This is an excerpt from EERE Network News, a weekly electronic newsletter.

November 01, 2006

EPA Encourages the Use of Biofuels to Transport Freight

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is encouraging the freight-hauling members of its SmartWay Transport Partnership to commit to using renewable fuels. EPA launched its new SmartWay Grow & Go program on October 26th with the goal of having one quarter of its SmartWay Transport partners using renewable fuels by 2012, and half of them using renewable fuels by 2020. There are currently 481 SmartWay Transport partners, including major truck and rail carriers as well as shipping and logistics companies. Among the current partners are H-E-B and Meijer, which are expanding the sale of renewable fuels at their retail pumps, and Coca-Cola Enterprises, which is expanding the use of ethanol and biodiesel in its light- and heavy-duty fleets. See the EPA press release and the SmartWay Grow & Go Web page.

The EPA plays a crucial role in the growth of the renewable fuels industry, since the agency is setting the rules for a national program requiring increasing levels of renewable fuels production over the next six years. The Renewable Fuels Standard (RFS) Program, authorized by the Energy Policy Act of 2005, requires 4.7 billion gallons of biofuels production in 2007, increasing gradually to 7.5 billion gallons in 2012. And although EPA announced the proposed rules on September 7th, the rules weren't actually published in the Federal Register until later that month. See the official text of the proposed rules.