Ethanol Battle Flares Again

Arguments over the renewable fuel standard heated up at an EPA public hearing Thursday.

Reuters reports that “about 300 people attended [the hearing on the] proposed changes which have become one of the most divisive policy issues of the year.”

“The meeting comes nearly three weeks after the Obama administration proposed slashing how much renewable fuel – mostly corn-based ethanol – needs to be blended into the U.S. fuel supply, bowing to pressure from the petroleum industry.”

“The EPA has warned that the country is approaching a point where the RFS would require the use of more ethanol than can be blended into gasoline at the 10 percent level that dominates the U.S. fueling infrastructure.”

“Refiners have said this so-called “blend wall,” if left in place, would force them to export more fuel or produce less gasoline, leading to shortages and higher prices at the pump.”

“Ethanol supporters and the biodiesel industry have warned that the lower mandate could seriously hurt U.S. corn prices by undercutting demand from refiners, and trigger job losses across rural America.”

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