Governor Ricketts appeared at American Ethanol Coalition’s annual conference in Omaha last month to speak about the economic benefits of higher blends of ethanol.
The governor, who gave the keynote address, explained how increased ethanol gasoline blends add value to Nebraska agriculture which helps create jobs, increases demand for locally grown commodities and attracts new businesses, which are all a part of a growing state economy.
The conference included speakers who provided information to retailers interested in including E15 ethanol blends at their pumps. Grants from the U.S. Department of Agriculture are available to help retailers with the costs of installing new pumps to dispense higher ethanol blends.
Ricketts said the goal of higher ethanol blends is to put more ethanol into our nation’s motor fuel supply — aiming beyond the 10 percent blend now common at the pump. E15 — or a blend with 15 percent ethanol — is the future, supporters say.
More than two dozen plants across the state produce ethanol, providing corn farmers with buyers who require moiuntains of grain. Also, a byproduct of producing ethanol is a high-protein cattle feed, which is very useful to Nebraska cattle ranchers and farmers.