Francis Rooney: Time to End Renewable Fuel Standard Mandate, Cut Down on Ethanol

A Florida congressman is leading the charge on Capitol Hill to end the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) mandate and cut down on ethanol.

Last week, U.S. Rep. Francis Rooney, R-Fla., unveiled the “Eliminating the RFS and Its Destructive Outcomes Act” which would repeal the RFS mandate.

On Wednesday, Rooney weighed in on why he had introduced the proposal.

“Since the RFS was created in 2005 there have been severe unintended consequences,” Rooney said. “Ethanol-based fuels decrease fuel efficiency by approximately 3 percent, and increase fuel prices for American consumers. The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) estimates that due to the RFS, in 2017 there was a price hike for gasoline between $.13 and $.26 per gallon.

“For years the RFS has wreaked havoc on boat engines and other small engines which are vital to the Florida economy,” Rooney added. “Recently, the EPA finalized a rule allowing for the year-round sale of E15 (gasoline blended with up to 15 percent ethanol), which will cause even more destruction to marine vessels across the state and the country.”

Rooney offered his take on ethanol and how it impacts cars across the nation and the environment.

“Ethanol-based fuels defeat the purpose of their stated environmental goals since their production and consumption release more carbon emissions than conventional petroleum fuels. Corn production overall has risen since the RFS was mandated and has led to the increased use of nitrogen-based fertilizer across the United States.  Studies are showing that the RFS is causing environmental harm and polluting waterways,” Rooney said.

“Through the RFS, the government created and subsidized a false market for ethanol fuels that is hurting Americans. The free market must be returned and this mandate must be repealed,” Rooney added.

Rooney rounded up seven cosponsors–all on the GOP side of the aisle and none from the Sunshine State. The bill was sent to the U.S. House Energy and Commerce Committee last week. So far, there is no companion bill over in the U.S. Senate.


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