RFS Volumes Fall Short Despite Industry Efforts

By The National Biodiesel Board | January 08, 2018

Despite the robust efforts of the industry, the U.S. EPA failed to grow the biomass-based diesel volumes in the required volume obligations (RVOs) under the Renewable Fuel Standard that were recently released.

“EPA Administrator Pruitt has disappointed the biodiesel industry for failing to respond to our repeated calls for growth,” said Doug Whitehead, chief operating officer of the National Biodiesel Board. “These flat volumes will harm Americans across several job-creating sectors—be they farmers, grease collectors, crushers, biodiesel producers, truckers, as well as consumers. We look forward to working with EPA collaboratively as we continue to move the industry forward.”

Since the July proposal and the September Notice of Data Availability, the biodiesel industry engaged in aggressive advocacy for growth in the volumes. In addition to an extensive series of meetings with administration officials, NBB issued robust data sets, a campaign-style video, a full-page advertisement in The Washington Post, a letter to President Trump from NBB’s leadership, and NBB joined a broad coalition letter with other biofuels advocates. The association led several letter-writing and social media campaigns, as well as assisting with the efforts of governors, senators and NBB members  to raise the volumes. In November, nearly 100 NBB members were in Washington, D.C., to meet with their elected officials on Capitol Hill.

“We can’t thank our members and our biodiesel champions at the state and federal levels enough for their tireless advocacy and education efforts,” Whitehead said. “The biodiesel industry has consistently exceeded EPA’s standards—despite the agency underestimating the volumes each year. These volumes are important for setting a baseline—and our industry will again surpass these low expectations—but the failure to increase volumes will inhibit continued growth and investments.”

On Nov. 30, EPA announced requirements of 4.29 billion gallons of advanced biofuels for 2018 and 2.1 billion gallons of biomass-based diesel again for 2019. The July proposal recommended only 4.24 billion gallons of advanced biofuels and 2.1 billion gallons of biomass-based diesel—a reduction and a flatline, respectively, from last year’s standards.

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