The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) today proposed the 2012 percentage standards for four fuel categories that are part of the agency’s Renewable Fuel Standard program (RFS2). EPA continues to support greater use of renewable fuels within the transportation sector every year.
The Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 (EISA) established the annual renewable fuel volume targets, which steadily increase to an overall level of 36 billion gallons in 2022. To achieve these volumes, EPA calculates a percentage-based standard for the following year. Based on the standard, each refiner, importer, and non-oxygenate blender of gasoline or diesel determines the minimum volume of renewable fuel that it must ensure is used in its transportation fuel.
The proposed 2012 overall volumes and standards are:
Biomass-based diesel (1.0 billion gallons; 0.91 percent)
Advanced biofuels (2.0 billion gallons; 1.21 percent)
Cellulosic biofuels (3.45 - 12.9 million gallons; 0.002 – 0.010 percent)
Total renewable fuels (15.2 billion gallons; 9.21 percent)
Based on analysis of market availability, EPA is proposing a 2012 cellulosic volume that is lower than the EISA target for 2012 of 500 million gallons. EPA will continue to evaluate the market as it works to finalize the cellulosic standard in the coming months. The agency remains optimistic that the commercial availability of cellulosic biofuel will continue to grow in the years ahead.
In addition, EPA is proposing a volume requirement of 1.28 billion gallons for biomass-based diesel for 2013. EISA specifies a one billion gallon minimum volume requirement for that category for 2013 and beyond, but enables EPA to increase the volume requirement after consideration of a variety of environmental, market, and energy-related factors.
Overall, EPA’s RFS2 program encourages greater use of renewable fuels, including advanced biofuels. For 2012, the program is proposing to implement EISA’s requirement to blend more than 1.25 billion gallons of renewable fuels over the amount mandated for 2011.