To the editor:
As a general manager from POET Biorefining-Gowrie, I help support Gowrie and Webster County's local economy. But it is not just me. Our engineers, our farmers, our technicians and our future industry leaders are working together to simultaneously strengthen America's energy independence and move our nation toward further economic prosperity. None of this innovation, economic growth and security would be possible without the Renewable Fuel Standard.
The RFS has vastly expanded American renewable energy industries, contributing more than $40 billion to the nation's gross domestic product in 2012 alone. This energy strategy bolsters the American ethanol industry, creates nearly 400,000 domestic jobs, sparks innovative academic research at top American universities and revitalizes towns like Gowrie.
You see, when the RFS is attacked, it is an attack on my job, my town and this local economy. At a time when jobs are shipped overseas, and top research is conducted outside our borders, America's growing ethanol industry is creating economic prosperity. We are creating economic opportunities in agriculture, and related industries, for our best and brightest to return home and thrive. Millions of dollars from some of the world's largest companies are pouring in to local communities. Cutting-edge research and technological innovation is occurring right here at home, in Gowrie, America's heartland.
As a retired brigadier general for the Iowa Army National Guard I have had a close relationship with our national security and I can tell you that our dependence on foreign oil needs to end. We here in the United States have the resources to become energy independent and ethanol is first on the list.
The RFS is built to last; it has already transformed communities across this country and provided consumers savings and a choice at the pump. Now is not the time to change this policy. Now is the time to trust in it, trust our farmers and trust our homegrown industries. It is time to stop attacking the heart of America, and let our economy - and innovation - flourish.
Gary F. Eischeid