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Oil industry group sues government over EPA renewable fuel standard

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Jim Young/Reuters/File

(Read caption) Stalks of corn are seen on a farm in Dixon, Ill. Each year, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) establishes the volume requirements and associated percentage standards for cellulosic biofuel, biomass-based diesel, advanced biofuel, and total renewable fuel.

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Big Oil’s American Petroleum Institute (API) is taking on the ethanol mandate with a lawsuit challenging quota’s that the group says is not only bad policy but unrealistic.  

On 9 October, the API filed a federal lawsuit challenging the government’s estimate over how much ethanol must be blended into the US fuel supply this year.

In August, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) established the volume requirements and associated percentage standards that apply in calendar year 2013 for cellulosic biofuel, biomass-based diesel, advanced biofuel, and total renewable fuel. These targets are set to steadily increase to an overall level of 36 billion gallons in 2022. (Related article: Corn Residue for Biofuels, Everyone’s On Board)

The deadline to comply was extended to June 30, 2014, because the EPA was almost eight months late issuing the final volume requirements for 2013. 

Next year, the situation will intensify as the new mandate for 2014 call for 14.4 billion gallons of ethanol to be blended with gasoline—a 4.3% increase over 2013.  

The API wants to see the ethanol mandate dip below 10% for 2014.

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