Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
March 26, 2015

EPA Proposal Signals Win for Oil Industry; Setback for Biofuels

According to Politico, “the Environmental Protection Agency on Friday proposed [a 20%] cut in the amount of ethanol that must be blended into the nation’s gasoline supply — a shift that marks a huge blow to corn growers and puts President Barack Obama uncharacteristically on the side of the oil industry.”

“Friday’s proposal concerns a program, known as the renewable fuels standard, that Congress created in 2005 and expanded in 2007. Until now, the mandate has required gasoline and diesel refiners to blend ever-increasing amounts of ethanol into their fuel, an amount that hit 16.55 billion gallons this year and had been scheduled to reach 18.15 billion gallons next year.”

“Congress’s intent in 2007 was to wedge biofuels into the nation’s fuel mix for reasons that included cutting reliance on foreign oil imports, as well as cutting greenhouse gas emissions from cars. But since then the energy market has taken some unexpected turns: Oil imports are falling sharply, domestic drilling is up and gasoline demand is flat as the economy remains slow and cars have become more fuel-efficient.”

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