The American Farm Bureau Federation says it supports the Grow Renewable Energy from Ethanol Naturally (GREEN) Jobs Act of 2010 (S. 3231).

The legislation, introduced April 20 by Sens. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) and Kent Conrad (D-N.D.), would bring the nation one step closer to energy independence.

The bill would extend the Volumetric Ethanol Excise Tax Credit and the Small Ethanol Producers Tax Credit for five years through 2015. These two provisions are set to expire at the end of 2010. In addition, the bill extends the Cellulosic Ethanol Production Tax Credit for three years, through 2015, and the secondary tariff on ethanol that offsets the benefit received by imported ethanol.

“Clean, renewable, domestic energy will help America achieve long-term economic growth, create a cleaner environment and shield our economy from unreliable foreign energy sources,” said AFBF President Bob Stallman. “American farmers and ranchers are playing a bigger role in supplying our nation with the energy it needs through the production of agricultural-based, renewable energy resources. Tax incentives play a key role in the development and production of renewable energy.”

Farm Bureau supports the extension and expansion of existing renewable energy tax incentives and supports new incentives to expand the production of cellulosic fuels, cellulosic generated power and the production of biogas. New and expanded incentives that encourage a more diverse feedstock base for cellulosic fuels are needed to reduce price competition for crops that can serve as energy sources and as food and feed.

“The successful development of our nation’s ethanol industry stands as a testament to the effectiveness of tax incentives for renewable energy,” continued Stallman. The industry, which was launched with the aid of tax incentives during the 1980s, now has the capacity to produce more than 10 billion gallons of fuel. Tax incentives also have proven valuable in promoting the production of biodiesel made from oilseed crops and animal fats.

Unfortunately, says AFBF, existing renewable energy tax incentives are temporary with varying expiration dates. Long-term extensions are needed to boost renewable technologies and support development of the market infrastructure necessary to make these technologies more competitive. In addition, the long-term extension of renewable energy credits will ensure industry stability and attract the capital necessary to realize the benefits of long-term planning.

S. 3231 is companion bill to H.R. 4940, the Renewable Fuels Reinvestment Act, introduced earlier this year by Reps. Earl Pomeroy (D-N.D.) and John Shimkus (R-Ill.).