-- Winter 2020 --
As we kick off 2020, we reflect on the last decade and celebrate how far POET has come. We’ve grown significantly in size and scope while maintaining our position as the leader in the biofuels industry. Innovation remains central to our mission, guiding everything we do from research and process efficiencies to our nonprofit commitment and community engagement. We’ve had opportunities to celebrate our accomplishments and received recognition for our efforts from leading national and industry organizations and publications. We’re proud of how far we’ve come, but our work is not complete.
When farmers speak up, policymakers pay attention. That was the case most recently, as U.S. farmers and biofuels supporters expressed frustration when the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in August issued 31 new waivers to oil refineries, freeing them of requirements to blend biofuels. In response, President Trump promised to deliver a “giant package” to the biofuels industry that would provide relief to U.S. farmers.
Farm country continues to be in a downturn. While it’s clear the difficult ag environment has an impact on America’s farmers, the impact extends further than you might think. It has a ripple effect on global ag markets and farmers across the world.
It was standing room only to hear POET Founder and CEO Jeff Broin’s presentation at the 5th annual Farmer’s Business Network Farmer2Farmer Conference, where he spoke to a packed room of hundreds of farmers and agriculture supporters about the role of agriculture and biofuels in addressing climate change.
The competing interests of Big Oil and agriculture are not new. Big Oil has opposed growth of the ethanol industry in the U.S. for decades because it impacts their bottom line. But the stakes for biofuels’ success and increasing the domestic market for corn is growing, when trade and weather have impacted farms and farmers across the Midwest.
POET SUPPORTS THE NEXT GENERATION OF CHANGEMAKERS
by Miranda Broin
In its third year, POET’s Never Satisfied scholarship program reached further than ever before. More than 2,100 applications came in from across all 50 states, and there was no shortage of impressive candidates looking to use their talents and passions to make a difference.
The stakes for addressing climate change have never been higher. Many point to possible solutions that are in the lab benchwork stages, available at a small scale or cost-prohibitive for the general public. But we need real solutions now. The short-term answer to tackling climate change — the way Jeff Broin, founder and CEO of Sioux Falls-based POET sees it — lies in agriculture and biofuels.