No summer doldrums in Washington, DC

By NBB | September 10, 2012

Although Congress has been in recess for weeks, Washington has been a busy place for the NBB team as a variety of issues percolate through the federal process. A quick update on the issues about which the most frequent meetings with lawmakers and the executive branch include:

• Regarding the 2013 RFS volume, it is expected that a final decision will be announced by the time this magazine is published, but as of press time there is still no announcement. The intense focus on the drought and the RFS, NBB believes, has already diverted federal resources from resolving this issue and that could continue. In addition to the 2013 volume, the EPA is also working to finalize future year volumes for other categories of the RFS, a new pathway for camelina, a new processing pathway for biodiesel esterification, and a rule modifying the definition of heating oil under the RFS.

• NBB continues to work closely with the EPA and petroleum industry groups to find solutions for addressing RIN fraud. On that front, NBB has expanded its work with the law firm of Bingham McCutchen to help navigate the process and fight for the biodiesel industry’s priorities. Bingham McCutchen has experience in this area as they helped NBB win a series of RFS-related lawsuits in recent years.

• Congress adjourned without passing a farm bill, but the industry was successful in getting some biodiesel priorities included in the House and Senate versions of the bill. NBB continues to push for final passage.

• The Senate Finance Committee on Aug. 2 passed a bipartisan package of tax extensions that includes the biodiesel tax incentive. This represents significant progress on this front and puts the industry in a good position to win an extension if Congress can come together to pass tax legislation later this year.

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