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ACE leadership testifies on EPA’s proposed RVP/RIN rule

ACE encourages EPA to move forward to finalize a rule allowing RVP relief for E15 but to cast aside harmful proposals to reform the RIN market

Sioux Falls, SD (March 29, 2019) –American Coalition for Ethanol (ACE) Senior Vice President and Market Development Director Ron Lamberty testified today during the public hearing in Ypsilanti, Michigan, on the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) proposed rule “Modifications to Fuel Regulations to Provide Flexibility for E15; Modifications to RFS RIN Market Regulations.”

Lamberty’s testimony highlights points which will be detailed in ACE’s written comments to the proposed rule. The points include: (1) supporting EPA’s effort to allow the 1-psi Reid vapor pressure (RVP) waiver to apply to E15 today and accommodate for a higher octane higher ethanol blend if one were approved in the future; (2) finalizing a legally-defensible rule in time for fuel retailers to sell the fuel by June 1; (3) welcoming EPA’s analysis that E15 would be held to the same gasoline volatility standards as E10 and have substantially the same level of emissions performance as E10; (4) urging EPA to cast away the proposed changes to RINs that would undermine ethanol demand and negate the upside benefit of E15 year-round; and (5) emphasizing the need for proper implementation of the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) Small Refinery Exemption (SRE) program.

In his testimony to EPA, Lamberty said, “ACE supports EPA’s effort to enact a legally-defensible rule providing RVP relief to ethanol blends 10 percent and higher, and to do so in time for E15 retailers to avoid the pointless stop-and-start dance they have been forced to perform for the previous seven summer driving seasons. The unnecessary changes in product availability and labeling currently required each June and September – changes which prevent stations from offering a more environmentally friendly, higher octane, lower cost fuel, during the busiest time of the year - have been a major roadblock preventing gas station and convenience store owners and operators from offering E15. The fact thousands of other retailers are willing to jump through EPA’s hoops each spring and fall is testament to how valuable E15 is to those businesses and their customers.”

On EPA’s RIN Reform portion of the proposal, Lamberty noted ACE continues to encourage EPA to separate these unrelated matters and stated, “the proposed changes to blending and RIN trading proposed in this rule would create new challenges for retailers and blenders, removing incentives for those who have invested in blending infrastructure and turning control of the RFS back to those who have refused to take action to comply with the rule over almost a decade and a half since the RFS became law.”

EPA’s comment period on the proposed rule ends on April 29, and ACE encourages industry advocates to utilize its Legislative Action Center to submit comments. Lamberty’s full testimony available here. listen to ron testify here.

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