The Supreme Court declined on May 18 to consider a case that addressed whether the Environmental Protection Agency needs to consider every year whether to move downstream the requirement to buy RINs under the Renewable Fuel Standard. Valero brought the lawsuit and petitioned the Supreme Court for review late last year. NATSO opposed the lawsuit, and filed several rounds of comments with EPA as well as an amicus brief
in federal court opposing this shift.
This may be the final word on a multi-year battle over the so-called "point of obligation" under the RFS. NATSO has worked diligently to oppose EPA shifting the obligation to buy RINs from refiners and importers of motor fuel to "position holders" at terminal racks. The arguments for making this policy shift were false and misleading, and would have raised the price of motor fuel for consumers and discouraged fuel retailers from investing in biofuels infrastructure.
This was seemingly the very outcome Valero was hoping to achieve by pursuing this policy shift over the past several years. Although this may close the door on the specific "point of obligation" policy discussion for the foreseeable future, Valero and its allies are expected to continue to seek to undermine the RFS through new iterations of the same underlying policy grievance. NATSO will continue to oppose these efforts.
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