EPA Reopens REGS Rule to Address SREs

Source: BY Helena Tavares Kennedy, Biofuels Digest • Posted: Monday, May 13, 2019

In Washington, D.C., the Renewable Fuels Association reports that on April 11, EPA initiated the process for reviving one provision within the Nov. 2016 Renewables Enhancement and Growth Support (REGS) rule in an effort to provide more transparency regarding small refinery exemptions (SREs) from the RFS program. EPA had proposed to codify a determination that would reveal basic information about SRE petitioners (e.g., company name, refinery location) that currently can be claimed as confidential business information (CBI). A 15-day comment period will open once the official version of EPA’s Request for Further Comment is published in the Federal Register.

The timing of this action is fitting as EPA continues to rack up more SREs, as indicated by the agency’s April update of its Small Refinery Exemption dashboard. This latest revision reflects another pending 2018 RFS waiver, which raises the number to 40. RFA recently assessed ethanol consumption and blend rate consequences of the SREs—view the white paper here. We applaud EPA’s long-overdue focus on greater SRE transparency, and continue to urge the agency to adopt a more judicious and restrained decision-making process.