EIA maintains 2016, 2017 ethanol production forecasts

By Erin Voegele | August 11, 2016

The U.S. Energy Information Administration has released the August edition of its Short-Term Energy Outlook, predicting ethanol production will average approximately 980,000 barrels per day in 2016 and 2017. The new forecast maintains the prediction made in the July STEO

According to the EIA, ethanol production averaged almost 970,000 barrels per day last year. Production is expected to increase this year, reaching approximately 980,000 barrels per day. That level of production is expected to continue through 2017.

Ethanol consumption averaged approximately 910,000 barrels per day last year and is expected to increase to approximately 930,000 barrels per day this year and next year. The EIA said this level of consumption would result in the ethanol share of the total gasoline pool averaging 10 percent in both 2016 and 2017.

Biodiesel production averaged 82,000 barrels per day last year and is expected to increase to 99,000 barrels per day this year and 106,000 barrels per day next year. According to the EIA, net imports of biomass-based diesel are expected to increase form 29,000 barrels per day last year to 41,000 barrels per day in 2016 and 47,000 barrels per day in 2017. The EIA also said it expects approximately 10,000 barrels per day of domestic renewable diesel consumption will be used to meet the biomass-based diesel and advanced biofuel targets under the renewable fuel standard (RFS) in both 2016 and 2017.

U.S. regular gasoline prices this summer, April through September, are expected to average $2.19 per gallon, 6 cents lower than forecasted in the July STEO and 44 cents  per gallon than last summer. According to the EIA, gasoline retail prices are expected to average $2.06 per gallon this year and $2.26 per gallon in 2017.

The EIA’s most recent weekly ethanol data shows production averaged 1.018 million barrels per day the week ending Aug. 5, down slightly from the all-time record of 1.029 million barrels per day, which was set the week ending July 15. The most recent monthly EIA data shows the U.S. imported only 1,000 barrels of ethanol in May, with exports at 1.328 million barrels.