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Money-Saving Updates Proposed For Fuels Regulations

Officials with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) have proposed an action intended to streamline and modernize EPA’s existing fuels regulations by eliminating costly and unnecessary duplication. Fuel standards will remain just as stringent, but the action will update EPA’s existing gasoline, diesel, and other fuels regulations to help reduce compliance costs, while improving overall compliance assurance and removing approximately 800 pages of redundant regulatory text.

This action does not propose to change the stringency of the existing fuel quality standards nor does it propose to remove any statutory requirement for fuels specified by the Clean Air Act. Rather, it will help ensure consistency in how parties comply with EPA’s regulatory requirements and report information to the Agency.

“Ensuring compliant fuel that protects air quality and public health is among the highest priorities for the EPA,” said EPA Principal Deputy Administrator for the Office of Air and Radiation Anne Idsal. “We are focused on reducing unnecessary and duplicative regulations that increase costs to the American people. Our goal is to start the 2021 compliance period with a set of streamlined fuel regulations that save industry, government, and the U.S. economy millions of dollars annually without sacrificing any environmental protection.”

In this action, EPA proposes to streamline existing fuels regulations by deleting expired provisions, eliminating redundant compliance provisions, and removing unnecessary and out-of-date requirements. The proposal will replace them with a single set of provisions and definitions that will apply across all gasoline, diesel, and other fuels programs.

EPA estimates $32.9 million annually in administrative cost savings to industry. These savings would largely arise from the reduction of the administrative costs on both regulated parties and EPA in complying with and implementing the existing fuel quality standards. Other potentially significant savings are expected to occur by improving the ability to efficiently deliver compliant fuel through the system and by providing greater flexibility for fuel production and distribution.

EPA is proposing the regulations would replace the existing regulations on Jan. 1, 2021. The Agency believes having an implementation date at the beginning of a new compliance period will provide for a smooth transition to new regulatory requirements.

Once published in the Federal Register, there will be a 60-day public comment period.

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