U.S. EPA expected to propose biofuel blending requirements by end of week -sources

E85 Ethanol biodiesel fuel is shown being pumped into a vehicle at a gas station in Nevada, Iowa
E85 ethanol fuel is shown being pumped into a vehicle at a gas station selling alternative fuels in the town of Nevada, Iowa, December 6, 2007. REUTERS/Jason Reed

NEW YORK, Nov 30 (Reuters) - The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is expected to propose by the end of this week the amount of renewable fuels that oil refiners must blend into their fuel mix for 2023 and beyond, two sources familiar with the matter said.

The EPA is expected to announce multiple years of renewable fuel obligations, Reuters has previously reported. The agency is also expected to include in the announcement a request for comment for provisions regarding electricity use under the law, the U.S. Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS), the sources said.

The EPA declined to comment.

Biofuel and oil industry stakeholders have been eagerly awaiting the proposal, which is delayed. The proposal will highlight how the Biden administration plans to use the RFS going forward, as the EPA, which administers the law, has expanded authority for the first time to set obligations.

Under the RFS, oil refiners are required to blend billions of gallons of biofuels into the nation's fuel mix, or buy tradeable credits from those that do.

While Congress set out specific goals through 2022, the law expands the EPA's authority for 2023 and beyond to change the way the RFS is administered. Starting next year, the agency has leeway to set multi-year mandates and make other changes.

Reuters previously reported that the EPA is expected to propose that electric vehicles be eligible for renewable fuel credits, according to sources. The inclusion of electric vehicles into the RFS would be one of the largest changes to the program since it began more than a decade ago.

Earlier this year, the EPA set biofuel blending mandates for 2022 at 20.63 billion gallons and retroactive volume mandates for 2021 at 18.84 billion gallons and for 2020 at 17.13 billion gallons.

Reporting by Stephanie Kelly in New York and Jarrett Renshaw in Philadelphia Editing by Matthew Lewis

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Thomson Reuters

A New-York-based correspondent covering the U.S. crude market and member of the energy team since 2018 covering the oil and fuel markets as well as federal policy around renewable fuels.