Japan to Allow Access for US Ethanol

Cindy Zimmerman

Japan published a new biofuels policy last week that will allow the United States to capture up to 100 percent of Japan’s on-road ethanol market, according to the Office of the United States Trade Representative.

“The new biofuels policy Japan announced today is the result of close collaboration between our two countries and it will further allow U.S. producers to meet Japan’s demand for more diverse energy sources,” said Ambassador Katherine Tai. “Ambassador Emanuel and the staff across the U.S. government deserve huge credit for working through the technical details that led to this outcome, which is just the latest sign of a strengthened partnership between our two countries.”

According to the new biofuels policy under the Sophisticated Methods of Energy Supply Structure Act, exports of U.S. ethanol could increase by over 80 million gallons annually, representing an additional $150-200 million in exports each year. We will continue working with Japan to increase its on-road ethanol demand and further align its biofuels policies with that of the United States.

Renewable Fuels Association President and CEO Geoff Cooper, U.S. Grains Council President and CEO Ryan LeGrand, and Growth Energy CEO Emily Skor issued a joint statement in response:

“The U.S. ethanol community applauds the Japanese government for joining other countries in recognizing the role ethanol can play in the global effort to address climate change at the same time it takes steps to decarbonize its transportation sector. Countries around the world are recognizing that biofuels like ethanol are a simple, inexpensive and effective solution they can deploy today to help them lower their carbon emissions and meet their climate goals. We will continue to work closely with Japan and other nations to find more ways for us to collaboratively decrease carbon emissions. The U.S. ethanol industry will engage with Japan on additional ethanol consumption efforts both within the on-road and sustainable aviation sectors as the country implements its new regulation.”

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