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. While not officially or legally binding, the letter states that EPA will finalize a decision within 30 days to refrain from shifting the compliance responsibility under the RFS, commonly referred to as the "point of obligation," from refiners and importers to blenders and finalize biofuel volumes on time by Nov. 30 at levels equal to or greater than those in the proposed rule. The letter also contains a pledge not to make biofuel exports eligible for Renewable Identification Number (RINs) credits. Administrator Pruitt also said that he will direct EPA staff to "actively explore" whether the agency has legal authority to grant a waiver allowing year-round sale of gasoline with 15 percent ethanol. Read Pruitt's letter here.
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