A coalition of aviation trade groups including GAMA, HAI, NATA, and NBAA has issued a letter to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) requesting an expansion of the feedstocks approved for sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) production as it ponders an update to the federal Renewable Fuels Standard (RFS).
The letter, issued in response to the agency’s request for comments on a proposed RFS rule, states that expansion of the list of eligible feedstocks to include additional sources such as municipal solid waste and woody biomass would create new opportunities for increased SAF production through the approval of new technology processes. It would also ensure that the renewable volume obligations (RVO)–which determine how many gallons of renewable biofuel should be blended into each year’s fuel supply–are set at levels that will allow greater supplies of those fuels.
The RFS was established as part of the Energy Policy Act of 2005, aimed at reducing U.S. reliance on imported oil and reducing greenhouse gas emissions. The alphabet groups noted that such changes to the RFS would be crucial in meeting the White House’s previously announced “SAF Grand Challenge,” which set an annual goal of 3 billion gallons of SAF production by 2030.
“The RFS has been driving growth from biofuels and accomplishing what creators of the program aimed for—deployment of domestic ultra-clean renewable fuel,” stated the letter addressed to EPA administrator Michael Regan. “For this success to continue, certainty must be provided to the market. Congress sought to provide this certainty through the RFS program, and EPS should provide that certainty through the regulatory process."