EPA aims to increase use of renewable domestic fuels

| 12/29/2005

The Environmental Protection Agency is looking to boost usage of renewable fuels among Americans.

Starting in 2006, the overall pool of fuel in the U.S. will consist of at least 2.78 percent renewable fuels produced domestically, including ethanol and biodiesel.

The requirement is part of a new standard set forth by the EPA as part of its Renewable Fuels Standard Program, which was authorized by the Energy Policy Act of 2005.

Eventually, the program plans to double the current use of fuels produced from American crops by 2012.

John Millet, a spokesman for the EPA, told “Land Line Now” that means going from current levels of about 4 billion gallons of renewable fuels per year to 8 billion gallons by 2012.

Millet said the industry is already poised to meet the 2006 requirement because the requirement was based on production levels that are currently sustainable.

“We expect the industry will be able to go beyond the standard in the first year,” he said.

Millet said he expects refiners and producers will be able to meet future requirements with little trouble as well.

“We don’t see any indicators that we will have the need to enforce a lot,” he said.

Millet said this is the first standard of its kind and the EPA expects it to go a long way toward increasing the use of domestically produced renewable fuel sources.

“It gives certainty to the (refiners) that if they expand production, then that production will find a market,” he said.