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Possible E15 waiver gives hope amid low corn prices

Posted at 5:21 PM, Apr 13, 2018
and last updated 2018-04-13 20:35:08-04

Nebraska ethanol officials are hoping the White House will come through with an ethanol blend waiver.

President Donald Trump, in a meeting with Nebraska and Iowa lawmakers, said he's open to considering an E15 waiver, which would give drivers the option to use the ethanol and gas blend at the gas pump.

Nebraska Ethanol Board Chair Jan tenBensel says its a sign of relief for corn growers facing low commodity prices. Farm income is down around 50 percent over the last five years.

"This is a positive message for Nebraska and this is a positive message for the Midwest," tenBensel said.

An E15 waiver would take time to approve and implement. Prices remained steady after the meeting with the President Thursday. Commodities had fallen in recent weeks while trade talks with China have escalated.

Nebraska Gov. Pete Ricketts, who attended the meeting at the White House, said its important to come to a solution with trade with China, along with re-negotiating NAFTA and the TPP.

"Obviously the sooner the better would be best," RIcketts said. "We haven't even really begun planting with the weather here so we do have some time here over the next several months."