Delay in Biofuel Mandate Hurts U.S. Biodiesel Industry
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After running nine months behind schedule, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency submitted its final rule for the 2014 renewable fuel standard to the White House on Aug. 22.
The Obama administration will do a final review of the rule, but it’s unclear on how long the Office of Management and Budget will take to return the targets to the EPA.
Last year, the OMB completed the review in about a month, but biofuel producers are suffering from the decreasing prices as refiners and blenders delay purchases until they see the final mandate.
The preliminary 2014 rule upset many in the biofuel industry due to slashes in renewable fuel requirements. The proposed rule, announced in November, held the biodiesel target at the 2013 level of 1.28 billion gallons.
Biodiesel producer Renewable Energy Group reported a 12 percent decline in second-quarter revenues as lower prices offset an 11 percent increase in volume, reports Reuters.
“We can begin to reverse that damage with a meaningful increase in the biodiesel volume that is finalized as quickly as possible,” said Anne Steckel of the National Biodiesel Board in a Chicago Tribune report.