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Senator Ernst questions EPA nominee over refinery waivers

Photo courtesy of Senator Joni Ernst's YouTube channel.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Renewable Fuels Standard (RFS) are both getting a lot of attention as of late. Mostly this stems from the Tenth Circuit Court’s decision to hold the EPA accountable for what they called, “an illegal granting of waivers.” Now, as an EPA nominee comes before the Senate, Iowa Senator Joni Ernst had some direct and frank questions for him.

Doug Benevento is the nominee to become the deputy administrator of the EPA. During a hearing of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee on Wednesday, Senator Ernst asked Benevento directly about the court ruling being the law of the land when it comes to Small Refinery Exemptions (SREs).

Ernst says she and Senator Grassley have been in communication with President Trump about this court ruling and that EPA needs to follow the orders.

In a rare moment of agreement, the American Petroleum Institute has said the EPA needs to restore certainty to the marketplace and follow the rules.

The question has been asked about why if President Trump could lean on the EPA and get year-round E15, why has he not done the same on the SREs. Ernst has said she would like to see that same tactic from the Oval Office as well.

While the administration did request an extension to appeal, there has been no word if an appeal to the decision will actually happen.