As officials with the Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Department of Agriculture were preparing for a meeting today on the Renewable Fuel Standard, reports surfaced that the nation’s second largest oil refiner has requested a “hardship waiver” for one of its facilities.
Marathon Petroleum is in merger talks with Andeavor, one of the first large oil companies reported to receive a hardship waiver, which would make them the largest oil refiner in the United States that would control one-sixth of U.S. refining.
Growth Energy CEO Emily Skor hopes today’s meeting will put an end to these waivers and restore the gallons of ethanol lost because of them. “These waivers have already siphoned billions away from farm families to enrich some of the world’s largest oil companies as well as a few well-connected investors like Carl Icahn. Those gallons need to be restored and American consumers need immediate, year-round access to E15,” said Skor. “President Trump promised to protect statutory targets under the RFS, and we support Secretary Perdue’s efforts to ensure the EPA upholds that commitment to rural families.”
Officials with EPA, USDA and the Department of Energy are expected to meet today to work on the details that came out of the White House meeting earlier this month, allowing year-round sales of E15, cutting down on the waivers, and possibly allowing ethanol exports to count toward blending requirements.