With less than 48 hours remaining, I call on all farmers to submit comments to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) on the proposed Renewable Volume Obligations (RVO) for the 2018. While the proposed RVO has corn-based ethanol at the level intended by Congress, it would lower the cellulosic and advanced volumes. These reductions equate to a 73-million-gallon reduction for cellulosic and a 40-million-gallon reduction for total renewable fuel when compared to 2017. Cellulosic and advanced biofuels are important to consumers, farmers and environmentalists alike, so we need EPA's support for these fuels. Farmers can submit comments by going to www.ncga.com/rfs.
As corn farmers, we want to ensure that the final 2018 RVO numbers continue to expand the cellulosic and advanced market for two reasons. These fuels will continue to advance our research and investment in clean-burning, homegrown products and it will also provide an additional market for corn and corn by-products. We need the EPA to look forward and set goals that propel our nation's biofuels production in a growing direction, not leave it stagnant.
The RVO is set by a federal law called the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS). It requires domestic, renewable, cleaner-burning ethanol to be blended into the nation's fuel supply. Congress adopted the RFS in 2005 and expanded it in 2007. The program requires oil companies to blend increasing volumes of renewable fuels with gasoline and diesel, culminating with 36 billion gallons in 2022. RVOs are set annually by EPA to dictate the amount of renewable fuel blended into our fuel.
The RFS has been one of America's most successful energy policies ever. It has made our air cleaner. It has spurred investment in rural communities and created high-tech jobs. Today, consumers have more access to affordable, renewable fuel choices than ever before. And it has reduced our dependency on foreign oil. It moves America forward as a leader in clean energy.
Iowa Corn will continue to work to grow the renewable fuel market by improving the infrastructure for higher ethanol blends (E15 and E85) and promoting the use of higher blends with automakers, fuel retailers and consumers to gain more demand for corn-based ethanol. Here in Iowa, consumers already have access to more fuel options at the pump because of the Biofuels Infrastructure Partnership through the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the state's Renewable Fuels Infrastructure Program.
The very foundation of America lies in our rural economies, and the ethanol industry is crucial to future progression and vitality of this nation. Again, go to www.ncga.com/rfs to submit a RVO comment.