Ethanol leader says biofuels industry would suffer if rail strike begins
A renewable fuels leader says the ethanol industry would definitely feel the impact if America’s railroads go on strike.
Geoff Cooper with the Renewable Fuels Association says, “It’s a dire situation, to be sure.”
Cooper says 70% of the ethanol produced in the U.S. is shipped by rail and producers have already been dealing with poor rail service. He says the prospect of any further slowdown or cuts to rail service would be “calamitous” for the industry. “If we can’t move ethanol, plants have got to shut down. It’s that simple. Once you fill up those storage tanks, if you can’t move it out of the facility, your only option is to throttle down or shut the plant down.”
Cooper says if ethanol movement stops, gas prices will go up. “If that product is now held up or is sitting on a siding somewhere or is not moving to the terminals to get blended, that is absolutely going to have an impact.”
Cooper says he’s encouraged to hear the Biden administration is actively trying to resolve the dispute before Friday’s deadline.