The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has issued an Interim Enforcement Response Policy to Resolve Violations Arising from the Use of Invalid 2010 and 2011 Biomass-Based Diesel Renewable Identification Numbers (RINs). The Policy follows in the wake of EPA’s enforcement actions related to RINs generated by Clean Green Fuel LLC and Absolute Fuels LLC. EPA’s Policy addresses invalid 2010 and 2011 RINs only, and is modeled upon EPA's settlement posture set forth to the Obligated Parties who used Clean Green and/or Absolute Fuels RINs on their 2010 compliance reports. As stated in the Policy, EPA intends to take a “more aggressive approach to violations arising from the use of [invalid] 2012 and later RINs.”
EPA's Policy continues the focus on Obligated Parties who use invalid RINs for compliance purposes and, additionally, on any shortfalls on their compliance reports that may ensue. EPA will require that invalid RINs be removed from reports and be replaced with valid RINs, as well as require the payment of penalties. There is no reference to penalties or enforcement for buying or selling invalid RINs.
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