EPA announces renewable fuel standard, key figure for Iowa corn, ethanol

The Biden administration Friday made official its requirement for how much ethanol and biodiesel the oil industry must blend into the nation’s fuel supply this year, giving the renewable fuel industry several wins.

The US Environmental Protection Agency deviated little from the proposal level announced late last year, the largest since the establishment of the Renewable Fuel Standard in 2005. Most US gasoline is blended with at least 10% ethanol under the federal mandate.

Iowa is both the nation’s largest ethanol producer and corn grower, with about half the crop going to make the renewable fuel.

It also leads the nation in making biodiesel and is the second-largest grower of soybeans, a major feedstock for the fuel.

The EPA said the decision on the standard reflects “the Biden administration’s commitment to reset and strengthen the RFS, bolster our nation’s energy security, and support homegrown biofuel alternatives to oil for transportation fuel.”

Supporters hailed the decision, which comes at a time when gas prices have skyrocketed. In Iowa, the Friday median gas price was $4.493 a gallon, nearly 60% higher than a year earlier, according to AAA Gas Price.

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