March 19, 2009

Corn Board: Increasing blend rate makes sense

The Nebraska Corn Board said today that increasing the amount of ethanol blended into gasoline is a logical next step to achieve the biofuels consumption increases prescribed by the Energy Independence and Security Act (EISA) of 2007. EISA includes the Renewable Fuels Standard, which is set to increase the amount of ethanol used each year through 2022.

About two weeks ago, a number of ethanol advocacy groups asked the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to to allow ethanol blended with gasoline to increase up to 15 percent (e15).

Several groups and individuals have come out in support of the request.

"In order to reach 36 billion gallons of ethanol by 2022 as established by the Energy Independence and Security Act, we need to move beyond e10 because it will take less than 15 billion gallons of ethanol to reach the e10 blend limit in all gas sold in the United States," said Randy Klein, director of market development for the Nebraska Corn Board. "Moving to e15, or perhaps a stair step approach to e12 or e13, is one way to begin heading down that path."

Klein also noted that America's corn farmers exceeded market demand for corn over the last year, creating a surplus, so there is no question about the corn supply available to meet demands from the ethanol sector and others.

"Corn farmers demonstrated they can meet the demands placed upon them for feed, food, fuel and fiber, and at the same time help Nebraska take advantage of the corn to ethanol to distillers grains to livestock value-added chain that is so good for this state’s economy," he said.

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