US ethanol production for September dropped to its lowest level in at least 27 months, in large part because of plant shutdowns. Ethanol plants produced 983.9 million gallons in September, down 9.4 percent from August. The previous low since the EPA started keeping such records in July 2010 was the 1.051 billion gallons produced in February 2011. The numbers come from the US Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) Moderated Tracking System website and were reported in the energy-pricing publication Platts.

Among recent ethanol-factory shutdowns was Abengoa in Madison, WI, which was closed for maintenance. Usually, it makes 88 million gallons of ethanol per year. The issue of ethanol production has grown in importance as President Barack Obama and Republican candidate Mitt Romney debate over the concept of alternative fuels and US energy independence. Biodiesel production in September was also down for the fourth straight month.

Meanwhile, the EPA's 2010 decision to raise the nationally available ethanol blend to 15 percent from 10 percent withstood its most recent challenge from various trade groups when a lawsuit against the regulator was thrown out in August.

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 8 Months Ago
      Great ! only 90.6 % to go !
      • 8 Months Ago
      Odd article. Stats without a reason given. Did we not have corn crop failure this year due to drought? Food crisis coming up? Perhaps alternative energy production based on stable agricultural climate is not the best idea.
      • 8 Months Ago
      Hey DOMINICK!!! Here is a cool article on oil company profits, overhead, taxes, etc., from Mötley Fool....
        • 8 Months Ago
        @ EZEE Despite my reservations about some aspects of Motley Fool, it does publish interesting and thought proving articles. It's kinda sad that ABG readers, like Ford Future and 2WM, and other rabid anti-oil posters, don't read such articles to to provide them with some kind of balance to their irrational beliefs.
          • 8 Months Ago
          I enjoy reading all sides, rational or not. It helps one understand the mindset. One reason why I recommend d Rules for Radicals for everyone. One does not have to agree or accept the various ideas or premisesm but, it helps one to understand what they hear, and why.
      • 8 Months Ago
      Good! The less ethanol in my fuel, the better the gas mileage I get.
      Dave D
      • 8 Months Ago
      It's funny, but as much attention as I pay to this whole market and all the things alternative....yet I don't have a clue which way to feel about this one. LOL No wonder the average person ignores this stuff and their eyes roll back in their head if you start talking about it all.
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