The Environmental Protection Agency’s proposed Renewable Fuel Standards for 2018 and biomass-based diesel volume for 2019 must be improved to support investment and capacity building for advanced and cellulosic biofuels, the Biotechnology Innovation Organization (BIO) said today. Brent Erickson, executive vice president of BIO’s Industrial & Environmental Section, issued the following statement in reaction to EPA’s release of the rules:
“BIO and its members are concerned with EPA’s delays in issuing this proposal. We will work with the agency and the Administration to finalize annual rules in a timely manner and carefully consider the program’s impact on investment in advanced biofuels. We believe the rule should do more to grow advanced and cellulosic biofuel production in the next year and to provide certainty for companies investing in new technologies and production capacity.
“EPA’s proposed advanced and cellulosic biofuel volume obligations do not reflect the full potential for these innovative fuels over the next year. The agency continues to rely on a flawed methodology formulated by the prior administration that fails to ensure sufficient space in the U.S. transportation fuels market for all available advanced biofuels. BIO and its members look forward to working with EPA to identify and account for all qualifying volumes of advanced biofuel.
“BIO and its members have stressed to EPA the importance of speedier decisions on RFS pathway approvals. Biofuel producers must obtain this approval before they can produce RFS qualifying fuels. To date, EPA has simply taken too long to make its decisions on pathway approvals, with devastating results to individual companies, especially in the cellulosic and advanced biofuels industry.
“BIO believes the agency is wrong to waive more than half of the RFS program’s required advanced biofuel volumes and more than 20 percent of the required overall volume while failing to enable advanced biofuel producers to reach the market.
“Further, BIO continues to strongly disagree with EPA’s prior interpretation of its general waiver authority under the RFS statute and with EPA’s ongoing stockpiling of carryover RIN credits. The RFS statute does not allow EPA to rely on demand-side factors under the oil industry’s control as a basis for decreasing the fundamental requirement to use as much renewable fuel as the biofuel industry can produce. And the statute does not grant the agency leeway to create a permanent carryover RIN bank.
Source: The Environmental Protection Agency
Date: Jul 5, 2017