Don’t Pick Winners and Losers When Establishing Emissions Standards, NCGA Tells EPA

July 5, 2023

Don’t Pick Winners and Losers When Establishing Emissions Standards, NCGA Tells EPA

Jul 5, 2023

Key Issues:Ethanol

Author: Bryan Goodman

The National Corn Growers Association submitted comments today to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency calling on the agency to focus on opening pathways for all low carbon fuels and technologies as it finalizes its proposed multi-pollutant emission standards for model year 2027 through 2032 for light and medium duty vehicles.

“For automakers to use new technologies and enhanced engines to meet stringent standards, they need updated fuel that enables new vehicles and fuels to work as a system to enhance greenhouse gas and other tailpipe emissions reductions,” said NCGA President Tom Haag. “Higher ethanol blends used with advanced engines optimized for higher octane would provide a much-needed pathway for low-carbon, low-emission fuels.”

The EPA’s proposed multi-pollutant emissions standards has caused deep concerns for corn growers. The rule, as proposed, picks winners and losers in the energy sector and places ethanol on the losing side. NCGA launched a call-to-action on June 20 asking advocates to contact the EPA on its proposal and defend ethanol as a readily available, sustainable, clean fuel option for emissions reduction. Since that time, 2,109 people responded to NCGA’s campaign by submitting comments with EPA. Missouri Corn Growers Association submitted a letter to EPA with an additional 168 signatures.

In its comments, NCGA highlights the environmental benefits of ethanol.

“Clean octane from today’s ethanol is 50 percent lower in GHG emissions than gasoline and replaces the most harmful hydrocarbon aromatics to improve air quality and prevent adverse health impacts,” Haag noted in the comments. “EPA failed to use the proposal to broaden the solutions that reduce transportation emissions by beginning a transition to low carbon, high-octane fuels to advance climate, air quality and environmental justice goals with these and future standards. Furthermore, alternative fuel vehicles such as flex-fuel vehicles, which have the potential to reach zero emissions, should be equitably incentivized through these vehicle standards.”

NCGA also reminded the EPA that a blueprint for future high-octane low-carbon fuels exists in the Next Generation Fuels Act and the agency has the statutory authority to make these changes without waiting for Congress to act.

Read NCGA’s full comments here.