A number of Republican Senators from states that produce renewable fuels met on Jan. 5 with Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt, President-elect Donald Trump’s nominee for administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
Among the topics discussed, the lawmakers said they addressed the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) and who should bear responsibility for the RFS compliance requirements. Under the RFS, refiners and importers are required to ensure that renewable fuels are integrated into the nation’s fuel supply. Recently, however, there has been a coordinated effort on the part of some refiners to encourage policymakers to shift compliance responsibility under the RFS from refiners and importers to “rack sellers.”
NATSO has been leading a coalition of fuel associations in opposing these efforts to move the RFS compliance requirement downstream as it would discourage fuel marketers from integrating renewable fuels into the fuel supply while simultaneously raising prices at the pump.
NATSO, along with SIGMA and NACS, applauded the Senators who met with Pruitt Jan. 5 for their commitment to keeping fuel prices low for consumers and supporting a robust economy. Attendees included Senators Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), John Thune (R-S.D.), Joni Ernst (R-Iowa), Mike Rounds (R-S.D.), Deb Fischer (R-Neb.), Roy Blunt (R-Mo.), and Pat Roberts (R-Kan.).
“We’re encouraged by their meeting with Scott Pruitt … that included ensuring the Renewable Fuel Standard will continue to foster domestic energy independence and spur renewable energy use,” the groups said. “As the EPA weighs the status of the program this year, it is important to keep the compliance requirements for the renewable fuel standard with refiners and importers. It’s good for businesses that sell fuel and it’s good for consumers who buy it. Maintaining the current point of obligation would also make good on President-elect Trump’s campaign pledge to simplify the regulatory process, support rural America, and continue the progress made with the RFS.”
Following the meeting, Senators Grassley and Ernst said they received a positive response on Pruitt’s support for the RFS and for the rule of law. Sen. Grassley did not say whether he would support Pruitt’s nomination for EPA Administrator.
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