US ethanol production and use reached new record levels in 2015, the Renewable Fuel Association (RFA) said, citing official data.

The country produced 14.81 billion gallons of ethanol last year, up from 14.31 billion gallons in 2014. The amount of ethanol blended into the US gasoline supply, meanwhile, increased to 13.69 billion gallons from 13.32 billion gallons in the previous year. The ethanol content in total gasoline consumption was little changed at 9.75%, compared to 9.74% in 2014.

The monthly average ethanol output crossed the 1 million-barrel-per-day mark for the first time in December 2015.

The RFA said that while the US ethanol industry had an incredible year in 2015, mismanagement of the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) programme and the unwillingness of the oil industry to adopt higher ethanol blends like E15, kept it from realising its full potential.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) set the 2015 blending requirement for renewable fuel at 14.05 billion gallons, rather than the 15 billion gallon level originally stipulated by Congress, the association noted.


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