Gov. Ricketts, Ethanol Board Comment on EPA RFS Volumes Proposal

Source: By Nebraska Governor's Office • Posted: Monday, July 2, 2018

LINCOLN – Tuesday, Governor Pete Ricketts, who is a past chair of the Governors’ Biofuels Coalition, issued the following statement on the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) announcement of the proposed renewable volume obligations (RVOs) for 2019 under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS).

“Nebraska appreciates the EPA’s continued commitment to the timely release of renewable volume obligations required by the RFS and maintaining conventional biofuel requirements at 15 billion gallons.  We are also pleased to see that cellulosic and biodiesel are going up.  While timely release helps create predictability for producers, the EPA’s practice of granting small refinery waivers erodes producer confidence in the market.  During a recent meeting in Nebraska, Administrator Pruitt talked about reforming the method for reallocating waived gallons.  Producers need predictability from the EPA, and we would like to see his proposal on how to go about doing that as quickly as possible,” said Governor Ricketts.

During the meeting with the Administrator, Governor Ricketts also highlighted the need for robust biofuel targets as an integral part of sustaining domestic demand for biofuels, especially in a challenging trade environment and a time of low commodity prices.

“The 2019 Renewable Volume Obligation announced by the EPA helps get biofuel demand back on track.  However, ethanol producers are wary of the potential to again undermine the requirements via EPA issuance of ‘small refiner’ waivers.  EPA waivers have reduced biofuel demand by an estimated 1.5 billion gallons.  Biofuel producers continue to seek reliable market signals that stimulate investment in production and fuel infrastructure,” said Todd Sneller, Administrator of the Nebraska Ethanol Board.