At USDA we applaud today’s action by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) that essentially completes the federal actions necessary to allow consumers to buy fuel containing up to 15 percent ethanol (E15). This announcement gets us one step closer to giving American consumers a real choice at the pump. It also supports the “all –of-the-above” energy strategy, including production of renewable biofuels, implemented by the Obama Administration to help wean us off of imported oil.
The public has a right to choose between spending their money on imported oil or home-grown energy. Today’s action by EPA helps break down the ethanol “blend wall” thereby potentially allowing more ethanol into the market. Iowa State University has estimated that blending ethanol with petroleum keeps the price per gallon at the pump down by around a dollar a gallon. This is a demonstration of the Obama Administration making good on its commitments to work to reduce foreign oil imports and increase domestic energy production. Read more »
Everett Dobrinski, CoBank, North Dakota
Cross posted from the White House Rural Champions of Change website:
Everett farmed all his life in North Dakota and taught high school while farming for a few years. Nowadays, Everett is a full-time farmer and a leader in co-operatives with farming. Read more »
Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack touts the benefits of Ethanol E-85 at a gas station in Nashville, TN, on Monday, May 23, 2011.
Secretary Tom Vilsack recently joined a Round Table of regional stakeholders in Nashville to discuss ways that USDA can help rural fuel station owners and cooperatives increase the availability and use of flex-fuels. About eight million cars and trucks on the road in the U.S. today can use E85 fuel, but finding a station that can dispense renewable fuels can be a challenge. Read more »
Flexible fuel pump
USDA Rural Development Nebraska State Director Maxine Moul joined the Nebraska Ethanol Board, Nebraska Corn Board and Nebraska Energy Office on May 6, 2011 in York, Nebraska at the Aurora Cooperative for a media conference to discuss the need for flexible fuel pumps. Also, the importance of the use of ethanol blended gasoline in Flex Fuel Vehicles (FFV) was discussed with gasoline retailers. The Obama Administration has set a goal of establishing 10,000 more flexible fuel pumps in the next five years along with a national security goal (RFS 2) of using 36 billion gallons of biofuel per year by 2022. Local residents and fuel retailers pulled FFV cars up at the Coop’s flex fuel pumps to fill their tanks with the ethanol blended fuels gas. Read more »
Last week, Agriculture Deputy Secretary Kathleen Merrigan visited the campus of Michigan State University to participate in a tour of the cellulosic ethanol pretreatment lab at MBI International and conduct a roundtable discussion with key stakeholders in Michigan’s biofuels community.
MBI is owned by the Michigan State University Foundation and its purpose is to “de-risk” emerging technologies, making them more viable for commercial application. One of MBI’s current projects is developing ways to scale cellulosic ethanol from the laboratory to the marketplace. Read more »
An ethanol plant in Bairstown, Iowa, may soon begin producing fuel from waste materials.
After visiting a cutting-edge biofuels facility in rural Iowa recently, a group of USDA Rural Development state directors are thinking about the tremendous global implications of that plant. Read more »