by Ken Root and Whitney Newman
The annual dance of division between the petroleum industry, which wants the renewable fuel standard to go away, and all segments of the biofuels industry that want it to expand as Congress passed it in 2006 and beyond.
There was clear division at the EPA hearing to determine the renewable fuel standard for 2017. The Preliminary number from the agency was 200 million gallons below the legislative direction when the bill was passed during the George W. Bush Administration.
Testimony came in 3 minute clips from those for, and against the standard. Governor Pete Ricketts of Nebraska was a proponent (Pete Ricketts Testimony). Patrick Kelly, Senior Fuel Analyst for the American Petroleum Institute, also spoke against raising the volume of the RFS (Patrick Kelly Testimony). In all, 150 people testified with over 90% in favor or increasing the amount of ethanol required to be used in gasoline for the year ahead.