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Farmers React to Possible Ethanol Reduction

CENTRAL CITY (CBS 2/ FOX 28)-- Checking his grain levels, farmer John Airy is keeping track of the corn on his farm.
Of those 20,000 bushels in each grain bin that get dried and stored, many of them are turned into ethanol.
Seventy-five to 80 percent of the gallons sold in the state of Iowa are ethanol blends," said John Airy, president of the Linn County Corn and Soybean Growers Association.
But pretty soon that number could change.
The Environmental Protection Agency announced a plan Friday to cut the amount of ethanol blended into the nation's gasoline supply.
If passed, the amount of ethanol produced each year would go from a little more than 18 billion gallons to about 15.
A drop Airy says could hurt corn farmers.
"The less bushels that are used in the production of ethanol are going to be that many more bushels on the market, Airy said. 
Something which could drive the price of corn down.
"You've got extra supply and less demand," Airy said.
Lawmakers say with gas consumption going down, the need for ethanol-- which is used in most gas sold in the U.S. -- just isn't as high.
A possible change Airy says he'd just have to get used to, even though he may not like it.
"We'd sure hate to see ethanol go backwards," he said.
The proposed plan is subject to a 60-day public comment period and could later be changed.

 
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