USDA is issuing a rule to clarify the definition of renewable energy systems to include flexible fuel pumps, sometimes referred to as "blender pumps". Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack says this action will permit Americans to purchase domestically produced renewable transportation fuels as it will provide fuel station owners with incentives to install flexible fuel pumps. Vilsack said - flex-fuel pumps will give Americans a choice to purchase domestically produced renewable transportation fuels.
A Federal Register notice on these clarifications will be published in the near future. USDA Rural Development will meet with elected Tribal officials in the upcoming months to discuss the impact of the changes on Tribal governments, communities and individuals. USDA will also host a series of informational meetings and workshops to explain the rule changes and to bring stakeholders together to advance retail Flex-Fuel installations.
Bob Dinneen, President and CEO of the Renewable Fuels Association, says this change will go a long way toward providing American drivers across the nation with more choice at the pump. Dinneen points out that ethanol, whether E10 or mid-levels blends and E85 for flex-fuel vehicles, helps lower the cost of a gallon of gasoline, reduces this nation's dependence upon foreign oil, and supports American jobs with an American-made product.
National Farmers Union President Roger Johnson says the announcement is the very sort of long-term renewable energy infrastructure investment that is critically needed to expand consumer access to renewable biofuels and reduce our dependence on imported petroleum. Johnson says that this expanded access will provide a more level playing field for biofuels and will give greater certainty to the renewable fuels industry and the farmers and ranchers who are providing real solutions to the energy challenges our country faces.