Biofuel Groups File Brief in RFS Challenge

Seven biofuel organizations filed a brief Tuesday in a case by the American Petroleum Institute challenging the 2012 cellulosic and advanced biofuel requirements under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS). The groups include the Advanced Biofuels Association, the Advanced Ethanol Council, the American Coalition for Ethanol, the Biotechnology Industry Organization, Growth Energy, the National Biodiesel Board, and the Renewable Fuels Association.

The intervenor’s brief defends the Environmental Protection Agency’s ability to set cellulosic and advance biofuels targets that are based on market data and seek to spur development, as consistent with the RFS as passed by Congress.

In the brief, the groups argued that “[f]or the 2012 cellulosic biofuel requirement, EPA reasonably based its analysis on EIA’s projection, but then took into account more specific information it had from individual facilities. Precedent makes clear that EPA can adopt standards calculated to spur development, consistent with Congress’s express statutory objectives.” Ultimately it is EPA who “is charged with judging credibility and weighing the record evidence.”

Likewise, the brief supports EPA’s determination to retain the overall advanced biofuels mandate as “well within its discretion. Nothing in the statute requires EPA to make specific ‘numerical projections’ for each advanced biofuel before deciding to maintain the congressionally-mandated overall volume” as API argues.

The case will be heard before the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. No oral arguments have been scheduled.

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