IRFA Disappointed by DC Circuit Court Decision on Year-Round E15

Contact: Cassidy Walter

JOHNSTON, IOWA – Today the DC Circuit Court of Appeals struck down the EPA rule granting E15 the same volatility waiver that has applied to E10 blends for decades. The rule made it easier for E15 to be sold during the summer driving season in conventional gasoline markets which make up roughly two-thirds of all gasoline sold.

In response, Iowa Renewable Fuels Association Executive Director Monte Shaw made the following statement:

“We are very disappointed by today’s decision to strike down EPA’s rule that makes it easier to sell E15 year-round in all markets. It is still our view that the law allowing an RVP waiver for blends containing 10% ethanol can and should be applied to E15, which does contain 10% ethanol, and a little more. There is no scientific or environmentally-sound reason to erect arbitrary barriers to the sale of E15 in the summer months, which has lower combined evaporative and tailpipe emission than either E0 or E10. Today’s decision really turned this section of the Clean Air Act on its head.

“Every legal, regulatory and legislative option will be pursued to reverse this decision. We are confident that as this issue continues to work its way through the legal and regulatory process, E15 sales during this summer’s driving season will not be impacted. The key will be to find a solution by June of 2022 to ensure the rug is not pulled out from under fuel retailers across the country who have added E15 to their stations, banking on the certainty EPA provided to offer the fuel all year. Ethanol producers will not abandon these retailers as we continue to find a path for E15 to be sold all year long.

“It is painfully ironic that last week we lost an important RFS lawsuit when the Supreme Court found that agencies could broadly construe the word ‘extension,” while today the DC Circuit Court rules against us because an agency did not employ the most narrow and limiting definition of the word ‘contains.’ Perhaps last week’s Supreme Court loss sowed the seeds of this decisions future reversal.”

The Iowa Renewable Fuels Association represents the state’s liquid renewable fuels industry and works to foster its growth. Iowa is the nation’s leader in renewable fuels production with 42 ethanol refineries capable of producing 4.5 billion gallons annually – including 34 million gallons of annual cellulosic ethanol production capacity – and 11 biodiesel facilities with the capacity to produce 410 million gallons annually. For more information, visit the Iowa Renewable Fuels Association website at: