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AFPM files lawsuit challenging RFS

Hydrocarbon Engineering,

The American Fuel and Petrochemical Manufacturers (AFPM) has filed a lawsuit in the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit challenging the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) 2013 Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS).

The AFPM is unhappy with the EPA’s reliance on data that was not available for public comment, and its use of a secretive methodology for setting cellulosic biofuel requirements.

Furthermore, the AFPM believes that the EPA continues to overestimate the amount of cellulosic fuel that will be produced and available for compliance.

AFPM is also asking the court to force the EPA to abide by statutory deadlines and put an end to EPA’s retroactive application of the renewable fuel requirements, which compounds refiners’ ability to comply with the law.

‘The agency has repeatedly disregarded the timelines established in the Clean Air Act to finalise standards prior to the beginning of the compliance year. This retroactive rule making harms refiners and must stop,’ said AFPM General Counsel, Rich Moskowitz.

The AFPM is simultaneously petitioning for the EPA to waive the cellulosic biofuel requirement based on EPA data and statements from cellulosic biofuel producers demonstrating that there will be a dramatic shortfall in the amount of cellulosic biofuel produced in 2013.

‘EPA continues to ignore the admonition of the DC Circuit to establish realistic, not aspirational biofuel standards (Case No. 12-1139, D.C. Cir. 2013). The Agency’s reliance on statements made by biofuel producers with an interest in creating a large government mandate for their product has not worked and will not work’, said Moskowitch.

‘While EPA missed the mark in finalizing the 2013 reneable fuel Standardsm we are pleased that the Agency acknowledged the problems with the ethanol blendwall and are cautiously optimistic that it will exercise its waiver authority with the upcoming 2014 rulemaking to establish more feasible volumes of renewable fuels’.

Adapted from a press release by Emma McAleavey.

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