Today, EPA released the 2014 Renewable Fuels Standard (RFS) Proposal, and we’re asking for your input on how to encourage the production and use of renewable energy while balancing practical constraints on the pace at which the market is currently accommodating ethanol above a threshold known as the ethanol “blend wall.”
If you don’t think about energy policy every day, you might be asking yourself, “what’s a ‘blend wall’?”
The answer to that question goes back to 2007, when Congress passed the Energy Independence and Security Act. That legislation created the RFS program, which lays the foundation for reducing greenhouse gas emissions and reducing America’s dependence on oil by growing our nation’s renewable fuels sector.
The RFS program set a target for the renewable fuels to be blended into transportation fuel that rises each year until 2022. Ethanol generally goes into the nation’s supply of E10, gasoline with up to 10 percent ethanol that is sold across the Unites States. In the years between when Congress created that program and today, production of renewable fuels has grown rapidly, but at the same time, fuel economy improvements and other factors have pushed gasoline consumption far lower than what was expected.