Energy & Environment

Pruitt allies lobby on EPA’s ethanol mandate

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A pair of allies to Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) head Scott Pruitt are lobbying policymakers on ethanol issues.

Glenn Coffee and Crystal Coon, through their firm, Coffee Group, filed paperwork this week with Congress to represent Oklahoma-based gasoline station and convenience store owner QuikTrip Corp. on issues related to the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS).

Pruitt and Coffee were both Republican state senators in Oklahoma from 1999 until 2011, when they both took on state government positions.

{mosads}Pruitt became attorney general and Coffee became secretary of state that year, and they remained close, according to StateImpact Oklahoma.

Coon was a senior adviser to Pruitt from 2015 to 2016.

Greenwire first reported on the lobbying registration Friday.

QuikTrip is the first federal lobbying client for Coffee and Coon, who are still based in Oklahoma City.

“QuikTrip is an Oklahoma-based company I have worked with for many years. Potential changes to the RFS would impact their business,” said Coffee, an attorney.

“To the extent that our clients have issues before federal agencies, we will continue to fully disclose that,” he continued.

“We plan to provide EPA, in an appropriate manner, the impact to their business of any potential agency action taken.”

The EPA is responsible for carrying out the ethanol mandate, including setting annual ethanol blending volumes for fuel refiners and setting the standards for compliance.

The agency is currently considering whether to make fuel wholesalers responsible for complying with the mandate, taking the responsibility off of refiners. The proposal has the backing of Carl Icahn, a billionaire investor and special adviser to President Trump.

QuikTrip, which owns a fuel wholesaler company, wrote to Pruitt last August that the proposal is “anti-consumer” and would undermine the goals of the ethanol mandate.

Coffee’s firm did not specify how much of its advocacy would focus on the EPA and how much would be elsewhere, such as with lawmakers.

Tags Environmental Protection Agency Ethanol Scott Pruitt

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