(New York Times) The Environmental Protection Agency on Friday proposed reducing the amount of ethanol that is required to be mixed with the gasoline supply, the first time it has taken steps to slow down the drive to replace fossil fuels with renewable forms of energy.
Most fuel pumps and vehicles are not equipped to handle more than 10 percent ethanol, the E.P.A. said, and there has been little demand for more.
The move was expected, but it drew bitter complaints from advocates of ethanol, including some environmentalists, who see the corn-based fuel blend as a weapon to fight climate change. It was also unwelcome news to farmers, who noted that the decision came at a time when a record corn crop is expected, and the price of a bushel has fallen almost to the cost of production.
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"We're all just sort of scratching our heads here today and wondering why this administration is telling us to burn less of a clean-burning American fuel," said Bob Dinneen, president of the Renewable Fuels Association.