House Small Business Agriculture, Energy and Trade Subcommittee Chairman Scott Tipton (R-CO) today held a hearing to examine innovative ways small businesses contribute to energy production. Specifically, the Subcommittee focused on advanced biofuels, such as cellulosic ethanol, and new innovative technologies small companies have developed to produce energy from previously unused materials.
“Today’s hearing was on a topic of significant importance for our nation,” said Chairman Tipton. “Economic prosperity in the United States is closely tied to the availability of reliable and affordable supplies of energy. In recent years, we have seen energy prices skyrocket. You only need to fill your gas tank, or pay your home heating bill to realize how much more you are paying for energy now than just 10 years ago. This puts tremendous strain on American families, small businesses, and farms. In order for us to take steps forward, we must acknowledge the role of innovative small businesses in reducing our dependence on foreign sources of energy and developing new ‘homegrown’ energy solutions right here in our own communities.”
For related hearing documents, click here.
Notable Witness Quotes:
Jerry Taylor, President and CEO of MFA Oil and Co-founder of MFA Oil Biomass in Columbia, MO said: “Our farmer-owners see incredible opportunities as this endeavor takes off. They recognize the potential to offer America’s rural communities permanent manufacturing jobs, a new cash crop for farmers, a local source for green hearing, renewable liquid fuel sources, biobased chemicals, green building materials, water treatments systems, soil reclamation systems, and consumer packaging.”
Michael McAdams, President of Advanced Biofuels Association in Washington, DC said, “…the advanced biofuels industry is extremely innovative and has moved rapidly over the last five years. We believe we can and should be a fundamental part of an American energy policy that adopts a portfolio approach. [We] are already starting to see advanced biofuels delivering on its promise of creating new jobs, and helping to strengthen our nation’s economic and energy security.”
Ralph Tommaso, CEO and Head of Business Development at Greenworks Holdings in Bethlehem, PA said, “Running a business is tough. There are layers of regulations and laws at the Federal, state, county and town level. Small businesses need stable policies with reasonable time frames for permits and approvals. Our main challenge is regulatory uncertainty and the fluctuating and more often than not tightening policies under the Renewable Fuel Standard 2.
“Biofuels represent a potentially cost effective way for the manufacturing industry to reduce harmful emissions, thus saving manufacturing jobs while simultaneously creating and preserving jobs in the biofuels industry.”