EPA Proposes Action Concerning Economic Harm, Renewable Fuel Standards, and Ethanol Storage
The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is taking many actions through the Renewable Fuel Standard program intended to help farmers and refiners, especially those affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. The EPA is proposing rules concerning E15 label revisions underground storage tank (UST) compatibility, as well as rules concerning compliance with the Renewable Fuel Standards (RFS) program. Although the EPA has proposed these rules, whether they reach final implementation remains to be seen. The new administration under President Biden will be responsible for making the final decision and is less likely to be as favorable toward rolling back anti-pollution measures. Read on to learn about the proposed rule changes, and call on our seasoned, licensed UST remediation and removal professionals to handle a damaged or contaminated UST.
EPA’s Proposed Rule Changes
On January 19, the EPA determined to issue several proposed rule changes. The proposals included the following:
- Proposing to allow gasoline blended with up to 15 percent ethanol (E15) to rely on the 1-psi Reid Vapor Pressure (RVP) waiver that currently applies to E10 during the summer months, allowing E15 and other high ethanol blends to be stored in underground storage tanks at existing tank systems of retail stations
- Proposing a change to the E15 fuel pump label requirements
- In response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, proposing to extend compliance time for certain obligated parties subject to the Renewable Volume Obligation (RVO) and all parties subject to the 2020 RVO
The EPA is also seeking comment on a number of petitions from refiners and governors of oil states for waivers under the 2019 and 2020 RVOs concerning “severe economic harm” and a letter from the National Wildlife Federation concerning “severe environmental harm.” Upon publication of the proposals, the rules will be open for 90 days for comments from the public as well as interested stakeholders.
Proponents of the renewable fuel industry claim that the proposed changes reflect an attempt to undermine the RFS and intend to ask the Biden administration to refuse these waiver requests. The CEO of the American Coalition for Ethanol claimed that the proposal is attempting to unreasonably bundle efforts to make E15 more accessible to retailers and motorists “with a poison pill gift to oil refiners.”
Call the Remediation and Removal Professionals at Lutz to Handle Your Underground Storage Tank Issues
If you find a UST at your construction worksite, farm, or real estate development project, or if you are dealing with a UST spill on your property, get help from qualified experts with years of excellent service to real estate developers and managers. For dedicated and comprehensive assistance, call Herbert Lutz & Company, in Florida at 954-971-5222, or in New Jersey at 908-862-8888.