Thursday, September 23, 2021
HomeAlternative EnergiesBiofuelsEthanol faces tough future with reduced biofuels and more electric cars

Ethanol faces tough future with reduced biofuels and more electric cars


Alan Guebert

The key ingredients for a looming crack-up in ethanol — the fast rise of electric vehicles, lukewarm politics and more evidence of catastrophic climate change — are in place and few in U.S. ag policy circles are prepared to face that reality.

In fact, none of those woes are new; they’ve been building for years.

For example, the Trump Administration’s almost carte blanche blending waivers for gasoline refiners shrunk ethanol’s biggest funnel into American gas tanks. Next, its early denials of the COVID pandemic helped stall gasoline sales. In 2020, gas sales were 119 billion gallons; by comparison, they were 140 billion gallons in 2017.

Both combined to slice ethanol usage, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, from 15.7 billion gallons in 2017 to 13.7 billion gallons in 2020 while, incredibly, ethanol imports doubled from 77 million gallons to 144 million gallons.



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