Klobuchar, Peterson Slam EPA's Proposed 2019 RVOs

  • Thursday, 28 June 2018 11:04

Sen. Amy Klobuchar and Rep. Colin Peterson are the latest members of Minnesota's congressional delegation to criticize the EPA's failure to account for gallons of ethanol that will be lost from the agency's ongoing issuance of renewable volume obligation (RVO) waivers to oil refineries.

On Tuesday, the EPA proposed a RVO target of 15 billion gallons for corn ethanol in 2019. However, it is estimated that the EPA's continued issuance of RVO waivers to small oil refineries - including ones owned by major oil corporations - will reduce corn ethanol consumption by 1.6 billion gallons.

Klobuchar issued the following statement:

"Renewable fuels are a homegrown economic generator for Minnesota and for our country. This proposal maintains the ethanol volume requirements for 2019 and increased, albeit modestly, the blend targets of advanced biofuels that will create jobs and strengthen rural communities. But increasing those volume requirements is meaningless if the EPA continues to undermine the Renewable Fuel Standard by granting small refinery waivers to multi-billion-dollar oil companies - reducing incentives for blending, slashing demand for biofuels and feedstocks, and hurting farmers and biofuel companies. This misguided overuse of the waivers by the EPA could cripple the homegrown biofuels market for years to come."

She said by the time the EPA issues its final rule in November, it should address the misuse of small refinery waivers and restore the gallons of ethanol lost due to the waivers.

Similarly, Peterson said the EPA needed to address the issue of exempting oil refineries from complying with the RFS. 

"The damage inflicted on the biofuels industry by the EPA exempting major refineries from their RFS obligations far outweighs the minor volume increases in its proposed rule. Our corn and soybean farmers are fed up with EPA undermining the RFS, and the harm being done by the Administration's trade war. Enough is enough."

Yesterday, Sen. Tina Smith said the EPA's proposed target for corn ethanol would not be met if it continued to issue RVO waivers.