Phillips 66 Produced Renewable Fuels Without Necessary Regulatory Approvals

Published on: 24 June 2022
by KnowESG
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Phillips 66, a U.S. refiner, confirmed to Reuters that California regulators claim the business improperly started processing renewable diesel in a unit at its Rodeo, California refinery.

According to a statement made by the company last year, it began processing limited amounts of soybean oil at the Rodeo refinery in the first quarter of 2021 as part of a strategy to become the country's top producer of renewable fuels made from animal fats and soybean oil.

Early in June, the Bay Area Air Quality Management District (BAAQMD) sent the refiner a notice of violation for starting to produce renewable diesel without modifying the air permit that already permits the same type of processing using petroleum feedstocks.

"Phillips 66 disagrees with the allegation but is working with the district to resolve the notice of violation," the company said in a statement, adding that it submitted an air permit modification request to the district.

Following requests from environmental groups last year, BAAQMD, which oversees stationary sources of air pollution, has been looking into whether the company renovated its petroleum refinery without obtaining the necessary additional licences.

Phillips 66 refuted the claims made by environmental organisations such as the Natural Resources Defence Council that the firm lacked the necessary permissions. However, according to an email from the authorities seen by Reuters, they informed Phillips 66 in June that they had neglected to apply for a permit for the use of alternative fuels in one of the refinery units.

According to authorities, who also stated that they would take enforcement action once the inquiry is over, the refiner needs to give more information to assess if the company needed a permit for the improvements to the unit.

Early this year, Contra Costa County authorised Phillips 66 and Marathon Petroleum's proposals to transform their Bay Area refineries to create renewable fuels.

Source: Reuters

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