WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senators Rand Paul (R-KY) and Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) last week introduced the Fuel Choice and Deregulation Act of 2015. This legislation will remove Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) impediments to market competition and innovation in America’s transportation fuel market.
“The EPA’s onerous regulation of fuels is artificially limiting options for consumers and producers and preventing the adoption of new fuel options that could benefit our environment, our economy, and our energy security. Through competition and consumer choice, my bill will free fuel producers and automobile manufacturers to innovate and bring new products to market that can lower costs to consumers, increase domestic energy production, and benefit the environment.” Sen. Paul said.
“Consumers appreciate having choices, whether it’s at the grocery store or the fuel pump,” Sen. Grassley said. “Those of us who live in biofuels-producing states like Iowa understand the appeal of cleaner, domestic, renewable fuels. The EPA should be consistent in the way it treats different fuel blends as a matter of fairness and to give consumers more options for fueling their vehicles. The EPA has never acted on its authority to grant a waiver for E15. This bill proposes a legislative fix to fill the void.”
Supporters of the Fuel Choice and Deregulation Act of 2015 include: the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA), Growth Energy, Commonwealth Agri-Energy, and the U.S. Energy Security Council.
“Securing parity with respect to fuel volatility regulation for E10 and E15 is critical to the expansion of E15 in the marketplace. The RFA believes EPA has the regulatory authority to do that without new legislation. But legislation compelling Agency action such as Senator Paul’s Fuel Choice and Deregulation Act underscores the need to achieve parity by any means necessary, and we applaud and support his effort. Without it, refiners will continue to deny gasoline marketers the specially tailored blendstocks they would need to sell E15 in the summer months. At the end of the day, however, the most important means of assuring fuel choice for consumers would be the successful implementation of the RFS as intended by a bipartisan Congress in 2007,” said Bob Dinneen, President and CEO of Renewable Fuels Association.
“We certainly support efforts by Senator Paul and Senator Grassley to remove a major hurdle preventing consumers the opportunity to purchase higher blends such as E15. This has been a major obstacle ever since Growth Energy led the successful effort to get E15 approved for commercial use,” said Tom Buis, CEO of Growth Energy. “We are hopeful that Senators Paul and Grassley’s legislative efforts are successful in granting this much needed waiver to overcome the single largest regulatory hurdle to ensuring consumers have access to higher blends such as E15.”
“We applaud and support this effort by Senator Paul. EPA continues to drag its feet on this very important consumer issue. Without this legislation, gasoline refiners will continue to deny gasoline marketers the specially tailored blend stocks they need to sell E15 in the summer months,” said Mick Henderson, General Manager of Kentucky’s Commonwealth Agri-Energy.
“It is far from certain, given the rampant instability in the Middle East, that oil prices will stay in the double digits for long. Competition in the transportation fuel market can keep prices at the pump low by allowing consumers to fill up with competing fuels when oil prices spike,” said R. James Woolsey, Co-founder of the U.S. Energy Security Council and former Director of Central Intelligence Agency. “The Fuel Choice and Deregulation Act would level the regulatory playing field and open the fuel market to competition without subsidies, mandates or picking winners.”
Click HERE to read the Fuel Choice and Deregulation Act of 2015 in its entirety.