API Director of Regulatory and Scientific Affairs Howard Feldman warned of a "veritable tsunami" of new EPA air regulations for refineries that could "put some refineries out of business, diminish U.S. fuel manufacturing capacity, and increase our reliance on imported fuels" recently in a conference call with reporters:
"The president himself has called on federal agencies to take into account the impact of regulations on jobs and the economy," Feldman said. "EPA should follow through by ensuring that their regulatory proposals are necessary, practical, and fair."
Four U.S. refineries closed last year, according to Feldman. He said that significant new compliance costs on top of what existing regulations have imposed would make a difficult operating environment for refineries even more challenging.
"Given that the Clean Air Act was simply not designed to address greenhouse gases, if EPA is going to proceed, it is critical that the process be open and transparent," Feldman said.
Feldman said that step III of EPA's tailoring rule is not needed at this time and should be pulled back. He also called for EPA to accommodate gas-burning facilities and make allowances for refineries located on islands in its upcoming BoilerMACT rule.
He called on EPA not issue a Tier 3 vehicle emission proposal before there is "a full airing of the impacts, costs and benefits of further reductions of sulfur and vapor pressure in gasoline."
New Tier 3 requirements could boost the cost of making gasoline by up to 25 cents per gallon, close up to seven U.S. refineries, and actually increase carbon dioxide emissions, according to a study by Baker and O'Brien.
API represents more than 490 oil and natural gas companies, leaders of a technology-driven industry that supplies most of America's energy, supports 9.2 million U.S. jobs and 7.7 percent of the U.S. economy, delivers more than $86T a day in revenue to our government, and, since 2000, has invested more than $2T in U.S. capital projects to advance all forms of energy, including alternatives.