Jefferson City, Missouri [RenewableEnergyAccess.com] Governor Matt Blunt signed House Bill 1270 establishing the Missouri Renewable Fuel Standard Act, which requires most Missouri gasoline to contain at least ten percent ethanol (E-10) by January 1, 2008. Sponsored by Rep. Bob Behnen, the new law ensures the state has access to E-10’s economic and environmental benefits.“This renewable fuel standard benefits consumers, our economy, the environment and Missouri farmers. It means Missouri corn fields will be the oil fields of the 21st century, contributing $348 million annually in value-added income to Missouri’s economy and generating $726 million annually in economic activity,” Blunt said. The legislation ensures lower gasoline costs by lifting the E-10 standard when ethanol is more expensive than petroleum-based gasoline. Consumers will benefit from the proposal and will also continue to have a choice when they buy gas, as premium-grade fuels will be exempt from the E-10 standard. Blunt is the first Missouri Governor to recommend full funding for the Ethanol Incentive Fund in his budget to the General Assembly. Since taking office Blunt has directed $16.5 million to the fund. Missouri currently has three operating ethanol plants, in Macon, Malta Bend, and Craig, that produce about 115 million gallons of ethanol annually. A fourth ethanol plant under way brings anticipated growth in Missouri’s ethanol industry to more than enough fuel produced to meet the new E-10 standard. Studies have shown that 10 percent ethanol blends reduce particulate matter by 50 percent, reduce carbon monoxide emissions by up to 30 percent and reduce emissions of toxic compounds by 13 percent.