Budzinski Introduces Bipartisan Legislation to Address Gap in EPA’s Year-Round E15 Rule

WASHINGTON, D.C. — This week, U.S. Representatives Nikki Budzinski (IL-13) and Zach Nunn (IA-03) introduced bipartisan legislation to address a gap in the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s recently finalized rule allowing for the sale of year-round E15 in eight midwestern states beginning in 2025. The Year-Round E15 Act would ensure that E15 sales can begin this year. The bipartisan legislation is co-led by U.S. Representatives Adrian Smith (NE-03), Brad Finstad (MN-01), Eric Sorensen (IL-17) and Don Bacon (NE-02).

“Biofuels bring down fuel costs, reduce our dependence on foreign oil, cut carbon emissions and support critical markets for Illinois’ family farmers,” said Congresswoman Budzinski. “I was glad to see the Environmental Protection Agency take evidence-based action to allow the permanent sale of E15 in Illinois and across the Midwest, but this long-awaited action doesn’t take effect until 2025. Today, I’m proud to introduce bipartisan legislation with my friend, Congressman Zach Nunn, that will address this gap and allow for the sale of cheaper, cleaner fuel for Heartland consumers this summer.” 

“Since day one, I’ve been fighting for year-round E15. Unfortunately, this Administration has repeatedly put America’s producers and families behind as they stubbornly opposed E15, which is good for the economy, good for the climate, and good for families,” said Congressman Nunn. “This bill wouldn’t be necessary if the Administration had just done the right thing to begin with, but this is a critical step to provide certainty for farmers, producers, and families who will benefit from less expensive fuel.” 

In February, the Environmental Protection Agency finalized a rule in February that allows eight midwestern states to sell E15 year-round beginning in April of 2025. The rule applies to Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, Ohio, South Dakota and Wisconsin. Budzinski released a statement praising the rule and calling for action to allow E15 sales for the 2024 summer driving season and secure permanent E15 sales under the law by passing legislation like the Consumer and Fuel Retailer Choice Act.

As a member of the House Committee on Agriculture, Congresswoman Budzinski has established herself as a bipartisan leader in supporting biofuels production and family farmers across Central and Southern Illinois. Her Next Generation Fuels ActSustainable Aviation Fuels Accuracy Act and Fuels Parity Act would take significant steps to support the future of homegrown biofuels. Additional information on Budzinski’s biofuels legislation can be found below: 

  • The Next Generation Fuels Act would phase in higher gasoline octane levels through the greater use of ethanol beginning with a 95 Research Octane Number (RON) standard for automobile model year 2028 and increasing to 98 RON by model year 2033. For a new vehicle to receive certification from an automaker, the bill would require the automobile to operate with an E25 blend for model year 2028 and an E30 blend for model year 2033 onwards. The bill would also require fuel retailers to carry these higher blend fuels.
  • The Sustainable Aviation Fuels Accuracy Act would require the federal government to use the most up-to-date lifecycle emissions models—including the U.S. Department of Energy commissioned, Argonne National Lab’s Greenhouse Gases, Regulated Emissions, and Energy Use in Technologies Model or GREET model—that accurately considers crops, land uses and carbon reduction practices in the U.S and does not arbitrarily prevent our American farmers and crops from contributing to the green economy.
  • The Fuels Parity Act would allow corn to qualify as an advanced biofuel – incentivizing lower emissions from ethanol production and allowing corn to access another bucket of the RFS. If ethanol can meet the scientific thresholds, then it should be allowed to qualify as an advanced biofuel and generate an advanced biofuel renewable identification number.

Full text of the Year-Round E15 Act can be found here.  

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