Ethanol, Renewable Fuels and Rural Economic Development
The ACGF was established to advocate the benefits of renewable energy, which is our primary program. ACGF has been and continues to be a strong advocate of ethanol, wind energy and renewable energy. American Corn Grower organization leaders conceived of the renewable fuels standard (RFS) for ethanol in the late 1990’s and earlier 2000’s and then, informed leaders of the potential economic benefits of that policy for rural America and for U.S. consumers overall. Through outreach and public education ACGF then advocated adoption of that policy. As a result of 10% ethanol in the U.S. gasoline supply American motorists paid $1.00 per gallon less in 2011 according to a study by Iowa State University and the University of Wisconsin. The lower gas prices at the pump from ethanol in the fuel mix saves U.S. motorists about $112 billion annually given the total amount of gasoline use.

The ethanol industry supports 400,000 U.S. jobs. A September 19, 2011 Progressive Farmer-DTN article cited three land-grant university officials or studies (University of Nebraska Center for Energy Sciences Research, South Dakota State University and Iowa State University) and confirmed the economic benefits of ethanol to U.S. consumers, taxpayers and cattle feeders. A quote from South Dakota State University stated, “In this country, top livestock producers are mixing DDGs with previously unused or under-used crop residue. As a result, the animals are getting the same, or even more crude protein and total digestible nutrients, than there was in the corn alone. In other words there is no loss of feed, and the feed vs. fuel argument becomes irrelevant.” Ethanol is a rural economic development superstar. A University of Nebraska’s agricultural economics analysis shows that ethanol is a key component of Nebraska’s “Golden Triangle” of corn, cattle and ethanol. The report states that ethanol’s 2010 economic contribution in Nebraska included: Direct receipts of $3.4 billion with indirect (multiplier) impacts on other businesses results totaling $4.5 billion in business receipts; total direct and multiplier impacts of $928,000,000 in gross state product; direct labor income of $223 million and a total of $585 million with the multiplier; and 3,000 direct jobs and nearly 8,000 more when indirect jobs are considered.

This program uses its resources for public education and outreach on behalf of renewable energy.

Wealth from the Wind
Wealth From The Wind recognizes the potential economic and environmental benefits of wind power generation for small and mid-sized farms and rural communities, along with the contribution wind power can make to reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

It is no secret that the farm economy has its economic ups and downs and faces many challenges, especially where commodity prices and farm income are concerned from time to time. Looking at other ways to provide farm income and rural economic development diversity is important. Environmental stewardship cannot be ignored and wind energy is a very positive energy source and beneficial to the environment. Wind power opens up new opportunities for both the economy and the environment while addressing the problems of global warming.

Wealth From The Wind advocates research as well as positive state and federal policies and programs to encourage farmer-owned wind systems, the leasing of farmland for commercial wind development, small-scale wind turbines for individual farm use and net metering. This is accomplished through educational programs and by providing information to the agricultural community including governmental incentives such as the U. S. Department of Agriculture (REAP) grant and loan program and programs available through the U.S. Department of Energy.
Wind Powering America Newsletter
The National Wind Resource Guide
Wind Energy Benefits
Wind Powering America Fact Sheet Series (PDF 435 KB)
Wind Energy Myths
Wind Powering America Fact Sheet Series (PDF 211 KB)
2004 Wind Producers Survey
Survey Results from the June 14th Press Release
2003 Wind Producers Survey
Survey Results from the April 21st Press Release

2001 Wind & Climate Change Survey