Mexico raises ethanol standard

by Holly Demaree
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The the new ethanol standard receives support  organizations support from U.S. ag and energy organizations.
 
WASHINGTON, D.C., U.S. — The Mexican Energy Regulatory Commission (CRE) announced recently a change that will increase the maximum amount of ethanol that can be blended in Mexican gas supplies from 5.8% to 10%, except in the cities of Monterrey, Guadalajara and Mexico City.

The announcement modifies the Mexican Official Standard NOM 016-CRE-2016 regarding the quality specifications for fuels by increasing the maximum volume content of anhydrous ethanol as an oxygenate in regular and premium gasolines in Mexico.

According to the U.S. Grains Council (USGC), Mexico’s regulators moved in August 2016 to allow ethanol in local fuel supplies, except in its three largest metropolitan areas. In its decision, the CRE recognized the benefits of E10, which will help demonstrate that a 10% ethanol blend can positively contribute to air quality improvement and reduced cancer risk throughout the country. The Mexican Institute of Petroleum is also studying the merits of E10 blends.

The USGC, Growth Energy and Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) spoke out in the support of the energy reform.

“We are pleased to see this decision, which is the culmination of significant work by Mexican authorities and industry as they continue to diversify and improve their fuel supplies," said Tom Sleight, president and chief executive officer (CEO) of the USGC. “We appreciate the opportunity to work with Mexican leaders as they seek to build their own biofuels industry and offer cleaner fuels for the Mexican people.”

The organizations support the possibility of increased ethanol use in the future.

“We’re strongly encouraged by this announcement, which clears the way for further adoption of ethanol into the Mexican fuel supply,” said Emily Skor, CEO of Growth Energy. “By doing so, Mexican consumers will see how embracing ethanol will reduce harmful emissions, help contribute to a cleaner environment, and will create a stronger rural sector.”

The decision moves Mexico toward global standards in the use of renewable and sustainable energy resources like ethanol that offer environmental, economic, social and public health advantages over other additives and oxygenates for gasoline, the USGC said.

“We are greatly encouraged by Mexico’s recent decision to allow the sale and use of 10% ethanol (E10) as part of its fuel market reform efforts,” said Bob Dinneen, president and CEO of the RFA. “By permitting the use of E10 in its fuel market, Mexico will have blend levels consistent with fuel sold and used throughout the United States and Canada. Not only will Mexico be able to achieve greater octane and oxygenate benefits from using E10, it will help to drive trade and investment in its ethanol fuel sector. We hope the Mexican Institute of Petroleum will soon conclude its study, and are confident the study will affirm the air quality benefits of the use of E10 in the country’s most populous cities, thereby allowing it to be used in all regions of the country.”

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