Conservative groups push for RFS repeal 

Source: Amanda Peterka, E&E reporter • Posted: Monday, March 23, 2015

A coalition of right-leaning groups today urged members of Congress to support repeal of the renewable fuel standard.

In a letter to each House office, the groups called on members to co-sponsor legislation introduced earlier this year by Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.) that would eliminate the RFS. The organizations said that the RFS program was “irretrievably broken.”

The standard requires that refiners blend certain levels of conventional ethanol and advanced biofuels into petroleum fuel each year.

“Repealing this mandate would bring certainty to the fuel markets and eliminate the harmful impacts this government program has had on businesses and consumers,” the groups wrote.

Among the 17 signatories of the letter were the American Energy Alliance, Americans for Prosperity, the E&E Legal Institute, the Taxpayers Protection Alliance and the Heartland Institute.

Backers of the renewable fuel standard, including most advanced biofuel and ethanol producers, have called on Congress to keep the policy intact. They say that it helps reduce greenhouse gas emissions and promote energy independence.

Along with pushing for the repeal bill, H.R. 703, the groups also urged members of the House to oppose a separate bill by Goodlatte that would reform the RFS partly by eliminating the corn ethanol portion of its requirements.

The letter says that eliminating only the corn ethanol portion while leaving other requirements for advanced biofuel use intact would make the renewable fuel standard more like California’s low-carbon fuel standard.

“The advanced component of the current RFS mandate is easily converted into an LCFS, and a coalition of regulatory agencies and environmental agencies is already poised to push for that transformation,” the letter says. “An LCFS means higher fuel costs, gasoline shortages, job losses and reduced economic growth.”