(WASHINGTON D.C.) – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency today is issuing an emergency fuel waiver to allow E15 gasoline — gasoline blended with 15% ethanol — to be sold during the summer driving season.
This action will provide Americans with relief at the pump from ongoing market supply issues created by Russia’s unprovoked war in Ukraine by increasing fuel supply and offering consumers more choices at the pump. The waiver will help protect Americans from fuel supply crises by reducing our reliance on imported fossil fuels, building U.S. energy independence, and supporting American agriculture and manufacturing. Current estimates indicate that on average, E15 is about 25 cents a gallon cheaper than E10.
“The Biden-Harris Administration is committed to protecting Americans from fuel supply challenges resulting from the ongoing war in Ukraine by ensuring consumers have more choices at the pump,” said Administrator Michael S. Regan. “Allowing E15 sales during the summer driving season will not only help increase fuel supply, but support American farmers, strengthen U.S. energy security, and provide relief to drivers across the country.”
Read the full release from EPA here: https://www.epa.gov/newsreleases/epa-issues-emergency-fuel-waiver-e15-sales-0
Statement from Secretary Vilsack on Emergency Fuel Waivers for E15 Sales
WASHINGTON, April 28, 2023 – “The Biden-Harris Administration has been the most supportive in our history for homegrown, renewable biofuels, which bolster American agriculture, expand people’s options for affordable fuel, strengthen our nation’s energy independence, and power the transportation sector that keeps our supply chains running. By allowing the summer sale of E15 at gas pumps nationwide, President Biden is supporting the creation of good-paying jobs and economic growth, particularly in rural and farm communities. At the same time, thanks to President Biden’s Inflation Reduction Act, USDA is continuing to make critical investments in infrastructure to expand biofuels’ availability for drivers at thousands more retailers through competitive grants we expect to announce soon. The Inflation Reduction Act also sets the course for U.S. agriculture to lead the way in helping to build a new industry that will produce low carbon aviation and marine fuel, create more manufacturing jobs, and keep America’s aviation industry at the forefront of innovation. Through all of these actions, the Biden-Harris Administration demonstrates progress every day on behalf of consumers and farm communities across the nation.”
We have more reaction from industry groups below as well. Stay tuned for more updates on this breaking news story.
OUR PREVIOUS STORY BELOW:
(WASHINGTON D.C.)- Late Thursday, a report from Bloomberg says that the Biden Administration is going to allow the sale of E15 gasoline this summer. In a move expected to be announced by the Environmental Protection Agency on Friday, it will temporarily exempt the 15% ethanol fuel blend from volatility requirements that effectively block sales from June 1 to Sept. 15 throughout much of the country.
We will continue to follow this story as it develops. You can read the full report from Bloomberg here: https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2023-04-27/biden-epa-to-allow-summer-sales-of-higher-ethanol-e15-gasoline?utm_source=website&utm_medium=share&utm_campaign=twitter?sref=CXDDGF7f&leadSource=uverify%20wall
EPA Moves to Maintain Consumer Access to Low-Cost, Low-Emission E15
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced today that it will use existing authority to prevent drivers from losing access to lower-cost and lower-emission E15, a higher ethanol blend often marketed as Unleaded 88.
The National Corn Growers Association and state corn grower organizations, which have advocated for the move, praised the decision.
“We appreciate Administrator Regan’s timely action to prevent a disruption in E15 availability,” said National Corn Growers Association President Tom Haag. “EPA’s action will help address fuel supply constraints and ensure drivers continue to have access to a lower-cost fuel choice that cuts emissions.”
The fuel market conditions that warranted EPA taking the same successful step last year continue today, Haag noted, and he said corn growers are proud to contribute to an energy and environmental solution that saves consumers money at the pump.
Continued access to E15 during the summer months will help relieve ongoing energy supply pressures. When EPA took similar action last year, drivers saved nearly a dollar per gallon in some locations and an average of 23 cents per gallon during the summer months, according to data from the Minnesota Department of Commerce. E15 continues to save consumers significantly at the pump.
Moreover, allowing uninterrupted E15 sales keeps a lower-emission fuel in the marketplace. In addition to being lower in carbon emissions, E15 has lower volatility than regular fuel, which is a 10% ethanol blend, and using E15 results in lower evaporative and exhaust emissions, important during the summer driving season.
RFA Welcomes Emergency E15 Waivers for Summer Driving Season
The emergency fuel waivers announced today by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency will provide relief at the pump for American drivers this summer, while simultaneously reducing greenhouse gas emissions and tailpipe pollution. The Renewable Fuels Association welcomed EPA’s announcement, which will allow lower-cost, lower-carbon E15 (gasoline containing 15 percent ethanol) to be sold during the summer driving season.
“We join consumers across the nation in thanking EPA Administrator Regan for taking action to combat potential fuel shortages and higher gas prices this summer,” said RFA President and CEO Geoff Cooper. “U.S. gasoline inventories are even tighter than they were a year ago, and Putin’s war on Ukraine continues to wreak havoc on global fuel supplies. EPA’s action allowing summertime E15 will help extend gasoline supplies, prevent fuel shortages, protect air quality and reduce carbon emissions. We thank EPA, USDA, DOE, and the entire Biden administration for ensuring drivers across the country will continue to have access to lower-cost, lower-carbon E15 all summer long.”
EPA took the same action ahead of last summer, resulting in nearly $60 million in savings at the pump for American consumers during the summer months. Recent analysis by the RFA shows that since the beginning of 2022, E15 has typically sold for 20-30 cents per gallon less than regular E10 gasoline, saving drivers an average of $3-5 on each fill-up.
Today’s decision will also reduce summertime air pollution, as shown in RFA’s “E15 Fact Check” released last spring. And, according to EPA, “consumers can continue to use E15 without concern that its use in the summer will impact air quality.”
Prior to today’s action, EPA on March 6 proposed to approve a bipartisan petition from eight Midwest governors that will allow retailers and marketers in their states to permanently sell E15 year-round beginning in 2024.
Growth Energy Applauds EPA for Granting Emergency RVP Waiver for E15
WASHINGTON, D.C.—Growth Energy, the nation’s largest biofuels trade association, applauded U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Michael Regan’s announcement that the agency will grant an emergency waiver allowing fuel retailers to sell E15—a fuel blend made with 15% ethanol—without seasonal vapor pressure restrictions during the coming summer driving season. EPA announced the decision following an intense campaign by Growth Energy and elected leaders.
“Today’s announcement is a win for drivers across the nation, who can rest easier knowing that they’ll have access to savings on lower-carbon E15 this coming summer,” said Growth Energy CEO Emily Skor. “We’re grateful to EPA Administrator Michael Regan for granting this waiver, to our industry partners, and to the thousands of Americans who supported our campaign to press for action by EPA.
“Last summer, E15 saved drivers $0.16 per gallon on average, and up to a dollar per gallon in some regions. It delivered those savings while reducing carbon emissions and smog-forming pollution. America’s biofuel producers are ready to meet the demand for cleaner, more affordable choices at the pump so more drivers can enjoy those same benefits in the months ahead.
“In addition to Administrator Regan, we’d also like to thank our bipartisan champions in Congress, Midwest governors, President Biden, and U.S. Department of Agriculture Secretary Vilsack for their continued attention to higher biofuel blends. We urge them to keep up the momentum by acting swiftly on a permanent fix for E15, so that we can avoid needless uncertainty around last-minute waivers in the years ahead.”
POET: Biden Keeps E15 Flowing When Americans Need It Most
SIOUX FALLS, SD (April 28, 2023) – Today, POET applauded President Joe Biden and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Michael Regan for extending summer access to E15, made with 15 percent plant-based bioethanol. The announcement, mirroring one made by the president at POET Bioprocessing – Menlo, Iowa, in 2022, marks the second time the Biden EPA has lifted nonsensical seasonal restrictions on the cleaner, cost-saving biofuel blend.
“The Biden administration’s decision will keep E15 flowing when Americans need it most,” said POET Senior Vice President of Corporate Affairs Joshua Shields. “With tight fuel supplies, rising prices, and poor air quality looming this summer, continued access to E15 puts a cleaner and more affordable fuel option within reach. We’re grateful to President Biden, EPA Administrator Regan, and House and Senate biofuel champions for working together to protect America’s fuel supply, ensure continued savings at the pump, and promote cleaner air for all.”
Last summer, E15 saved American drivers up to nearly $1 per gallon in some areas, with an average savings of 16 cents per gallon, according to ABF Economics.
“Boosting the nation’s available fuel supply with E15 is better for consumers, the environment, and the economy,” Shields continued. “E15 can help shield Americans from gasoline supply shortages and price spikes. In addition, E15 reduces smog-forming emissions, which can mean cleaner air in congested urban areas most impacted by air pollution. E15 also supports jobs, creates value for family farmers, and drives economic growth in rural communities across America.”
Federal regulations limit the vapor pressure of gasoline during the summer ozone season; however, those rules were drafted before E15 was available. E15 is effectively blocked from the marketplace during the summer months because of an unintended wrinkle in federal law, despite having lower evaporative emissions than standard summertime gasoline. Just last year, research by the University of California Riverside reaffirmed that E15 reduces volatile organic compounds, carbon monoxide, and particulate matter that contribute to smog formation.