June 26, 2024

New studies: Low carbon fuels, FFVs more effective at reducing GHG emissions than de facto EV mandates

Increased use of lower-carbon liquid fuels in light-duty vehicles would lead to larger and faster reductions in greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions than EPA’s recently finalized EV-forcing tailpipe emissions standards, according to a new study commissioned by the RFA and executed by an independent not-for-profit research institute.

“Lowering the carbon intensity of liquid fuels can reduce CO2 emissions faster than [electric] vehicles can displace the existing fleet,” according to the study. With a modest fuel carbon intensity reduction of just 1.25 percent per year nationwide, “the cumulative CO2 benefit from 2027 to 2032 would be 77 percent larger than required by the EPA standards.” The study notes that “this CO2 benefit could be achieved with a dramatically smaller on-road BEV fleet” than is anticipated by EPA under the new tailpipe standards.

The study also found that if automakers rely primarily on BEVs to meet EPA’s tailpipe standards and if 17 states adopt California’s “zero emissions vehicle” mandate, U.S. liquid fuel consumption in 2035 will fall 38 billion gallons (compared to 2022 levels) and electricity consumption will jump 480 terawatt hours (roughly twice as much electricity as California uses annually).

Renewable Fuels Association, Ethanol Producer Magazine

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