A bipartisan group of 23 Senators asked the White House to keep the current compliance structure under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) arguing that changing it would undermine the intent of the program and lead to chaos in the marketplace.
In a March 16 letter to President Donald Trump led by Sens. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) and Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), the Senators said changing what is commonly referred to as the point of obligation under the RFS is “unwarranted and indefensible” and would undermine incentives built into the program and lead to chaos in the marketplace.
"We strongly urge you to steer clear of administrative changes to the policy that would undermine the program and run contrary to your goals of promoting domestic energy independence and more choices at the pump," the letter states. "We look forward to working with you to ensure the RFS continues to provide the stability and predictability that is creating jobs and economic growth across the country.”
“This type of change would not only wholly undermine the intent of the program, but would also result in a massive, costly, time-consuming shift in compliance,” the letter states.
Signatories include Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.), Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.), Sens. Ed Markey (D-Mass.) and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.), Joni Ernst (R-Iowa), John Hoeven (R-N.D.), Roy Blunt (R-Mo.), Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich.), Heidi Heitkamp (N.D.), Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii), Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.), Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.), Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.), Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.), Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), Joe Donnelly (D-Ind.), Jack Reed (D-R.I.), Gary Peters (D-Mich.), Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.), Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii), and Michael Bennet (D-Colo.).
The letter comes less than a month after the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) closed a public comment period on whether to shift who bears responsibility for complying with the law and amid speculation that the White House is considering issuing an executive order to shift compliance responsibility under the RFS from refiners and importers to the rack.
The White House has denied those rumors, but has not expressly stated that such a deal is off the table.
NATSO and a coalition of more than 35 organizations and companies representing downstream blenders, fuel retailers, marketers and users vehemently oppose shifting the compliance responsibility under the law. Changing the compliance structure would inject massive disruption into the marketplace and raise fuel prices, hurting the economy and hard-working Americans.
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