June 25, 2021
The Supreme Court issued a ruling on Friday supporting the refinery’s seeking an exemption from the federal program that requires the blending of renewable fuels into gasoline and diesel.Judge Neil Gossack wrote View in Hollyfrontier Cheyenne Refining v. Renewable Fuel Association.
The case involved a renewable fuel program created by Congress in 2005 and expanded to its current form in 2007. Congress granted temporary exemptions to small refineries, and the plan required the use of more and more renewable fuels. In addition, it authorizes the Environmental Protection Agency to grant an “extension” of the exemption under certain circumstances.Problem in Holly border If the exemption expires in the previous year, can the refinery obtain an “extension” of the exemption.
The refinery argued that the text of the relevant regulations— 42 USC § 7545(o)(9) – Allow them to extend previous exemptions even if they are no longer valid. Renewable fuel producers disagree, arguing that refineries must have continuous, uninterrupted exemptions to qualify for the extension.
In the 6-3 decision, the court sided with the refinery.
Gossac wrote: “Even after a certain period of time, it is completely natural to seek’extended’ time-and consistent with common usage.” Tenants who do so after the lease expires, or parties who negotiate an’extension’ after the contract expires.”
Chief Justice John Roberts and Justices Clarence Thomas, Stephen Breyer, Samuel Alito and Brett Kavanaugh joined the majority opinion of Gorsuch. Justice Amy Koney Barrett wrote an objection, and Justice Sonia Sotomayor and Justice Elena Kagan also joined the objection.
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