EPA: No new SREs filed, 3 SRE petitions remain pending

By Erin Voegele | July 21, 2022

The U.S. EPA on June 21 published updated data on small refinery exemptions (SREs) filed under the Renewable Fuel Standard, reporting that no new SRE petitions have been filed in the past month.

According to the EPA’s online data dashboard, three SRE petitions are currently pending, a number that was maintained from mid-June. The SRE petitions include one each for compliance years 2016, 2017 and 2018. The EPA took no action on the three pending SREs and made no changes to any of the SRE data included in its online SRE data dashboard.

The EPA’s data shows that 346 SRE petitions were filed with the agency from 2011 through 2021. Of that number 121 were ultimately approved, with 184 denied, 15 declared ineligible and 23 withdrawn. From 2013 through 2021, the number of approved SREs officially accounted for 3.12 billion renewable identification number (RINs). The true number of waived RINs, however, is likely much higher than 3.12 billion. The EPA in April overturned 31 SRE petitions that had previously been approved by the agency. Those 31 refineries were provided with an alternative compliance approach for demonstrating compliance with their 2018 renewable volume obligations (RVOs). Under that alternative approach, the impacted refineries can resubmit their 2018 RFS annual compliance reports with zero deficit carryover and no additional RIN retirements. The agency in June extended that approach to three additional SREs denied for compliance years 2016 and 2017. Growth Energy in June filed petitions for review with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit challenging the EPA’s alternative compliance approach.