On July 25, 2011, the EPA published a final rule entitled “Regulation To Mitigate the Misfueling of Vehicles and Engines With Gasoline Containing Greater Than Ten Volume Percent Ethanol and Modifications to the Reformulated and Conventional Gasoline Programs”. The final rule can be found via Federal Register (08/24/11).
Prior to E15 entering commerce in any area a number of steps must occur. One of these required steps is the implementation of a retail survey program. Obligated parties who are required to fund and participate in the retail survey/(sampling) program are described as:
Any gasoline refiner, gasoline importer, ethanol blender, ethanol producer, or ethanol importer who manufactures, introduces into commerce, sells or offers for sale E15, gasoline, blendstock for oxygenate blending, ethanol, or gasoline ethanol blend that is “intended” for use in or as E15 shall comply with the survey program requirements, and;
In all areas which may be “reasonably” expected to be supplied with their gasoline, blendstock for oxygenate blending, ethanol, or gasoline-ethanol blend if these may be used to manufacture E15 or as E15 at “any time during the year”.
The Association in conjunction with and on behalf of all obligated parties under these regulations has developed a comprehensive E15 retail survey, sampling and testing program, that will meet all the requirements of the regulations outlined in 40 CFR Part 80 § 1502. The retail survey program will focus on potential E15 distribution areas (local, state, region, nationwide levels) examining the likely areas of distribution and the surrounding area (trade area). The approved EPA Program will be to be implemented by the Association and funded jointly by the obligated parties of Oil and Ethanol Industries. The Survey Program must meet the regulatory requirements including being fully funded by ALL OBLIGATED PARTIES and in operation, prior to the introduction of E15 into commerce. The Association working closely with the obligated parties and EPA will provide assistance in the development of an orderly process for interested program participants to satisfy their E15 survey requirements under the regulations.
In order to coordinate survey activities and to meet all the requirements of the regulations, RFGSA will initiate monthly registration periods (subject to change) during which perspective program participants will provide information to allow the Association to design, fund and implement a retail survey program beginning in the following quarter. The sampling and testing program must be fully funded by ALL OBLIGATED PARTIES prior to E15 being sold or introduced into commerce.
There are a number of steps required for Obligated parties and the RFGSA to introduce E15 into commerce or to be sold in the enrolled survey areas.
Obligated parties are required to submit a Mis-fueling Mitigation Plan (MMP) to EPA for approval, prior to E15 going into commerce in a particular geographic area. IMPORTANT: This is a separate requirement (from the retail survey program) for all obligated parties. Additional information/ assistance with meeting the MMP requirements can be found in the Federal Register publication entitled “Partial Grant of Clean Air Act Waiver Application Submitted by Growth Energy To Increase the Allowable Ethanol Content of Gasoline to 15 Percent published on January 26, 2011 or from your fuel supplier or other industry trade groups.
1) Prospective Program Participants must complete the registration process and fully fund their initialdues obligation in E15 survey program during the registration period. Registration periods are open monthly. Billing occurs at the end of each registration period. To Enroll, participants log into the RFGSA website www.rfgsa.org, select the programs tab and select E15 Program. Choose the “E15 Program Enrollment link” and complete all required information.
a)IMPORTANT: REGISTRATIONS WILL ONLY BE ACCEPTED during the registration period.
b) Each registration will be effective for an initial calendar year and will continue in effect for each calendar year thereafter until terminated by either the participant or RFGSA in accordance with the Terms and Conditions that govern the E15 Program.
c) Once a company has successfully registered (paid initial dues and received RFGSA credentials/temporary passwords), future survey registrations (new requested E15 survey areas) will be done directly through the RFGSA member/participant login at the top of the RFGSAwebsite home page.
2) Once a registration is closed, you will receive an email from Association with your survey billing. IMPORTANT: Promptly pay your survey dues BASED ON TERMS OF THE INVOICE (DUE UPON RECEIPT). The invoice may be printed and manually paid per the instructions on the invoice. (WITHOUT LIMITING THE RIGHT OF THE RFGSA TO COLLECT PAST SURVEY DUES, FAILURE OF OBLIGATED PARTIES TO PROMPTLY PAY AND FULLY FUND THE SURVEY WILL CAUSE A DELAY/CANCELATION OF YOUR REGISTRATION AND THE IMPLEMENTATION OF THE SURVEY PROGRAM. I.E. E15 MAY NOT BE PUT INTO COMMERCE)
3) RFGSA will plan, design and secure EPA approval for each registered survey area based on information provided by the participants.
4) IMPORTANT: The Association will be responsible for providing confirmation notice to all enrolled participants of the survey start date for a given registered survey area(s). Introducing E15 into commerce or offering to sell E15 prior to the implementation of the retail survey or providing the obligated funding may be a violation of the Federal regulations.
5) Prior to the start of each survey area, each new enrolled program participant will receive login credentials and temporary passwords to the RFGSA website.
6) The RFGSA will provide resources/instructions detailing RFGSA website operations for program participants via the RFGSA website.
7) Participants will be responsible for managing access and maintenance to their company specific area of the RFGSA website.
8) Program participants (with enrolled retail brands) will receive potential non-compliance (PNC’s) notices (via email or mail) from the RFGSA in the event that an issue is found at branded (owned or controlled) tested site(s).
9) Participants will be responsible for logging into the RFGSA website and recording actions taken to resolve E15 program issues found at their registered test site(s).
10) ANNUALLY PARTICIPANTS WILL BE REQUIRED TO UPDATE SURVEY INFORMATION AND PAY ANNUAL DUES UNTIL THEIR PARTICIPATION IN THE PROGRAM IS TERMINATED IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE TERMS AND CONDITIONS THAT GOVERN THE E15 PROGRAM.
IMPORTANT: YOU WILL NEED THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION TO COMPLETE YOUR E15 REGISTRATION. IT IS STRONGLY RECOMMENDED THAT YOU HAVE THE REQUIRED INFORMATION AVAILABLE, BEFORE ATTEMPTING TO REGISTER FOR THE E15 PROGRAM.
1) The registration package will be customized based on each program participant’s information provided.
2) The following information will be required to register*. (*Please note exceptions)
a)Company contact/billing information
b)Indication of submission to EPA - Mis-fueling Mitigation Plan (MMP) for surveyed areas
c) Indication of E15 operation type(s) Refiner/importer, Ethanol Blender (traditional or site), ethanol producer/importer. More than oneoption may be selected.
d)Specific E15 distribution information is required and is based on each registration. This information may include the following: (ifapplicable)
i)Areas of E15 distribution (state, county, zip-code)
ii)Facility supply sources, (includes distributor supplied E15 areas)
iii)Station listings - For owned and controlled Retail brands, (controlled means – ongoing supply agreements to which yourfinished gasoline is regularly provided) and unbranded retail service station listings may be required. Site blenders are required toprovidelocation listings.
iv)Estimated annual E15 contribution volumes* (Blendstock, Ethanol blended) by each operation type. (* Not required for EthanolProducers/Importers, or site blenders)
3) During the registration process you may be required to download/upload forms to complete the process. In most cases the downloaded forms will automatically be populated based on previous information provided during the registration process. IMPORTANT: Please use ONLY the forms and format provided by the system. DO NOT ALTER THE DOWNLOADED DOCUMENT NAMES OR FORMATS. Using any other file format or document name will delay or cause your registration to fail.
4) Upon completing ALL the registration information, Press the SUBMIT/COMPLETE button to finalize the registration.
5) Changes/Updates to an registration may only during the registration period.
6) If you have any questions, contact the RFGSA at Frank.Lenski@rfgsa.org or 703-279-6434.