EPA Adjusts 2018 Renewable Fuel Standard Goals

four(December 5, 2017) – EPA announced Nov. 30 its final rule establishing the required renewable fuel volumes for 2018 under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) program.  EPA increased the volume of cellulosic biofuel from its proposed rule, but stopped short of restoring the 2017 level, as NACWA requested in its comments on the proposal.  The level of advanced biofuel was increased to be greater than the 2017 level.  Renewable compressed natural gas (CNG) produced by clean water agencies from digestion of biosolids is classified as cellulosic biofuel, and CNG from co-digestion is classified as advanced biofuel.

Maintaining consistent volume requirements will provide market stability and allow clean water agencies to initiate or continue their plans to participate in the RFS program.  Although significant investments are needed to produce CNG, the revenue currently available from the RFS program can make CNG production financially beneficial.  The 2018 volume requirements should help to maintain this profitability for clean water agencies. 

NACWA members that are participating in the RFS program or who have an interest in learning more are encouraged to contact Cynthia Finley.