EPA delays compliance with renewable fuel standard

Petroleum companies will get a breather from latest round of renewable fuel standard, as the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is once again delaying the deadline for compliance with the 2013 standards.

The Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) is a program started under the Bush administration that requires that increasing amounts of renewable fuels that emit lower levels of greenhouse gases be mixed with gas and diesel fuels, eventually reaching 36 billion gallons of renewable fuel by 2022.

But the EPA said Friday it is delaying last year's compliance deadline for a second time. The original deadline for was set for Feb. 28 for petroleum companies to show their gas and diesel fuels met the previous year's standards. But the agency pushed it back to June 30.

The EPA delayed the rules again Friday in a Federal Register announcement, pushing the new deadline to Sept. 30.

This comes as the EPA struggles to develop new 2014 standards. The agency said it is important for petroleum companies to know what the 2014 standards will be before they have to comply with the 2013 standards. 

"The 2014 RFS rulemaking has been more time consuming than originally anticipated, involving receipt of over 300,000 comments," the EPA wrote.