Hagedorn Writes EPA about Renewable Fuel Standard, Small Refinery Exemptions

December 2, 2019
Press Release

WASHINGTON – Last week, Rep. Jim Hagedorn (MN-01) filed comments with U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Andrew Wheeler to express frustration with and demand changes to the agency’s practice of granting Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) waivers to large or unqualified refineries.

“I am here today to make my position clear that I expect the EPA to uphold the President’s promise made on October 4, 2019, to rural America and to implement the Congress’s intent on the Renewable Fuel Standard. I write to you today in frustration. In the last three years, waivers granted to refineries by your agency have eliminated four billion gallons of ethanol. That's a quarter of the ethanol produced last year in the U.S. -- the equivalent of 50 ethanol plants. With two biodiesel and 11 ethanol plants across southern Minnesota, these exemptions have negative consequences for the First District of Minnesota,” wrote Hagedorn.

Hagedorn also laid out a list of demands for ending EPA’s loose interpretation of the Small Refinery Exemptions (SRE) Rule, which can be found below:

  • Enforce the original biofuel targets that were agreed upon by President Trump, Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue, former Energy Secretary Rick Perry and yourself;
  • Limit the ability of large and unqualified companies to use SRE’s;
  • Restore all the lost gallons that were destroyed by retroactive SRE waivers granted for years 2016, 2017 and 2018; and,
  • Boost the proposed volume requirements by the amount of retroactive exemptions EPA reasonably anticipates granting for 2019 and 2020.

The full text of the comments can be found here.

Jim Hagedorn was elected in 2018 to represent Minnesota’s First District in the U.S. House of Representatives. He grew up on his family’s grain and livestock farm near Truman. Jim’s father, former U.S. Congressman Tom Hagedorn (MN-02), grandfather, and great-grandfather were all southern Minnesota farmers. Jim currently resides in the rural farming community of Blue Earth. Hagedorn brings policy experience to Capitol Hill from time spent as a congressional aide to former U.S. Congressman Arlan Stangeland (MN-07) and a congressional relations officer for two non-partisan U.S. Department of the Treasury agencies. Hagedorn serves on the House Committees on Agriculture and Small Business to promote farming, Main Street enterprises and southern Minnesota’s way of life.