The Renewable Fuel Standard (Rfs)

The Renewable Fuel Standard (Rfs) : Cellulosic Biofuels

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Description

The Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) was established under the Energy Policy Act of 2005 (EPAct05, P.L. 109-58), and was later expanded under the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 (EISA; P.L. 110-140), in accordance with efforts at that time to reduce dependence on foreign oil, promote biofuel use, and stabilize transportation fuel prices, among other goals. Over 15 years, the RFS requires that increasing amounts of biofuels-36 billion gallons by 2022-be used in transportation fuel. The mandate is to be accomplished in part with advanced biofuels, including cellulosic biofuels-fuels produced from cellulosic materials including grasses, trees, and agricultural and municipal wastes-which would increase over time to comprise some 44% of the RFS in 2022. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is required to set the annual standard (i.e., usage requirement) for cellulosic biofuels under the RFS if the projected volume of cellulosic biofuel production is less than the volume specified in the statute (i.e., the mandate). Under this circumstance, EPA can lower the annual cellulosic biofuels standard to the volume expected to be available for that year. If EPA lowers the standard for a given year, it is required to do so by November 30 of the preceding year. EPA concluded that the nation lacked sufficient production capacity to meet the RFS cellulosic biofuels mandate each year from 2010 to 2014. In 2010, EPA reduced the mandate from the statutory volume of 100 million gallons to 6.5 million ethanol-equivalent gallons, in 2011 from 250 million gallons to 6.0 million ethanol-equivalent gallons, in 2012 from 500 million gallons to 10.45 million ethanol-equivalent gallons, and in 2013 from 1 billion gallons to 810,185 ethanol-equivalent gallons. EPA proposes to lower the 2014 mandate from 1.75 billion gallons to 17 million ethanol-equivalent gallons, and to rescind the 2011 cellulosic biofuel standard. The 2010-2012 reduced mandates were not met by actual cellulosic biofuel production, which EPA reports was limited. Instead, these mandates were largely met with waiver credits. EPA announced in November 2014 that the 2013 compliance deadline will take place in 2015, and that it intends to finalize the 2014 standard in 2015. This delay-which is a year past the statutory deadline-raises significant uncertainty for biofuel producers, feedstock growers, and refiners. For years, actual cellulosic biofuel production has significantly fallen short of the RFS mandates. However, there were noteworthy occurrences in 2014 for the industry, including the opening of three commercial-scale cellulosic ethanol plants in Iowa and Kansas with a combined production capacity of up to 52 million gallons per year. There was also the November 2014 bankruptcy filing by the company KiOR, which commenced operations of the first commercial-scale cellulosic fuel facility in 2012 in Mississippi.show more

Product details

  • Paperback | 24 pages
  • 215.9 x 279.4 x 1.52mm | 113.4g
  • Createspace Independent Publishing Platform
  • United States
  • English
  • black & white illustrations
  • 1507735596
  • 9781507735596