The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has  sent the final Renewable Volume Obligations (RVO) to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for interagency review, an EPA spokeswoman confirmed to Reuters. “After an extensive public outreach process, we’ve received 340,000 comments that will help inform our final determinations.  EPA will issue a final rulemaking after the interagency review process has been completed,”  the EPA spokeswoman said.  “The agency’s overarching goal is to put the RFS program on a path that supports continued growth in renewable fuels over time.”

EPA’s proposed 2014 Renewable Fuel Standard, issued in November 2013, calls for nearly across-the-board cuts. By statute, the final rule was due by November 30, 2013. However, EPA has not met its statutory deadline since 2009.  Last year’s rule was issued on August 6, 2013.

With the interagency review expected to take a minimum of  30 days, although EPA is entitled to 90 days for review, it is likely that the final rule will not be released until this fall.  There is speculation that the final number may not be published until as late as November 2014,  a full year behind schedule.

At this point, EPA should be proposing the 2015 RVO’s to be finalized by November 30, 2014.  Instead, EPA will still be operating under the 2013 compliance year.  EPA has already extending the compliance period for the 2013 RVO three times this year.  If OMB takes the full 90 days to review the current regulations, EPA will be wrapping up the 2013 compliance year in February 2015.