Biobased and Renewable Products News: Federal

June 6, 2013
EPA Petitions Supreme Court To Deny Review Of E15 Ruling By Lower Court
On May 30, 2013, EPA filed a petition asking the U.S. Supreme Court to deny requests by the Grocery Manufacturers Association, Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers, and the American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers (together petitioners) that the Court review recent decisions by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia regarding E15. In August 2012, for lack of standing, the D.C. Circuit Court upheld by a 2-1 majority EPA's waivers, issued in 2010 and 2011, of E15 for certain vehicles after 2001. Though D.C. Circuit Court Judge Brett Kavanaugh issued a strong ... read more >
May 17, 2013
Farm Bill
  This week, the Agriculture Committees in the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives passed their versions of the next five-year Farm Bill. The full Senate is expected to consider its version of the Farm Bill on May 20, while the full House is not expected to consider its version until later this year. Below, please find brief summaries of Farm Bill activities this week, particularly as they relate to renewable chemicals and biofuels. Senate On May 14, 2013, the U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry, led by Chair Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), marked-up ... read more >
May 2, 2013
Leaders Announce Plans To Consider Farm Bill
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) stated publicly that he would like the full Senate to consider a Farm Bill this month after the Senate Agriculture Committee marks up and passes its version of the legislation. Senate Agriculture Committee Chair Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) has reportedly stated that she plans to schedule a mark-up of her Committee's version of the next Farm Bill sometime this month. Biofuel and renewable chemical supporters are working hard to ensure that this year's version of the next five-year Farm Bill will include a strong energy title that helps ... read more >
May 2, 2013
Tax Reform
Last week, the Senate Finance Committee released its latest position paper as part of its ongoing effort to outline and propose ways to accomplish broad based tax reform. The position paper (available online) includes potential ways to reform energy tax incentives. An idea presented in the paper is to consider whether the various existing biofuel incentives should be eliminated and replaced with biofuel incentives based on technology ... read more >
May 2, 2013
Oil Industry Requests Extension Of Tier 3 Comment Deadline
EPA published a notice in the Federal Register on April 8, 2013, announcing a June 13, 2013, deadline for comments on its proposed "Tier 3" fuel and vehicle emissions rule. In March, EPA released the rule on its website available online. The rule has yet to be published in the Federal Register. Last week, the American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers (AFPM) sent a letter to Robert Perciasepe, Acting EPA Administrator, requesting the deadline for comment on the rulemaking be extended until 90 days after it is officially published in the Federal Register. AFPM claims the ... read more >
April 25, 2013
Senate EPW Committee Expected To Take Up EPA Nominee
Senate Environment and Public Works Committee (EPW) Chair Barbara Boxer (D-CA) has stated that she expects the Committee to consider and vote on President Obama's pick for U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator, Gina McCarthy, in the coming weeks. The nomination is expected to pass the Committee and the full Senate despite recent public statements by Committee Ranking Member Jim Inhofe (R-OK) that he will not support McCarthy. McCarthy has served as EPA's Assistant Administrator for Air and Radiation since 2009. In this position, McCarthy has helped oversee among ... read more >
April 25, 2013
Renewable Chemicals Eligible Under Reintroduced MLP Legislation
On April 24, 2013, Senator Chris Coons (D-DE) reintroduced the "Master Limited Partnership Parity Act," legislation that would give certain renewable energy companies the ability to organize themselves as master limited partnerships (MLP). Currently, only energy companies in traditional fossil fuel sectors may organize as MLPs. Renewable energy advocates support this MLP legislation as a potential tool to help raise much needed capital, as MLPs are taxed as partnerships, but establish ownership shares that can be traded like traditional stock on an exchange. This year's ... read more >
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