Ethanol Rail Movements Update – Mar ’21
According to the EIA, Dec ’20 ethanol rail movements increased 12.3% MOM on a daily average basis, reaching a three month high level but remaining 10.2% below previous year levels. The YOY decline in monthly ethanol rail movements was the eighth experienced throughout the past nine months. 2020 annual ethanol rail movements declined 9.8% on a YOY basis, reaching a five year low level.
12 month rolling average ethanol rail movements have ranged from 60% – 69% of monthly ethanol production, historically. Dec ’20 ethanol rail movements accounted for 67.4% of monthly production on a 12 month rolling average basis, reaching a four month low level.
Ethanol rail movement figures are broken out by Petroleum Administration for Defense District (PADD) for both originating rail movements and destinations of shipments. The U.S. is regionally divided into five PADDs, which include the East Coast, Midwest, Gulf Coast, Rocky Mountain and West Coast.
Over 96% of the total rail movements originated in PADD 2 (Midwest) during Dec ’20. Over 9.1 million barrels of ethanol rail movements were destined to PADD 1 (East Coast) during Dec ’20, leading all regional districts.
Ethanol rail movements destined to PADD 1 (East Coast) accounted for nearly half of the total shipments during Dec ’20. Combined shipments to PADD 1 (East Coast), PADD 3 (Gulf Coast) and PADD 5 (West Coast) accounted for over 90% of total ethanol rail movements, with minimal amounts being shipped to PADD 2 (Midwest), PADD 4 (Rocky Mountain) and Canada.
Ethanol rail movements destined to PADD 3 (Gulf Coast) finished most significantly above historical average figures throughout Dec ’20 while ethanol movements destined to PADD 5 (West Coast) finished most significantly below historical average figures.