Before Missouri can have B-5, urban and rural opposition has to get out of the way. .
The push to do for Missouri’s soybean growers what the ethanol mandate has done for corn growers is on in the state senate where debate has stalled on a bill saying almost all diesel fuel in Missouri should be blended with five percent biodiesel. The legislation is similar to the ethanol mandate that went into effect January 1 requiring almost all gasoline sold in Missouri to be ten percent ethanol.
Opponents charge the plan is a false economy that uses taxpayer money to produce a product government will force taxpayers to buy, and the diversion of food crops to energy production will drive up food costs. .
Senator Wes Shoemeyer, a supporter of the biodiesel mandate and part-owner of an ethanol plant, claims the biodiesel mandate will help break American independence on foreign oil. "Sometimes there are some things that we deem patriotic enough to say we have to create a market," he argues. But opponent Matt Bartle of Lee’s Summit says he has seen more "horrible ideas wrapped in the flag of patriotism marched off the cliff." Bartle says this is another of those ideas.
Bartle suggests changing the bill to require half of the biodiesel produced in taxpayer subsidized plants in Missouri to be sold within the state. Sponsor Bill Stouffer of Napton says Bartle’s idea is impractical because Missouri motorists do not use enough diesel fuel to consume that much biodiesel.
Opposition led by Bartle and the length of the debate so far has forced Stouffer to set the bill aside for another day.