Nebraska Ethanol Board Urges EPA to Finalize Year-Round E15 Rule

LINCOLN, Neb. — On April 29, 2019, the Nebraska Ethanol Board (NEB) submitted written comments to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), urging it to issue a final rule allowing for year-round sales of E15 (gasoline blended with 15 percent ethanol) throughout the country by June 1, when summer driving season begins.

“It is crucial for the EPA to get the rule out by June 1, so that our retailers can sell E15 all year, everywhere in the U.S. This change has the potential to create significant new demand for ethanol, which is a key value-added agriculture market for farmers in Nebraska, and so important at this time of an ongoing downturn in agriculture and uncertain global trade,” remarked Jan tenBensel, Chairman of the Board.

NEB Secretary, Randy Gard, stated that “the USDA, state governments, and retailers like Bosselman have made significant investments in the infrastructure needed to sell E15. We want to protect those investments and be able to get a return on them throughout the year, not just nine months out of it. Our customers want to put E15 in their cars. They know it is generally 5 to 6 cents cheaper than regular gasoline and has higher octane, with the engine performance benefits that goes with that. Retailers should be able to sell and customers use E15 year round. There is no good reason why this option should not be available to them, and I hope EPA will issue this rule by June 1.”

Nebraska Ethanol Board Administrator Sarah Caswell explained that “the NEB has submitted comments to the EPA urging it to release a final rule by June 1 allowing for year-round E15. In our comments, the NEB stressed to EPA some key changes we would like to see in the final rule that would strengthen its impact to help facilitate the further production and use of ethanol and other biofuels, in accordance with the intent of the Renewable Fuel Standard. We encouraged the agency to issue a final rule allowing for E15 all year throughout the U.S. that does not include some of their more controversial proposals to alter the RIN market.”

Read the Nebraska Ethanol Board’s comments here.

Review the April 1, 2019, press release issued by the offices of Governor Pete Ricketts and the Nebraska Ethanol Board on their comments as part of the U.S. EPA’s March 29, 2019, field hearing on this rulemaking here.

The Nebraska Ethanol Board works to ensure strong public policy and consumer support for biofuels. Since 1971, the independent state agency has designed and managed programs to expand production, market access, worker safety and technology innovation, including recruitment of producers interested in developing conventional ethanol, as well as bio-products from the ethanol platform. For more information, visit www.ethanol.nebraska.gov.

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