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U.S. Refineries Has Requested EPA to Keep Refiner Waiver Requests a Secret from USDA

A law firm serving for small U.S. refineries has requested the EPA to keep refiners’ applications for a waiver from the nation’s biofuel policy secret from the Department of Agriculture, arguing that the petitions embrace confidential enterprise info.

Perkins Coie requested in a letter to the EPA on July 8, provides to mount pressure from representatives of the refining industry to Trump administration to box the USDA out of the dubious waiver program.

The letter follows Sonny Perdue, Agriculture Secretary publicly expressing opposition to how this system has been run in recent times.

This system can exempt small refiners in financial turmoil from their accountability to mix ethanol into gasoline below the Renewable Fuel Standard. Waivers can save them of millions of dollars however are broadly opposed by the corn industry, which argues they undercut biofuel demand.

Since President Donald Trump took workplace, the EPA has roughly tripled the variety of waivers it has granted to small refiners, drawing anger from the corn foyer and placing Trump amid a battle between two powerful constituencies necessary to his re-election campaign.

Within the letter to EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler, Perkins Coie stated the applications contained confidential business information (CBI) that shouldn’t be shared with the USDA.

The letter added that refiners feared the USDA would share the confidential data within the functions with gamers within the agriculture community, which may undermine the refineries’ ability to compete.

Perdue has typically sided publicly with farmers on the problem of biofuel waivers and informed farmers at an occasion in Iowa recently that he had spoken to Trump about it and was helping to devise a fix. Trump has additionally ordered a review of the small refinery waiver program after listening to criticism from farmers throughout a current tour of farm country.