Open Fuel Standard Act of 2011

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Open Fuel Standard Act of 2011 (H.R. 1687) is a bipartisan bill in the House of the United States Congress, currently in committee, that would require that a certain portion of light-passenger vehicles sold in the U.S. be alternative fueling vehicles capable of running on something other than just gasoline.[1] The Open Fuel Standard Act does not dictate what types of vehicles are to be sold, only that an increasing percentage of the passenger car fleet sold in the U.S. be capable of running on non-petroleum sources - whether it be natural gas, electric, alcohol fuels, hydrogen or biodiesel, with a catch-all provision for any other sustainable technologies. The bill is intended by its sponsors to ensure that new vehicles enable fuel competition so as to reduce the strategic importance of oil to the United States.

Bill text[edit]

To amend chapter 329 of title 49, United States Code, to ensure that new vehicles enable fuel competition so as to reduce the strategic importance of oil to the United States.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,

Section 1. Short title.[edit]

This Act may be cited as the `Open Fuel Standard Act of 2011'.

Sec. 2. Open Fuel Standard For Motor Vehicles.[edit]

Chapter 329 of title 49, United States Code, is amended by inserting after section 32905 the following new section: `Sec. 32905A. Open fuel standard for motor vehicles.

(a) Requirements- Except as provided in subsection (c), each manufacturer's fleet of covered vehicles for a particular model year shall be comprised of--

(1) not less than 50 percent qualified vehicles beginning in model year 2014;
(2) not less than 80 percent qualified vehicles beginning in model year 2016; and
(3) not less than 95 percent qualified vehicles beginning in model year 2017 and each subsequent year.

(b) Additional Definitions- As used in this section--

(1) the term `covered vehicle' means a passenger automobile, and includes a light-duty motor vehicle;
(2) the term `qualified vehicle ' means covered vehicle that meets at least one of the following five criteria--
(A) has been warranted by its manufacturer to operate solely on natural gas, hydrogen, or biodiesel;
(B) is a flexible fuel vehicle;
(C) is a plug-in electric drive vehicle;
(D) is propelled solely by fuel cell that produces power without the use of petroleum or a petroleum-based fuel; or
(E) is propelled solely by something other than an internal combustion engine, and produces power without the use of petroleum or a petroleum-based fuel;
(3) the term `flexible fuel vehicle' means a vehicle that has been warranted by its manufacturer to operate on gasoline, E85, and M85 or any intermediate blend.
(4) the term `E85' means a fuel mixture containing 85 percent ethanol and 15 percent gasoline by volume;
(5) the term `M85' means a fuel mixture containing 85 percent methanol and 15 percent gasoline by volume;
(6) the term `biodiesel' means diesel fuel which has been produced from a non-petroleum feedstock and which meets the standards of ASTM D6751-03;
(7) the term `plug-in electric drive vehicle' has the meaning given such term in section 508(a)(5) of the Energy Policy Act of 1992 (42 U.S.C. 13258(a)(5)); and
(8) the term `light-duty motor vehicle' means a light-duty truck or light-duty vehicle as such terms are defined in section 216(7) of the Clean Air Act (42 U.S.C. 7550(7)) of less than or equal to 8,500 pounds gross vehicle weight rating.

(c) Temporary Exemption From Requirements-

(1) APPLICATION- A manufacturer may request an exemption from the requirement described in subsection (a) by submitting an application to the Secretary, at such time, in such manner, and containing such information as the Secretary may require by regulation. Each such application shall specify the models, lines, and types of automobiles affected.
(2) EVALUATION- After evaluating an application received from a manufacturer, the Secretary may at any time, under such terms and conditions, and to such extent as the Secretary considers appropriate, temporarily exempt, or renew the exemption of, a light-duty motor-vehicle from the requirement described in subsection (a) if the Secretary determines that unavoidable events not under the control of the manufacturer prevent the manufacturer of such automobile from meeting its required production volume of qualified automobiles, including--
(A) a disruption in the supply of any component required for compliance with the regulations; or
(B) a disruption in the use and installation by the manufacturer of such component.
(3) CONSOLIDATION- The Secretary may consolidate applications received from multiple manufacturers under subparagraph (A) if they are of a similar nature.
(4) CONDITIONS- Any exemption granted under paragraph (2) shall be conditioned upon the manufacturer's commitment to recall the exempted automobiles for installation of the omitted components within a reasonable time proposed by the manufacturer and approved by the Secretary after such components become available in sufficient quantities to satisfy both anticipated production and recall volume requirements.
(5) NOTICE- The Secretary shall publish in the Federal Register--
(A) notice of each application received from a manufacturer;
(B) notice of each decision to grant or deny a temporary exemption; and
(C) the reasons for granting or denying such exemptions.
(d) Rulemaking- Not later than 1 year after the date of enactment of this Act, the Secretary shall promulgate regulations as necessary to carry out this section.'.

Sponsors[edit]

Rep John Shimkus [R-IL19] introduced the bill along with Rep Eliot Engel [NY-17]

Cosponsors[edit]

Rep Bartlett, Roscoe G. [MD-6]

Rep Berman, Howard L. [CA-28]

Rep Blumenauer, Earl [OR-3]

Rep Boswell, Leonard L. [IA-3]

Rep Braley, Bruce L. [IA-1]

Rep Andre Carson [IN-7]

Rep Cole, Tom [OK-4]

Rep Dold, Robert J. [IL-10]

Rep Engel, Eliot [NY-17]

Rep Israel, Steve [NY-2]

Rep Henry C. "Hank," Jr. [GA-4]

Rep Loebsack, David [IA-2]

Rep McDermott, Jim [WA-7]

Rep Peterson, Collin C. [MN-7]

Rep Ross, Dennis [FL-12]

Rep Schwartz, Allyson Y. [PA-13]

Supporting Organizations[edit]

The Open Fuel Standards Coalition

Renewable Fuels Association[2]

Set America Free

Methanol Institute

American Coalition for Ethanol

References[edit]

  1. ^ 112th Congress, "The Library of Congress: Thomas", 5/3/2011, (http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/BILLS-112hr1687ih/pdf/BILLS-112hr1687ih.pdf), 6/14/2011
  2. ^ Open Fuel Standard Coalition, "OFS Supporters", 6/20/2011, (http://www.openfuelstandard.org/2011/05/our-purpose.html), 6/20/2011

External links[edit]