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Ethanol fuel mandates now take precedent over economic conditions and the pleas of farmers, states, and nearly 200 members of Congress, according to U.S. Senator Mike Enzi, R-Wyo., who was disappointed to learn that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) denied requests for waivers from certain provisions in the Renewable Fuels Standards (RFS).

Drought conditions have caused a spike in corn prices and the requirements for blending ethanol are driving prices even higher, according to Enzi. Giving states the ability to have a waiver would help lower gas and food prices already having a devastating effect across the economy.

In August, Enzi sent a letter to EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson asking that the agency grant waivers from the RFS if there is “inadequate supply to meet the mandate or when such a waiver will prevent economic harm to the country, a region, or a state.”

“This all-or-nothing approach by the EPA shows just how out-of-touch the agency really is,” said Enzi. “Putting the need for additives in gasoline above producers, farmers, and families in tough economic times, should have been the first sign that you’re going the wrong direction.”