The cost of a gallon of gas has increased nearly every month of Joe Biden’s presidency. American family budgets have been stretched thin, and people across the country have been feeling the pinch at the pump for months. This week, the national price of a gallon of gasoline topped four dollars for the first time since 2008. While President Biden and Washington Democrats are trying to place the blame for rising gas prices solely on Putin’s invasion of Ukraine, let’s be clear: President Biden’s year-long crusade against American energy put us in this vulnerable position.
On day one of his Administration, the President shut down the Keystone XL Pipeline. Shortly thereafter, he issued an executive order suspending all oil and gas leasing on federal lands and waters. And despite the promises he made to Iowans on the campaign trail, the President has acted as if our biofuels industry doesn’t exist, ignoring our homegrown, clean energy source. The pain Americans are feeling at the pump is the predictable result of President Biden favoring foreign energy over our abundant domestic options.
Even as Putin waged war on Ukraine, President Biden was still importing upwards of 600,000 barrels of oil a day from Russia—there is no justification for the U.S. spending millions of dollars daily to fund Putin’s murderous invasion of Ukraine. Though delayed, President Biden’s eventual decision to cut off Russian oil was the right one. But now, the President must stop sidelining domestic producers and re-establish U.S. energy dominance. It is dangerous for the U.S. to rely on foreign energy—and we don’t have to.
Instead of asking foreign adversaries like Venezuela and Iran to produce more oil, the Administration should ramp up domestic production and turn to Iowa’s biofuels community who stand ready to bolster our fuel supply and bring prices down at the pump.
That’s why I called on the Administration to grant a nationwide Reid Vapor Pressure (RVP) waiver to allow the sale of higher ethanol blends across the country. This isn’t a new concept. The EPA has routinely exercised this authority regionally in response to unforeseen fuel supply challenges. For example, the EPA granted a federal RVP waiver in Louisiana and Mississippi following fuel shortages caused by Hurricane Ida. The EPA also granted a federal RVP waiver in 13 states following the Colonial Pipeline hack. The EPA’s regular use of RVP waivers proves that the Administration recognizes biofuels can be used to mitigate price and supply impacts. So why haven’t they taken this step during a major crisis that is impacting every single American?
As gas prices climb, working families need the Administration to stop just talking about rising prices and start doing something about them. The Biden Administration deflecting blame and telling Americans to buy luxury electric vehicles won’t help the Iowans who need to fill up their tank to get to work or drive their kids to school. Granting an RVP waiver and allowing the sale of higher blends of ethanol nationwide is a commonsense, actionable solution to lower costs for every single American family today.
We don’t need Russian energy. We don’t need Iranian energy. And we don’t need Venezuelan energy when we have Iowa biofuels. Fully utilizing Iowa biofuels will bring down costs at the pump, bolster our domestic energy supply, reduce emissions, and increase our national security. Plus, it helps create American jobs and supports our family farming economy. What is the Biden Administration waiting for?