Tag Archives: ethanol

Supreme Court Dismisses Ethanol Waiver Case

The United States Supreme Court today dismissed a petition by the American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers or AFPM challenging an EPA regulation that allows for 15% ethanol in gasoline. Continue reading

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President Obama Calls for $2 Billion Energy Security Trust Using Fossil Fuel Development Taxes to Wean U.S. from Oil and Gas

Leaving aside the controversy over President George W. Bush’s plan to do so under the flawed Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007, which mandates ethanol that apparently is now adding $1 per gallon to the price of gasoline, the question remains is this just Washington politics from an Administration whose approval rating is dropping or sound national policy? Continue reading

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Court of Appeals Throws Out EPA Cellulosic Mandate for Refiners

While the enabling legislation was noble at least in its publicly stated intent – the U.S. sends over $1,000,000 a minute to oil exporting nations, many of whom are hostile to us – it was in the end a sordid tale of special interests feeding at the public trough. Worse, the legislation dictated the types and amounts of fuel to be used to gain energy independence – in effect a dreaded and ineffective design standard – instead of a performance standard that sets broad goals and lets industry and the marketplace work out the issues. Continue reading

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Food Fight over Ethanol as Special Interest Groups Trade Charges

Two special interest groups are sparing in public over the cost implications of a long-standing federal energy policy that mandates the use of ethanol and ever increasing amounts of bio-fuels in an attempt to free the United States from importing oil sold by terrorist supporting nations. In 2012 about 9% of all transportation fuel used will be from so-called renewable sources. Continue reading

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Gulf Oil Opens Another E85 Station on Massachusetts Turnpike

It’s estimated that Massachusetts drivers own more than 100,000 FFVs that were produced because automakers receive generous CAFE credits whether or not the alternative fuel is actually used. It’s unknown how many drivers use the alternative fuel, but national consumption statistics suggest it’s slight. Worse, since ethanol does not have the energy density of good old gasoline, E85 needs to be roughly 25% cheaper for it to make economic sense for drivers. So far the fuel is about as successful as the Boston Red Sox this year. As a result, there are only 2,400 E85 ethanol fueling stations in the U.S. Continue reading

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Edeniq Pilot Plant in California Now Making Cellulosic Ethanol

The new plant was constructed in partnership with Logos Technologies Inc. under a $25 million program funded 80% by the Integrated Biorefinery Initiative Program of the U.S. Department of Energy. Whether this is a good investment by taxpayers that might help recover some of the billions of dollars spent on subsidized corn ethanol or just more subsidies for agribusiness are open issues. Continue reading

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Study Claims E15 Ethanol Gas Will Damage New Car Engines

At the heart of the controversy are the costs of installing E15 pumps at gas stations, which already are selling fuel with E10, as well as warranty costs at automakers, where typically powertrains are now covered for 100,000 miles. The problem for automakers and consumers comes from a regulation that applies to existing vehicles on the road, instead of a phase-in for future vehicles. While automakers are now building some vehicles that can safely run of blends containing up to 85% ethanol, CRC said the decision to move to E15 was “premature and irresponsible,” since millions of existing auto engines cannot. Continue reading

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EPA Finally Decides 2012 Renewable Fuel Standards

This ongoing Congressional debacle started when EISA established annual renewable fuel volume targets, reaching an overall level of 36 billion gallons annually in 2022, including 16 billion gallons of cellulosic biofuels; 15 billion gallons of conventional biofuels; 4 billion gallons of advanced biofuels; and 1 billion gallons of biomass-based diesel. EISA further specifies that 21 billion U.S. gallons of the 2022 total must be derived from non-cornstarch products such as sugar or cellulose. Continue reading

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EPA Finalizes E15 Gasohol Pump Labels as Automakers Again Protest Adding More Ethanol to Gasoline. Lawsuits Pending

The ethanol tariff is comprised of a 54 cent Most Favored Nation duty and a 2.5% ad valorem tax. Critics say the ethanol tariff makes our nation more dependent on foreign oil by increasing the price of imported ethanol. Iowa State University estimates that a one-year extension of the ethanol subsidy and tariff would lead to only 427 additional direct domestic jobs at a cost of almost $6 billion, or roughly $14 million of taxpayer money per job.
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U.S. Oil Imports Declining Since 2005 Peak. It’s Not All Good

There are several problems with the imported oil numbers since oil is mostly imported as crude, an unrefined product, but is consumed as a refined product. In between there is refinery gain – yes, gain – whereby more comes out of the process of splitting heavier oils into lighter ones. Continue reading

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Taxpayer Subsidized Ethanol Caught in Partisan Budget Battle

The politics of ethanol, virtually all of it corn derived and therefore benefiting big money farm lobby interests, are as tangled as it gets. Taxpayers would be better off if legislators were required to wear NASCAR-style uniforms with the patches of the organizations that are their major, err, sponsors, to put it politely in pay to play Washington where campaign contributions from special interests determine policy not national interests. Continue reading

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EPA Grants E15 Fuel Waiver for Some Older Vehicles

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) today waived a its regulation preventing the sale of gasoline that contains more than 10% ethanol for model year 2001- 2006 passenger vehicles, including cars, SUVs, and light pickup trucks.

EPA also announced that no waiver is being granted this year for E15 use in any motorcycles, heavy-duty vehicles, or non-road engines because current testing data does not support such a waiver. Continue reading

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Baucus Proposes Continuing Billions in Ethanol Subsidies

Senator Max Baucus, D-Montana, chairman of the Finance Committee has proposed draft legislation that would continue lavish taxpayer financed ethanol subsidies instead of letting then expire at the end of this year. Continue reading

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