The blending of ethanol into the nation's gasoline supply was the topic of a hearing held Wednesday by the federal Environmental Protection Agency to discuss the 2014 Standards for the Renewable Fuel Standard program.
Last month, EPA released the 2014 proposed standards which reduced the amount of corn ethanol mandated under the RFS for the first time since the law was implemented. This was a small but tide-changing victory for boat owners whose vessels cannot operate with ethanol above a 10-percent blend level without serious harm or safety concerns.
BoatUS Government Affairs program manager Nicole Payla Wood, along with a coalition of representatives from environmental groups, fuel and manufacturing associations as well as food, restaurant, poultry and meat producers testified at today's hearing to lower the Renewable Fuel Standard.
"We believe in a national renewable fuels policy, but one that is both safe for boaters and sound for the environment," said Wood, "However, until the current ethanol mandate is removed, there is little room for investment in other renewable fuels that may not have the current negative impact of corn-based ethanol."