Ethanol was maintained at its 15 billion gallon cap. All groups that support cleaner-burning, renewable fuels should work together to help the EPA understand why a viable starch industry and aggressive targets for cellulosic and advanced biofuels are essential to safeguarding public health and improving the health of our planet. The 2019 amount for biomass-based diesel also was set at 2.1 billion gallons.
However, the National Biodiesel Board noted that the EPA recommended only 4.29 billion gallons of advanced biofuels and 2.1 billion gallons of biomass-based diesel, a reduction and a flatline, respectively, from past year.
"Maintaining the renewable fuel standard at current levels ensures stability in the marketplace and follows through with my commitment to meet the statutory deadlines and lead the Agency by upholding the rule of law", EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt said in a written statement. Some groups applauded the government for keeping the total growing while others said it didn't grow almost enough.
"These volumes are important for setting a baseline - and our industry will again surpass these low expectations - but the failure to increase volumes will inhibit continued growth and investments", the association said.
The American Soybean Association sees things a little differently.
NCC President Mike Brown said: "EPA just keeps trying to pump more ethanol into a fuel market that doesn't have room".
"The EPA's announced renewable volume obligations fall short of the full potential of the US biofuels industry. We would like to have seen a boost to the target blending levels for cellulosic biofuels, and we will continue to work with the administration to advance the RFS goal of further stimulating growth and showing USA leadership in 21st century fuels". This represents a modest step in the right direction for the RFS in 2018.
EPA officials announced the RFS for conventional ethanol would remain at 15 billion gallons for 2018.
Leading up to the release of the final 2018 RVOs, Growth Energy filed substantive comments including several studies that provided insight into the potential for cellulosic biofuels production, the role of renewable fuel in achieving the U.S.'s energy policy goals, and the risk of an increase to national greenhouse gas emissions if the EPA were to reduce the conventional fuel volume. POET remains committed to seeing the U.S. lead the world in cellulosic biofuel production.
"Biofuels are a critical component of the United States fuel supply, and today President Trump and the EPA confirmed that fact". The NCGA is committed to working with EPA to increase consumer access to renewable fuels.
The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) yesterday (Thursday, 30 November) announced that it is mandating the statutory maximum 15 billion gallons of ethanol be added to the domestic fuel supply in 2018, the second consecutive year EPA has mandated the maximum amount of ethanol allowed under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS).