The new renewable fuel standard (RFS) announced Wednesday by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will give a boost to the production of ethanol. According to EPA, new data showed that ethanol delivers significant climate benefits by displacing conventional gasoline.
The new RFS requires biofuel production to grow from last year’s 11.1 billion gallons to 36 billion gallons in 2022, with 21 billion gallons to come from advanced biofuels. According to EPA, increasing renewable fuels will reduce dependence on oil by more than 328 million barrels a year and reduce greenhouse gas emissions more than 138 million tons a year when fully phased in by 2022.
The American Farm Bureau Federation is examining the rule in its entirety, but is optimistic about the overall direction of support it offers renewable fuels.
“America’s farmers and ranchers are encouraged that the rule announced by the administration will help keep the nation’s renewable fuel standards on a path toward greater energy independence,” said AFBF President Bob Stallman. “By raising the volume of biofuels available for our nation’s transportation fuel supply, the administration is building on the strong bipartisan efforts that began years ago to provide a home-grown solution to the energy challenges facing our nation.”
However, Farm Bureau is concerned about the measurement of indirect land use in the RFS.
“Continuing to utilize indirect land use changes to calculate greenhouse gas emissions is unfair to domestic biofuels. Using it as a measurement of biofuels’ carbon impact is still highly controversial and scientifically unproven. We will continue our efforts with policymakers on both sides of the aisle and in the administration to assure that biofuels live up to their enormous potential,” Stallman said