The U.S. Environmental Agency (EPA) has approved EcoEngineers’ application to implement a quality assurance program (QAP) for Renewable Identification Numbers (RINs) generated on biofuels produced at foreign facilities and imported into the U.S. In February, EcoEngineers became the first in the U.S. to be approved to audit domestic RINs, which oil companies use to account for their compliance under the federal Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS).
The QAP program, as outlined in the EPA’s Notice of Proposed Rule Making (NPRM), was originally written to cover only domestic production. Now RINs generated by importers on foreign production and RINs generated by foreign companies will also be covered by EcoEngineers’ QAP program.
“We’re very pleased with the direction EPA is taking,” EcoEngineers Partner and Senior Engineer James Ramm said. “The breadth of services we offer meets the needs of diverse players in the biofuel supply chain and the EPA is supporting our role as a validator of RINs.”
EcoEngineers currently assists foreign facilities to be “QAP ready,” meaning the company will monitor production and operations at foreign facilities to ensure they meet RFS requirements. Importers who buy biofuels from EcoEngineers’ foreign “QAP Ready” facilities can generate QAP RINs for the imported fuels they purchase from them.
While there is no deadline for establishing final QAP guidelines, EPA has indicated it hopes they will be released this fall. The QAP program in its final form is expected to authorize third parties to certify the validity of RIN credits and protect from liability refiners that purchase the validated RINs.