U.S. EPA proposes key changes to Renewable Fuel Standard

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has proposed changes to its Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS), which would allow biofuel producers to partially process renewable feedstocks at one facility and further process them into renewable fuels at another facility.

This change “will provide the opportunity for increasing the production and use of renewable fuels by allowing the market to operate in the most efficient and economical way,” the EPA said.

“This would increase the economics and efficiency for the production of biofuels, particularly advanced and cellulosic fuels that have the lower carbon footprints.”

The U.S. is currently the world’s largest ethanol fuel producer, generating more than twice as much as Brazil, the second-largest producer.

The EPA also called for amended quality standards for biofuel blends containing up to 83% ethanol. These mixtures of gasoline and ethanol are currently used in flexible fuel vehicles (FFVs).

The proposed rule also looks at several potential approaches to generating renewable identification numbers (RINs) for electricity that is produced from biogas and used as a transportation fuel.

The EPA is seeking public comments on the proposal within 60 days.