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President Trump choosing refineries over farmers

Colorado Corn Growers Association

A misinformation campaign led by Sen. Ted Cruz, along with a handful of oil refineries has urged President Trump to overturn a unanimous decision by the Tenth Circuit Court preventing the Environmental Protection Agency’s abuse of small refinery exemptions under the Renewable Fuel Standard.

A panel of three judges in the Tenth Circuit Court ruling (Jan. 24, 2020) were unanimous in their decision. The deadline to file a request for the court to rehear the case is March 9, 2020. If requests are filed, the case could be reconsidered by all the judges of the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals. The Trump Administration, up until recently, was expected to accept the court’s ruling.

Last week, the following joint statement was issued by the National Corn Growers Association, the Renewable Fuels Association, the American Soybean Association, the National Farmers Union, Growth Energy, the American Coalition for Ethanol, the National Biodiesel Board, the Iowa Renewable Fuels Association and Fuels America.

“The president needs to understand Ted Cruz doesn’t care about this administration or families across the heartland who are counting on the White House to keep its promises. Just days ago, thousands of farmers rallied behind Secretary (Sonny) Perdue, who expressed his confidence that we had finally reached the end of a long and painful fight against EPA demand destruction. Tearing open that wound, against the advice of rural champions and the president’s own advisers, would be viewed as a stunning betrayal of America’s rural workers and farmers. We cannot stress enough how important this decision is to the future of the rural economy and to President Trump’s relationship with leaders and voters across the heartland. Ted Cruz comes back year after year with the same lies about refinery profits, disproven over and over by economists, the EPA, and even by Big Oil. We urge the president to stand up now against this misguided effort to torpedo the rural recovery.”

More than 20 farm and biofuel groups, including the American Farm Bureau and the National Farmers Union, sent a letter asking President Trump to reject “an appeal of the court decision, given the clarity, unanimity, and strength of the ruling.”


At a press conference Feb. 25, the American Petroleum Institute released a white paper basically debunking the narrative that RINs costs are hurting refiners. API’s Frank Macchiarola, Senior Vice President of Policy, Economics and Regulatory Affairs released the following statement. “We do not support the widespread use of small refinery exemptions that distort the marketplace and result in unnecessary costs. The 10th Circuit ruling is consistent with Congress’ intent when it enacted the Renewable Fuel Standard and limited EPA’s authority to extend existing exemptions — not issue new ones. The EPA should move immediately to apply the court’s decision nationwide to significantly reduce the number of exemptions going forward. Anything short of this will only further exacerbate the regulatory uncertainty created by this fundamentally flawed and outdated mandate.” ❖




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