During a visit to the Agricultural Retailers Association conference and expo in Phoenix on Thursday, Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue was asked to comment on the final Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) renewable volume obligations (RVOs) for 2018.
The Secretary noted that the requirement for conventional renewable fuels like corn ethanol is capped at 15 billion gallons, so that’s as high as it can go. “Obviously, cellulosic has not matured like we thought it would,” said Perdue of the lower levels for cellulosic biofuel at 288 million gallons.
Perdue says he thinks that EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt made a good final decision with lots of input from biofuel champions such as Senators Chuck Grassley and Joni Ernst from Iowa. “One of the reasons I’m having trouble now with Secretary Northey is because of that,” he said, referring to the hold that Sen. Ted Cruz has put on Northey’s nomination to USDA Under Secretary.
Alluding to issues refiners have put forth this year regarding prices for Renewable Identification Numbers (RINS) and compliance under the RFS, Secretary Perdue said, “We gotta help the refiners and the blenders figure out the RIN market and maybe make it more like an open outcry like grain markets are.”
Listen to comments here: Secy Perdue comments on final RVO numbers