The moment of truth is at hand for US biofuels this week as environmental
regulators prepare to rule on one state's request to halve the steep national
target for blending ethanol into fuel.
Texas governor Rick Perry asked the US environmental protection agency (EPA) in
April to cut the national biofuels target 50% from its current level of 9bn
gallons. After an unexpected delay last month, the EPA is expected to rule on
Perry's waiver request as soon as this week.
The waiver proposal has stoked a fierce political row over the future of
biofuels, with some US politicians echoing their European counterparts in
questioning whether ethanol's effect on food prices limits its usefulness as an
alternative to traditional fuel.
"We need to put an end to flawed government policies that distort the markets,
raise food prices artificially, and pit producers against consumers," senator
John McCain said in May ...