Fuel & Energy

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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.

Minnesota to Implement Biodiesel B20 Mandate May 1

April 3, 2018

Minnesota to Implement Biodiesel B20 Mandate May 1

Effective May 1, all diesel sold in Minnesota must contain at least 20 percent biodiesel as the state officially implements the B-20 mandate passed in 2008.

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.

IRS Explains Procedures for Claiming Retroactive 2017 Biodiesel Blender Tax Credits

March 7, 2018

IRS Explains Procedures for Claiming Retroactive 2017 Biodiesel Blender Tax Credits

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has released a guidance document outlining special one-time claim procedures for obtaining the $1.00 per gallon biodiesel blender tax credit for 2017. Notice 2018-21 prescribes rules for how taxpayers can claim one-time credits for selling or using biodiesel, renewable diesel, and other alternative fuels (such as natural gas) in 2017. The notice also outlines how entities can offset liability for federal gasoline and/or diesel taxes with the 2017 credits, and further provides instructions for how taxpayers can make certain income tax claims on biodiesel and alternative fuels.

Congress Reinstates Oil Spill Liability Tax on Prospective (Not Retroactive) Basis

February 9, 2018

Congress Reinstates Oil Spill Liability Tax on Prospective (Not Retroactive) Basis

The budget deal that Congress passed on Feb. 8 restores the 9-cent-per-barrel tax on oil to pay for spill cleanups. The tax will not take effect until March 1, 2018, however, and will not be applied to transactions taking place between Jan. 1 and Feb. 28.

Congress Passes Retroactive Biodiesel Tax Credit for 2017 as Part of Larger Budget Package

February 9, 2018

Congress Passes Retroactive Biodiesel Tax Credit for 2017 as Part of Larger Budget Package

Congress yesterday passed and President Trump signed legislation providing for a retroactive biodiesel blenders' tax credit for 2017, leaving the credit's status in 2018 and beyond uncertain. The measure was included as part of a larger budget package that will keep the federal government funded for the foreseeable future.

NATSO, Others Urge Congress to Approve Multi-Year Extension of Tax Extenders

December 20, 2017

NATSO, Others Urge Congress to Approve Multi-Year Extension of Tax Extenders

NATSO joined nearly 60 organizations representing a variety of business, energy, transportation, and agriculture stakeholders in urging Congress to approve a seamless, multi-year extension of the tax extenders before the end of 2017.

NATSO, Biodiesel Supply Chain Unified in Support of Extending Biodiesel Tax Credit

December 19, 2017

NATSO, Biodiesel Supply Chain Unified in Support of Extending Biodiesel Tax Credit

NATSO on Dec. 18 along with all major associations representing the biodiesel supply chain signed a letter urging leaders of the House Committee on Ways and Means and the Senate Finance Committee to include a retroactive, multi-year extension of the biodiesel tax incentive in end of year legislation.

A Look at the 2018 Renewable Fuel Standards

December 14, 2017

A Look at the 2018 Renewable Fuel Standards

For more than a decade, the federal Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) program has sought to improve the emissions characteristics of fuel and support the domestic biofuels sector, while increasing American energy independence and security. The program calls for increasing volumes of renewable fuels—known as renewable volume obligations (RVOs)—to be blended into the nation’s transportation fuel supply every year.

International Trade Commission Moves Closer to Imposing Duties on Biodiesel Imports

December 6, 2017

International Trade Commission Moves Closer to Imposing Duties on Biodiesel Imports

The U.S. International Trade Commission on Dec. 5 made a final finding that biodiesel imports from Argentina and Indonesia harm U.S. producers. The decision, coupled with last month's final countervailing duties determination by the Department of Commerce, paves the way for final countervailing duties orders by the end of December. NATSO disagrees with the outcome, preferring free trade policies, and maintains that limiting fuel marketers' access to supply from overseas will raise retail fuel prices. The decision does, however, obviate the need for Congress to convert the biodiesel tax credit from a blender credit to a producer credit, as this change was designed to limit imports in the first place.

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.

Iowa 80 Thanks Senator Ernst for RFS Leadership

December 4, 2017

Iowa 80 Thanks Senator Ernst for RFS Leadership

Delia Moon Meier, owner and senior vice president of the Iowa 80 truckstop, recently applauded the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for its recent decision to reject proposals to change the current compliance structure under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) as well as thanking Iowa Senator Joni Ernst for helping to lead that effort.

EPA Releases Final 2018 Renewable Fuel Mandates

December 1, 2017

EPA Releases Final 2018 Renewable Fuel Mandates

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) on November 30 finalized its renewable fuel volume mandates for 2018. The final renewable volume obligations (RVOs) are very similar to the Agency’s original proposed mandates that were released in July.

New England, New York Energy Groups Urge Lawmakers to Extend, Phase Out Biodiesel Blenders' Tax Credit

November 28, 2017

New England, New York Energy Groups Urge Lawmakers to Extend, Phase Out Biodiesel Blenders' Tax Credit

The New England Fuel Institute (NEFI) and the New York State Energy Coalition (NYSEC) marked the latest organizations to urge lawmakers to retroactively extend the biodiesel blenders’ tax credit and phase it out over five years. In a letter to the Senate Finance Committee, NEFI and NYSEC said that proposals to shift the biodiesel tax credit to a producers’ credit would have an immediate and adverse effect on biodiesel supplies in the Northeast, including supply disruptions and an increase in consumer prices for biodiesel blended heating oil in New England and New York.

Environmental Protection Agency Rejects Petition to Alter Compliance Responsibility Under the RFS

November 27, 2017

Environmental Protection Agency Rejects Petition to Alter Compliance Responsibility Under the RFS

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) on Nov. 22 rejected proposals to change the current compliance structure under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS), ending a major push by merchant refiners and other obligated parties to shift what is commonly known as the point of obligation from refiners and importers to “rack sellers.”

NACS Joins SIGMA in Telling Senate Finance It Prefers No Biodiesel Tax Credit to Producers’ Credit

November 15, 2017

NACS Joins SIGMA in Telling Senate Finance It Prefers No Biodiesel Tax Credit to Producers’ Credit

The National Association of Convenience Stores (NACS) marked the second association in as many days to publicly express that although it supports the biodiesel blender’s tax credit it would prefer no credit rather than have it converted to a producer’s credit.

SIGMA Supports Biodiesel Blenders' Tax Credit; Prefers No Credit to Producers' Credit

November 15, 2017

SIGMA Supports Biodiesel Blenders' Tax Credit; Prefers No Credit to Producers' Credit

The Society of Independent Gasoline Marketers of America on Nov. 14 told members of the Senate Finance Committee that although it supports the biodiesel blender’s tax credit, the association would prefer no credit rather than have it converted to a producer’s credit.

EPA Sends 2018 RFS Proposal to OMB for Review

November 2, 2017

EPA Sends 2018 RFS Proposal to OMB for Review

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) on Nov. 1 submitted its proposed rule for the 2018 Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) renewable volume obligations -- and 2019 obligations for biomass-based diesel -- to the White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for interagency review. This marks the final step before the proposal is published in the Federal Register and open for public comment.

NATSO, Biodiesel Supply Chain Urge Tax-Writing Committees to Extend, Phase Out Biodiesel Tax Credit

October 31, 2017

NATSO, Biodiesel Supply Chain Urge Tax-Writing Committees to Extend, Phase Out Biodiesel Tax Credit

NATSO and a diverse group of biodiesel producers, fuel retailers and trucking interests representing every segment of the biodiesel supply chain sent a letter the Senate Finance Committee and House Ways and Means Committee on Oct. 31 in support of extending and phasing out the biodiesel blenders’ tax credit, and outlining their opposition to efforts to shift the credit to a producers’ credit as the tax-writing committees consider tax reform legislation.

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