American Biogas Council forms coalition with two associations

Three renewable electricity trade associations have announced the launch of the RFS Power Coalition.

According to a release, the Biomass Power Association (BPA), the American Biogas Council (ABC) and the Energy Recovery Council have formed the coalition in order to get the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to implement a law passed by Congress in 2007.

The law itself will mandate the inclusion of qualifying renewable electricity in the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS).

“It’s been more than 11 years since President George W. Bush signed the RFS2, which included electricity as an RFS transportation fuel,” said Bob Cleaves, president and CEO of the BPA.

“The EPA has had more than enough time to implement the law as Congress intended, and they have failed to do so. Meanwhile, biomass power producers and other qualifying electricity producers are missing out on participation in the RFS program. It’s time for the EPA to act on this crucial part of the RFS.”

In order to press the issue, the group have filed a petition in the DC Circuit Court challenging the EPA’s 2019 Renewable Volume Obligation (RVO) which excluded electricity from its targets for renewable fuel production for this year.

“The EPA has received more than 40 applications from electricity producers to participate in the RFS,” said Patrick Serfass, ABC executive director.

“That means 40 projects were developed, investors committed funding and partners lined up to build new infrastructure using waste biomass to produce renewable electricity. But these projects sit dormant due to EPA’s inaction to administer their own program. Biogas applicants include dairy farmers, food waste systems and wastewater facilities all of whom could be building valuable new infrastructure America needs to recycle organic material that would otherwise be wasted into renewable energy and soil products.”

The coalition estimates that the inclusion of electricity would result in roughly 200 million gasoline gallon equivalents added to the D3 cellulosic fuel category of the RFS, which represents less than 1% of the total volume of fuels for 2019.

“There is currently much discussion in Washington about improving and reinvesting in infrastructure. Implementing a law already on the books is a logical step to provide local governments the tools they need to support their resilient infrastructure across the country,” said Ted Michaels, president of the Energy Recovery Council.

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