Amid complaints from refiners that it would exceed their ability to blend it into fuels without putting engines at risk, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is considering scaling back legal requirements on the use of ethanol next year.
A proposal from the agency would cut the mandate to 15.21 billion gallons for renewable fuels in 2014 instead of the 18.15 billion gallons established by a 2007 law, according to an internal proposal. The agency would call for the use of 13 billion gallons of conventional corn-based ethanol and 2.21 billion gallons of advanced biofuels such as biodiesel, down from 13.8 billion gallons and 2.75 billion gallons respectively this year, it said.
The EPA proposal is “addressing both availability of qualifying renewable fuels and constraints on their consumption,” the agency said in the draft, which is dated Aug. 26, just days before a plan was officially submitted to the White House for review. An industry representative provided the EPA document to Bloomberg.
The administration of President Barack Obama, which has the ability under the law to adjust the legal requirements, could revamp the plan before the EPA issues it in the coming weeks. After that, the proposal could be changed before being finalized by the agency.
Under the Renewable Fuel Standard, refiners must use a certain amount of those fuels each year, with their target determined by their share of the fuel market. The EPA and renewable-fuel makers argue it spurs production of domestic fuels and cuts greenhouse-gas emissions by reducing use of gasoline or diesel.
) - Friday, October 11th, 2013 - filed under Industry
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