With the release of the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) E15 rule, we now are beginning a scramble to see if it can be implemented in time for the summer driving season, which begins on June 1st. The increase in ethanol production and corn usage is hanging in the balance.
The fact of the matter is many ethanol production facilities are running at minimum production right now. Some aren’t even online at the moment. There are even a few ethanol plants which haven’t even come online, because of the number of ethanol stocks we have. A change to year-round E15 should help alleviate this problem. United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Secretary Sonny Perdue says he feels confident new EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler will be “driving his troops” to get it done in time.
However, the National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) does not share in the optimism of Secretary Perdue. NCGA’s Kathy Bergen cites the fact that no rulemaking process moves quickly in Washington, DC.
Senate Ag Committee Member and Presidential hopeful, Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) says year-round E15 must happen on time. It is much needed to boost the rural economy.
The comment period for EPA’s rule ends on April 29th.