Domestic biofuel production is necessary for energy and national security, the Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) emphasized today in a letter to the leaders of the House Armed Services Committee and its Subcommittee on Readiness.
BIO President & CEO Jim Greenwood said, “The Pentagon has sought to decrease its reliance on foreign oil and increase use of renewable energy for a very simple reason: energy security is a national security priority.
“As the single largest fuel consumer in the U.S., the military is as vulnerable to high fuel prices as every other consumer. It is also vulnerable to supply disruptions. And just like consumers, over the past few years our military forces have been paying more at the pump. But unlike other consumers who have simply used less fuel, when the Pentagon is forced to shift its budget to pay higher fuel prices, it comes at a cost of reducing military readiness. In 2011, $3.6 billion of the military’s budget was shifted to pay for higher fuel prices.
“Further, our military’s reliance on oil is a liability that our enemies can exploit – by blocking access to fuel supplies during military or humanitarian missions. We can’t afford to wait to speed funding to new biofuel technology providers.
“That’s why each branch of the military has set goals for using renewable energy. And while the cost of renewable energy is high now, it is declining rapidly through ongoing research and development and early commercialization efforts. U.S. companies have made significant investments in advanced biofuels that can increase U.S. energy security, and the measurable progress they’ve made is beginning to pay dividends. This is not about picking winners and losers. With biofuels everyone wins!”