WASHINGTON D.C. (FOX 26 / AP) - The Environmental Protection Agency has issued emergency waivers allowing states from Maryland to Texas to ignore some clean-air requirements for gasoline to ensure an adequate fuel supply despite disruptions caused by Harvey.
EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt says the waivers issued Wednesday will help ensure an adequate supply of fuel throughout the South, Southeast and Mid-Atlantic.
In a letter to governors, Pruitt says the shutdown of nearly a dozen refineries and extreme weather conditions that have prevented fuel-barge movement in the Gulf Coast region justify the waiver. The designated states receive significant gasoline supplies from Gulf-area refineries.
- As a result of the continuing impacts on Gulf Coast-area refineries and disruption to the fuel distribution system caused by Hurricane Harvey, EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt today exercised EPA’s emergency fuel waiver authority to help ensure an adequate supply of fuel throughout the South, Southeast and the Mid-Atlantic.
- EPA has waived requirements for reformulated gasoline and low volatility gasoline through September 15 in the following states: Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Maryland, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, Texas, Louisiana and the District of Columbia. The waiver authority was exercised under the Clean Air Act and was granted by EPA Administrator Pruitt, in coordination with the U.S. Secretary of Energy Rick Perry.
- As required by law, EPA and Department of Energy (DOE) evaluated the situation and determined that granting a short-term waiver was consistent with the public interest. EPA and DOE are continuing to actively monitor the fuel supply situation as a result of Hurricane Harvey, and will act expeditiously if extreme and unusual supply circumstances exist in other areas.
- To mitigate any impacts on air quality, the Clean Air Act provides strict criteria for when fuels waivers may be granted, and requires that waivers be limited as much as possible in terms of their geographic scope and duration.
- More information: www.epa.gov/enforcement/fuel-waivers
The waivers are effective immediately and continue through Sept. 15 at least.
Affected states are Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas and Virginia, as well as Washington, D.C.
Keep informed with FOX 26 News updates on Hurricane Harvey.