Sixteen U.S. Senators responded to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) consideration of granting more than 50 petitions for Small Refinery Exemptions (SREs) under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS).

The senators, including Illinois’ Tammy Duckworth and Dick Durbin, urged the EPA to reject the petitions for past compliance years and respond to questions about recent use of SREs under the RFS.

The senators questioned EPA’s commitment to apply the 10th Circuit decision nationwide and the agency’s awareness that the structure of the RFS already ensures that Renewable Volume Obligations are effectively automatically adjusted proportionally based on actual sales of gasoline.

The letter then concluded: “The approval of SREs for past compliance years at this moment would only worsen the unprecedented economic challenges facing the biofuels industry and the rural communities that it supports. EPA must deny these petitions and apply the 10th Circuit decision nationally.”