Renewable Fuel Standard Articles

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President to Allow Year-Round E-15; Attach RINs to Exports

May 9, 2018

President to Allow Year-Round E-15; Attach RINs to Exports

President Trump said May 8 that he is considering allowing the unrestricted sale of gasoline containing 15 percent ethanol and will let biofuel exports count toward refiners’ domestic renewable fuel obligations. The proposed changes follow months of fractious negotiations between the corn and oil industries over the future of the U.S. Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS). However, major elements of the compromise remained in dispute after the meeting between top administration officials and four senators ended.

EPA Administrator Testifies on RFS Waivers

April 27, 2018

EPA Administrator Testifies on RFS Waivers

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Scott Pruitt testified before the House Energy and Commerce Committee on April 26 that the agency received more than 50 waiver petitions for small refineries to get out of their Renewable Fuel Standard requirements for the 2016 and 2017 compliance years. EPA has come under fire for abusing the waivers to quietly undercut the RFS after the agency exempted one of the nation’s largest oil refining companies from complying with the U.S. biofuels regulation.

NATSO Objects to Proposed Refinery Bankruptcy Settlement

March 28, 2018

NATSO Objects to Proposed Refinery Bankruptcy Settlement

NATSO on March 26 sent a letter to the U.S. Department of Justice outlining the truckstop industry's opposition to a proposed settlement agreement for the bankrupt refinery Philadelphia Energy Solutions. The proposed settlement would absolve the refinery of many of its RIN obligations under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS), and represents in many ways the latest iteration of the years-long battle between merchant refiners that strongly oppose the RFS and other segments of the fuels supply chain that have adjusted their business models based on the RFS's incentives.

Sen. Barrasso Calls on EPA to Study the Renewable Fuel Standard’s Impact on the Environment

December 4, 2017

Sen. Barrasso Calls on EPA to Study the Renewable Fuel Standard’s Impact on the Environment

The Chairman of the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works sent a letter to Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Scott Pruitt Dec. 1 requesting that the agency complete several outstanding studies assessing the impact of the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) on air, water, and land quality.

Commerce Announces Preliminary Dumping Determination on Biodiesel Imports from Argentina and Indonesia

October 25, 2017

Commerce Announces Preliminary Dumping Determination on Biodiesel Imports from Argentina and Indonesia

The U.S. Department of Commerce Oct. 23 announced a preliminary determination regarding biodiesel imports from Argentina and Indonesia, finding biodiesel is being dumped into the United States at below fair-market value. As a result, biodiesel importers will be required to pay cash deposits to the U.S. government on biodiesel imports from Argentina and Indonesia at a rate equal to the dumping margins.

EPA Administrator Reassures Midwest Senators on Agency Steps on the Renewable Fuel Standard / Regulatory

October 23, 2017

EPA Administrator Reassures Midwest Senators on Agency Steps on the Renewable Fuel Standard / Regulatory

Responding to pushback from a number of Midwestern Senators, Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Scott Pruitt outlined a number of steps the agency intends to take on the Renewable Fuel Standard. Pruitt detailed the changes, which will be beneficial to NATSO members, in an Oct. 19 letter addressed to seven Senators, including Iowa Senators Chuck Grassley and Joni Ernst and Nebraska Senator Deb Fischer among others.

Trump Administration Uses Obama's Legal Arguments in RFS Case

February 16, 2017

Trump Administration Uses Obama's Legal Arguments in RFS Case

In a brief filed in federal court on Feb. 14, the Trump Administration Department of Justice reiterated legal arguments made by the Obama Administration to defend against claims from the refining industry that Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) volume mandates are too high, and from renewable groups that the mandates are too low. This is a welcome development for many stakeholders concerned that the Trump Administration could significantly disrupt RFS implementation, but it remains possible that incoming EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt intends to do just that.

GAO Reports Say Renewable Fuel Standard Unlikely to Meet Greenhouse Gas Targets

December 5, 2016

GAO Reports Say Renewable Fuel Standard Unlikely to Meet Greenhouse Gas Targets

The Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) is unlikely to meet projected cuts in greenhouse gases (GHG) largely because of shortfalls in advanced biofuels productions, the Government Accountability Office said in a pair of reports issued Dec. 1.

NATSO, Fuel Groups Unite To Oppose Moving Point of Obligation Under the Renewable Fuel Standard

December 1, 2016

NATSO, Fuel Groups Unite To Oppose Moving Point of Obligation Under the Renewable Fuel Standard

NATSO joined seven fuel associations representing the majority of participants across the transportation fuels sector in expressing unified support for the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) recent proposal to keep the current point of obligation under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS).

EPA Finalizes 2017 RFS Requirements

November 28, 2016

EPA Finalizes 2017 RFS Requirements

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) on Nov. 23 issued the final volumetric requirements under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) for 2017. EPA also released a final 2018 standard for biomass-based diesel.

NATSO Meets With OMB to Discuss Renewable Fuel Standard

November 19, 2016

NATSO Meets With OMB to Discuss Renewable Fuel Standard

NATSO met with officials from the White House Office of Management and Budget Nov. 15 to discuss the forthcoming final rule outlining the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) volume obligations for 2017.

EPA Sides with NATSO, Fuel Marketers in RFS Decision

November 14, 2016

EPA Sides with NATSO, Fuel Marketers in RFS Decision

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced Nov. 10 that it is proposing to deny recent requests to change the "point of obligation" under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) from refiners and importers downstream to "position holders" at the rack, including many fuel marketers and blenders. The decision marks an important positive development for NATSO members. NATSO has spent more than a year educating EPA and the entire fuel marketing community on this issue and urging EPA to maintain the current point of of obligation.

EPA Sides With NATSO on Obligated Party Issue Under RFS

November 10, 2016

EPA Sides With NATSO on Obligated Party Issue Under RFS

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) today announced that it will not alter the “point of obligation” under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) program. The announcement was accompanied by a comprehensive analysis detailing the effectiveness of the current point of obligation, as well as a thorough rebuttal of arguments in support of changing the point of obligation. NATSO President and CEO Lisa Mullings issued the following statement on EPA’s report:

Donald Trump Elected President, GOP Retains Majorities in Senate and House

November 9, 2016

Donald Trump Elected President, GOP Retains Majorities in Senate and House

Donald Trump has been elected the 45th President of the United States. His victory has stunned pollsters, political prognosticators, and represents a severe rebuke to the political and media establishment. Voters have selected the ultimate political outsider.

NATSO Discusses Opposition to Moving Point of Obligation Under RFS at Energy Conference

September 22, 2016

NATSO Discusses Opposition to Moving Point of Obligation Under RFS at Energy Conference

Moving the point of obligation under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) downstream away from refiners would discourage fuel marketers from integrating renewable fuels into the fuel supply while simultaneously raising fuel prices at the pump, NATSO Vice President of Government Affairs said Sept. 21 at an energy conference.

API Urges EPA to Reject Petitions to Move Point of Obligation Under RFS

August 18, 2016

API Urges EPA to Reject Petitions to Move Point of Obligation Under RFS

The American Petroleum Institute (API) on Aug. 15 urged the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to deny petitions for a rulemaking that request EPA to move the current point of obligation under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS).

Moving RFS Obligation Would Cut Biofuel Use, Raise Fuel Prices: NATSO

August 11, 2016

Moving RFS Obligation Would Cut Biofuel Use, Raise Fuel Prices: NATSO

Shifting the point of obligation under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) from fuel refiners and importers to blenders would reduce competition at the rack and lead to lower renewable fuel use and higher retail prices, NATSO Vice President of Government Affairs told OPIS.

Fuels Update: Clinton Defends Position on RFS, AFPM Petitions EPA to Move RFS Compliance Burden

August 5, 2016

Fuels Update: Clinton Defends Position on RFS, AFPM Petitions EPA to Move RFS Compliance Burden

The Clinton Campaign announced on Aug. 3 that it does not support replacing the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) with a national low-carbon fuel standard similar to what is in place in California. The statement came in response to a news story that Clinton had reached out to California Air Resources Board (CARB) officials to discuss whether a low-carbon fuel standard could be applied at a national level. The Clinton campaign said that this outreach was simply "part of the campaign's ongoing stakeholder outreach efforts." CARB chair Mary Nichols is considered to be on Clinton's short-list of potential EPA administrators. In other RFS news, AFPM formally petitioned EPA to move the point of obligation under the RFS from the refinery to rack sellers and the Renewable Fuels Association asked the Commodity Futures Trading Commission and the EPA to investigate whether anyone is manipulating the RINs market.

June 26, 2016

House Committee Examines Renewable Fuel Standard

The House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Energy and Power held a hearing on June 22 to examine the Renewable Fuel Standard's (RFS) implementation, market impact, and possibilities for reform. Although Congress is not expected to consider any serious legislative proposal revising or repealing the RFS this year, legislators are likely to examine reform ideas in the next Congress beginning in 2017. The June 22 hearing provided a preview of what that debate will look like.

EPA Releases Proposed Renewable Fuel Mandates for 2017

May 23, 2016

EPA Releases Proposed Renewable Fuel Mandates for 2017

On May 18, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released proposed renewable fuel mandates for 2017 under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS). The proposal also included a proposed 2018 volume mandate for biomass-based diesel (the 2017 biomass-based diesel number was finalized in late 2015).

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