Minnesota may lose $610 million in 2014 due to proposed RFS rollback

Source: Fergus Falls Journal • Posted: Wednesday, January 8, 2014

MINNEAPOLIS — The Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) proposed rollback of the Renewable Fuel Standard’s (RFS) biofuel requirements for 2014 may lead to a $610 million shortfall to Minnesota’s economy and a loss of 1,532 jobs this year.

Estimates by the Minnesota Department of Agriculture indicate that the EPA’s proposal, which calls for lowering the RFS’ statutory levels for ethanol-based biofuels in 2014, will lower ethanol production and in turn have an adverse impact on the economy in Minnesota.

In light of these developments, the Minnesota Bio-Fuels Association (MBA) recently launched a campaign that provides Minnesotans with a platform to communicate their opposition to the EPA’s proposal. The campaign is available on www.mnbiofuels.organd directs comments from the public to the EPA, White House as well as the state’s senate and congressional representatives in Washington, D.C.

“It takes just a minute to send a message to the EPA and Washington to stick to the original statutory levels stipulated by the RFS. Biofuels have boosted our economy, reduced our consumption of foreign oil, produced fewer greenhouse gas emissions than gasoline and saved consumers money at the pump,” said Tim Rudnicki, executive director at the MBA.

The EPA has stated that all comments regarding its proposed 2014 RFS requirements must be received by Jan 28, 2014.

The RFS, which was implemented in 2005 and expanded in 2007, had set the production and consumption volume for ethanol-based biofuels in 2014 at 14.4 billion gallons. However, the EPA has proposed to reduce that level by 10 percent to 13.01 billion gallons.

In fact, the EPA’s proposed level for 2014 is even lower than the volume for 2013, which was 13.8 billion gallons.