In case you haven’t heard the news, the Next Generation Fuels Act was re-introduced in the United States Congress. This is a big deal for American corn farmers and would mean massive benefits for consumers and the environment.

As a recap, the Next Generation Fuels Act had been introduced before in a previous Congress, but didn’t make it though both the House of Representatives and the Senate. Since it has now been re-introduced in both chambers at the same time, the two separate bills are known as “companion bills.”

This is the first step in a long process with many twists and turns, but it is an important step that we should celebrate.

In Ohio, Senator Sherrod Brown and Representative Marcy Kaptur are co-sponsors. Both have championed the issue in the past and we are grateful for their ongoing support of Ohio’s corn growers.

So what does the Next Generation Fuels Act do? In short, it facilitates and eases the transition to cleaner-burning, lower cost, sustainable liquid fuels by improving greenhouse gas emission standards on auto manufacturers, and promoting ethanol fuel blends. Manufacturers would produce vehicle engines optimized for higher ethanol blends, which burn at a higher octane and increases engine performance.

A major point to note here is that the Next Generation Fuels Act is supported by both sides of the aisle. It is a bipartisan movement to the next step for sustainable fuel in America, and the world, not to mention that the United Automobile Workers Union and the American Farm Bureau both support this bill. It is an all-around win for consumers, producers, manufacturers, and the environment.

Another point in the Next Generation Fuels Act’s favor is that it works with the infrastructure already in place (pumps at gas stations are able to blend varying amounts of ethanol into gasoline), unlike electric vehicles, which would require all new kinds of charging stations to be built.

You can expect to hear more this summer as things heat up.

For a verbal explanation of what is going on here, listen to Ep 012 of Kernels with Ohio Corn & Wheat at