Koch Opposes Federal Mandates and Subsidies for Ethanol

June 13, 2011

Dear Senator Coburn,

Koch Industries has opposed federal mandates and subsidies for decades. Our aim is to create a free market where consumers decide winners and losers based on which products they decide to buy, instead of government picking winners and losers based on which friends or products it chooses to subsidize.

One such government intervention is the tax credit that provides about $6 billion each year to blenders of ethanol. Lawmakers in the Senate could take a sensible step by approving an amendment sponsored by Senator Tom Coburn (R-OK.) that would eliminate this credit. We hold this position despite the fact that we benefit from these tax credits.

We oppose ethanol subsidies because they distort economic signals about price and demand and create inefficiencies that divert resources from productive activities to politically favored ones. We have also opposed subsidies for natural gas vehicles and other biofuels for these same reasons.

Still, our company now produces and blends ethanol, because while we would prefer that there be no government mandates or subsidies, once such laws are in place we will comply with them. We will not place our company or our employees at a competitive disadvantage in the mixed-market economy in which we compete.

Our government and public affairs activities are based on principles of economic freedom and property rights that are core values recognized and held by the majority of Americans. Koch will continue to lobby for the repeal of energy subsidies and mandates. We will work to transform the current, mixed-market economy into a true free-market economy.