2014-'15 RFS rule under review by White House OMB

By Erin Voegele | May 11, 2015

The U.S. EPA’s proposed rulemaking for the 2014, 2015 and 2016 renewable fuel standard (RFS) volume requirements is officially undergoing review by the White House Office of Management and Budget, marking a final step before the rules are released for public review.

According to information published by the OMB, it received the proposed rule from the EPA on May 7. The OMB has also indicated the rulemaking is subject to a judicial deadline.

On April 10, the EPA announced its intent to release proposed rulemaking for the 2014, 2015, and 2016 RFS renewable volume requirements (RVOs), along with 2017 RVOs for renewable diesel, by June 1. Final rulemaking is scheduled to be issued by Nov. 30.

A portion of the new compliance schedule is the result of a proposed consent decree in litigation brought against EPA by the American Petrochemical Institute and American Fuel and Petrochemical Manufacturers. Under the proposed consent decree, the EPA said that it will propose 2015 RFS volume requirements by June 1 and finalize volume requirements for 2014 and 2015 by Nov. 30. Outside the scope of the decree, the EPA has committed to propose RFS volume requirements for 2016 by June 1 and finalize them by Nov. 30. The agency also said it will finalize the RFS biomass-based diesel volume requirements for 2017 on the same schedule.

Regarding the 2014 standard, the EPA said it will re-propose 2014 volume requirements by June 1 that reflect the volumes of renewable fuel that were actually used in 2014. The EPA first proposed 2014 RVO rulemaking in November 2013. Approximately one year later, in November 2014, the agency announced it would delay setting 2014 RVOs until 2015

Under the new rulemaking schedule, the 2014 RVO is expected to be final by November.

Also under the decree, the EPA will resolve a pending waiver petition for 2014. That waiver petition was submitted to the EPA in August 2013 by the American Petrochemical Institute and American Fuel and Petrochemical Manufacturers.

The EPA’s Regulatory Development and Retrospective Review Tracker currently shows the original 2014 RVO rulemaking was withdrawn from review on May 1, while the new 2015 RVO rulemaking is expected to be published in the Federal Register in June