EPA to Propose US Biofuel Fraud Fix by End of 2012
by Ryan Tracy (Hydrocarbon Processing) …The US Environmental Protection Agency late Tuesday made its first specific promises to address fraud in the alternative fuels market, a signal that months of negotiations with industry representatives are making progress.
In a letter to Rep. Gene Green, a Texas Democrat who was among lawmakers pressing the agency to act, EPA Assistant Administrator Gina McCarthy said the agency would formally propose a new regulation for the alternative fuel market by the end of this year.
…Refiners and oil importers are required to buy certain amounts of fuel made from plants every year under a 2005 law designed to reduce US oil imports.
The EPA enforces the mandate by assigning each gallon of fuel a number, which refiners can buy and sell on a market the agency oversees.
The market for alternative diesel-motor fuels – typically made from cooking oil, soybeans, and other feedstocks – has been in turmoil since last year, when it became clear that some companies were selling fraudulent numbers.
Ms. McCarthy said the proposal would allow a legal defense for refiners who buy alternative diesel-motor fuel from producers that don’t follow the agency’s rules. Oil refiners had sought that so-called affirmative defense to reduce their financial burden as a result of future fraud cases. READ MORE and MORE (Biodiesel Magazine)