As Global Leaders Meet, Council Highlights Ethanol’s Environmental Benefits

The U.S. Grains Council (USGC) is continuing to demonstrate to administration and global stakeholders the environmental benefits of ethanol.

Forty countries participated in the Leaders Summit on Climate, held in Washington, DC, April 22-23, 2021. Attendees, including foreign leaders and representatives of many countries that already have ethanol policies in place like China, Japan, Brazil, Canada, India, Mexico and the EU heard President Biden’s climate goal to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and witnessed the submission of the U.S. Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC), the formal commitment by the U.S. to reduce emissions.

“Formal climate commitments, such as the Biden Administration’s announcement to reduce GHG emissions by 50-52% by 2030, open new opportunities to showcase ethanol’s environmental benefits,” said Isabelle Ausdal, USGC manager of ethanol trade policy and economics. “USGC is engaging with countries that are setting increasingly ambitious climate targets to ensure that all opportunities for ethanol are realized.”

To date, more than 80 countries have updated their Paris Climate Agreement commitments to include the 2030 target.

The Council is committed to developing partnerships between industries and local governments that promote trade policy inclusive of ethanol as a transportation fuel while ensuring the significant benefits of ethanol can reach consumers who need it most. To date, 49 countries have submitted implementing biofuels as an avenue to meet emissions goals.

The Council continues to work with the Administration, pursuing ethanol’s use as an immediate solution to decarbonizing the global transportation sector. These interactions are critical in the coming months as countries continue to lay out their plans to achieve critical environmental goals. The Council will work to engage through new bilateral climate partnerships, which most recently included India and Japan, and with existing multilaterals involved in the space. India, for example, recently announced it’s intent to increase blend rates to 20 percent by 2025 which, if realized, could have a nearly four-fold reduction in emissions from directly blending ethanol.

“The global ethanol industry has a opportunity to further abate emissions in the transport sector. There is real opportunity for the sector to achieve immediate reductions in emissions through higher blends,” Ausdal said.