EIA: 10,000 Bpd Rise in Ethanol Output

OAKHURST, N.J. (DTN) -- The Energy Information Administration in its latest Short-term Energy Outlook forecast a 10,000 barrel per day (bpd) increase in ethanol production this year and for 2016.

Ethanol production, which averaged 934,000 bpd in 2014, is forecast to average about 960,000 bpd in both 2015 and 2016. This compares with estimates of 950,000 bpd last month.

The agency said ethanol consumption, which averaged 877,000 bpd in 2014, is forecast to average 905,000 bpd this year, 5,000 bpd higher than the prior estimate. In 2016, EIA estimates ethanol consumption to average 918,000 bpd, about 20,000 bpd higher than last month's STEO.

"This level of consumption results in the ethanol share of the total gasoline pool averaging 9.9% in 2015 and 10.0% in 2016. EIA does not expect significant increases in E15 of E85 consumption over the forecast period."

On Nov. 30, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency finalized a rule setting Renewable Fuel Standard volumes for 2014 through 2016, which EIA used to develop the current STEO forecast.

EIA expects the largest effect of the proposed RFS targets would be for biodiesel consumption, which helps to meet the RFS targets for use of biomass-based diesel, advanced biofuel and total renewable fuel. Biodiesel production averaged 83,000 bpd in 2014 and is forecast to average 87,000 bpd this year and 107,000 bpd in 2016. The estimate for this year and next are 4,000 bpd and 9,000 bpd higher than last month's STEO, respectively.

Net imports of biomass-based diesel are also expected to increase from 15,000 bpd in 2014 to 28,000 bpd this year and 47,000 bpd in 2016, 2,000 bpd higher and 12,000 bpd higher than the November forecast, respectively.

EIA estimates that emissions of carbon dioxide grew 0.9% in 2014 and are projected to fall by 1.0% this year and then rise by 0.3% in 2016. These forecasts are sensitive to assumptions about weather and economic growth, said EIA.