via a special arrangement with Informa Economics, Inc.
Some states may try, again, to opt out
of RFS mandate, but not until Obama EPA team arrives
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or retransmission is prohibited under U.S. copyright laws.
ethanol futures prices continue higher than retail gasoline prices, some
observers predict some states may request to opt out of the Renewable
Fuels Standard (RFS) mandate. If the ethanol price remains at a premium
to gasoline prices at the pump, some state officials will argue that mandating
ethanol blends is leading to higher gasoline prices for already strapped
Waiting until after Jan. 20. Any request to opt out
of the RFS will likely wait until President-elect Barack Obama's administration
is in place at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), sources inform,
and that means after the Jan. 20 inauguration day for Obama.
Some say a new EPA team could look more favorably on any opt out
request. Others say that it would take a clear trend of higher ethanol
prices vs gasoline prices to coax any RFS change.
Comments: I know of no
state or any other entity that has indicated they will try for an opt
out, but some energy contacts have signaled a possible attempt at an opt
out next year if the current ethanol price/gasoline price structure continues.
With new players in the three spots that have input into any
RFS waiver request -- EPA, Energy and USDA -- it will be interesting
to see if the strong support that marked candidate Obama's stance translates
into continued strong backing of corn-based ethanol under President
Incoming USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack is on record in favor of
ethanol and the mandate.But whether incoming Energy Dept. chief Steven
Chu or new EPA administrator Lisa P. Jackson share that stance remains
to be seen.
This column is copyrighted material, therefore reproduction or
retransmission is prohibited under U.S. copyright laws.