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There are only two weeks left for the EPA to release final rules for Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS), mandated by U.S. courts.
November 30th will tell refiners and ethanol producers what production requirements will be for 2014, 2015, and 2016.
The 2014 requirements are a year late and according to the Renewable Fuels Association’s Jeff Cooper, that’s left a lot of businesses in the dark, “Now that we have this uncertainty and it’s not clear what those volumes are going to be that’s bad for business and I think it’s caused our industry to look at other outlets for our ethanol, we’re exporting nearly a billion gallons of ethanol today largely as a result of the fact that we built this industry thinking we would have that demand.”
Cooper says corn prices are 50 cents to a dollar below the cost of production, “So they’re looking for anything that will help boost demand for their product. Help get those prices back up to at least break even levels, and certainly if EPA followed the letter of the law and implemented the program that congress intended, that would help raise demand for corn, that would pull prices up to more manageable levels.”
The U.S. requires a certain amount of ethanol be included in the fuel supply. The Renewable Fuel Standard tells producers how much that is, last year EPA proposed to reduce certain parts of the RFS.