For months, Sen. Chuck Grassley of Iowa has urged the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to revise and increase its proposed volume obligations for renewable biofuels under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) for 2014, 2015 and 2016. After hearing from Grassley and other senators, the EPA revised its initial proposal and released a proposed volume obligation that is a modest improvement over the prior proposal. Still, the latest proposal underestimates the capacity for farmers and ethanol and biodiesel producers to generate enough renewable fuel to meet higher goals. Grassley was among a bipartisan group of senators who today met with White House chief of staff Denis McDonough to discuss their concerns. The EPA intends to finalize its proposal by Nov. 30. Grassley made the following comment on the meeting.
“I hope the chief of staff who met with a large, bipartisan group of senators will take our concerns to heart and back to the EPA. By hurting biofuels like ethanol and biodiesel, the EPA is hurting agriculture markets, rural economies, lower prices for consumers at the pump, reduced emissions, and national security through dependence on foreign oil. The EPA needs to revise and improve the rule, and President Obama needs to make it a priority.”