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First step to end ethanol mandate

Hydrocarbon Engineering,

Bob Greco, API Downstream Group Director has welcomed the bipartisan proposal being introduced in the US Senate, led by Senators Pat Toomey and Diane Fienstein, what would roll back portions of the nation’s unworkable ethanol mandate, known as the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS).

Greco said, “the nation’s ever increasing ethanol mandate is a crisis in waiting, and API has joined a chorus of concerned groups in calling on congress to repeal it. We fully support efforts to repeal or comprehensively reform the RFS to protect consumers’ vehicles and our economy. The corn ethanol mandate is outdated as ethanol is already blended into virtually all the gasoline sold nationwide.”

Greco also said that the industry is hitting the ethanol blendwall, above which the amount of ethanol required to be blended under the RFS would be unsafe for most vehicles on the road today. Millions of cars could be damaged by fuel blends that contain more than 10% ethanol, according to studies by the Coordinating Research Council, and automakers have said using higher ethanol blends would void car warranties.

Greco continued, “we continue to believe the misguided program should be repealed. This proposal addresses the core problem of the ethanol blendwall that could put consumers in harm’s way, hurt the economy, and disrupt the nation’s fuel supply.”

The Senate proposal follows a similar bipartisan proposal in the US House of Representatives. High ethanol mandates could cause severe fuel rationing that would lead to a US$770 billion decrease in US GDP and a US$580 billion decrease in take home pay for American workers, according to a study by NERA Economic Consulting.

Greco concluded, “ethanol and other renewable fuels have an important role to play in our transportation fuel mix and will continue to be used after Congress repeals the mandate. But we cannot allow a mandate for ethanol that exceeds what is safe for vehicles and our economy and that could put upward pressure on fuel prices.”

Edited from press releases by Claira Lloyd

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