Citing the amount of work that remains to sufficiently answer the Texas request for a waiver from the Renewable Fuels Standard (RFS) (earlier post), the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has said that it will not be able to make a final decision on the request by 24 July.
In April, Texas Governor Rick Perry requested that the EPA grant a national 50% waiver from the federal renewable fuel standard (RFS) mandate for ethanol produced from grain because of rising grain costs.
EPA Administrator Stephen Johnson issued a statement saying that additional time is needed to allow staff to adequately respond to the public comments and develop a decision document that explains the technical, economic and legal rationale of the decision.
In late April of this year Texas officially requested a waiver from the RFS. Shortly after receiving the waiver request, EPA initiated a public comment during which we received over 15,000 comments and a number of these comments raised substantive issues and included significant economic analysis. I believe it is very important to take sufficient time to review and understand these comments in order to make an informed decision. EPA is also required to consult with the Departments of Agriculture and Energy in considering whether to grant or deny the waiver request and has begun these consultations.
Johnson said he is targeting a final determination on the Texas waiver request in early August.