The Renewable Fuels Association today thanked Reps. Randy Feenstra (R-IA) and Angie Craig (D-MN) for introducing legislation that reinforces the intended meaning of the term “extension” as it relates to the Renewable Fuel Standard’s small refinery exemption provisions.


The bill stipulates that a small refinery may petition for an exemption only if that refinery has continuously received one every year since 2011. It was prepared in response to the recent Supreme Court decision to reverse an important aspect of the Tenth Circuit’s 2020 decision regarding small refinery exemption extensions granted by the previous administration.


“As we argued before the Supreme Court, we believe Congress has always intended the small refinery exemption to be temporary in nature. We also continue to believe the statute only allows EPA to extend exemptions for refineries that were continuously exempt, but only if they can prove disproportionate economic hardship will be caused solely by RFS compliance,” said Geoff Cooper, RFA President and CEO. “We strongly agreed with Justices Barrett, Kagan, and Sotomayor that ‘EPA cannot ‘extend’ an exemption that a refinery no longer has,’ but unfortunately their six colleagues didn’t see it that way. Thus, we applaud Reps. Feenstra and Craig for introducing this bill that would erase any lingering doubts about the intended meaning of ‘extension’ and clarify once and for all that exemptions were meant to be temporary.”


Ken Colombini