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We've lost 3 Billion gallons of domestic demand to Illegal Waivers.
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Posted 3/14/2019 08:02 (#7379533 - in reply to #7379422)
Subject: EPA keeping a lid on it. China following suit..

The EPA isn't all bad.. because of the EPA we have the Clean Air Act.. because of the Clean Air Act.. we have Cleaner Air thanks in part to Ethanol.  Ever been to Beijing?  Me neither but from reports the Air quality is kind of bad over there..

The human and fiscal cost of air pollution is irrefutable. Since 2013, the World Health Organization (WHO) has tracked air quality to measure its effect on heart disease, strokes, lung cancer, and other respiratory illnesses. China and India each had 1.1 million air pollution-related deaths in 2015, accounting for half of the world’s total air pollution deaths that year.

Chinese leaders face the difficult choice of prioritizing either economic growth or environmental and social welfare. For the past several years, Beijing has a made a concerted effort to reduce high concentrations of air pollution across China.

Countries with a developed or developing industrial sector often face a tradeoff between rapid economic growth – without the constraints of environmental regulations – or public and environmental welfare measures. This challenge is not a recent phenomenon. 


After the 1952 “Great Smog of London” was estimated to have killed at least 4,000 people, the UK introduced the 
Clean Air Act of 1956 to restrict emissions. Due to the lack of consistent data, the extent to which the act directly contributed to air-quality improvements is unknown, but the post-1960 difference was dramatic; urban concentrations of smoke fell by 80 percent and sulfur dioxide by 70 percent within 20 years.

In the United States, the Environmental Protection Agency introduced the Clean Air Act in 1970, with subsequent amendments in 1977 and 1990. The Clean Air Act established national air-quality standards, and has been associated with reductions in sulfur dioxide and other pollutants, leading to an immediate reduction in infant mortality rates. In 1972, an estimated 1,300 infants survived as a consequence of the Clean Air Act. 2 

Many Chinese citizens have expressed frustration with this public health hazard. In February 2015, Chinese reporter Chai Jing’s air-pollution documentary, “Under the Dome,” went viral upon its release. Depicting comparative interviews with environmental officials, industrial business managers, and health officials in China and Los Angeles, it received up to 200 million hits on Chinese websites such as Youku and Tencent before its removal by Internet censors. In March 2015, Peking University academics released a critical evaluation of pollution levels and current policy responses, drawing on recent U.S. Embassy data.

High pollution levels drive the demand for air quality products, including air filters and face masks. Companies such as 3M have seen a boom in air purification sales on the Chinese market since 2013. Recently this demand has pivoted toward high-end air purification units rather than cheaper alternatives. This trend has also fostered a fake goods market. In December 2015, 120,000 counterfeit masks were seized by Shanghai authorities in a raid. These masks offered no air purification, prompting public concerns over the authenticity of air quality products on the market.

So China is implementing many solutions.. including ethanol to "clean up air pollution."

The central government said last year that it plans to roll out the use of gasoline blended with 10 percent added ethanol nationally by 2020, to cut corn stocks and clean up choking smog.

Do you have a list of companies that were granted waivers and who their owned by? I think that would be telling.

New EIA Data Confirms Ethanol Demand Destruction in 2018

Total Ethanol Consumption and Average Blend Rate Both Saw Year-Over-Year Declines

Data released today by the Energy Information Administration (EIA) reveals the extensive damage to 2018 ethanol demand that resulted from former EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt’s egregious abuse of small refinery exemptions (SREs). Pruitt excused 48 refiners from their legal blending obligations under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS), resulting in a flood of unneeded RINs into the market and a subsequent collapse in RIN prices. The wave of surplus RINs reduced the incentive to expand ethanol blending beyond the so-called E10 “blend wall,” while low RIN prices pressured ethanol values and margins throughout 2018. The significant destruction in ethanol demand harmed ethanol producers, farmers and consumers.

According to the Renewable Fuels Association’s (RFAanalysis of the new EIA data:

  • U.S. ethanol consumption declined to 14.38 billion gallons in 2018 from 14.49 billion gallons in 2017. Based on the EIA’s forecast in January 2018 (i.e., before the market became aware of rampant SREs), U.S. ethanol consumption was expected to reach 14.66 billion gallons—276 million gallons more than what actually occurred; and
  • The U.S. ethanol blend rate fell to 10.07% in 2018 from 10.13% in 2017. The blend rate began to drop in February 2018, as rumors and press reports regarding SREs made their way into the market. This was far below expectations at the start of 2018, when EIA had forecasted an implied ethanol blend rate of 10.26% for 2018. For the February-December period, the blend rate averaged just 10.01%.

Read the full RFA analysis here.

Commenting on the data, RFA President and CEO Geoff Cooper stated, “As expected, EIA’s latest data confirms that small refiner exemptions caused both the ethanol blend rate and the total ethanol volume consumed to drop in 2018. This was the first year-over-year decline in U.S. ethanol consumption since 1998, breaking a 20-year trend of annual increases in domestic ethanol demand. Similarly, the blend rate slid backward for the first time since EIA began offering more robust ethanol blending data in 2010. The RFS was designed to steadily expand the amount of renewable fuels blended into our fuel supply each and every year. Unfortunately, that is not what happened in 2018, and all the evidence points back to former Administrator Pruitt’s unprecedented abuse of small refiner waivers as the cause. As newly confirmed EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler considers the 37 petitions now before him for small refiner exemptions from 2018 RFS requirements, we urge him to take a more measured, constrained, and reasonable approach that remains faithful to the spirit and intent of the RFS.

Edited by JonSCKs 3/14/2019 08:05
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