EPA RFS faces court setback as fuels fight drags on

Source: Buy Josh Siegel, Washington Examiner • Posted: Wednesday, September 11, 2019

Environmental groups were the only ones to notch a victory in court on Monday in a case over the Renewable Fuels Standard. The Environmental Protection Agency must conduct a proper Endangered Species Act review of its rule setting biofuels requirements for 2018 under the RFS, the D.C. Circuit judges said.

But the D.C. Circuit rejected competing challenges from oil industry groups and biofuels producers, arguing about whether the EPA’s biofuels mandate for 2018 is too high or too low.

That battle is playing out yet again. No one seems to be happy with the Trump administration’s pending plans to address 2020 biofuels requirements under the fuels program. That plan, according to a report from Reuters, would increase the biofuels mandate for 2020 by 1 billion gallons.

The United Steelworkers Union is the latest to speak up about the rumored proposal, arguing in a letter to Trump on Friday that changes to the requirements would increase foreign imports of biofuels.

“Without careful consideration on the impacts of increased conventional renewable fuels, we run the risk of walking away from the Congressional intent of the RFS which was to develop greater energy independence and security,” United Steelworkers international president Thomas Conway wrote.