Administration Likely to Raise Ethanol Blending Volumes for 2021

Two sources close to the discussions told Reuters that the Biden administration is likely to raise ethanol blending mandates for 2021 above the figure it proposed last December. The Environmental Protection Agency proposed that refiners blend 13.32 billion gallons of ethanol into the fuel pool. The December proposal angered Farm Belt lawmakers and biofuel producers, who said the number was too low. The mandates are getting set for 2020-2022 retroactively because of disruptions from COVID-19. The sources also say that the administration isn’t looking at dramatic changes for 2020 or 2022. White House officials met to discuss the mandates and the political implications of the decision. The move could impact fuel and food prices in the middle of a 40-year peak in inflation rates. The rule is a long-time bone of contention between the oil and corn lobbies in Washington, D.C. Refiners claim the mandate requirements are costly and threaten their businesses.

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