EPA Chief Administrator Scott Pruitt may not receive a warm welcome in South Dakota

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KSFY) - The chief administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is coming to South Dakota.

Cropped Photo: Gage Skidmore / CC BY-SA 2.0

But he may not receive a warm welcome from the South Dakota Corn Growers Association. The organization is upset about how Administrator Scott Pruitt has handled ethanol production and are planning a rally to prove their point.

Pruitt has used his position at the EPA to grant waivers for smaller refineries that allows them not to add ethanol to their fuel.

"In South Dakota, we have 12,500 corn farmers, we have over 10,000 South Dakotans in Sioux Falls, Huron, and Aberdeen invested in ethanol," Lisa Richardson, executive director for the South Dakota Corn Growers Association, said. "We have over 5,000 employees that work for ethanol in the state, so it's critical to our economy.

Each year, South Dakota produces 800 million bushels of corn. More than 300 million of that is used in ethanol products.

"We welcome him if he's ready to give us E-15 year-round; otherwise, he's simply not welcome," she said. "He's undermined our industry."

Pruitt will be touring a farm in Reliance on Wednesday. The same day that the rally will be held at the farmer's market across from Falls Park at 10:30 a.m.