote drew some of the Senate’s most conservative and progressive members together to end the tax giveaway, which primarily benefits big oil companies.

Friends of the Earth is part of a diverse coalition of environmental groups, business associations, taxpayer advocates, hunger and development organizations, agricultural groups, free-market groups, religious organizations, budget hawks and public interest watchdogs that have mounted a multi-year campaign to end the wasteful tax break promoting corn ethanol.

Tax credits for ethanol are already set to expire at the end of 2011, but if signed into law the amendment approved by the Senate today would revoke the $6 billion tax credit by July 1, and could save $3 billion dollars this year. Action is pending in House of Representatives.


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Friends of the Earth is fighting to defend the environment and create a more healthy and just world. Our current campaigns focus on promoting clean energy and solutions to climate change, keeping toxic and risky technologies out of the food we eat and products we use, and protecting marine ecosystems and the people who live and work near them.

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