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Thursday, December 19, 2013

The Renewable Fuel Standard: In Brief - R43325

Kelsi Bracmort
Specialist in Agricultural Conservation and Natural Resources Policy

The Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) requires U.S. transportation fuel to contain a minimum volume of biofuel. The RFS—established by the Energy Policy Act of 2005 (P.L. 109-58; EPAct05) and expanded in 2007 by the Energy Independence and Security Act (P.L. 110-140; EISA)—began with 4.0 billion gallons of renewable fuel in 2006 and ascends to 36.0 billion gallons in 2022. The Environmental Protection Agency administers the RFS. Compliance for the RFS is met using a credit system with renewable identification numbers (RINs). Some have concerns about how EPA is administering the RFS (e.g., the accuracy of EPA projections of the annual amounts of advanced biofuel that will be produced), which biofuels are eligible for which part of the mandate, how the RIN market operates, and the potential impact of the “blend wall,” among other things. Congress has expressed interest in the RFS, particularly the challenges associated with implementing the RFS and with compliance. Some question whether it is time to amend or repeal the RFS or maintain the status quo.

Date of Report: November 27, 2013
Number of Pages: 11
Order Number: R43325
Price: $29.95

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