Brooding Over Biofuels

A fuel refinery and a corn field.

April 26, 2018

NASHVILLE, Tenn (RFD-TV) Testifying before a Senate panel, Ag Secretary Perdue responded to some Senators’ concerns that the EPA is destroying demand for biofuels through its granting of waivers to refineries.

The Renewable Fuels Association says EPA waivers may have cut at least 1.6 billion gallons of biofuels from anticipated mandates in 2016 and 2017.

The agency has granted several small refinery hardship waivers, but reports say many of the refineries aren’t small or experiencing hardship. The issue was a popular topic when Ag Secretary Sonny Perdue testified in front of lawmakers on Tuesday. Senator Joni Ernst (R-IA) asked Perdue what he will do to “ensure the EPA is not deliberately circumventing the renewable fuel standard.”

Perdue responded that, while he has no direct authority in this case, he has brought up the matter of the discrepancy between the number of gallons mandated (15 billion) and the number which has essentially been circumvented via the waivers to EPA Administrator and to members of President Trump’s administration.

For his part, EPA Secretary Scott Pruitt has responded that the waivers are not granted subjectively but according to statutory constraints, adding that their needs to be stability when it comes to the RFS.

Watch at excerpt from Secretary Perdue’s testimony in the video clip above.