U.S. Senators Deb Fischer (R-NE) and Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) this week introduced the bipartisan RFS Integrity Act of 2021 to “provide more certainty for rural America by bringing transparency and predictability to EPA’s small refinery exemption process.”
The bill would require small refineries to petition for Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) hardship exemptions by June 1st of each year. This change would ensure that EPA properly accounts for exempted gallons in the annual Renewable Volume Obligations (RVO) it sets each November.
“This legislation is necessary because under President Trump, EPA brazenly granted nearly 90 waivers for small refineries, erasing over 4 billion gallons from the RFS volumes established by Congress,” said
American Coalition for Ethanol (ACE) CEO Brian Jennings.
“While we remain hopeful that the U.S. Supreme Court will soon put this issue behind us once and for all by affirming the Tenth Circuit Court’s decision in RFA et al. v. EPA, introduction of the RFS Integrity Act marks an important step forward toward getting the program back on track,” said Renewable Fuels Association President and CEO Geoff Cooper.
The Tenth Circuit’s vacatur of three last minute Trump Administratin exemptions last week means RFA was successful in preserving 260 million gallons of renewable fuel blending requirements that would have otherwise been erased if the exemptions had been allowed to stand.
RFA asked both the Tenth and D.C. Circuit Courts to dismiss its challenges to the three midnight-hour exemptions. “Now that the Court has vacated these improperly granted exemptions and is sending them back to EPA for reconsideration, we are gladly requesting the withdrawal of our original objections,” said Cooper.