We must mind the source for this bit of news. POET, apparently the second-largest US producer of ethanol after Archer Daniels Midland (ADM), has put out a press release about its first economic impact study. We must also mind the source of the economic impact study, an agriculture and biofuels consultancy firm called ABF Economics.

Having said all that, POET says its the 60-page report documenting the company's 2014 economic impact reveals good news: a hand in creating around 39,978 full-time jobs and $3.1 billion in domestic income, $5.4 billion added to the nation's gross domestic product, and $13.5 billion in receipts for US companies. And then there are the usual plaudits like reducing greenhouse gas and decreasing our use of foreign oil. The gaudy numbers aren't surprising; the US is the world's largest ethanol producer by far, more than doubling Brazil's output for the last four years, and ADM's ethanol division helped boost the company's 2014 numbers even though profit margins have been on the ropes for years.

If you're hearing more about ethanol's salubrious effects on the Earth and the economy it could have to do with the Obama administration's proposal to lower the ethanol blending requirement. That's what got the corn-supported Energy Resources Center to put out a release recently saying the administration's idea would have the effect of adding more than 951,000 cars to the nation's roads and more than four million metric tons of CO2 to the atmosphere, right after the petition in support of ethanol that garnered 250,000 signatures. You can read POET's contribution to the defensive strategy in the press release below.

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POET releases first-ever economic impact study

Report shows POET is instrumental in enhancing economic growth, reducing dependence on foreign oil and offsetting greenhouse gases


SIOUX FALLS, SD (August 13, 2015) – Today, POET, one of the world's largest ethanol producers, released its first-ever economic impact study, revealing the significant impact POET made to national economic growth and job creation in 2014, including:

- Generating a total of $13.5 billion in sales for U.S. businesses;
- Adding $5.4 billion in national gross domestic product;
- Supporting an estimated 39,978 full time jobs; and
- Contributing $3.1 billion in income for American families.

The report further details POET's contribution to the economic prosperity in each of the seven states where it operates – South Dakota, Minnesota, Iowa, Missouri, Indiana, Ohio and Michigan. POET, which is headquartered in Sioux Falls, S.D., operates a total of 27 dry mill corn ethanol plants with an annual capacity of 1.7 billion gallons – more than 11 percent of the total U.S. ethanol output.

"Ethanol provides us the means to produce our own clean fuel and keep the enormous economic benefits within America's borders," POET CEO Jeff Lautt said. "The impact flows from the plants to farmers, communities, throughout the states in which they operate and across the nation."

In addition, the report cites POET's impact on reducing foreign oil dependence. According to the study, POET's production of 1.7 billion gallons of ethanol displaces nearly 1.2 billion gallons of gasoline, which requires 61 million barrels of crude oil to produce. This displacement potentially reduces the outflow of money to foreign producers of oil by nearly $5.5 billion.

The use of POET ethanol also reduces greenhouse gas emissions relative to gasoline. Burning a gallon of ethanol opposed to gasoline results in a 35 percent reduction of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions. Reflecting this, the production of 1.7 billion gallons of POET ethanol cuts CO2 emissions by approximately 874,000 metric tons.

POET employees, stakeholders, family and friends are celebrating the announcement today at a series of POET Ethanol Day events in its operating states, where attendees can enjoy food, activities and hear from local officials.

To read the full report and find additional information on state-level data, please visit: http://www.poet.com/impact.

About POET
POET, one of the world's largest ethanol producers, is a leader in biorefining through its efficient, vertically integrated approach to production. The 25-year-old company has a production capacity in excess of 1.6 billion gallons of ethanol and 9 billion pounds of high-protein animal feed annually from its network of 27 production facilities. POET also operates a pilot-scale cellulosic bio-ethanol plant, which uses corn cobs, leaves, husk and some stalk as feedstock, and expects to commercialize the process in Emmetsburg, Iowa through its joint venture with DSM. For more information, visit http://www.poet.com.

About the Study
The findings are derived from an independent and comprehensive nationwide study titled "Economic Contribution of POET Biofuels Production on U.S. and State Economies" conducted by ABF Economics. ABF analysts used an economic model called IMPLAN (Impact Analysis for Planning) to quantify the economic impact of POET's operations across three main sectors – ethanol production, agriculture/corn growth and biofuels R&D.


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