Coalition Challenges EPA on 2018 Refinery Waivers

A coalition of renewable fuels and agricultural trade organizations filed a petition with the Washington, D.C., Court of Appeals on Tuesday.

The petition challenges the process the Environmental Protection Agency uses to exempt certain unknown small refineries from their respective obligations under the Renewable Fuels Standard in 2018.

The coalition includes American Coalition for Ethanol, Growth Energy, National Biodiesel Board, National Corn Growers Association, National Farmers Union, and Renewable Fuels Association.

In the petition, the coalition noted that the EPA’s document outlining the waiver decisions was just two pages long.

These two pages outlined the reasons behind granting 36 waiver exemptions to small refineries that didn’t then have to blend approximately 1.5 billion gallons of renewable fuel.

The document doesn’t reveal details and contains just “bare-bones” reasoning behind the decisions.

Furthermore, the groups point out that the decision didn’t even address whether or not the refineries were eligible for the exemptions.

It also didn’t include an analysis of “disproportionate economic hardship” as the statute requires.

The coalition says, “Even as the Trump Administration indicates it’s taking steps to account for future small refinery exemptions, the coalition remains concerned that the EPA’s abuse of the small refinery exemption program diverges from the spirit and letter of the Clean Air Act.”

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