The Biden administration is considering temporarily removing restrictions on summer sales of higher-ethanol gasoline as a way to lower fuel costs for U.S. consumers, three sources familiar with the matter told Reuters.
The consideration comes as gasoline prices climb for U.S. motorists, following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in late February. Retail gasoline prices hit a record high earlier in March, as the invasion roiled energy markets worldwide.
The Environmental Protection Agency said it could not comment on whether it was considering the move, but said it was “considering a range of options across the administration to help mitigate impacts from Russia’s actions on American consumers.”
The action would be welcomed by the ethanol industry, which has fought to increase sales of the fuel blend, known as E15, and lift summertime restrictions on it. E15 contains up to 15% ethanol, versus the 10% found in most U.S. gasoline.
The summertime ban on E15 was imposed over concerns that E15 contributes to smog in hot weather.
Copyright 2022 Thomson/Reuters