Last week, the Environmental Protection Agency announced it is delaying its decision on Governor Rick Perry‘s request for a 50% waiver from the federal ethanol mandate. Gov. Perry sought the waiver on grounds that the mandate is raising feed prices for livestock producers. The EPA was set to announce a decision last week but has delayed its decision until August at the earliest in order to review more than 15,000 public comments and to consult with other federal agencies (e.g., the Departments of Energy and Agriculture).

Corn prices have declined recently but remain well above their pre-federal-mandate levels. Three years ago, when Congress required alternative fuels to be blended with gasoline, corn was just over $2 per bushel. Prices subsequently tripled 2006 levels, and according to the Chicago Board of Trade, have risen 123% during the past year. The reality of post-regulation corn prices needs to be hammered home throughout the EPA’s decision-making process.

Read more on our federal government’s harmful food-for-fuel policies.

– Drew Thornley