As farmers and biofuel producers continue to wait for a promised “small refinery waiver mitigation efforts” from the administration, U.S. Rep. Rodney Davis (R-Ill.) this week introduced the Small Refinery Exemption Fairness Act of 2019, which would require the EPA Administrator to use the average number of Small Refinery Exemptions (SREs) granted in the previous three calendar years when formulating the Renewable Volumes Obligations (SVO) for an upcoming year.
“I’ve heard from many farmers in my district, and this is top of mind for them and it’s top of mind for me,” said Davis. “We need certainty in an uncertain farm economy and the Small Refinery Exemption Fairness Act will put us on the right path to move forward. This bill should be passed immediately, and I hope that any final package proposed by President Trump will include the provisions in my bill.”
Requiring the EPA to use realistic estimates of the number of SREs they will grant rather than stating they plan to grant zero when calculating their annual RVO will give industry some degree of certainty and effectively relocate some of the lost gallons that were detrimental to the renewable fuels industry when, most recently, the EPA announced that they had granted 31 SREs. In an effort to incentivize the agency to issue fewer exemptions, his bill does not set a minimum number of waivers that the EPA should grant.
Rep. Davis talked about the waiver issue during an interview at the Farm Progress Show: Interview with Rep. Rodney Davis, R-IL 13th District