Sen. Chuck Grassley

(Washington, D.C.) -- Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley says he’s glad the EPA “has finally come around” after it announced its support for a recent appeals court decision supporting biofuels producers.

The Environmental Protection Agency Monday afternoon said it agrees with last year’s ruling by the Tenth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals that rejected the Trump EPA’s retroactive waivers to oil refiners from the Renewable Fuel Standard. In his weekly conference call with farm reporters Tuesday morning, Senator Grassley said the EPA’s shift on small refinery exemptions is a step in the right direction.

“The announcement (Monday) provided certainty for Iowa farmers and biofuel producers regarding the use of the waivers,” Grassley said. “In the past few years, we’ve seen an increase in waiver petitions being granted. That had a significant decline in the renewable fuels volumes. In other words, it ended up being below what the law requires.”

EPA’s siding with biofuels in the critical RFS case follows longstanding calls from Grassley and Senate colleagues to follow the letter of the Renewable Fuels Standard. Grassley says there is more work to be done on the biofuels front.

“We are still waiting for this new administration to propose for the 2021 renewable volume obligations for all renewable fuels categories,” Grassley said. “There’s more work to be done on E15 labeling. While the Supreme Court has indicated its intentions to review the Tenth Circuit case, I’m glad to see the Biden Administration tries to right the wrong of previous small refinery decisions and then do what we all expect them to do – follow the law.”

Grassley noted he’s had a long-running campaign to restore integrity in the implementation of the law setting minimum benchmarks for the use of biofuels.

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