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Exxon Mobil Corporation Message Board

  • bluecheese4u bluecheese4u Jul 19, 2013 2:06 PM Flag

    Oil companies break with trade group on renewable fuel mandate

    Oil companies break with trade group on renewable fuel mandate

    July 19, 2013 at 9:02 am by Jennifer A. Dlouhy

    The oil and gas industry’s top trade groups doggedly insist that Congress must completely scrap a federal mandate that forces gasoline makers to blend in ethanol and other renewable fuels.

    But not all oil companies are on board.

    At least two major integrated oil companies — Shell and BP — are pushing more modest changes to the eight-year-old renewable fuel standard, while others have biofuels investments that would be undermined if the mandate was dismantled.

    “Shell generally supports the RFS, but we do feel that it has to be revised,” said John Reese, the company’s downstream policy and advocacy manager, during an event Thursday that was organized by The Hill newspaper.

    As the world’s largest distributor of biofuels, Shell recently partnered with Virent Inc., to produce advanced alternatives made with plant materials at a pilot facility in Houston.

    “It’s because of those interests we have a little bit of a different interest than some others in the oil industry,” Reese said.

    BP, meanwhile, is one half of Butamax Advanced Biofuels, a joint venture with DuPont that aims to convert corn, wheat and other biomass into an alcohol that has a higher energy density than traditional ethanol and can be blended into gasoline at refineries. Butamax’s chief executive praised the renewable fuel standard in a June interview with Bloomberg.

    For its part, BP says changes are needed to the RFS, but the company hasn’t visibly been part of an effort to repeal the standard.

    “BP supports the goals of the RFS program to stimulate the development and deployment of biofuels technologies,” said spokesman Matt Hartwig. “There are challenges with the standard that must be addressed, and we continue to work with regulatory authorities to address these issues.”

    The renewable fuel standard obligates refiners to add steadily increasing amounts of ethanol and oth

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