In a recent letter to EPA Acting Administrator Wheeler, members of the U.S. House of Representatives Biofuels Caucus provided comment on the Agency’s 2019 Renewable Volume Obligations (RVO) proposal. Echoing comments from NCGA and other ethanol advocates, the Caucus members emphasized the growth potential for ethanol and advanced biofuels while also cautioning the EPA against further undermining the RFS through secret waivers for refineries.
“Corn farmers thank members of the bipartisan House Biofuels Caucus for advocating for a continued strong RFS, greater transparency from EPA and reallocation of waived gallons to keep RFS volumes whole,” said NCGA president Kevin Skunes. “We appreciate the Caucus’ efforts to promote the benefits of renewable fuels and stand up for farmers and rural communities.”
As the Caucus points out in the letter, the RFS volumes EPA sets this fall will be undermined if EPA continues issuing refinery exemptions.
“We urge the EPA to put an end to these secret waivers until a process is established to make the name of the refinery, the gallons waived, and other relevant information publicly available. Additionally, accounting for any 2019 waived gallons in the final rule would help ensure biofuel production is not harmed by retroactive refinery exemptions,” the Caucus members wrote.
The letter also urged the EPA to update regulations that prohibit the year-round sale of blends greater than 10 percent such as E15 to increase biofuels use and keep RIN prices low. As of September 16, consumers again have access to E15 following its limited summer availability.
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