Soy Growers Ask President Trump to Support Renewable Fuel Standard

first_imgThe American Soybean Association (ASA) joined the National Biodiesel Board (NBB) and the National Renderers Association on a letter last week, urging President Donald Trump to keep his promises to support and protect the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS).Reports indicate the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has granted exemptions from RFS volume obligations to several refineries for the 2016 and 2017 compliance years. EPA has apparently granted Andeavor a hardship waiver for its three smallest refineries, despite the fact that their profits last year were approximately $1.5 billion dollars. At least two other refineries with hundreds of millions of dollars in annual profits appear to have also been granted exemptions.The biodiesel industry is extremely concerned with EPA’s decision to give large, profitable refiners waivers from their RFS obligations, which reduces demand for biodiesel and feedstock providers.ASA, NBB, and the National Renderers Association also note concern with the inconsistent signals from the administration.“Contrary to your steadfast support, the EPA has undermined the RFS through recent actions granting so-called ‘hardship’ exemptions designed for small refiners,” the letter states. “This has a direct impact on consumers, renderers, fuel marketers, biofuel producers and hundreds of thousands of American soybean farmers. The actions taken by the EPA undermine the integrity of the RFS and stand in direct contrast to your pledge of support…”]Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) and Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) led a bipartisan group of 13 senators in writing to EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt requesting the agency cease issuing the so-called “hardship” waivers exempting obligated parties from the RFS, provide topline information about the waivers already issued, disclose whether or not the agency redistributed the waived volume obligations among the non-exempted obligated parties and outline the agency’s plan to make the waiver process more transparent. The full text of the senators’ letter can be found here.If you have any questions or would like additional information, please contact Tom Hance in the ASA Washington office at 202-969-7040 or [email protected]last_img