An op-ed by economist Robert Murphy on the blog of an oil-industry-backed group alleging that an op-ed by Renewable Fuels Association President and CEO Bob Dinneen "misrepresented the facts" on Renewable Identification Numbers "is a bit like a skunk saying a rose smells bad," writes Dinneen. Murphy's claim that RINs are driving up gasoline costs is "absurd" because RINs are generated free for each gallon of ethanol produced, Dinneen states. The recent run-up in RIN values was caused by refiners opting to buy surplus RINs on the open market rather than buy actual gallons of ethanol that come with free RINs, Dinneen explains.

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