December 13, 2013

The End of Ethanol?

Probably too much to hope for.

Could the ethanol mandate be repealed? According to The Hill, “Introduced by Sens. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) and Tom Coburn (R-Okla.), the Corn Ethanol Mandate Elimination Act of 2013 would effectively repeal requirements for the amount of ethanol that is blended into gasoline.” As Coburn wrote explaining the legislation, “The time to end the corn ethanol mandate has arrived. This misguided policy has cost taxpayers billions of dollars, increased fuel prices and made our food more expensive.” He’s absolutely correct, but farm-state senators and congressmen will fight repeal tooth and nail. Still, even the EPA has come to realize that the requirements are unrealistic. Americans don’t consume as much gas as was forecast when the mandate was created, meaning that gas manufacturers are reaching a “blend wall” – a point beyond which more than 10% ethanol would be required in each gallon to reach targets, and that would harm engines even more.

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