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U.S. EPA to propose expanding credit eligibility under biofuel program

The Biden administration is expected to propose expanding the kinds of renewable fuel production processes that are eligible to receive credits under the U.S. Renewable Fuel Standard program, three sources familiar with the matter said.

The move could help increase production of advanced biofuels, which include lower-carbon products such as renewable diesel and sustainable aviation fuel, the sources said. It is expected to be included in a highly anticipated upcoming proposal that mandates the amount of biofuels that oil refiners must blend into their fuel mix, they said.

The Environmental Protection Agency, which administers the RFS, plans to announce the blending mandate proposal in days, Reuters reported on Thursday, citing sources.

The EPA declined to comment for this article.

The expanded eligibility around production processes could echo a similar proposal put forth in 2016, the sources said. That rule, proposed toward the end of the Obama administration, was never finalized.

It is unclear how closely the new proposal's language would align with the previous language.

In the 2016 proposal, the EPA highlighted that several companies have developed renewable fuel production technologies that produce a "biointermediate" at one facility that is then processed into renewable fuel at another facility. The EPA sought to allow fuels produced through such methods to qualify under current approved RFS production pathways.

The EPA said at the time it was proposing those changes to raise production of cellulosic and other advanced biofuels.

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