Biobased and Renewable Products News: RFS

June 27, 2013
Legislation Introduced To Repeal The RFS
This week, Senators John Barrasso (R-WY), Mark Pryor (D-AR), and Pat Toomey (R-PA) introduced S. 1195, a bill to repeal the RFS. S. 1195, the Renewable Fuel Standard Repeal Act, is companion legislation to H.R. 1461, the Renewable Fuel Elimination Act, which was introduced in April by Representative Bob Goodlatte (R-VA). The introduction of this legislation marks a victory for the refining industry, chain restaurants, and other industry groups that oppose the RFS. It is another action taken that supports their efforts to repeal the RFS. It is unlikely the bill will be enacted, ... read more >
June 27, 2013
President Obama Outlines Plan On Climate Change
On Tuesday, June 25, 2013, President Obama announced his new 21-page climate action plan in a speech he gave at Georgetown University. The plan is available online. Under the plan, the President will use his Executive authority under the Clean Air Act to curb harmful greenhouse gas emissions. For instance, he will issue a directive to EPA requiring the Agency to issue a proposed rule by next June (to be finalized a year later) that will limit greenhouse gas emissions at coal-fired power plants throughout the country. Other parts of the plan would help further the biofuels and renewable ... read more >
June 13, 2013
Energy and Commerce Committee White Paper
On June 7, House Energy and Commerce Committee Chair Fred Upton (R-MI) and Ranking Member Henry Waxman (D-CA) issued the fourth in a series of white papers on the federal RFS. This latest paper requests feedback from stakeholders on six questions on how the RFS impacts or affects energy security. Comments are due by June 21, 2013. The white paper is available online. As we have reported, Chair Upton and Ranking Member Waxman have issued the series of white papers to gather information for a set of hearings expected later this summer on whether and how the RFS should be ... read more >
June 13, 2013
House Subcommittee Hearing Targets RFS
On Wednesday, June 5, 2013, Chair James Lankford (R-OK) of the House Oversight and Government Reform Subcommittee on Energy Policy, Healthcare and Entitlements held a hearing on "Up Against the Blend Wall: Examining EPA's Role in the Renewable Fuel Standard." Witnesses included the current Director of EPA's Office of Transportation and Air Quality, Christopher Grundler, along with one supporter of the advanced biofuels industry and three opponents of the RFS. There were no representatives directly involved in the biofuels industry, and the corn ethanol industry affected ... read more >
June 6, 2013
RFS Target Of House Subcommittee Hearing
On Wednesday, June 5, 2013 Chair James Lankford (R-OK) of the House Oversight and Government Reform Subcommittee on Energy Policy, Health Care, and Entitlements held a hearing on "Up Against the Blend Wall: Examining EPA'S Role in the Renewable Fuel Standard." The content and focus of the hearing focused on the federal RFS and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) implementation of the policy. It represents another effort in Congress among RFS opponents to work toward significant reform or repeal of the law. Witnesses included the current Director of EPA's ... read more >
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 >
June 6, 2013
Florida Anti-RFS Legislation Signed Into Law
Late last week, Florida Governor Rick Scott (R) signed into law HB4001, legislation to repeal the state's RFS. This new law is significant because it represents another victory for the oil and gas industry that is working hard at the local, state, and national levels to build grassroots support to repeal the federal RFS. Opponents of the bill included biofuels producers building advanced biofuels facilities in Florida and national renewable fuels organizations, including the Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO). Supporters included specialty equipment manufacturers and the American ... read more >
May 30, 2013
Study Presses EPA On Delayed New Pathway Approval
James McCubbins and A. Bryan Endres of the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, just released a new article entitled "EPA Biofuel Pathways and Petitions: Failure to Launch?." It echoes concerns recently raised by members of the biofuels industry that EPA's ongoing delay in approving new fuel pathway petitions under the federal Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) program is inhibiting the ability of biofuels producers to produce new types of renewable fuel that would qualify under the RFS, including advanced and cellulosic fuels. The authors found, among other things, that ... read more >
May 30, 2013
Stakeholders Submit Conflicting Comments To House Energy And Commerce Committee On RF
As we recently reported, House Energy and Commerce Committee Chair Fred Upton (R-MI) and Ranking Member Henry Waxman (D-CA) issued the Committee's third in a series of white papers for public comment as part of their efforts to examine potential changes that they believe should be made to the federal RFS. This third white paper (available online) examined "Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Other Environmental Impacts." Refining groups, including the American Petroleum Institute (API), generally oppose the RFS and are working for the policy's repeal. In its comments to the ... read more >
May 24, 2013
New Fuel Pathways
EPA announced this week that it has signed off on a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) to amend administratively the federal Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) program, by among other things adding additional eligible pathways, which include eligible feedstocks. Unless prescribed in the final rule implementing the RFS, renewable fuel producers need to request that EPA approve their pathways, which include their feedstocks and technology, so that their fuel may qualify for renewable identification numbers (RIN) under the program. EPA has been criticized for taking too long to approve new ... read more >
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