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Biofuel groups want EPA to restore lost RFS demand

Court challenge asks EPA to reconsider the 2016 RVO and restore the 500 million lost RIN gallons.

Jacqui Fatka

January 8, 2021

2 Min Read

A coalition of the nation’s largest biofuels and agricultural trade groups filed its reply in support of its motion in the U.S. Court of Appeals in the District of Columbia. The motion, originally filed on November 23, 2020, asks the court to enforce its 2017 decision requiring the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to address its improper waiver of 500 million gallons of biofuel demand in the 2016 renewable volume obligation.  

In the July 2017 ruling of the case Americans for Clean Energy et al. v. EPA et al., the court invalidated the EPA’s improper waiver of 500 million gallons in the 2016 RVO and ordered EPA to revisit the rule. The court held that EPA’s interpretation of the “inadequate domestic supply” waiver provision “runs contrary to how the Renewable Fuel Program is supposed to work.” To date, EPA has failed to open any proceedings to reconsider the 2016 RVO and has not restored the 500 million lost RIN gallons.

In the reply brief filed Jan. 7, the coalition reasserts that EPA’s delays in remedying the improper waiver are unreasonable and confirms that the court has the authority to require EPA to issue a 500 million gallon “curative obligation” to make up lost gallons, and to do it now.  

The coalition, which includes the Renewable Fuels Association, Growth Energy, National Biodiesel Board, American Coalition for Ethanol, National Corn Growers Association, National Farmers Union and National Sorghum Producers, says, “EPA should not be allowed to hide behind claims that restoring 500 million improperly waived gallons is an administrative burden that would inconvenience oil industry interests.”

The groups adds, “What’s at stake is the proper implementation of the RFS and the rural communities that rely on its success for their livelihood. As we have made clear, EPA has had the ability and the authority to do the right thing and remedy these lost gallons immediately and on a definite schedule. EPA’s delay and disregard for the court’s directive for more than three years is inexcusable.” 

Source: Joint statement from Renewable Fuels Association, Growth Energy, National Biodiesel Board, American Coalition for Ethanol, National Corn Growers Association, National Farmers Union, and National Sorghum Producers, which is solely responsible for the information provided and is wholly owned by the source. Informa Business Media and all its subsidiaries are not responsible for any of the content contained in this information asset. 

 

About the Author(s)

Jacqui Fatka

Policy editor, Farm Futures

Jacqui Fatka grew up on a diversified livestock and grain farm in southwest Iowa and graduated from Iowa State University with a bachelor’s degree in journalism and mass communications, with a minor in agriculture education, in 2003. She’s been writing for agricultural audiences ever since. In college, she interned with Wallaces Farmer and cultivated her love of ag policy during an internship with the Iowa Pork Producers Association, working in Sen. Chuck Grassley’s Capitol Hill press office. In 2003, she started full time for Farm Progress companies’ state and regional publications as the e-content editor, and became Farm Futures’ policy editor in 2004. A few years later, she began covering grain and biofuels markets for the weekly newspaper Feedstuffs. As the current policy editor for Farm Progress, she covers the ongoing developments in ag policy, trade, regulations and court rulings. Fatka also serves as the interim executive secretary-treasurer for the North American Agricultural Journalists. She lives on a small acreage in central Ohio with her husband and three children.

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