Advocates Push for a Boost in Federal Ethanol Production Mandates

Ethanol advocates are urging the Environmental Protection Agency to raise the 2019 federal ethanol production mandate to make up for waivers granted this year. Scott Pruitt, the EPA Administrator who resigned earlier this month, issued waivers so some small refineries didn’t have to blend ethanol into gasoline. Ron Lamberty, senior vice president of the American Coalition for Ethanol, testified at an EPA hearing in Michigan Wednesday.

Ethanol advocates say more than two billion gallons of the corn-based fuel would have been added to gasoline if Pruitt hadn’t granted those waivers. Lamberty and others are lobbying the EPA to add onto the 2019 federal production guidelines to make up for the losses.

About 150 people testified at the EPA’s public hearing on the Renewable Fuels Standard. Governor Reynolds flew to Michigan to testify Wednesday afternoon. One farmer told EPA officials because there’s a nearby ethanol plant that buys his corn, he gets as much as 40 cents more per bushel.