The far-left’s obsession with spending taxpayer dollars on electric vehicle subsidies is a deeply irresponsible publicity stunt that props up the Chinese Communist Party to the detriment of Iowa’s own biofuel producers—and to the detriment of our environment and national security.
The Administration and Democrats in Congress continue to put forward proposals that prioritize electric vehicle subsidies while undermining the biofuel industry at every turn.
Earlier this month, the Speaker Pelosi-led House passed a partisan surface transportation bill that would spend $4 billion over the next five years to deploy electric vehicle charging stations across the country, on top of an extra $4 billion for state and local governments to transition to electric bus fleets.
President Biden recently asked for $174 billion for electric vehicle incentives in his initial infrastructure proposal—the second largest spending item in the entire package. But his proposal failed to include any investments in biofuels, despite his campaign promise to Iowans that he would “promote and advance renewable energy, ethanol, and other biofuels to help rural America and our nation’s farmers.”
Breaking this promise not only harms Iowa’s biofuel producers and farmers, but actively benefits China, our greatest foreign adversary and national security threat.
Communist China currently dominates all aspects of the electric vehicle market and supply chain—nearly every dollar that goes to an electric vehicle flows through China’s economy. This isn’t by mistake. China is essentially the sole producer of the rare earth minerals necessary to create batteries for electric vehicles. Chinese Communist Party leaders have intentionally and strategically ensured that most anyone who wants to build an electric vehicle will have to go through Beijing to do so.
Electric vehicles will play a role in our transportation future—that’s a fact. But spending taxpayer dollars to further our dependence on China and boost the communist regime’s economy is deeply irresponsible, shortsighted, and leaves rural America in the dust. It’s infuriating that the left wants to invest nearly $200 billion of your hard-earned dollars to enrich our biggest adversary instead of promoting and investing in biofuels, an on-hand clean energy resource here at home.
Where are over 70% of electric vehicle batteries manufactured? China.
Where will this investment create jobs? China.
Who is the biggest environmental offender on the planet? China.
Who is our greatest national security threat? Once again, China.
The real farce here is that, even if far-left Democrats got their way and we spent billions of taxpayer dollars on electric vehicle subsidies, it would still take decades to achieve even a slight reduction in carbon emissions.
However, if the Administration were to follow through on its promises to the biofuel industry and increase the blend level of ethanol from E10 to E15, carbon emissions would be reduced significantly. If this change were implemented tomorrow, the reduction in emissions would be equivalent to taking 3.85 million cars off the road within a year.
Right now, Iowa’s biofuel producers stand ready to supplement our domestic fuel supply amid rising gas prices and shortages. The recent Colonial Pipeline cyberattack—the largest attack on U.S. oil infrastructure on record—laid bare the vulnerabilities in our fuel supply chain and the consequences of not having reliable and abundant domestic fuel stores. We should invest in biofuels to improve our supply chain resilience while immediately reducing carbon emissions, not sink taxpayer dollars into the electric vehicle industry and thereby boost China’s economy and the communist regime’s ability to undermine U.S. interests.
There is no justifiable reason to sell out to Communist China when maximizing the use of higher ethanol blends would increase American energy independence, help the environment, and bolster Iowa's biofuel and agriculture industry.
This piece originally ran in The Washington Times on July 20th, 2021.