01 December 2009 15:51 [Source: ICIS news]
HOUSTON (ICIS news)--The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) said on Tuesday it expects to delay its final determination until mid-2010 on whether to raise the blend cap for ethanol above its current 10% level, claiming that not all testing has been completed.
The delay drew immediate fire from ethanol industry proponents, who were counting on an immediate decision. Under the US Clean Air Act, the EPA was required to respond to the request by 1 December.
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“This delay threatens to paralyse the continued evolution of
“Moreover, this delay will chill investment in advanced biofuel technologies at a critical time in their development and commercialisation,” he added.
Dinneen urged the EPA to immediately approve intermediate ethanol blends, such as E-12, as good faith gesture from the Obama administration, underscoring the commitment it has pledged to biofuels.
“Allowing for a 20 percent increase in ethanol’s potential share of the market would provide some breathing room for the industry while EPA finishes its testing on E-15,” he said.
The EPA said the results of two tests taken thus far indicate that engines in newer cars likely can handle an ethanol blend higher than the current 10% limit.
The EPA also announced that it had begun the process of crafting the labelling requirements that will be necessary if the blending limit is raised.
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