Growth Energy calls on US government to support biofuels sector

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Biofuels are crucial to improving the US energy outlook, according to an expert from ethanol trade association Growth Energy.

Chris Bliley, Growth Energy’s vice-president of regulatory affairs, says that the forecasts in the recently released US Energy Information Administration’s (EIA) Annual Energy Outlook 2018 demonstrate a clear need for US biofuels.

“Blending more homegrown, cost-efficient biofuels into the fuel supply is the ready-made solution to lowering prices at the pump while also dramatically reducing emissions,” Bliley said.

“We don’t need federal data to remind us that gasoline prices never stay low forever. Homegrown fuels like ethanol are already saving the average American household $142 [€113], according to the American Journal of Agricultural Economics, and those savings will only grow as the demand for transportation rises in the decades to come.”

The EIA Outlook contains projections up to the year 2050 based on current energy trends and regulations in the US. It predicts an 18% increase in miles travelled by US motorists in traditional light vehicles. EIA also reports that: “Retail prices of motor gasoline and diesel fuel are projected to increase from 2018 to 2050 in the reference case, largely because of expected increases in crude oil prices.”

“Federal experts agree that ethanol slashes emissions by 43% over the full energy life-cycle – from farm to engine – but that the level of carbon savings is rising with each passing year thanks to innovations in biofuel production and precision agriculture,” Bliley continued.

“We must reduce emissions in the transportation sector, and that means deploying higher ethanol blends like E15 and E85 as well as mid-level ethanol blends like E30 alongside advanced and cellulosic biofuels. A strong Renewable Fuel Standard is vital to that effort, and we urge the Environmental Protection Agency to reject calls from a few fossil fuel advocates who want to hold back the rapid growth of ethanol production in rural America.”

Growth Energy’s Emily Skor gives her Outlook for 2018 in our latest issue. Sign-up for a free copy here.