On Wednesday, Sens. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), a lifelong farmer and senior member of the Agriculture Committee, and Joni Ernst (R-Iowa), a fellow member of the Agriculture Committee, joined Sens. John Thune (R-S.D.), Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) and several of their colleagues in urging the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to establish expanded renewable volume obligations (RVOs) in the upcoming “set” rule under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS). The senators encourage the agency to increase blending obligations for all renewable fuel types.
“Through this rulemaking, EPA has a historic opportunity to not only reinforce its efforts to restore integrity to the RFS, but chart a new course for biofuels that will help meet America’s diverse energy demands while further decarbonizing numerous sectors of our economy,” the senators wrote. “In order to guard against sidelining decades of investment and the diverse workforce that supports biofuels, we request that EPA set the conventional target above 15 billion gallons, set advanced biofuel volumes that account for increased production capacity of fuels like sustainable aviation fuel and renewable diesel, and ensure that renewable identification numbers (RINs) for emerging technologies and e-RINs are additive to existing volumes.”
Additionally, Grassley and his colleagues urge EPA to take other actions to maximize uses for biofuels, including updating lifecycle analysis for biofuel emissions and approving additional fuel registrations under the RFS.
“Finally securing reliable, EPA-endorsed lifecycle analysis will encourage increased use of biofuels in domestic low-carbon fuel markets and expand export opportunities to the growing number of countries turning to biofuels to meet their energy needs and climate action goals, such as Canada, India, and Japan,” the senators continued.
This letter was also signed by Sens. Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.), Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.), Deb Fischer (R-Neb.), Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), Roger Marshall (R-Kan.), Gary Peters (D-Mich.), Mike Rounds (R-S.D.) and Tina Smith (D-Minn.).
Full text of the letter is available HERE.
Grassley has been an outspoken advocate for Iowa biofuel producers throughout his tenure in the Senate. This spring, Grassley successfully pressed the Biden administration to allow E15 to be sold in the summer months to give Americans some relief at the pump. He has worked extensively with Senate colleagues and the executive branch to advance renewable energies and restore integrity to the RFS. Grassley has stood up for biofuels and the importance of the RFS countless times by calling out the EPA, regardless of administration. This year, Grassley has received the 2022 Fueling Growth Award and the President’s Award from the National Corn Growers Association for his leadership.