Some 87% of Americans say the U.S. government should actively support the development of a renewable-fuels industry, a national poll conducted by the Renewable Fuels Now Coalition finds.

The coalition represents the ethanol, biodiesel, agriculture and other industries that support increased use of homegrown renewable fuels as part of a balanced energy policy for the U.S.

Members include the Renewable Fuels Assn. (RFA), American Coalition for Ethanol, Ethanol Promotion and Information Council and Clean Fuels Development Coalition.

The poll finds 74% of Americans believe there should be increased use of domestically produced renewable fuels such as ethanol, while 77% think the U.S. Congress should encourage oil refiners to blend more ethanol into their gasoline. The survey queried 1,000 U.S. adults in October and had a margin of error of plus or minus 3.1%.

“By overwhelming margins, Americans want renewable fuels, like ethanol, to play a larger role in our nation’s energy future,” says RFA President Bob Dinneen.

The poll finds 78% of respondents feel an increase in domestic ethanol production would create new jobs and improve the economy in rural America, while 58% believe more use of U.S.-produced ethanol would help reduce the country’s dependence on foreign oil.

Some 75% of those polled say they view ethanol as somewhat important in reducing greenhouse-gas emissions.

The survey also finds 84% of Americans believe other factors besides ethanol are the root cause of rising food prices. These include higher oil prices (46%); increased global demand (15%); and adverse weather conditions, such as drought (14%).