EPA denies RFS waiver request

U.S. EPA Administrator Stephen Johnson announced Aug. 7 the denial of the renewable fuels standard (RFS) waiver request submitted by Texas Gov. Rick Perry. As a result, Johnson said the required total volume of renewable fuels to be blended into the nation’s fuel will remain 9 billion gallons for 2008 and 11.1 billion gallons in 2009. “The renewable fuels standard is not causing severe economic harm,” he said, adding that the agency determined there is “no compelling evidence” that the RFS has been a factor in the impact that high commodity prices have had on the economy.

Johnson said the RFS will remain an important tool in America’s effort to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions and lessen its dependence on foreign oil. The EPA has published a detailed rationale that will serve as the framework for future waiver considerations. The EPA’s decision can be viewed at www.epa.gov/otaq/renewablefuels.

Perry submitted his request to the EPA in late April, asking for a 50 percent reduction in the 2008 renewable fuel requirement that calls for 9 billion gallons of consumption nationwide. Perry requested that the number be reduced to 4.5 billion gallons.