The Geography of Ethanol’s Support in Congress

Michael Giberson

The House of Representatives budget battle has produced a few shots at the ethanol industry, including “Sullivan of Oklahoma Amendment No. 94,” a proposal to prevent the EPA from taking steps to encourage the sale of gasoline with higher ethanol content for use in newer cars. The amendment succeeded, 285-136 (12 not voting), and the resulting map of yeas and nays is so predictable, unsurprising, and boring that even as I am posting it I wonder why I bother.

Anyway, here is the map of the vote (blue is a vote opposing ethanol, red a vote favoring ethanol), followed by a USDA map showing corn production and ethanol plants:

Vote on amendment to stop EPA from implementing E15 waiver. Blue is anti-ethanol, red is pro-ethanol. (Click image for more details on vote)
U.S. Ethanol Capacity as of April 2007; USDA and Renewable Fuels Association data
U.S. Ethanol Capacity as of April 2007 (Link to USDA article on ethanol industry growth.)

If you are among those few people who still believe U.S. ethanol policy is driven by something other than the demands of the U.S. ethanol industry, then you might be surprised. For the rest of us: no surprises here.

5 thoughts on “The Geography of Ethanol’s Support in Congress

  1. Typical Republican grandstanding symbolic gesture. E15 will go nowhere considering how many lawsuits there already are against the EPA and the fact that many states have laws prohibiting selling anything higher than E10 to non flex-fuel cars including California and Oregon, so that little red area in Oregon is a joke.

  2. energy received compared to the energy expended to produce is not worth the costs, besides with ethanol your fuel milage decreases and more pollutants are expelled into the atmosphere. we have the technology to get internal combustion engines to run close to 100% efficiency,greed and political corruption??

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