Increasing the biodiesel mandate under the 2014 Renewable Fuel Standard would be illegal under the Clean Air Act the American Petroleum Institute (API) recently told the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), according to Platts.
In a letter sent to EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy, API said the Clean Air Act requires EPA to finalize each year’s biodiesel mandate 14 months beforehand, which means the 2014 mandate should have been finalized by November 2012.
API did not indicate whether API, which has sought to repeal the RFS, would sue EPA if it raises the mandate, according to Platts.
EPA is close to finalizing the 2014 volumetric requirements for the final RFS, which is currently under review at the Office of Management and Budget. This marks the last round of reviews before the proposed rule becomes final.
McCarthy said in September that the volumetric requirements for the final RFS may end up higher than the proposal issued last year amid climbing gasoline use.
EPA in November lowered the ethanol mandate and set reduced levels for other biofuels in 2014.
The reductions were seen as a recognition on the agency’s part that fuel consumption has declined over the last several years and that today’s fuel infrastructure is not able to handle ethanol blends greater than E-10.
For the first time, rather than establishing a specific target for the biofuels fuels, the agency established a range of acceptable levels of the fuels to be blended in the nation's fuel supply.
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