BIO analysis shows US' RFS cut emissions by 589m tonnes in 10 yrs
Photo by Steve Jurvetson (Flickr) [CC BY 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
The Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) programme has cut transportation-related carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions in the USA by 589.33 million tonnes over its 10-year lifespan, says the Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO).
This is equivalent to removing more than 124 million cars from the road over the decade, the trade association said on Monday. Its analysis also shows that by replacing petroleum fuels with biofuels the RFS has avoided the use of almost 1.9 billion barrels of foreign oil so far.
The RFS sets minimum requirements for the amount of renewable fuel that should be blended into US transportation fuel. It was signed into law in August 2005.
While hailing the success of the programme up to now, the BIO criticised the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for failing to set the annual renewable volume obligations (RVOs) at achievable levels and in a timely manner. It said that the EPA's recently proposed RFS rules for 2014, 2015 and 2016 would cut short the emissions reduction potential of the programme and called on the agency to put it back on track.
"The agency’s delay will continue to allow fossil fuels to be used when cleaner, lower carbon biofuels are available, reversing some of the progress made in the past ten years," commented Brent Erickson, executive vice president of BIO’s Industrial & Environmental Section.