On behalf of the Business Aviation Coalition for Sustainable Aviation Fuel, GAMA, the Helicopter Association International, NATA and NBAA have urged the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to provide greater opportunities for the development of sustainable aviation fuel as it updates the federal Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS).
The coalition says that with the right changes, the RFS can go a long way to helping the US meet the Biden administration's 'SAF Grand Challenge' goal of bringing three billion gallons of SAF to the market per year by 2030.
In a letter to EPA administrator Michael Regan, in response to a request for comments on a proposed RFS rule, the coalition called on the agency to: expand the list of eligible feedstocks, which would make new sources available for biofuels and SAF; approve new process technologies and biointermediate opportunities; and ensure that the volumes for advanced biofuels are set at levels that will allow greater supplies of those fuels.
“We hope EPA and this administration recognise the opportunity for SAF moving forward as part of the RFS programme. The growth in SAF will not happen if EPA does not responsibly improve the regulatory structure of the RFS by finalising biointermediates, by updating the opportunities for both feedstocks and technologies, and by increasing the RVO volumes accordingly,” the coalition writes in its comments.
EPA should ensure that municipal solid waste and woody biomass are included in the definition of biointermediates, according to the coalition.
On the volumes, the coalition asked EPA to ensure that cellulosic, non-cellulosic advanced and biomass-based diesel are set at levels that will increase the volumes of each of these fuels to help support the SAF market.
Congress created the RFS programme in the Energy Policy Act of 2005 and later expanded it in the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 to reduce the nation's reliance on imported oil and greenhouse gas emissions.
“The RFS has been driving growth from biofuels and accomplishing what creators of the programme aimed for; deployment of domestic, ultra-clean renewable fuel,” the coalition says. “For this success to continue, certainty must be provided to the market. Congress sought to provide this certainty through the RFS programme and EPA should provide that certainty through the regulatory process.”
The coalition is also collaborating with the White House, US Department of Transportation, US Department of Energy and the FAA on the 'SAF Grand Challenge'. It will continue its efforts to educate key government, industry and community stakeholders on the value of SAF in achieving shared environmental goals.