Obama Administration Releases Proposed New Renewable Fuel Standards

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The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency released its proposed new fuel efficiency standards on Thursday, opening up a 45-day public comment period.

“EPA continues to support the use of renewable fuels within the transportation sector, which encourages innovation, strengthens American energy security, and decreases greenhouse gas pollution,” according to a press release announcing the standards.

The Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 established the Renewable Fuel Standard program and the annual renewable fuel volume targets, which steadily increase to an overall level of 36 billion gallons in 2022. To achieve these volumes, EPA calculates a percentage-based standard for the following year. Based on the standard, each refiner and importer determines the minimum volume of renewable fuel that it must ensure is used in its transportation fuel.

The proposed 2013 overall volumes and standards are:

Biomass-based diesel (1.28 billion gallons; 1.12 percent)
Advanced biofuels (2.75 billion gallons; 1.60 percent)
Cellulosic biofuels (14 million gallons; 0.008 percent)
Total renewable fuels (16.55 billion gallons; 9.63 percent)

Overall, EPA’s program encourages greater use of renewable fuels, including advanced biofuels. For 2013, the program is proposing to implement EISA’s requirement to blend more than 1.35 billion gallons of renewable fuels over the amount mandated for 2012.

Find more information on the standards and regulations here.

© 2013, Glynn Wilson. All rights reserved.

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