A bipartisan coalition of 35 members of the House of Representatives, led by Reps. Cindy Axne, D-Iowa, and Adrian Smith, R-Neb., today called on Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Andrew Wheeler to end the practice of granting small refinery exemptions (SRE) under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) for large or unqualified refiners.
The EPA has approved 54 SRE petitions totaling 2.61 billion ethanol-equivalent gallons of renewable fuels in the past year and a half; EPA currently has 40 more refinery waiver petitions pending.
“This unprecedented rate of granting waivers is a betrayal of our rural communities, detrimental to our energy security, and threatens our entire agricultural sector at a time of declining incomes and rising debts for our producers. EPA must halt this process and reallocate waived gallons as the law intends,” the lawmakers wrote.
Read the letter sent to the EPA.
NCGA thanks Representatives Axne and Smith and the 33 House members who joined this letter for sending a strong message to EPA to stop granting unjustified waivers and take steps to ensure waived gallons are reallocated and for highlighting the impact these waivers have on farmers.
NCGA has consistently decried the negative impacts these waivers have had on farmers and the RFS, calling on the Administration to rein in RFS exemptions for refiners with large profits, keep the RFS whole by accounting for waived biofuels blending and bring more transparency to this secret process.
NCGA came up with 40 reasons why the EPA should not grant any of the 40 pending petitions.