The EPA’s Proposed 2017 RFS Standards: Is a Push Still a Push?05/27/2016
The EPA released the final rulemaking for 2014-2016 RFS standards on November 30, 2015. That final rule making reflected a change in EPA policy in that the implied mandate for conventional biofuel (ethanol) in 2016 was large enough to imply a measurable “push” beyond the E10 blend wall. The magnitude of the push was apparently not well understood as there was some confusion about the mechanism of enforcement of the mandate. Specifically, the mandate is not enforced as a strictly volumetric mandate, but instead is enforced as a fractional mandate. That is, the mandate is enforced as a blend rate rather than in volumetric terms. The likely magnitude of the push contained in that final rulemaking was examined in the farmdoc daily article of December 4, 2015, with the conclusion that the push likely approached one billion gallons for 2016.