Senate Must Fix Biofuels Mistakes

Senate Must Fix Biofuels Mistakes

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Bad BiofuelsMany bad deals were made to help pass a major climate and energy bill in the House. Some of the most egregious were brokered on behalf of corporate agribusiness by Rep. Collin Peterson (D – Minn.) and his Agriculture Committee.

Now we have to pressure the Senate to fix the House’s compromises.

Corporate agribusiness has given more than a million dollars to Peterson’s campaigns.1 He returned the favor by severely weakening limits on greenhouse gas emissions from biofuels and eliminating legal protections that prevent federal forests from being logged and turned into biofuels.

These compromises will lead to greater use of biofuels that cause even more global warming pollution than gasoline. Now, Peterson’s counterpart in the Senate, Tom Harkin (D – Iowa), is threatening to weaken biofuels policy further.2 We need your help to stop him.

Tell your senators not to be like Collin Peterson — we need to maintain protections for forests and limits on global warming pollution from biofuels.

Peterson and Harkin purport to be looking out for farmers. But those same famers — along with the rest of us — face economic devastation from the droughts, heat waves, and severe storms that global warming will bring. It’s only Big Agribusiness that will benefit, expanding short-term profits by increasing pollution and cutting down precious forests.

It may be too late to persuade Collin Peterson to do the right thing, but it’s not too late to reach out to senators who will assemble their climate and energy bill over the next few months.

Letter from Enviros to Senate  Letter from Hunger Groups to Senate

Factsheet on Global Warming and Biofuels   Factsheet on Biomass Loop-Hole


1 Collin Peterson took $1.6 million dollars from the agribusiness sector according to

2 “Chairman Tom Harkin (D-Iowa) and other members of his panel say they want to ensure any effort at wide-ranging climate legislation in the Senate will include all of the provisions that House Agriculture Chairman Collin Peterson (D-Minn.) brokered for the House cap-and-trade bill, H.R. 2454. With the hard-fought Peterson deal as their starting point, the farm state lawmakers could have leverage to capture additional benefits for farmers and ranchers.” Winter, Alison. “Senate Ag Panel’s Members Look to Stake Major Claim in Climate Bill.” New York Times. Web, July 9, 2009