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EPA Releases Ethanol Standards

Tuesday, June 9, 2015   (0 Comments)
Posted by: William Higgins
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EPA Releases Ethanol Standards

The Environmental Protection Agency has released its proposal for the next three years of the ethanol mandate. It set its overdue 2014 requirements at the actual level of production — 15.93 billion gallons of biofuel — increasing that total to 16.3 billion gallons this year and 17.4 billion gallons in 2016. The statutory requirement for 2016 is 22.25 billion gallons. The agency has stated:

"The proposal seeks to put the RFS program on a steady path forward – ensuring the continued growth of renewable fuels while recognizing the practical limits on ethanol blending, called the ethanol 'blend wall.' The blend wall refers to the difficulty in incorporating increasing amounts of ethanol into the transportation fuel supply at volumes exceeding those achieved by the sale of nearly all gasoline as E10 (gasoline containing 10 percent ethanol by volume). Although the production of renewable fuels has been increasing, overall gasoline consumption in the United States is less than anticipated when Congress established the program by law in 2007. In order to address that issue, EPA is proposing – to use existing authorities under the law – to reduce the advanced biofuel and total renewable fuel standards for 2014. The agency also is proposing to maintain the same volume for biomass-based diesel for 2014 and 2015 as was adopted for 2013. Once the proposal is published in the Federal Register, it will be open to a 60 day public comment period.”

Many critics are unhappy with the Renewable Fuel Standard, claiming that the market cannot support elevated levels of ethanol as required by the federal mandate. The proposal has critics in congress as well, Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-OK), chairman of the Senate Natural Resources committee, said the RFS is "a mismanaged program in need of rigorous oversight.”

MRAA is opposed to increased ethanol levels in transportation gasoline and is part of a multi-industry coalition, Smarter Fuel Futures, which advocates for a complete reform of our country’s biofuel policies.

To read the full EPA Report, visit

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