Proposed Rule; Renewable Fuel Standard Program; Grain Sorghum Oil Pathway, 61205-61213 [2017-27946]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 247 / Wednesday, December 27, 2017 / Proposed Rules to this action because this measure does not modify any SIP control requirement that was in effect before November 15, 1990. We are proposing to find that the submitted measure satisfies CAA requirements for enforceability, SIP revisions, and nontraditional emission reduction programs as interpreted in EPA guidance documents. The TSD contains more information on our evaluation of this measure. C. Public Comment and Proposed Action The EPA proposes to fully approve the submitted measure under CAA section 110(k)(3) based on a conclusion that the measure satisfies all applicable requirements. We will accept comments from the public on this proposal until January 26, 2018. If we take final action to approve the submitted measure, our final action will incorporate this measure into the federally enforceable SIP. daltland on DSKBBV9HB2PROD with PROPOSALS III. Incorporation by Reference In this action, the EPA is proposing to include in a final EPA rule regulatory text that includes incorporation by reference. In accordance with requirements of 1 CFR 51.5, the EPA is proposing to incorporate by reference the NSAQMD measure described in Table 1 of this preamble. The EPA has made, and will continue to make, these materials available through www.regulations.gov and at the EPA Region IX Office (please contact the person identified in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section of this preamble for more information). IV. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews Under the Clean Air Act, the Administrator is required to approve a SIP submission that complies with the provisions of the Act and applicable federal regulations. 42 U.S.C. 7410(k); 40 CFR 52.02(a). Thus, in reviewing SIP submissions, the EPA’s role is to approve state choices, provided that they meet the criteria of the Clean Air Act. Accordingly, this proposed action merely proposes to approve state law as meeting federal requirements and does not impose additional requirements beyond those imposed by state law. For that reason, this proposed action: • Is not a ‘‘significant regulatory action’’ subject to review by the Office of Management and Budget under Executive Orders 12866 (58 FR 51735, October 4, 1993) and 13563 (76 FR 3821, January 21, 2011); • Is not an Executive Order 13771 (82 FR 9339, February 2, 2017) regulatory VerDate Sep<11>2014 20:10 Dec 26, 2017 Jkt 244001 action because SIP approvals are exempted under Executive Order 12866; • Does not impose an information collection burden under the provisions of the Paperwork Reduction Act (44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.); • Is certified as not having a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities under the Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.); • Does not contain any unfunded mandate or significantly or uniquely affect small governments, as described in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 (Pub. L. 104–4); • Does not have Federalism implications as specified in Executive Order 13132 (64 FR 43255, August 10, 1999); • Is not an economically significant regulatory action based on health or safety risks subject to Executive Order 13045 (62 FR 19885, April 23, 1997); • Is not a significant regulatory action subject to Executive Order 13211 (66 FR 28355, May 22, 2001); • Is not subject to requirements of Section 12(d) of the National Technology Transfer and Advancement Act of 1995 (15 U.S.C. 272 note) because application of those requirements would be inconsistent with the Clean Air Act; and • Does not provide the EPA with the discretionary authority to address disproportionate human health or environmental effects with practical, appropriate, and legally permissible methods under Executive Order 12898 (59 FR 7629, February 16, 1994). In addition, the SIP is not approved to apply on any Indian reservation land or in any other area where the EPA or an Indian tribe has demonstrated that a tribe has jurisdiction. In those areas of Indian country, the rule does not have tribal implications and will not impose substantial direct costs on tribal governments or preempt tribal law as specified by Executive Order 13175 (65 FR 67249, November 9, 2000). List of Subjects in 40 CFR Part 52 Environmental protection, Air pollution control, Incorporation by reference, Intergovernmental relations, Particulate matter, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements. Authority: 42 U.S.C. 7401 et seq. Dated: December 14, 2017. Deborah Jordan, Acting Regional Administrator, Region IX. [FR Doc. 2017–27950 Filed 12–26–17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560–50–P PO 00000 Frm 00014 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 61205 ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Part 80 [EPA–HQ–OAR–2017–0655; FRL–9972–59– OAR] RIN 2060–AT82 Proposed Rule; Renewable Fuel Standard Program; Grain Sorghum Oil Pathway Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). ACTION: Proposed rule. AGENCY: In this proposed rule, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is providing an opportunity to comment on an analysis of the lifecycle greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions associated with certain biofuels that are produced from grain sorghum oil extracted at dry mill ethanol plants at any point downstream from sorghum grinding, also known as distiller sorghum oil. EPA seeks comment on its proposed assessment that using distillers sorghum oil as feedstock results in no significant agricultural sector GHG emissions; and that biodiesel and heating oil produced from distillers sorghum oil via a transesterification process, and renewable diesel, jet fuel, heating oil, naphtha, and liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) produced from distillers sorghum oil via a hydrotreating process, would meet the lifecycle GHG emissions reduction threshold of 50 percent required for advanced biofuels, and biomass-based diesel under the Renewable Fuel Standard program. Based on these analyses, EPA is proposing to amend the RFS program regulations to define the term ‘‘distillers sorghum oil’’. We also propose to add to the regulations approved pathways from the production of biodiesel and heating oil from distillers sorghum oil via a transesterification process, and renewable diesel, jet fuel, heating oil, naphtha, and liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) produced from distillers sorghum oil via a hydrotreating process. DATES: Comments must be received on or before January 26, 2018. ADDRESSES: Submit your comments, identified by Docket ID No. EPA–HQ– OAR–2017–0655, at http:// www.regulations.gov. Follow the online instructions for submitting comments. Once submitted, comments cannot be edited or withdrawn from Regulations.gov. The EPA may publish any comment received to its public docket. Do not submit electronically any information you consider to be SUMMARY: E:\FR\FM\27DEP1.SGM 27DEP1 61206 Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 247 / Wednesday, December 27, 2017 / Proposed Rules Confidential Business Information (CBI) or other information whose disclosure is restricted by statute. Multimedia submissions (audio, video, etc.) must be accompanied by a written comment. The written comment is considered the official comment and should include discussion of all points you wish to make. The EPA will generally not consider comments or comment contents located outside of the primary submission (i.e., on the web, cloud, or other file sharing system). For additional submission methods, the full EPA public comment policy, information about CBI or multimedia submissions, and general guidance on making effective comments, please visit https://www.epa.gov/dockets/ commenting-epa-dockets. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Diana Galperin, Office of Air and Radiation, Office of Transportation and Air Quality, Mail Code: 6401A, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20460; telephone number: 202–564– 5687; email address: Galperin.diana@ epa.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Outline of This Preamble I. General Information II. Public Participation III. Introduction IV. Analysis of GHG Emissions Associated With Production of Biofuels From Distillers Sorghum Oil A. Overview of Distillers Sorghum Oil B. Analysis of Lifecycle GHG Emissions 1. Livestock Sector Impacts 2. Feedstock Production 3. Feedstock Transport 4. Feedstock Pretreatment 5. Fuel Production 6. Fuel Distribution 7. Fuel Use 8. Results of GHG Lifecycle Analysis V. Consideration of Lifecycle Analysis Results VI. Summary VII. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews A. Executive Order 12866: Regulatory Planning and Review and Executive Order 13563: Improving Regulation and Regulatory Review B. Executive Order 13771: Reducing Regulations and Controlling Regulatory Costs C. Paperwork Reduction Act D. Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA) E. Unfunded Mandates Reform Act (UMRA) F. Executive Order 13132: Federalism G. Executive Order 13175: Consultation and Coordination With Indian Tribal Governments H. Executive Order 13045: Protection of Children From Environmental Health Risks and Safety Risks I. Executive Order 13211: Actions Concerning Regulations That Significantly Affect Energy Supply, Distribution, or Use J. National Technology Transfer Advancement Act (NTTAA) K. Executive Order 12898: Federal Actions To Address Environmental Justice in Minority Populations and Low-Income Populations I. General Information A. Does this action apply to me? Entities potentially affected by this proposed rule are those involved with the production, distribution, and sale of transportation fuels, including gasoline and diesel fuel or renewable fuels such as ethanol, biodiesel, heating oil, renewable diesel, naphtha and liquefied petroleum gas. Potentially regulated categories include: NAICS 1 codes Examples of potentially affected entities Sorghum Farming ........................................................................................................................................................... Petroleum refineries (including importers). ..................................................................................................................... Ethyl alcohol manufacturing. .......................................................................................................................................... Other basic organic chemical manufacturing. ................................................................................................................ Chemical and allied products merchant wholesalers. .................................................................................................... Petroleum Bulk Stations and Terminals; Petroleum ...................................................................................................... Other fuel dealers. .......................................................................................................................................................... This table is not intended to be exhaustive, but rather provides a guide for readers regarding entities likely to be regulated by this action. This table lists the types of entities that the EPA is now aware could potentially be affected by this action. Other types of entities not listed in the table could also be affected. To determine whether your entity is regulated by this action, you should carefully examine the applicability criteria in the referenced regulations. If you have any questions regarding the applicability of this action to a particular entity, consult the person listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section. daltland on DSKBBV9HB2PROD with PROPOSALS B. What action is the Agency taking? EPA is proposing to amend the RFS program regulations to define the term ‘‘distillers sorghum oil’’ as oil from grain sorghum that is extracted at a dry mill ethanol plant at any location downstream of grinding the grain 1 North sorghum kernel, provided that the grain sorghum is converted to ethanol, the oil is rendered unfit for food uses without further refining, and the distillers grains resulting from the dry mill and oil extraction processes are marketable as animal feed. We also propose to add to Table 1 to 80.1426(f), approved pathways from the production of biodiesel and heating oil from distillers sorghum oil via a transesterification process, and renewable diesel, jet fuel, heating oil, naphtha, and liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) produced from distillers sorghum oil via a hydrotreating process. Alternatively, or in addition, EPA may consider the comments it receives in response to this document in evaluating facility-specific pathway petitions submitted pursuant to 40 CFR 80.1416 that propose using distillers sorghum oil to make biofuel. American Industry Classification System. VerDate Sep<11>2014 20:10 Dec 26, 2017 Jkt 244001 PO 00000 Frm 00015 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 11119, 111191, 111199 324110 325193 325199 424690 424710, 424720 454310 C. What is the Agency’s authority for taking this action? Statutory authority for this action comes from Clean Air Act sections 114, 208, 211, and 301. II. Public Participation EPA will not hold a public hearing on this matter unless a request is received by the person identified in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section of this preamble by January 11, 2018. If EPA receives such a request, we will publish information related to the timing and location of the hearing and a new deadline for public comment. III. Introduction Section 211(o) of the Clean Air Act (CAA) establishes the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) program, under which EPA sets annual percentage standards specifying the amount of renewable fuel, as well as three subcategories of renewable fuel, that must be used to reduce or replace fossil fuel present in transportation fuel, heating oil, or jet E:\FR\FM\27DEP1.SGM 27DEP1 Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 247 / Wednesday, December 27, 2017 / Proposed Rules daltland on DSKBBV9HB2PROD with PROPOSALS fuel. Non-exempt 2 renewable fuels must achieve at least a 20 percent reduction in lifecycle GHG emissions as compared to a 2005 petroleum baseline. Advanced biofuel and biomass-based diesel must achieve at least a 50 percent reduction, and cellulosic biofuel must achieve at least a 60 percent reduction. In addition to the lifecycle GHG reduction requirements, renewable identification numbers (RINs) may only be generated if the fuel meets the other definitional criteria for renewable fuel (e.g., produced from renewable biomass as defined in the regulations, and used to reduce or replace the quantity of fossil fuel present in transportation fuel, heating oil, or jet fuel) in CAA section 211(o) and the RFS regulations at 40 CFR part 80 subpart M. Since the formation of the RFS program, EPA has periodically promulgated rules to add new pathways to the regulations.3 In addition, EPA has approved facility-specific pathways through the petition process in 40 CFR 80.1416. There are three critical components of approved fuel pathways under the RFS program: (1) Fuel type; (2) feedstock; and (3) production process. Each pathway is associated with a specific ‘‘D code’’ depending on whether the fuel meets the requirements for renewable fuel, advanced fuel, cellulosic fuel, or biomass-based diesel. EPA’s lifecycle analyses are used to assess the overall GHG emissions of a fuel throughout each stage of its production and use. The results of these analyses, considering uncertainty and the weight of available evidence, are used to determine whether a fuel meets the necessary GHG reductions required under the CAA. Lifecycle analysis 2 A baseline volume of renewable fuel produced from facilities that commenced construction on or before December 19, 2007, and which completed construction by December 19, 2010 without an 18month hiatus in construction, is exempt from the minimum 20 percent GHG reduction requirement that otherwise applies to renewable fuel. In addition, a baseline volume of ethanol from facilities that commenced construction after December 19, 2007, and on or before December 31, 2009, qualifies for the same exemption if construction was completed within 36 months without an 18-month hiatus in construction; the facility was fired with natural gas, biomass, or any combination thereof, at all times the facility operated between December 19, 2007 and December 31, 2009; and the baseline volume continues to be produced through processes fired with natural gas, biomass, or any combination thereof. 3 Please see information on Pathways I and Pathways II in 40 CFR part 80 subpart M, and in the Federal Register at 78 FR 14190 (March 5, 2013) and 79 FR 42128 (July 18, 2014). More information on these can be found at: https://www.epa.gov/ renewable-fuel-standard-program/final-ruleidentify-additional-fuel-pathways-under-renewablefuel and https://www.epa.gov/renewable-fuelstandard-program/renewable-fuel-pathways-ii-finalrule-identify-additional-fuel. VerDate Sep<11>2014 20:10 Dec 26, 2017 Jkt 244001 includes an assessment of emissions related to the full fuel lifecycle, including feedstock production, feedstock transportation, fuel production, fuel transportation and distribution, and tailpipe emissions. Per the CAA definition of lifecycle GHG emissions, EPA’s lifecycle analyses also include an assessment of significant indirect emissions, such as those from land use changes and agricultural sector impacts. EPA received a petition from the National Sorghum Producers (NSP), submitted under partial claims of confidential business information (CBI), requesting that EPA evaluate the GHG emissions associated with biofuels produced using grain sorghum oil derived from dry mill ethanol production as a feedstock, and that EPA provide a determination of the renewable fuel categories, if any, for which such biofuels may be eligible. In this action, EPA is proposing to amend the RFS program regulations to define the term ‘‘distillers sorghum oil’’ as oil from grain sorghum that is extracted at a dry mill ethanol plant at any location downstream of grinding the grain sorghum kernel, provided that the grain sorghum is converted to ethanol, the oil is rendered unfit for food uses without further refining, and the distillers grains resulting from the dry mill and oil extraction processes are marketable as animal feed. We also propose to add to Table 1 to 40 CFR 80.1426(f), approved pathways from the production of biodiesel and heating oil from distillers sorghum oil via a transesterification process, and renewable diesel, jet fuel, heating oil, naphtha, and LPG produced from distillers sorghum oil via a hydrotreating process. Alternatively, or in addition, EPA may consider the comments it receives in response to this document in evaluating facility-specific pathway petitions submitted pursuant to 40 CFR 80.1416 that propose using distillers sorghum oil to make biofuel. This preamble describes EPA’s analysis of the GHG emissions associated with distillers sorghum oil when used to produce specified biofuels. The analysis considers a scenario where distillers sorghum oil is extracted from distillers grains with solubles (DGS) at dry mill plants that produce ethanol from grain sorghum and where the remaining reduced-oil DGS co-product is used as animal feed. The distillers sorghum oil is then used as a feedstock for conversion into certain biofuels. As described in Section IV of this preamble, we estimate that the lifecycle GHG emissions associated with the production of biodiesel and heating oil produced from distillers sorghum oil PO 00000 Frm 00016 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 61207 via a transesterification process, and renewable diesel, jet fuel, naphtha, and LPG, produced from distillers sorghum oil via a hydrotreating process, are approximately 80 percent less than the lifecycle GHG emissions associated with the baseline petroleum fuels they would replace. Based on these results, we propose to find that these biofuels would meet the 50 percent GHG reduction threshold required for advanced biofuel and biomass-based diesel. We also anticipate that heating oil produced through transesterification or hydrotreating from distillers sorghum oil would meet the 50 percent GHG emission reduction threshold required for advanced biofuel and biomass-based diesel.4 EPA is seeking public comment on its analyses of the lifecycle GHG emissions related to biofuels produced from distillers sorghum oil. IV. Analysis of GHG Emissions Associated With Production of Biofuels From Distillers Sorghum Oil A. Overview of Distillers Sorghum Oil Dry mill ethanol plants grind and ferment grain sorghum, produce ethanol from the fermented grain sorghum starch, and also produce a DGS coproduct (made of non-fermentable solids, solubles syrup, and sorghum oil) that is sold as a type of livestock feed. A portion of the oil that would otherwise reside in the DGS can be extracted at the ethanol plant, typically through gravimetric methods. At dry mill ethanol plants, sorghum oil is recovered through methods nearly identical to that of corn oil extracted from DGS, and corn and sorghum oil extraction can occur at the same facilities. EPA has approved pathways for the production of ethanol from grain sorghum made through a dry mill process as qualifying for renewable fuel (D code 6) RINs, and in some cases advanced biofuel (D code 5) RINs, depending on process energy sources used during production.5 However, the regulations do not currently include pathways for the production of other biofuels from grain sorghum. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), the largest regions for grain sorghum production in the United States are located in Texas, Oklahoma, and Kansas.6 Currently about 30 percent 4 As defined in the RFS regulations at 40 CFR 80.1401, biomass-based diesel excludes renewable fuel that is co-processed with petroleum. Such fuel may qualify as advanced biofuel if it meets the 50 percent GHG reduction threshold. 5 Table 1 to 40 CFR 80.1426, Rows R and S. 6 USDA, NASS, ‘‘Sorghum for Grain 2016 Harvested Acres by County for Selected States,’’ E:\FR\FM\27DEP1.SGM Continued 27DEP1 61208 Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 247 / Wednesday, December 27, 2017 / Proposed Rules of grain sorghum grown, or 120 million bushels a year, goes towards ethanol production.7 For comparison, in recent years over 5,200 million bushels of corn have been used for ethanol production annually.8 Distillers sorghum oil is still a relatively niche product, and the NSP petition anticipates a potential of 12 to 21 million ethanol-equivalent gallons of fuel to be produced from the oil per year. We propose to define distillers sorghum oil to mean oil recovered at a point downstream of where a dry mill grain sorghum ethanol plant grinds the grain sorghum, provided that the grain sorghum is converted to ethanol, the oil is rendered unfit for food uses without further refining, and the distillers grains resulting from the dry mill and oil extraction processes are marketable as animal feed. So long as these criteria are met, a variety of recovery methods could be implemented. For example, this would include recovery of sorghum oil before fermentation from the slurry or from liquefaction tanks. It would also include recovery of sorghum oil after fermentation from the thin stillage and/ or DGS. Further, it would also include recovery of sorghum oil by a third-party from DGS produced by a dry mill sorghum ethanol plant. B. Analysis of Lifecycle GHG Emissions daltland on DSKBBV9HB2PROD with PROPOSALS EPA evaluated the GHG emissions associated with using distillers sorghum oil as a biofuel feedstock based on information provided by the petitioner and other available data sources. GHG emissions include emissions from production and transport of distillers sorghum oil; the processing of the oil into biofuel; transport of the biofuel from the production facility to the fuelblender; and, ultimately the use of the biofuel by the end consumer. The methodology EPA used for this analysis is generally the same approach used for the March 2010 RFS rule for lifecycle analyses of several other biofuel feedstocks, such as distillers corn oil and yellow grease.9 We believe that https://www.nass.usda.gov/Charts_and_Maps/ graphics/AS-HA-RGBChor.pdf. 7 Sorghum Checkoff, ‘‘Renewables,’’ http:// www.sorghumcheckoff.com/market-opportunities/ renewables, accessed 09–05–2017. 8 USDA, ERS, ‘‘Table 5— Corn supply, disappearance, and share of total corn used for ethanol,’’ U.S. Bioenergy Statistics, https:// www.ers.usda.gov/data-products/us-bioenergystatistics/us-bioenergy-statistics/#Feedstocks, accessed 09–05–2017. 9 The March 2010 RFS rule preamble (75 FR 14670, March 26, 2010) and Regulatory Impact Analysis (RIA) (EPA–420–R–10–006) provide further discussion of our approach. These documents are available online at https:// www.epa.gov/renewable-fuel-standard-program/ VerDate Sep<11>2014 20:44 Dec 26, 2017 Jkt 244001 applying the same methodology for these feedstocks is appropriate given similarities in how these feedstocks are produced, transported and processed into biofuel. These similarities are explained further in this section. EPA’s lifecycle analyses include upstream emissions, which include the significant direct and indirect GHG emissions (including such emissions from land use changes) associated with producing a feedstock and transporting it to the processing facility. All of the upstream emissions were calculated and taken into account in EPA’s evaluation of the lifecycle GHG emissions associated with grain sorghum ethanol.10 Based on our analysis, producing distillers sorghum oil at a dry mill ethanol plant converting grain sorghum to ethanol, and using the extracted sorghum oil as a biofuel feedstock does not result in additional upstream emissions, compared to the upstream emissions that have already been calculated and attributed to grain sorghum ethanol. Further, based on our analysis, the production of distillers sorghum oil does not significantly impact the upstream emissions associated with grain sorghum ethanol. While producing distillers sorghum oil may impact livestock markets, through the effects of de-oiling DGS, we discuss in the next section why, based on the data we have reviewed, we do not anticipate this to cause any significant indirect impacts. We welcome comments on this data and analysis. 1. Livestock Sector Impacts During a typical dry mill ethanol production process, DGS are produced. These DGS are then used as animal feed, thereby displacing feed crops and the GHG emissions associated with growing and transporting those feed crops. When distillers sorghum oil is produced, DGS continue to be created with reduced oil content. A significant portion of this analysis focuses on reviewing how reduced-oil DGS compare to full-oil DGS in terms of feed values and displacement of other feeds. Chemically, full-oil and reduced-oil sorghum DGS share similar compositions, primarily made up of crude protein, fat, and natural and acid detergent fibers. Where the two products differ most significantly is in their acid detergent fiber and fat concentrations. Table IV.1 shows the renewable-fuel-standard-rfs2-final-rule-additionalresources. 10 See the December 2012 grain sorghum ethanol rule (77 FR 74592). PO 00000 Frm 00017 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 key nutrients that make up dried full-oil and reduced-oil DGS. TABLE IV.1—KEY NUTRIENT MAKE-UP OF FULL-OIL AND REDUCED-OIL DRIED DISTILLERS GRAINS WITH SOLUBLES (DDGS) 11 Nutrient Crude Protein, % ...... Crude Fat, % (aka Ether Extract) ........ Neutral Detergent Fiber (NDF), % ...... Acid Detergent Fiber (ADF), % ............... Ash, % ...................... Calcium, % ............... Phosphorus, % ......... Lysine, % .................. Methionine, % ........... Cystine, % ................ Tryptophan, % .......... Full-oil sorghum DDGS Reducedoil sorghum DDGS 30.80 31.36 9.75 3.91 33.60 37.23 22.68 6.62 0.12 0.76 0.82 0.54 0.53 0.25 31.91 7.60 0.08 0.96 0.62 0.47 0.61 0.23 The difference in fat values is important as crude fat concentrations impact net energy uptake by the livestock. A memorandum to the docket shows the total net energy profiles by livestock of full-oil and reduced-oil sorghum DGS.12 Should fat content not be at sufficient levels, livestock producers might need to add nutrients or other types of feed to meet appropriate nutritional targets. This is reflected in the ‘‘displacement rate’’ of a DGS, which indicates how much weight a pound of distillers grain can replace of another feed. A lower displacement rate for a reduced-oil distillers grain as compared to a full-oil distillers grain could result in additional GHG emissions as it suggests that additional feed is required. In the case of reduced-oil sorghum DGS, we believe that it is unlikely that additional feed will be needed to backfill for the extracted oil. Research suggests that for poultry and swine, ‘‘increased concentrations of free fatty acids have a negative impact on 11 The chart lists the most prominent nutrients in distillers grains. Data provided by the National Sorghum Producers. Data for full-oil Sorghum DDGS is sourced from Nutrient Requirements of Swine, 2012 National Academies Press, Washington DC, pg 329. Data for reduced-oil Sorghum DDGS was calculated by National Sorghum Producers using the ratio of (1) corn DDGS, between 6 to 9 percent Oil; and (2) corn DDGS, less than 4 percent oil from Nutrient Requirements of Swine, 2012 National Academies Press, Washington, DC, pp. 266 and 267. 12 ‘‘Summary of Net Energy Impacts of ReducedOil Sorghum Dried Distillers Grains with Solubles (DDGS) on Livestock,’’ Air Docket EPA–HQ–OAR– 2017–0655. E:\FR\FM\27DEP1.SGM 27DEP1 61209 Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 247 / Wednesday, December 27, 2017 / Proposed Rules lipid digestion and energy content.’’ 13 Free fatty acids are a class of acids that form part of a lipid molecule. Full-oil DGS typically contain higher levels of free fatty acids and thus may have a negative impact on the fat digestion of poultry and swine. This supports the conclusion that while the fat content may be lower for reduced-oil DGS, feeding values of this product should not be worse than full-oil DGS for poultry and swine. For dairy, there are also benefits from feeding reduced-oil DGS as compared to full-oil DGS. Research on dairy cows shows that reduced-oil DGS produce a lessened likelihood of the onset of milk fat depression.14 Milk fat depression occurs when milk fat is reduced by 0.2 percent or more.15 If milk fat depression occurs over the long term, a decline in overall milk production may occur as well as worsened health conditions of the herd. High fat diets have been linked with this condition and have been shown to worsen the rumen environment of dairy cattle.16 Therefore, dairy producers seek to avoid high fat diets. Given the benefits of reduced-oil DGS over full-oil DGS for milk fat production, it is expected that reducedoil DGS will be preferred over full-oil DGS by dairy producers and that displacement rates will be no worse than those of full-oil DGS. An impact on displacement rates may occur when reduced-oil instead of fulloil DGS are used for beef cattle, which has the ability to digest additional fat. Table IV.2 shows the displacement ratios for the livestock sectors where dried DGS (DDGS) are used. In this table, for instance, 1 pound of reducedoil DDGS fed to beef cattle displaces 1.173 pounds of corn. A pound of fulloil and reduced-oil DDGS also displace equal portions (0.056 pounds) of urea. Urea is a non-protein nitrogen compound that is typically fed to cattle for aiding the production of protein by rumen microbes.17 These values show that for dairy, swine, and poultry, reduced-oil DDGS replace the same amounts of alternative feed despite containing less oil. TABLE IV.2—FULL-OIL AND REDUCED-OIL SORGHUM DISTILLERS GRAINS WITH SOLUBLES DISPLACEMENT RATIOS 18 [lb of ingredient/lb of sorghum distillers grains with solubles, dry matter basis] Beef cattle Dairy cattle Poultry 19 Swine Ingredient Full-Oil Corn ................. Soybean Meal .. Urea ................. Reduced-Oil 1.196 ...................... 0.056 Full-Oil 1.173 ...................... 0.056 Reduced-Oil 0.731 0.633 0.731 0.633 Full-Oil 0.890 0.095 daltland on DSKBBV9HB2PROD with PROPOSALS We anticipate that sorghum oil producers will seek to sell reduced-oil DGS to poultry, swine, and dairy cow producers, as these markets allow them to obtain a higher value for their product. Dairy cattle producers may be willing to pay a premium for reducedoil distillers grains, as data suggests lower oil DGs improve milk production. Sales of reduced-oil DGS to the beef cattle market are less likely, and in these cases we anticipate that should a higher fat product be required, the fat content of the DGS could be augmented through the addition of distillers sorghum oil, thereby reducing the volumes of biofuel produced from distillers sorghum oil but not causing additional indirect GHG emissions. Therefore, we do not expect that sorghum oil extraction will have a significant impact on the feed value of DGS and thus will have no significant indirect GHG impacts per pound of DGS. We welcome comment on this assessment. 13 Kerr, B.J., W.A. Dozier, and G.C. Shurson. (2016). ‘‘Lipid digestibility and energy content of distillers’ corn oil in swine and poultry,’’ Journal of Animal Science. 94:2900–2908. doi:10.2527/ jas.2016–0440, pp. 2905. 14 H.A. Ramirez-Ramirez, E. Castillo Lopez, C.J.R. Jenkins, N.D. Aluthge, C. Anderson, S.C. Fernando, K.J. Harvatine, P.J. Kononoff, (2016). ‘‘Reduced-fat dried distillers grains with solubles reduces the risk for milk fat depression and supports milk production and ruminal fermentation in dairy cows,’’ Journal of Dairy Science, Volume 99, Issue 3 Pages 1912–1928, ISSN 0022–0302, http:// dx.doi.org/10.3168/jds.2015-9712. (http:// www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S002203 0216000515) 15 University of Kentucky, ‘‘Preventing Milk Fat Depression in Dairy Cows,’’ https://afs.ca.uky.edu/ dairy/preventing-milk-fat-depression-dairy-cows. Accessed September 8, 2018. On the herd level milk fats range from 3 to 5 percent normally. Oetzel, Garret R., ‘‘Subacute Ruminal Acidosis in Dairy Herds: Physiology, Pathophysiology, Milk Fat Responses, and Nutritional Management.’’ Preconference Seminar 7A: Dairy Herd Problem Investigation Strategies: Lameness, Cow Comfort, and Ruminal Acidosis, American Association of Bovine Practitioners, 40th Annual Conference, September 17, 2007—Vancouver, BC, Canada, https://www.vetmed.wisc.edu/dms/fapm/ fapmtools/2nutr/sara1aabp.pdf pp.98. 16 PennState Extension, ‘‘Troubleshooting Problems with Milkfat Depression,’’ August 14, 2017, https://extension.psu.edu/troubleshootingproblems-with-milkfat-depression. Accessed September 8, 2017. 17 PennState Extension, ‘‘Urea in Beef Cattle Rations,’’ August 8, 2017, https:// extension.psu.edu/urea-in-beef-cattle-rations. Accessed October 18, 2017. 18 Information provided by National Sorghum Producers, using the following sources Arora et al., (2008). Argonne National Laboratory. ‘‘Update of distillers grains displacement ratios for corn ethanol life-cycle analysis’’; Kerr et al., (2016). ‘‘Lipid digestibility and energy content of distillers’ corn oil in swine and poultry,’’ Journal of Animal Science 94:2900-8.; Opheim et al., (2016). ‘‘Biofuel feedstock and blended coproducts compared with deoiled corn distillers grains in feedlot diets: Effects on cattle growth performance, apparent total tract nutrient digestibility, and carcass characteristics,’’ Journal of Animal Science 94:227.; Ramirez et al., (2016). ‘‘Reduced-fat dried distillers grains with solubles reduces the risk for milk fat depression and VerDate Sep<11>2014 20:10 Dec 26, 2017 Jkt 244001 PO 00000 Frm 00018 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 Reduced-Oil 0.890 0.095 Full-Oil 0.292 Reduced-Oil 0.292 2. Feedstock Production Distillers sorghum oil is removed from DGS at dry mill ethanol plants using the same equipment and technologies used for corn oil extraction. Oil extraction requires thermal energy to heat the DGS and electricity to power centrifuges, pumps and other oil recovery equipment. Our analysis for the March 2010 RFS final rule,20 the NSP petition, and two studies,21 22 indicate that although extracting oil from DGS uses thermal supports milk production and ruminal fermentation in dairy cows,’’ Journal of Dairy Science 99:191228. Poultry displacement ratios were provided by the National Sorghum Producers and calculated based on data from the Iowa State Extension Services, Agricultural Marketing and Resources Center, ‘‘Estimated U.S. Dried Distillers Grains with Solubles (DDGS) Production and Use, https:// www.extension.iastate.edu/agdm/crops/outlook/ dgsbalancesheet.pdf. 19 Protein sources such as soybean meal can be used to supplement sorghum DGS for poultry. 20 See section 1.4.1.3 of USEPA (2010). Renewable fuel standard program (RFS2) regulatory impact analysis. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Office of Transportation Air Quality, EPA– 420–R–10–006. Washington, DC. https:// www.epa.gov/sites/production/files/2015-08/ documents/420r10006.pdf. 21 Wang, Z., et al. (2015). ‘‘Influence of corn oil recovery on life-cycle greenhouse gas emissions of corn ethanol and corn oil biodiesel.’’ Biotechnology for Biofuels 8(1): 178. 22 Mueller, S., Kwik, J. (2013). ‘‘2012 Corn Ethanol: Emerging Plant Energy and Environmental Technologies.’’ E:\FR\FM\27DEP1.SGM 27DEP1 61210 Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 247 / Wednesday, December 27, 2017 / Proposed Rules daltland on DSKBBV9HB2PROD with PROPOSALS energy, it also leads to relatively less thermal energy being used later in the process to dry the DGS, resulting in an overall negligible change in thermal energy requirements for plants that dry their DGS. Our analysis here includes both the thermal and electrical energy requirements to remove the distillers sorghum oil. We do not account for the reduction in thermal energy needed for DGS drying mentioned above, so this can be viewed as a conservative approach (i.e., resulting in higher estimated GHG emissions) for plants that dry their DGS.23 Based on data reviewed by EPA,24 we assume 200 Btu (British thermal units) of grid electricity and 800 Btu of natural gas are used to extract distillers sorghum oil from DGS, per pound of distillers sorghum oil extracted. These parameters are based on energy requirements associated with extracting oil from DGS at dry mill ethanol plants, but we believe they are also appropriate and conservative in cases where the oil is extracted at any point downstream from sorghum grinding. As discussed above, we do not expect sorghum oil extraction to significantly change the feed value of DGS on a per pound basis. According to the NSP petition, grain sorghum oil yields should be 0.67 pounds per bushel of grain sorghum feedstock.25 EPA’s modeling for the December 2012 grain sorghum ethanol final rule (77 FR 74592) assumed average dried DGS yield of 17 pounds per bushel of grain sorghum feedstock. Thus, sorghum oil extraction may reduce the total mass of DGS produced by up to approximately 4 percent. If full-oil and reduced-oil DGS have equivalent feed value on a per pound basis, we would expect a reduction in the total mass of DGS produced to impact livestock feed markets and result in a net increase in GHG emissions if production of other feed crops (e.g., corn, soybeans) increased to backfill the lost DGS, given 23 The purpose of lifecycle assessment under the RFS program is not to precisely estimate lifecycle GHG emissions associated with particular biofuels, but instead to determine whether or not the fuels satisfy specified lifecycle GHG emissions thresholds to qualify as one or more of the four types of renewable fuel specified in the statute. Where there are a range of possible outcomes and the fuel satisfies the GHG reduction requirements when ‘‘conservative’’ assumptions are used, then a more precise quantification of the matter is not required for purposes of a pathway determination. 24 See sources referenced in footnotes 20 and 21 for energy use associated with oil extraction, and California Air Resources Board (2014). ‘‘CaliforniaModified GREET Fuel Pathway: Biodiesel Produced in the Midwestern and the Western U.S. from Corn Oil Extracted at Dry Mill Ethanol Plants that Produce Wet Distiller’s Grains with Solubles.’’ Staff Summary, Method 1 Fuel Pathway. 25 NSP petition, section F.2.iv VerDate Sep<11>2014 20:44 Dec 26, 2017 Jkt 244001 that producing additional corn and soybeans would result in more GHG emissions.26 However, if reduced-oil DGS are more beneficial than full oil DGS for dairy cows, on a per pound of DGS basis, that could offset some or all of the impacts associated with the DGS mass reduction. The information currently available makes the magnitude of these countervailing impacts difficult to determine, and we did not include any emissions impacts from DGS mass reduction in our lifecycle GHG analysis of biofuels produced from distillers sorghum oil. We invite comment on our analysis of the GHG emissions associated with extracting sorghum oil from DGS. 3. Feedstock Transport In our analysis, distillers sorghum oil is transported 50 miles by heavy duty truck from the dry mill ethanol plant to the biodiesel or hydrotreating facility where it is converted to transportation fuel. GHG emissions associated with feedstock transport are relatively small, and modest changes in transport distance are unlikely to affect the results of our analysis. 4. Feedstock Pretreatment For emissions from feedstock pretreatment and fuel production, we perform two analyses. In the first analysis, we calculate the emissions from biodiesel produced using transesterification. In the second analysis, we calculate the emissions from renewable diesel, jet fuel, LPG, and naphtha, produced using hydrotreating. In Section V below, we then explain how similar results can be inferred for heating oil. Before distillers sorghum oil is converted to biodiesel via transesterification, it is processed to remove free-fatty acids. This process requires thermal energy. Our evaluation of yellow grease for the March 2010 RFS final rule included 14,532 Btu of natural gas per gallon of biodiesel produced for pretreatment, and we have applied the same assumption for this analysis. According to the NSP petition, distillers sorghum oil has free fatty acid content near or below 15 percent, which is in the range of yellow grease free fatty acid 26 For example, the California Air Resources Board (CARB) estimated this impact would be approximately 10 kgCO2e/mmBtu of biodiesel produced from distillers corn oil (https:// www.arb.ca.gov/fuels/lcfs/2a2b/apps/co_bd_wdgsrpt-102414.pdf). Applying such an impact to our analysis of biofuels produced from distillers sorghum oil would not change the GHG thresholds results for the biofuels produced from distillers sorghum oil evaluated in this document. PO 00000 Frm 00019 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 contents (<15 percent).27 This rate of thermal energy use for pretreatment is higher than thermal energy rates used in other lifecycle assessments EPA reviewed,28 and can be viewed as a conservative assumption (i.e., resulting in higher GHG emissions). Pretreatment to remove free-fatty acids is not required when distillers sorghum oil is used to produce renewable diesel, jet fuel, LPG and naphtha through a hydrotreating process. 5. Fuel Production For biodiesel production, we used the transesterification analysis for the March 2010 RFS rule for yellow grease biodiesel.29 Based on comparison of this yellow grease analysis and the mass and energy balance data in the NSP petition, submitted under claim of CBI, the conversion of yellow grease and distillers sorghum oil are expected to require similar energy inputs and yield similar amounts of biodiesel and methanol as outputs. For production of renewable diesel, jet fuel, naphtha and LPG via a hydrotreating process, we used the same data and approach as used in the March 2013 Pathways I rule (78 FR 14190, March 5, 2013), and subsequent facilityspecific petitions involving hydrotreating processes.30 The March 2013 Pathways I rule evaluated two hydrotreating configurations: One optimized for renewable diesel production and one optimized for jet fuel production. For this analysis we evaluated a hydrotreating process maximized for renewable diesel production, as that is the most common configuration. The jet fuel configuration results in higher emissions (approximately 5 kgCO2e/mmBtu higher), but the threshold GHG reduction results discussed below are not sensitive to this assumption. Our previous analyses of hydrotreating processes have applied an energy allocation approach for RINgenerating co-products that qualify as renewable fuel.31 This approach results in higher lifecycle GHG emissions for each of the fuel products than other approaches considered, such as a 27 See Table 15 in the January 5, 2012 Pathways I direct final rule (77 FR 722). 28 See for example: https://www.arb.ca.gov/fuels/ lcfs/2a2b/apps/co_bd_wdgs-rpt-102414.pdf. 29 For details see section 2.4 of the RIA for the March 2010 RFS final rule. 30 For determination documents responding to facility specific petitions, see: https://www.epa.gov/ renewable-fuelstandard-program/approvedpathways-renewable-fuel. 31 See the March 2013 Pathways I rule, specifically 78 FR 14198–14200 (March 5, 2013). E:\FR\FM\27DEP1.SGM 27DEP1 61211 Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 247 / Wednesday, December 27, 2017 / Proposed Rules displacement approach, and thus can be viewed as a conservative approach. In the allocation approach, all the emissions from the hydrotreating process are allocated across all coproducts. There are a number of ways to do the allocation, for example on the basis of energy, mass, or economic value. Consistent with the approach taken in the hydrotreating analysis for the March 2013 RFS rule, for this analysis of fuels produced from distillers sorghum oil feedstock through a hydrotreating process we allocated emissions to the renewable diesel, naphtha and LPG based on the energy content (using lower-heating values) of the products produced. Emissions from the process were allocated equally to all of the Btus of fuel produced. Therefore, on a per Btu basis, all of the primary products coming from the hydrotreating facility have the same emissions from the fuel production stage of the lifecycle. For this analysis, the energy content was the most appropriate basis for allocating emissions because all of March 2010 RFS final rule. For biodiesel we used the biodiesel emissions factor. For renewable diesel and jet fuel we used the emissions factors for non-CO2 GHGs for baseline diesel fuel. For naphtha we used the emissions factors for non-CO2 GHGs for baseline gasoline fuel. For LPG we used the LPG non-CO2 emissions factor developed for the March 2010 RFS rule. The tailpipe emissions are relatively small, and the threshold GHG reduction results are not sensitive to these assumptions. More details on our analysis of fuel use emissions are described in a memo 32 to the rulemaking docket. the fuel products are used as sources of energy. Energy content also has the advantage of being a fixed factor as opposed to market prices which fluctuate over time. 6. Fuel Distribution We used the fuel distribution results from the biodiesel analysis for the March 2010 RFS rule. Fuel distribution emissions are relatively small compared to baseline lifecycle GHG emissions (see Table IV.3 below), and although they may be different for different types of fuel, for the purposes of this analysis we assume that renewable diesel, jet fuel, LPG, and naphtha, have the same fuel distribution emissions per mmBtu of fuel used. Even if we applied a more precise value for fuel distribution emissions, we do not expect that revision to change our assessment that these fuels meet a 50 percent GHG emission reduction. 8. Results of GHG Lifecycle Analysis Table IV.3 shows the lifecycle GHG emissions associated with biofuels produced from distillers sorghum oil that result from our assessment. The table also shows the percent reduction relative to the petroleum baseline. All of the fuels are compared to the diesel baseline, except for naphtha which is compared to the gasoline baseline. 7. Fuel Use For this analysis we applied fuel use emissions factors developed for the TABLE IV.3—LIFECYCLE GHG EMISSIONS ASSOCIATED WITH BIOFUELS PRODUCED FROM DISTILLERS SORGHUM OIL (kgCO2-eq/MJ) Renewable diesel, jet fuel Fuel Biodiesel Production process Transesterification Naphtha 2005 Diesel baseline LPG Hydrotreating 2005 Gasoline baseline Refining Feedstock Production ........................ Feedstock Transport .......................... Feedstock Pretreatment ..................... Fuel Production .................................. Fuel Distribution ................................. Fuel Use ............................................. 5.6 0.2 8.4 1.2 0.8 0.7 6.2 0.3 ........................ 8.0 0.8 0.7 6.2 0.3 ........................ 8.0 0.8 1.7 6.2 0.3 ........................ 8.0 0.8 1.5 18.0 19.2 79.0 79.0 Total ............................................ 17.0 16.0 17.0 16.8 97.0 98.2 Percent Reduction ............................. 82 84 82 83 ........................ ........................ Based on the lifecycle GHG emissions results presented above, all of the pathways evaluated would meet the 50 percent GHG reduction threshold required for advanced biofuel and biomass-based diesel. The results presented above would also justify qualifying heating oil produced from distillers sorghum oil as meeting the 50 percent GHG threshold. In previous rulemakings, EPA considered the lifecycle GHG impacts associated with heating oil and determined that heating oil produced from a range of feedstocks (e.g., soybean oil, distillers corn oil) via a transesterification or hydrotreating process satisfies the 50 percent lifecycle GHG reduction required for advanced biofuel.33 Based on the results presented above, we anticipate that biofuels such as heating oil produced from distillers sorghum oil have significantly lower lifecycle GHG emissions than the same fuels produced from soybean oil, when the same production processes are used.34 Therefore, based on EPA’s previous lifecycle evaluations for heating oil produced from soybean oil, we believe that heating oil produced from distillers sorghum oil would also satisfy the 50 percent GHG reduction requirement. 32 See, ‘‘Summary of Key Assumptions for EPA’s Analysis of the Lifecycle Greenhouse Gas Emissions Associated with Biofuels Produced from Distillers Sorghum Oil,’’ Air Docket EPA–HQ–OAR–2017– 0655. 33 See the March 2013 RFS Pathway I rule (78 FR 14190, March 5, 2013). 34 For example, in analysis for the March 2010 RFS rule, EPA found that soybean oil biodiesel achieves a 57 percent GHG reduction (based on the mean result from our uncertainty assessment), whereas the results in Table IV.3, above, show biodiesel produced from distillers sorghum oil achieve a greater than 80 percent reduction. daltland on DSKBBV9HB2PROD with PROPOSALS V. Consideration of Lifecycle Analysis Results VerDate Sep<11>2014 20:10 Dec 26, 2017 Jkt 244001 PO 00000 Frm 00020 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 VI. Summary Based on our GHG lifecycle evaluation described above, we propose to find that biodiesel and heating oil produced from distillers sorghum oil via a transesterification process, and renewable diesel, jet fuel and heating oil produced from distillers sorghum oil via a hydrotreating process meet the 50 percent GHG reduction threshold requirement for advanced biofuel and biomass-based diesel. This finding E:\FR\FM\27DEP1.SGM 27DEP1 61212 Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 247 / Wednesday, December 27, 2017 / Proposed Rules would support a determination that these fuels are eligible for biomassbased diesel (D-code 4) RINs if they are produced through a process that does not co-process renewable biomass and petroleum, and for advanced biofuel (D-code 5) RINs if they are produced through a process that does co-process renewable biomass and petroleum. EPA invites comment on all aspects of its analysis of these proposed biofuel pathways. E. Unfunded Mandates Reform Act (UMRA) VII. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews This action does not have federalism implications. It will not have substantial direct effects on the states, on the relationship between the national government and the states, or on the distribution of power and responsibilities among the various levels of government. Additional information about these statutes and Executive Orders can be found at http://www2.epa.gov/lawsregulations/laws-and-executive-orders. A. Executive Order 12866: Regulatory Planning and Review and Executive Order 13563: Improving Regulation and Regulatory Review This action is not a significant regulatory action and was therefore not submitted to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for review. B. Executive Order 13771: Reducing Regulations and Controlling Regulatory Costs This action is not expected to be an Executive Order 13771 regulatory action because this action is not significant under Executive Order 12866. C. Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA) This action does not impose any new information collection burden under the provisions of the Paperwork Reduction Act, 44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq., and therefore is not subject to these requirements. daltland on DSKBBV9HB2PROD with PROPOSALS D. Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA) I certify that this action will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities under the RFA. This action will not impose any requirements on small entities. An agency may certify that a rule will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities if the rule relieves regulatory burden, has no net burden or otherwise has a positive economic effect on the small entities subject to the rule. This rule proposes to provide a positive economic effect for distillers sorghum oil producers and producers of biofuels from distillers sorghum oil as they would be able to participate in the RFS program, see CAA section 211(o). VerDate Sep<11>2014 20:10 Dec 26, 2017 Jkt 244001 This action does not contain an unfunded mandate of $100 million or more as described in UMRA, 2 U.S.C. 1531–1538, and does not significantly or uniquely affect small governments. The action imposes no enforceable duty on any state, local or tribal governments or the private sector. F. Executive Order 13132: Federalism G. Executive Order 13175: Consultation and Coordination With Indian Tribal Governments This action does not have tribal implications as specified in Executive Order 13175. This proposed rule would affect only producers of distillers sorghum oil and producers of biofuels made from distillers sorghum oil. Thus, Executive Order 13175 does not apply to this action. H. Executive Order 13045: Protection of Children From Environmental Health Risks and Safety Risks The EPA interprets Executive Order 13045 as applying only to those regulatory actions that concern environmental health or safety risks that EPA has reason to believe may disproportionately affect children, per the definition of ‘‘covered regulatory action’’ in section 2–202 of the Executive Order. This action is not subject to Executive Order 13045 because it because it does not concern an environmental health risk or safety risk. I. Executive Order 13211: Actions Concerning Regulations That Significantly Affect Energy Supply, Distribution, or Use This action is not subject to Executive Order 13211 because it is not a significant regulatory action under Executive Order 12866. J. National Technology Transfer Advancement Act (NTTAA) This rulemaking does not involve technical standards. PO 00000 Frm 00021 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 K. Executive Order 12898: Federal Actions To Address Environmental Justice in Minority Populations and Low-Income Populations The EPA believes that this action does not have disproportionately high and adverse human health or environmental effects on minority populations, lowincome populations and/or indigenous peoples, as specified in Executive Order 12898 (59 FR 7629, February 16, 1994). This proposed rule does not affect the level of protection provided to human health or the environment by applicable air quality standards. This action does not relax the control measures on sources regulated by the fuel programs and RFS regulations and therefore will not cause emissions increases from these sources. List of Subjects in 40 CFR Part 80 Environmental protection, Administrative practice and procedure, Air pollution control, Diesel Fuel, Fuel additives, Gasoline, Imports, Oil imports, Petroleum, Renewable fuel. Dated: December 19, 2017. E. Scott Pruitt, Administrator. For the reasons set forth in the preamble, EPA proposes to amend 40 CFR part 80 as follows: PART 80—REGULATION OF FUEL AND FUEL ADDITIVES 1. The authority for part 80 continues to read as follows: ■ Authority: 42 U.S.C. 7414, 7521, 7542, 7545, and 7601(a). Subpart M—[Amended] 2. Section 80.1401 is amended by adding in alphabetical order a new definition for ‘‘distillers sorghum oil’’ to read as follows: ■ § 80.1401 Definitions. * * * * * Distillers sorghum oil means oil recovered at a point downstream of where a dry mill grain sorghum ethanol plant grinds the grain sorghum, provided that the grain sorghum is converted to ethanol, the oil is rendered unfit for food uses without further refining, and the distillers grains resulting from the dry mill and oil extraction processes are marketable as animal feed. * * * * * ■ 3. Section 80.1426, paragraph (f)(1) is amended by revising entries F, H, and I in Table 1 to § 80.1426 to read as follows: E:\FR\FM\27DEP1.SGM 27DEP1 61213 Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 247 / Wednesday, December 27, 2017 / Proposed Rules § 80.1426 How are RINs generated and assigned to batches of renewable fuel by renewable fuel producers or importers? * * * * (f) * * * (1) * * * * TABLE 1 TO § 80.1426—APPLICABLE D CODES FOR EACH FUEL PATHWAY FOR USE IN GENERATING RINS Entry Fuel type Feedstock Production process requirements D-code * F ............... * * * Biodiesel, renewable diesel, jet fuel Soy bean oil; Oil from annual and heating oil, biodiesel. covercrops; Oil from algae grown photosynthetically; Biogenic waste oils/fats/greases; Non-food grade corn oil; Camelina sativa oil; Distillers sorghum oil. * * One of the following: TransEsterification Hydrotreating Excluding processes that co-process renewable biomass and petroleum. * * H .............. * * * Biodiesel, renewable diesel, jet fuel Soy bean oil; Oil from annual and heating oil. covercrops; Oil from algae grown photosynthetically; Biogenic waste oils/fats/greases; Non-food grade corn oil; Camelina sativa oil; Distillers sorghum oil. Naphtha, LPG .................................. Camelina sativa oil; Distillers sorghum oil. * * One of the following: TransEsterification Hydrotreating Includes only processes that coprocess renewable biomass and petroleum. * I ................ * * * * * * * * [FR Doc. 2017–27946 Filed 12–26–17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560–50–P ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Part 131 [EPA–HQ–OW–2017–0010; FRL–9972–46– OW] RIN 2040–AF69 Water Quality Standards for the State of Missouri’s Lakes and Reservoirs Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). ACTION: Proposed rule. AGENCY: The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA or Agency) proposes to establish federal nutrient criteria to protect designated uses for the State of Missouri’s lakes and reservoirs. On August 16, 2011, EPA disapproved most of the numeric criteria for total nitrogen, total phosphorus, and chlorophyll a that the State submitted to EPA in 2009. EPA acknowledged the importance of Missouri’s proactive efforts to address nutrient pollution by adopting numeric nutrient criteria. However, EPA concluded that the Missouri Department of Natural Resources (MDNR) had failed to demonstrate the criteria would protect the State’s designated uses and were not based on a sound scientific rationale. The Clean Water Act (CWA) directs EPA to promptly propose water daltland on DSKBBV9HB2PROD with PROPOSALS SUMMARY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 20:10 Dec 26, 2017 Jkt 244001 * Frm 00022 Fmt 4702 * Sfmt 4702 5 Hydrotreating .................................... quality standards (WQS) that meet CWA requirements if a state does not adopt WQS addressing EPA’s disapproval. On February 24, 2016, the Missouri Coalition for the Environment (MCE) filed a lawsuit alleging that EPA failed to satisfy its statutory obligation to act ‘‘promptly.’’ On December 1, 2016, EPA entered into a consent decree with MCE committing to sign a notice of proposed rulemaking by December 15, 2017 to address EPA’s 2011 disapproval, unless the State submits and EPA approves criteria that address the disapproval on or before December 15, 2017. As of the date of this proposed rule, Missouri has not submitted new or revised standards to address EPA’s 2011 disapproval and EPA has not approved such water quality standards. Therefore, under the terms of the consent decree, EPA is signing a notice of proposed rulemaking that proposes new water quality standards addressing EPA’s August 16, 2011 disapproval. In this proposal, EPA seeks comment on two primary alternatives. Under the first alternative, EPA proposes nutrient protection values and eutrophication impact factors in a combined criterion approach. Under the second alternative, EPA proposes a similar combined criterion approach that would mirror the State of Missouri’s October 2017 proposal for lake nutrient water quality standards. EPA will not proceed with final rulemaking (or will withdraw its final rule, if applicable) to address its 2011 disapproval if Missouri adopts and PO 00000 4 * 5 * submits criteria to address EPA’s 2011 disapproval and EPA approves them as meeting CWA requirements. DATES: Comments must be received on or before February 26, 2018. ADDRESSES: Submit your comments, identified by Docket ID No. EPA–HQ– OW–2017–0010, at http:// www.regulations.gov. Follow the online instructions for submitting comments. Once submitted, comments cannot be edited or removed from regulations.gov. EPA may publish any comment received to its public docket. Do not submit electronically any information you consider to be Confidential Business Information (CBI) or other information whose disclosure is restricted by statute. Multimedia submissions (audio, video, etc.) must be accompanied by a written comment. The written comment is considered the official comment and should include discussion of all points you wish to make. EPA will generally not consider comments or comment contents located outside of the primary submission (i.e. on the web, cloud, or other file sharing system). For additional submission methods, the full EPA public comment policy, information about CBI or multimedia submissions, and general guidance on making effective comments, please visit http://www2.epa.gov/dockets/ commenting-epa-dockets. EPA is offering two online public hearings so that interested parties may provide verbal comments on this proposed rule. The first public hearing E:\FR\FM\27DEP1.SGM 27DEP1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 82, Number 247 (Wednesday, December 27, 2017)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 61205-61213]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2017-27946]


-----------------------------------------------------------------------

ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY

40 CFR Part 80

[EPA-HQ-OAR-2017-0655; FRL-9972-59-OAR]
RIN 2060-AT82


Proposed Rule; Renewable Fuel Standard Program; Grain Sorghum Oil 
Pathway

AGENCY: Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

ACTION: Proposed rule.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: In this proposed rule, the Environmental Protection Agency 
(EPA) is providing an opportunity to comment on an analysis of the 
lifecycle greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions associated with certain 
biofuels that are produced from grain sorghum oil extracted at dry mill 
ethanol plants at any point downstream from sorghum grinding, also 
known as distiller sorghum oil. EPA seeks comment on its proposed 
assessment that using distillers sorghum oil as feedstock results in no 
significant agricultural sector GHG emissions; and that biodiesel and 
heating oil produced from distillers sorghum oil via a 
transesterification process, and renewable diesel, jet fuel, heating 
oil, naphtha, and liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) produced from 
distillers sorghum oil via a hydrotreating process, would meet the 
lifecycle GHG emissions reduction threshold of 50 percent required for 
advanced biofuels, and biomass-based diesel under the Renewable Fuel 
Standard program. Based on these analyses, EPA is proposing to amend 
the RFS program regulations to define the term ``distillers sorghum 
oil''. We also propose to add to the regulations approved pathways from 
the production of biodiesel and heating oil from distillers sorghum oil 
via a transesterification process, and renewable diesel, jet fuel, 
heating oil, naphtha, and liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) produced from 
distillers sorghum oil via a hydrotreating process.

DATES: Comments must be received on or before January 26, 2018.

ADDRESSES: Submit your comments, identified by Docket ID No. EPA-HQ-
OAR-2017-0655, at http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the online 
instructions for submitting comments. Once submitted, comments cannot 
be edited or withdrawn from Regulations.gov. The EPA may publish any 
comment received to its public docket. Do not submit electronically any 
information you consider to be

[[Page 61206]]

Confidential Business Information (CBI) or other information whose 
disclosure is restricted by statute. Multimedia submissions (audio, 
video, etc.) must be accompanied by a written comment. The written 
comment is considered the official comment and should include 
discussion of all points you wish to make. The EPA will generally not 
consider comments or comment contents located outside of the primary 
submission (i.e., on the web, cloud, or other file sharing system). For 
additional submission methods, the full EPA public comment policy, 
information about CBI or multimedia submissions, and general guidance 
on making effective comments, please visit https://www.epa.gov/dockets/commenting-epa-dockets.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Diana Galperin, Office of Air and 
Radiation, Office of Transportation and Air Quality, Mail Code: 6401A, 
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, 
Washington, DC 20460; telephone number: 202-564-5687; email address: 
[email protected].

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

Outline of This Preamble

I. General Information
II. Public Participation
III. Introduction
IV. Analysis of GHG Emissions Associated With Production of Biofuels 
From Distillers Sorghum Oil
    A. Overview of Distillers Sorghum Oil
    B. Analysis of Lifecycle GHG Emissions
    1. Livestock Sector Impacts
    2. Feedstock Production
    3. Feedstock Transport
    4. Feedstock Pretreatment
    5. Fuel Production
    6. Fuel Distribution
    7. Fuel Use
    8. Results of GHG Lifecycle Analysis
V. Consideration of Lifecycle Analysis Results
VI. Summary
VII. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews
    A. Executive Order 12866: Regulatory Planning and Review and 
Executive Order 13563: Improving Regulation and Regulatory Review
    B. Executive Order 13771: Reducing Regulations and Controlling 
Regulatory Costs
    C. Paperwork Reduction Act
    D. Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA)
    E. Unfunded Mandates Reform Act (UMRA)
    F. Executive Order 13132: Federalism
    G. Executive Order 13175: Consultation and Coordination With 
Indian Tribal Governments
    H. Executive Order 13045: Protection of Children From 
Environmental Health Risks and Safety Risks
    I. Executive Order 13211: Actions Concerning Regulations That 
Significantly Affect Energy Supply, Distribution, or Use
    J. National Technology Transfer Advancement Act (NTTAA)
    K. Executive Order 12898: Federal Actions To Address 
Environmental Justice in Minority Populations and Low-Income 
Populations

I. General Information

A. Does this action apply to me?

    Entities potentially affected by this proposed rule are those 
involved with the production, distribution, and sale of transportation 
fuels, including gasoline and diesel fuel or renewable fuels such as 
ethanol, biodiesel, heating oil, renewable diesel, naphtha and 
liquefied petroleum gas. Potentially regulated categories include:

------------------------------------------------------------------------
 Examples of potentially affected
             entities                         NAICS \1\ codes
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Sorghum Farming..................  11119, 111191, 111199
Petroleum refineries (including    324110
 importers)..
Ethyl alcohol manufacturing......  325193
Other basic organic chemical       325199
 manufacturing..
Chemical and allied products       424690
 merchant wholesalers..
Petroleum Bulk Stations and        424710, 424720
 Terminals; Petroleum.
Other fuel dealers...............  454310
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    This table is not intended to be exhaustive, but rather provides a 
guide for readers regarding entities likely to be regulated by this 
action. This table lists the types of entities that the EPA is now 
aware could potentially be affected by this action. Other types of 
entities not listed in the table could also be affected. To determine 
whether your entity is regulated by this action, you should carefully 
examine the applicability criteria in the referenced regulations. If 
you have any questions regarding the applicability of this action to a 
particular entity, consult the person listed in the FOR FURTHER 
INFORMATION CONTACT section.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \1\ North American Industry Classification System.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

B. What action is the Agency taking?

    EPA is proposing to amend the RFS program regulations to define the 
term ``distillers sorghum oil'' as oil from grain sorghum that is 
extracted at a dry mill ethanol plant at any location downstream of 
grinding the grain sorghum kernel, provided that the grain sorghum is 
converted to ethanol, the oil is rendered unfit for food uses without 
further refining, and the distillers grains resulting from the dry mill 
and oil extraction processes are marketable as animal feed. We also 
propose to add to Table 1 to 80.1426(f), approved pathways from the 
production of biodiesel and heating oil from distillers sorghum oil via 
a transesterification process, and renewable diesel, jet fuel, heating 
oil, naphtha, and liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) produced from 
distillers sorghum oil via a hydrotreating process. Alternatively, or 
in addition, EPA may consider the comments it receives in response to 
this document in evaluating facility-specific pathway petitions 
submitted pursuant to 40 CFR 80.1416 that propose using distillers 
sorghum oil to make biofuel.

C. What is the Agency's authority for taking this action?

    Statutory authority for this action comes from Clean Air Act 
sections 114, 208, 211, and 301.

II. Public Participation

    EPA will not hold a public hearing on this matter unless a request 
is received by the person identified in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION 
CONTACT section of this preamble by January 11, 2018. If EPA receives 
such a request, we will publish information related to the timing and 
location of the hearing and a new deadline for public comment.

III. Introduction

    Section 211(o) of the Clean Air Act (CAA) establishes the Renewable 
Fuel Standard (RFS) program, under which EPA sets annual percentage 
standards specifying the amount of renewable fuel, as well as three 
subcategories of renewable fuel, that must be used to reduce or replace 
fossil fuel present in transportation fuel, heating oil, or jet

[[Page 61207]]

fuel. Non-exempt \2\ renewable fuels must achieve at least a 20 percent 
reduction in lifecycle GHG emissions as compared to a 2005 petroleum 
baseline. Advanced biofuel and biomass-based diesel must achieve at 
least a 50 percent reduction, and cellulosic biofuel must achieve at 
least a 60 percent reduction.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \2\ A baseline volume of renewable fuel produced from facilities 
that commenced construction on or before December 19, 2007, and 
which completed construction by December 19, 2010 without an 18-
month hiatus in construction, is exempt from the minimum 20 percent 
GHG reduction requirement that otherwise applies to renewable fuel. 
In addition, a baseline volume of ethanol from facilities that 
commenced construction after December 19, 2007, and on or before 
December 31, 2009, qualifies for the same exemption if construction 
was completed within 36 months without an 18-month hiatus in 
construction; the facility was fired with natural gas, biomass, or 
any combination thereof, at all times the facility operated between 
December 19, 2007 and December 31, 2009; and the baseline volume 
continues to be produced through processes fired with natural gas, 
biomass, or any combination thereof.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    In addition to the lifecycle GHG reduction requirements, renewable 
identification numbers (RINs) may only be generated if the fuel meets 
the other definitional criteria for renewable fuel (e.g., produced from 
renewable biomass as defined in the regulations, and used to reduce or 
replace the quantity of fossil fuel present in transportation fuel, 
heating oil, or jet fuel) in CAA section 211(o) and the RFS regulations 
at 40 CFR part 80 subpart M.
    Since the formation of the RFS program, EPA has periodically 
promulgated rules to add new pathways to the regulations.\3\ In 
addition, EPA has approved facility-specific pathways through the 
petition process in 40 CFR 80.1416. There are three critical components 
of approved fuel pathways under the RFS program: (1) Fuel type; (2) 
feedstock; and (3) production process. Each pathway is associated with 
a specific ``D code'' depending on whether the fuel meets the 
requirements for renewable fuel, advanced fuel, cellulosic fuel, or 
biomass-based diesel.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \3\ Please see information on Pathways I and Pathways II in 40 
CFR part 80 subpart M, and in the Federal Register at 78 FR 14190 
(March 5, 2013) and 79 FR 42128 (July 18, 2014). More information on 
these can be found at: https://www.epa.gov/renewable-fuel-standard-program/final-rule-identify-additional-fuel-pathways-under-renewable-fuel and https://www.epa.gov/renewable-fuel-standard-program/renewable-fuel-pathways-ii-final-rule-identify-additional-fuel.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    EPA's lifecycle analyses are used to assess the overall GHG 
emissions of a fuel throughout each stage of its production and use. 
The results of these analyses, considering uncertainty and the weight 
of available evidence, are used to determine whether a fuel meets the 
necessary GHG reductions required under the CAA. Lifecycle analysis 
includes an assessment of emissions related to the full fuel lifecycle, 
including feedstock production, feedstock transportation, fuel 
production, fuel transportation and distribution, and tailpipe 
emissions. Per the CAA definition of lifecycle GHG emissions, EPA's 
lifecycle analyses also include an assessment of significant indirect 
emissions, such as those from land use changes and agricultural sector 
impacts.
    EPA received a petition from the National Sorghum Producers (NSP), 
submitted under partial claims of confidential business information 
(CBI), requesting that EPA evaluate the GHG emissions associated with 
biofuels produced using grain sorghum oil derived from dry mill ethanol 
production as a feedstock, and that EPA provide a determination of the 
renewable fuel categories, if any, for which such biofuels may be 
eligible. In this action, EPA is proposing to amend the RFS program 
regulations to define the term ``distillers sorghum oil'' as oil from 
grain sorghum that is extracted at a dry mill ethanol plant at any 
location downstream of grinding the grain sorghum kernel, provided that 
the grain sorghum is converted to ethanol, the oil is rendered unfit 
for food uses without further refining, and the distillers grains 
resulting from the dry mill and oil extraction processes are marketable 
as animal feed. We also propose to add to Table 1 to 40 CFR 80.1426(f), 
approved pathways from the production of biodiesel and heating oil from 
distillers sorghum oil via a transesterification process, and renewable 
diesel, jet fuel, heating oil, naphtha, and LPG produced from 
distillers sorghum oil via a hydrotreating process. Alternatively, or 
in addition, EPA may consider the comments it receives in response to 
this document in evaluating facility-specific pathway petitions 
submitted pursuant to 40 CFR 80.1416 that propose using distillers 
sorghum oil to make biofuel.
    This preamble describes EPA's analysis of the GHG emissions 
associated with distillers sorghum oil when used to produce specified 
biofuels. The analysis considers a scenario where distillers sorghum 
oil is extracted from distillers grains with solubles (DGS) at dry mill 
plants that produce ethanol from grain sorghum and where the remaining 
reduced-oil DGS co-product is used as animal feed. The distillers 
sorghum oil is then used as a feedstock for conversion into certain 
biofuels. As described in Section IV of this preamble, we estimate that 
the lifecycle GHG emissions associated with the production of biodiesel 
and heating oil produced from distillers sorghum oil via a 
transesterification process, and renewable diesel, jet fuel, naphtha, 
and LPG, produced from distillers sorghum oil via a hydrotreating 
process, are approximately 80 percent less than the lifecycle GHG 
emissions associated with the baseline petroleum fuels they would 
replace. Based on these results, we propose to find that these biofuels 
would meet the 50 percent GHG reduction threshold required for advanced 
biofuel and biomass-based diesel. We also anticipate that heating oil 
produced through transesterification or hydrotreating from distillers 
sorghum oil would meet the 50 percent GHG emission reduction threshold 
required for advanced biofuel and biomass-based diesel.\4\ EPA is 
seeking public comment on its analyses of the lifecycle GHG emissions 
related to biofuels produced from distillers sorghum oil.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \4\ As defined in the RFS regulations at 40 CFR 80.1401, 
biomass-based diesel excludes renewable fuel that is co-processed 
with petroleum. Such fuel may qualify as advanced biofuel if it 
meets the 50 percent GHG reduction threshold.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

IV. Analysis of GHG Emissions Associated With Production of Biofuels 
From Distillers Sorghum Oil

A. Overview of Distillers Sorghum Oil

    Dry mill ethanol plants grind and ferment grain sorghum, produce 
ethanol from the fermented grain sorghum starch, and also produce a DGS 
co-product (made of non-fermentable solids, solubles syrup, and sorghum 
oil) that is sold as a type of livestock feed. A portion of the oil 
that would otherwise reside in the DGS can be extracted at the ethanol 
plant, typically through gravimetric methods. At dry mill ethanol 
plants, sorghum oil is recovered through methods nearly identical to 
that of corn oil extracted from DGS, and corn and sorghum oil 
extraction can occur at the same facilities.
    EPA has approved pathways for the production of ethanol from grain 
sorghum made through a dry mill process as qualifying for renewable 
fuel (D code 6) RINs, and in some cases advanced biofuel (D code 5) 
RINs, depending on process energy sources used during production.\5\ 
However, the regulations do not currently include pathways for the 
production of other biofuels from grain sorghum. According to the U.S. 
Department of Agriculture (USDA), the largest regions for grain sorghum 
production in the United States are located in Texas, Oklahoma, and 
Kansas.\6\ Currently about 30 percent

[[Page 61208]]

of grain sorghum grown, or 120 million bushels a year, goes towards 
ethanol production.\7\ For comparison, in recent years over 5,200 
million bushels of corn have been used for ethanol production 
annually.\8\ Distillers sorghum oil is still a relatively niche 
product, and the NSP petition anticipates a potential of 12 to 21 
million ethanol-equivalent gallons of fuel to be produced from the oil 
per year.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \5\ Table 1 to 40 CFR 80.1426, Rows R and S.
    \6\ USDA, NASS, ``Sorghum for Grain 2016 Harvested Acres by 
County for Selected States,'' https://www.nass.usda.gov/Charts_and_Maps/graphics/AS-HA-RGBChor.pdf.
    \7\ Sorghum Checkoff, ``Renewables,'' http://www.sorghumcheckoff.com/market-opportunities/renewables, accessed 
09-05-2017.
    \8\ USDA, ERS, ``Table 5-- Corn supply, disappearance, and share 
of total corn used for ethanol,'' U.S. Bioenergy Statistics, https://www.ers.usda.gov/data-products/us-bioenergy-statistics/us-bioenergy-statistics/#Feedstocks, accessed 09-05-2017.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    We propose to define distillers sorghum oil to mean oil recovered 
at a point downstream of where a dry mill grain sorghum ethanol plant 
grinds the grain sorghum, provided that the grain sorghum is converted 
to ethanol, the oil is rendered unfit for food uses without further 
refining, and the distillers grains resulting from the dry mill and oil 
extraction processes are marketable as animal feed. So long as these 
criteria are met, a variety of recovery methods could be implemented. 
For example, this would include recovery of sorghum oil before 
fermentation from the slurry or from liquefaction tanks. It would also 
include recovery of sorghum oil after fermentation from the thin 
stillage and/or DGS. Further, it would also include recovery of sorghum 
oil by a third-party from DGS produced by a dry mill sorghum ethanol 
plant.

B. Analysis of Lifecycle GHG Emissions

    EPA evaluated the GHG emissions associated with using distillers 
sorghum oil as a biofuel feedstock based on information provided by the 
petitioner and other available data sources. GHG emissions include 
emissions from production and transport of distillers sorghum oil; the 
processing of the oil into biofuel; transport of the biofuel from the 
production facility to the fuel-blender; and, ultimately the use of the 
biofuel by the end consumer. The methodology EPA used for this analysis 
is generally the same approach used for the March 2010 RFS rule for 
lifecycle analyses of several other biofuel feedstocks, such as 
distillers corn oil and yellow grease.\9\ We believe that applying the 
same methodology for these feedstocks is appropriate given similarities 
in how these feedstocks are produced, transported and processed into 
biofuel. These similarities are explained further in this section.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \9\ The March 2010 RFS rule preamble (75 FR 14670, March 26, 
2010) and Regulatory Impact Analysis (RIA) (EPA-420-R-10-006) 
provide further discussion of our approach. These documents are 
available online at https://www.epa.gov/renewable-fuel-standard-program/renewable-fuel-standard-rfs2-final-rule-additional-resources.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    EPA's lifecycle analyses include upstream emissions, which include 
the significant direct and indirect GHG emissions (including such 
emissions from land use changes) associated with producing a feedstock 
and transporting it to the processing facility. All of the upstream 
emissions were calculated and taken into account in EPA's evaluation of 
the lifecycle GHG emissions associated with grain sorghum ethanol.\10\ 
Based on our analysis, producing distillers sorghum oil at a dry mill 
ethanol plant converting grain sorghum to ethanol, and using the 
extracted sorghum oil as a biofuel feedstock does not result in 
additional upstream emissions, compared to the upstream emissions that 
have already been calculated and attributed to grain sorghum ethanol. 
Further, based on our analysis, the production of distillers sorghum 
oil does not significantly impact the upstream emissions associated 
with grain sorghum ethanol. While producing distillers sorghum oil may 
impact livestock markets, through the effects of de-oiling DGS, we 
discuss in the next section why, based on the data we have reviewed, we 
do not anticipate this to cause any significant indirect impacts. We 
welcome comments on this data and analysis.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \10\ See the December 2012 grain sorghum ethanol rule (77 FR 
74592).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

1. Livestock Sector Impacts
    During a typical dry mill ethanol production process, DGS are 
produced. These DGS are then used as animal feed, thereby displacing 
feed crops and the GHG emissions associated with growing and 
transporting those feed crops. When distillers sorghum oil is produced, 
DGS continue to be created with reduced oil content. A significant 
portion of this analysis focuses on reviewing how reduced-oil DGS 
compare to full-oil DGS in terms of feed values and displacement of 
other feeds.
    Chemically, full-oil and reduced-oil sorghum DGS share similar 
compositions, primarily made up of crude protein, fat, and natural and 
acid detergent fibers. Where the two products differ most significantly 
is in their acid detergent fiber and fat concentrations. Table IV.1 
shows the key nutrients that make up dried full-oil and reduced-oil 
DGS.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \11\ The chart lists the most prominent nutrients in distillers 
grains. Data provided by the National Sorghum Producers. Data for 
full-oil Sorghum DDGS is sourced from Nutrient Requirements of 
Swine, 2012 National Academies Press, Washington DC, pg 329. Data 
for reduced-oil Sorghum DDGS was calculated by National Sorghum 
Producers using the ratio of (1) corn DDGS, between 6 to 9 percent 
Oil; and (2) corn DDGS, less than 4 percent oil from Nutrient 
Requirements of Swine, 2012 National Academies Press, Washington, 
DC, pp. 266 and 267.

   Table IV.1--Key Nutrient Make-Up of Full-Oil and Reduced-Oil Dried
               Distillers Grains With Solubles (DDGS) \11\
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                Reduced-
                                                     Full-oil     oil
                     Nutrient                        sorghum    sorghum
                                                       DDGS       DDGS
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Crude Protein, %..................................      30.80      31.36
Crude Fat, % (aka Ether Extract)..................       9.75       3.91
Neutral Detergent Fiber (NDF), %..................      33.60      37.23
Acid Detergent Fiber (ADF), %.....................      22.68      31.91
Ash, %............................................       6.62       7.60
Calcium, %........................................       0.12       0.08
Phosphorus, %.....................................       0.76       0.96
Lysine, %.........................................       0.82       0.62
Methionine, %.....................................       0.54       0.47
Cystine, %........................................       0.53       0.61
Tryptophan, %.....................................       0.25       0.23
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The difference in fat values is important as crude fat 
concentrations impact net energy uptake by the livestock. A memorandum 
to the docket shows the total net energy profiles by livestock of full-
oil and reduced-oil sorghum DGS.\12\ Should fat content not be at 
sufficient levels, livestock producers might need to add nutrients or 
other types of feed to meet appropriate nutritional targets. This is 
reflected in the ``displacement rate'' of a DGS, which indicates how 
much weight a pound of distillers grain can replace of another feed. A 
lower displacement rate for a reduced-oil distillers grain as compared 
to a full-oil distillers grain could result in additional GHG emissions 
as it suggests that additional feed is required. In the case of 
reduced-oil sorghum DGS, we believe that it is unlikely that additional 
feed will be needed to backfill for the extracted oil.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \12\ ``Summary of Net Energy Impacts of Reduced-Oil Sorghum 
Dried Distillers Grains with Solubles (DDGS) on Livestock,'' Air 
Docket EPA-HQ-OAR-2017-0655.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Research suggests that for poultry and swine, ``increased 
concentrations of free fatty acids have a negative impact on

[[Page 61209]]

lipid digestion and energy content.'' \13\ Free fatty acids are a class 
of acids that form part of a lipid molecule. Full-oil DGS typically 
contain higher levels of free fatty acids and thus may have a negative 
impact on the fat digestion of poultry and swine. This supports the 
conclusion that while the fat content may be lower for reduced-oil DGS, 
feeding values of this product should not be worse than full-oil DGS 
for poultry and swine.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \13\ Kerr, B.J., W.A. Dozier, and G.C. Shurson. (2016). ``Lipid 
digestibility and energy content of distillers' corn oil in swine 
and poultry,'' Journal of Animal Science. 94:2900-2908. doi:10.2527/
jas.2016-0440, pp. 2905.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    For dairy, there are also benefits from feeding reduced-oil DGS as 
compared to full-oil DGS. Research on dairy cows shows that reduced-oil 
DGS produce a lessened likelihood of the onset of milk fat 
depression.\14\ Milk fat depression occurs when milk fat is reduced by 
0.2 percent or more.\15\ If milk fat depression occurs over the long 
term, a decline in overall milk production may occur as well as 
worsened health conditions of the herd. High fat diets have been linked 
with this condition and have been shown to worsen the rumen environment 
of dairy cattle.\16\ Therefore, dairy producers seek to avoid high fat 
diets. Given the benefits of reduced-oil DGS over full-oil DGS for milk 
fat production, it is expected that reduced-oil DGS will be preferred 
over full-oil DGS by dairy producers and that displacement rates will 
be no worse than those of full-oil DGS.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \14\ H.A. Ramirez-Ramirez, E. Castillo Lopez, C.J.R. Jenkins, 
N.D. Aluthge, C. Anderson, S.C. Fernando, K.J. Harvatine, P.J. 
Kononoff, (2016). ``Reduced-fat dried distillers grains with 
solubles reduces the risk for milk fat depression and supports milk 
production and ruminal fermentation in dairy cows,'' Journal of 
Dairy Science, Volume 99, Issue 3 Pages 1912-1928, ISSN 0022-0302, 
http://dx.doi.org/10.3168/jds.2015-9712. (http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0022030216000515)
    \15\ University of Kentucky, ``Preventing Milk Fat Depression in 
Dairy Cows,'' https://afs.ca.uky.edu/dairy/preventing-milk-fat-depression-dairy-cows. Accessed September 8, 2018. On the herd level 
milk fats range from 3 to 5 percent normally. Oetzel, Garret R., 
``Subacute Ruminal Acidosis in Dairy Herds: Physiology, 
Pathophysiology, Milk Fat Responses, and Nutritional Management.'' 
Preconference Seminar 7A: Dairy Herd Problem Investigation 
Strategies: Lameness, Cow Comfort, and Ruminal Acidosis, American 
Association of Bovine Practitioners, 40th Annual Conference, 
September 17, 2007--Vancouver, BC, Canada, https://www.vetmed.wisc.edu/dms/fapm/fapmtools/2nutr/sara1aabp.pdf pp.98.
    \16\ PennState Extension, ``Troubleshooting Problems with 
Milkfat Depression,'' August 14, 2017, https://extension.psu.edu/troubleshooting-problems-with-milkfat-depression. Accessed September 
8, 2017.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    An impact on displacement rates may occur when reduced-oil instead 
of full-oil DGS are used for beef cattle, which has the ability to 
digest additional fat. Table IV.2 shows the displacement ratios for the 
livestock sectors where dried DGS (DDGS) are used. In this table, for 
instance, 1 pound of reduced-oil DDGS fed to beef cattle displaces 
1.173 pounds of corn. A pound of full-oil and reduced-oil DDGS also 
displace equal portions (0.056 pounds) of urea. Urea is a non-protein 
nitrogen compound that is typically fed to cattle for aiding the 
production of protein by rumen microbes.\17\ These values show that for 
dairy, swine, and poultry, reduced-oil DDGS replace the same amounts of 
alternative feed despite containing less oil.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \17\ PennState Extension, ``Urea in Beef Cattle Rations,'' 
August 8, 2017, https://extension.psu.edu/urea-in-beef-cattle-rations. Accessed October 18, 2017.

                          Table IV.2--Full-Oil and Reduced-Oil Sorghum Distillers Grains With Solubles Displacement Ratios \18\
                                   [lb of ingredient/lb of sorghum distillers grains with solubles, dry matter basis]
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                  Beef cattle                Dairy cattle                    Swine                   Poultry \19\
               Ingredient                ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                            Full-Oil     Reduced-Oil    Full-Oil     Reduced-Oil    Full-Oil     Reduced-Oil    Full-Oil     Reduced-Oil
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Corn....................................         1.196         1.173         0.731         0.731         0.890         0.890         0.292         0.292
Soybean Meal............................  ............  ............         0.633         0.633         0.095         0.095
Urea....................................         0.056         0.056
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    We anticipate that sorghum oil producers will seek to sell reduced-
oil DGS to poultry, swine, and dairy cow producers, as these markets 
allow them to obtain a higher value for their product. Dairy cattle 
producers may be willing to pay a premium for reduced-oil distillers 
grains, as data suggests lower oil DGs improve milk production. Sales 
of reduced-oil DGS to the beef cattle market are less likely, and in 
these cases we anticipate that should a higher fat product be required, 
the fat content of the DGS could be augmented through the addition of 
distillers sorghum oil, thereby reducing the volumes of biofuel 
produced from distillers sorghum oil but not causing additional 
indirect GHG emissions. Therefore, we do not expect that sorghum oil 
extraction will have a significant impact on the feed value of DGS and 
thus will have no significant indirect GHG impacts per pound of DGS. We 
welcome comment on this assessment.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \18\ Information provided by National Sorghum Producers, using 
the following sources Arora et al., (2008). Argonne National 
Laboratory. ``Update of distillers grains displacement ratios for 
corn ethanol life-cycle analysis''; Kerr et al., (2016). ``Lipid 
digestibility and energy content of distillers' corn oil in swine 
and poultry,'' Journal of Animal Science 94:2900-8.; Opheim et al., 
(2016). ``Biofuel feedstock and blended coproducts compared with 
deoiled corn distillers grains in feedlot diets: Effects on cattle 
growth performance, apparent total tract nutrient digestibility, and 
carcass characteristics,'' Journal of Animal Science 94:227.; 
Ramirez et al., (2016). ``Reduced-fat dried distillers grains with 
solubles reduces the risk for milk fat depression and supports milk 
production and ruminal fermentation in dairy cows,'' Journal of 
Dairy Science 99:1912-28. Poultry displacement ratios were provided 
by the National Sorghum Producers and calculated based on data from 
the Iowa State Extension Services, Agricultural Marketing and 
Resources Center, ``Estimated U.S. Dried Distillers Grains with 
Solubles (DDGS) Production and Use, https://www.extension.iastate.edu/agdm/crops/outlook/dgsbalancesheet.pdf.
    \19\ Protein sources such as soybean meal can be used to 
supplement sorghum DGS for poultry.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

2. Feedstock Production
    Distillers sorghum oil is removed from DGS at dry mill ethanol 
plants using the same equipment and technologies used for corn oil 
extraction. Oil extraction requires thermal energy to heat the DGS and 
electricity to power centrifuges, pumps and other oil recovery 
equipment. Our analysis for the March 2010 RFS final rule,\20\ the NSP 
petition, and two studies,21 22 indicate that although 
extracting oil from DGS uses thermal

[[Page 61210]]

energy, it also leads to relatively less thermal energy being used 
later in the process to dry the DGS, resulting in an overall negligible 
change in thermal energy requirements for plants that dry their DGS. 
Our analysis here includes both the thermal and electrical energy 
requirements to remove the distillers sorghum oil. We do not account 
for the reduction in thermal energy needed for DGS drying mentioned 
above, so this can be viewed as a conservative approach (i.e., 
resulting in higher estimated GHG emissions) for plants that dry their 
DGS.\23\ Based on data reviewed by EPA,\24\ we assume 200 Btu (British 
thermal units) of grid electricity and 800 Btu of natural gas are used 
to extract distillers sorghum oil from DGS, per pound of distillers 
sorghum oil extracted. These parameters are based on energy 
requirements associated with extracting oil from DGS at dry mill 
ethanol plants, but we believe they are also appropriate and 
conservative in cases where the oil is extracted at any point 
downstream from sorghum grinding.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \20\ See section 1.4.1.3 of USEPA (2010). Renewable fuel 
standard program (RFS2) regulatory impact analysis. U.S. 
Environmental Protection Agency Office of Transportation Air 
Quality, EPA-420-R-10-006. Washington, DC. https://www.epa.gov/sites/production/files/2015-08/documents/420r10006.pdf.
    \21\ Wang, Z., et al. (2015). ``Influence of corn oil recovery 
on life-cycle greenhouse gas emissions of corn ethanol and corn oil 
biodiesel.'' Biotechnology for Biofuels 8(1): 178.
    \22\ Mueller, S., Kwik, J. (2013). ``2012 Corn Ethanol: Emerging 
Plant Energy and Environmental Technologies.''
    \23\ The purpose of lifecycle assessment under the RFS program 
is not to precisely estimate lifecycle GHG emissions associated with 
particular biofuels, but instead to determine whether or not the 
fuels satisfy specified lifecycle GHG emissions thresholds to 
qualify as one or more of the four types of renewable fuel specified 
in the statute. Where there are a range of possible outcomes and the 
fuel satisfies the GHG reduction requirements when ``conservative'' 
assumptions are used, then a more precise quantification of the 
matter is not required for purposes of a pathway determination.
    \24\ See sources referenced in footnotes 20 and 21 for energy 
use associated with oil extraction, and California Air Resources 
Board (2014). ``California-Modified GREET Fuel Pathway: Biodiesel 
Produced in the Midwestern and the Western U.S. from Corn Oil 
Extracted at Dry Mill Ethanol Plants that Produce Wet Distiller's 
Grains with Solubles.'' Staff Summary, Method 1 Fuel Pathway.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    As discussed above, we do not expect sorghum oil extraction to 
significantly change the feed value of DGS on a per pound basis. 
According to the NSP petition, grain sorghum oil yields should be 0.67 
pounds per bushel of grain sorghum feedstock.\25\ EPA's modeling for 
the December 2012 grain sorghum ethanol final rule (77 FR 74592) 
assumed average dried DGS yield of 17 pounds per bushel of grain 
sorghum feedstock. Thus, sorghum oil extraction may reduce the total 
mass of DGS produced by up to approximately 4 percent. If full-oil and 
reduced-oil DGS have equivalent feed value on a per pound basis, we 
would expect a reduction in the total mass of DGS produced to impact 
livestock feed markets and result in a net increase in GHG emissions if 
production of other feed crops (e.g., corn, soybeans) increased to 
backfill the lost DGS, given that producing additional corn and 
soybeans would result in more GHG emissions.\26\ However, if reduced-
oil DGS are more beneficial than full oil DGS for dairy cows, on a per 
pound of DGS basis, that could offset some or all of the impacts 
associated with the DGS mass reduction. The information currently 
available makes the magnitude of these countervailing impacts difficult 
to determine, and we did not include any emissions impacts from DGS 
mass reduction in our lifecycle GHG analysis of biofuels produced from 
distillers sorghum oil. We invite comment on our analysis of the GHG 
emissions associated with extracting sorghum oil from DGS.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \25\ NSP petition, section F.2.iv
    \26\ For example, the California Air Resources Board (CARB) 
estimated this impact would be approximately 10 kgCO2e/
mmBtu of biodiesel produced from distillers corn oil (https://www.arb.ca.gov/fuels/lcfs/2a2b/apps/co_bd_wdgs-rpt-102414.pdf). 
Applying such an impact to our analysis of biofuels produced from 
distillers sorghum oil would not change the GHG thresholds results 
for the biofuels produced from distillers sorghum oil evaluated in 
this document.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

3. Feedstock Transport
    In our analysis, distillers sorghum oil is transported 50 miles by 
heavy duty truck from the dry mill ethanol plant to the biodiesel or 
hydrotreating facility where it is converted to transportation fuel. 
GHG emissions associated with feedstock transport are relatively small, 
and modest changes in transport distance are unlikely to affect the 
results of our analysis.
4. Feedstock Pretreatment
    For emissions from feedstock pretreatment and fuel production, we 
perform two analyses. In the first analysis, we calculate the emissions 
from biodiesel produced using transesterification. In the second 
analysis, we calculate the emissions from renewable diesel, jet fuel, 
LPG, and naphtha, produced using hydrotreating. In Section V below, we 
then explain how similar results can be inferred for heating oil.
    Before distillers sorghum oil is converted to biodiesel via 
transesterification, it is processed to remove free-fatty acids. This 
process requires thermal energy. Our evaluation of yellow grease for 
the March 2010 RFS final rule included 14,532 Btu of natural gas per 
gallon of biodiesel produced for pretreatment, and we have applied the 
same assumption for this analysis. According to the NSP petition, 
distillers sorghum oil has free fatty acid content near or below 15 
percent, which is in the range of yellow grease free fatty acid 
contents (<15 percent).\27\ This rate of thermal energy use for 
pretreatment is higher than thermal energy rates used in other 
lifecycle assessments EPA reviewed,\28\ and can be viewed as a 
conservative assumption (i.e., resulting in higher GHG emissions).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \27\ See Table 15 in the January 5, 2012 Pathways I direct final 
rule (77 FR 722).
    \28\ See for example: https://www.arb.ca.gov/fuels/lcfs/2a2b/apps/co_bd_wdgs-rpt-102414.pdf.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Pretreatment to remove free-fatty acids is not required when 
distillers sorghum oil is used to produce renewable diesel, jet fuel, 
LPG and naphtha through a hydrotreating process.
5. Fuel Production
    For biodiesel production, we used the transesterification analysis 
for the March 2010 RFS rule for yellow grease biodiesel.\29\ Based on 
comparison of this yellow grease analysis and the mass and energy 
balance data in the NSP petition, submitted under claim of CBI, the 
conversion of yellow grease and distillers sorghum oil are expected to 
require similar energy inputs and yield similar amounts of biodiesel 
and methanol as outputs.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \29\ For details see section 2.4 of the RIA for the March 2010 
RFS final rule.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    For production of renewable diesel, jet fuel, naphtha and LPG via a 
hydrotreating process, we used the same data and approach as used in 
the March 2013 Pathways I rule (78 FR 14190, March 5, 2013), and 
subsequent facility-specific petitions involving hydrotreating 
processes.\30\ The March 2013 Pathways I rule evaluated two 
hydrotreating configurations: One optimized for renewable diesel 
production and one optimized for jet fuel production. For this analysis 
we evaluated a hydrotreating process maximized for renewable diesel 
production, as that is the most common configuration. The jet fuel 
configuration results in higher emissions (approximately 5 
kgCO2e/mmBtu higher), but the threshold GHG reduction 
results discussed below are not sensitive to this assumption.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \30\ For determination documents responding to facility specific 
petitions, see: https://www.epa.gov/renewable-fuelstandard-program/approved-pathways-renewable-fuel.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Our previous analyses of hydrotreating processes have applied an 
energy allocation approach for RIN-generating co-products that qualify 
as renewable fuel.\31\ This approach results in higher lifecycle GHG 
emissions for each of the fuel products than other approaches 
considered, such as a

[[Page 61211]]

displacement approach, and thus can be viewed as a conservative 
approach.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \31\ See the March 2013 Pathways I rule, specifically 78 FR 
14198-14200 (March 5, 2013).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    In the allocation approach, all the emissions from the 
hydrotreating process are allocated across all co-products. There are a 
number of ways to do the allocation, for example on the basis of 
energy, mass, or economic value. Consistent with the approach taken in 
the hydrotreating analysis for the March 2013 RFS rule, for this 
analysis of fuels produced from distillers sorghum oil feedstock 
through a hydrotreating process we allocated emissions to the renewable 
diesel, naphtha and LPG based on the energy content (using lower-
heating values) of the products produced. Emissions from the process 
were allocated equally to all of the Btus of fuel produced. Therefore, 
on a per Btu basis, all of the primary products coming from the 
hydrotreating facility have the same emissions from the fuel production 
stage of the lifecycle. For this analysis, the energy content was the 
most appropriate basis for allocating emissions because all of the fuel 
products are used as sources of energy. Energy content also has the 
advantage of being a fixed factor as opposed to market prices which 
fluctuate over time.
6. Fuel Distribution
    We used the fuel distribution results from the biodiesel analysis 
for the March 2010 RFS rule. Fuel distribution emissions are relatively 
small compared to baseline lifecycle GHG emissions (see Table IV.3 
below), and although they may be different for different types of fuel, 
for the purposes of this analysis we assume that renewable diesel, jet 
fuel, LPG, and naphtha, have the same fuel distribution emissions per 
mmBtu of fuel used. Even if we applied a more precise value for fuel 
distribution emissions, we do not expect that revision to change our 
assessment that these fuels meet a 50 percent GHG emission reduction.
7. Fuel Use
    For this analysis we applied fuel use emissions factors developed 
for the March 2010 RFS final rule. For biodiesel we used the biodiesel 
emissions factor. For renewable diesel and jet fuel we used the 
emissions factors for non-CO2 GHGs for baseline diesel fuel. 
For naphtha we used the emissions factors for non-CO2 GHGs 
for baseline gasoline fuel. For LPG we used the LPG non-CO2 
emissions factor developed for the March 2010 RFS rule. The tailpipe 
emissions are relatively small, and the threshold GHG reduction results 
are not sensitive to these assumptions. More details on our analysis of 
fuel use emissions are described in a memo \32\ to the rulemaking 
docket.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \32\ See, ``Summary of Key Assumptions for EPA's Analysis of the 
Lifecycle Greenhouse Gas Emissions Associated with Biofuels Produced 
from Distillers Sorghum Oil,'' Air Docket EPA-HQ-OAR-2017-0655.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

8. Results of GHG Lifecycle Analysis
    Table IV.3 shows the lifecycle GHG emissions associated with 
biofuels produced from distillers sorghum oil that result from our 
assessment. The table also shows the percent reduction relative to the 
petroleum baseline. All of the fuels are compared to the diesel 
baseline, except for naphtha which is compared to the gasoline 
baseline.

                     Table IV.3--Lifecycle GHG Emissions Associated With Biofuels Produced From Distillers Sorghum Oil (kgCO2-eq/MJ)
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                             Renewable
                         Fuel                              Biodiesel        diesel, jet       Naphtha           LPG         2005 Diesel    2005 Gasoline
                                                                               fuel                                          baseline        baseline
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Production process                                     Transesterificati
                                                                      on                   Hydrotreating
                                                                    Refining
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Feedstock Production.................................                5.6             6.2             6.2             6.2            18.0            19.2
Feedstock Transport..................................                0.2             0.3             0.3             0.3
Feedstock Pretreatment...............................                8.4  ..............  ..............  ..............
Fuel Production......................................                1.2             8.0             8.0             8.0
Fuel Distribution....................................                0.8             0.8             0.8             0.8
Fuel Use.............................................                0.7             0.7             1.7             1.5            79.0            79.0
                                                      --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Total............................................               17.0            16.0            17.0            16.8            97.0            98.2
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Percent Reduction....................................                 82              84              82              83  ..............  ..............
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

V. Consideration of Lifecycle Analysis Results

    Based on the lifecycle GHG emissions results presented above, all 
of the pathways evaluated would meet the 50 percent GHG reduction 
threshold required for advanced biofuel and biomass-based diesel.
    The results presented above would also justify qualifying heating 
oil produced from distillers sorghum oil as meeting the 50 percent GHG 
threshold. In previous rulemakings, EPA considered the lifecycle GHG 
impacts associated with heating oil and determined that heating oil 
produced from a range of feedstocks (e.g., soybean oil, distillers corn 
oil) via a transesterification or hydrotreating process satisfies the 
50 percent lifecycle GHG reduction required for advanced biofuel.\33\ 
Based on the results presented above, we anticipate that biofuels such 
as heating oil produced from distillers sorghum oil have significantly 
lower lifecycle GHG emissions than the same fuels produced from soybean 
oil, when the same production processes are used.\34\ Therefore, based 
on EPA's previous lifecycle evaluations for heating oil produced from 
soybean oil, we believe that heating oil produced from distillers 
sorghum oil would also satisfy the 50 percent GHG reduction 
requirement.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \33\ See the March 2013 RFS Pathway I rule (78 FR 14190, March 
5, 2013).
    \34\ For example, in analysis for the March 2010 RFS rule, EPA 
found that soybean oil biodiesel achieves a 57 percent GHG reduction 
(based on the mean result from our uncertainty assessment), whereas 
the results in Table IV.3, above, show biodiesel produced from 
distillers sorghum oil achieve a greater than 80 percent reduction.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

VI. Summary

    Based on our GHG lifecycle evaluation described above, we propose 
to find that biodiesel and heating oil produced from distillers sorghum 
oil via a transesterification process, and renewable diesel, jet fuel 
and heating oil produced from distillers sorghum oil via a 
hydrotreating process meet the 50 percent GHG reduction threshold 
requirement for advanced biofuel and biomass-based diesel. This finding

[[Page 61212]]

would support a determination that these fuels are eligible for 
biomass-based diesel (D-code 4) RINs if they are produced through a 
process that does not co-process renewable biomass and petroleum, and 
for advanced biofuel (D-code 5) RINs if they are produced through a 
process that does co-process renewable biomass and petroleum. EPA 
invites comment on all aspects of its analysis of these proposed 
biofuel pathways.

VII. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews

    Additional information about these statutes and Executive Orders 
can be found at http://www2.epa.gov/laws-regulations/laws-and-executive-orders.

A. Executive Order 12866: Regulatory Planning and Review and Executive 
Order 13563: Improving Regulation and Regulatory Review

    This action is not a significant regulatory action and was 
therefore not submitted to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) 
for review.

B. Executive Order 13771: Reducing Regulations and Controlling 
Regulatory Costs

    This action is not expected to be an Executive Order 13771 
regulatory action because this action is not significant under 
Executive Order 12866.

C. Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA)

    This action does not impose any new information collection burden 
under the provisions of the Paperwork Reduction Act, 44 U.S.C. 3501 et 
seq., and therefore is not subject to these requirements.

D. Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA)

    I certify that this action will not have a significant economic 
impact on a substantial number of small entities under the RFA. This 
action will not impose any requirements on small entities. An agency 
may certify that a rule will not have a significant economic impact on 
a substantial number of small entities if the rule relieves regulatory 
burden, has no net burden or otherwise has a positive economic effect 
on the small entities subject to the rule. This rule proposes to 
provide a positive economic effect for distillers sorghum oil producers 
and producers of biofuels from distillers sorghum oil as they would be 
able to participate in the RFS program, see CAA section 211(o).

E. Unfunded Mandates Reform Act (UMRA)

    This action does not contain an unfunded mandate of $100 million or 
more as described in UMRA, 2 U.S.C. 1531-1538, and does not 
significantly or uniquely affect small governments. The action imposes 
no enforceable duty on any state, local or tribal governments or the 
private sector.

F. Executive Order 13132: Federalism

    This action does not have federalism implications. It will not have 
substantial direct effects on the states, on the relationship between 
the national government and the states, or on the distribution of power 
and responsibilities among the various levels of government.

G. Executive Order 13175: Consultation and Coordination With Indian 
Tribal Governments

    This action does not have tribal implications as specified in 
Executive Order 13175. This proposed rule would affect only producers 
of distillers sorghum oil and producers of biofuels made from 
distillers sorghum oil. Thus, Executive Order 13175 does not apply to 
this action.

H. Executive Order 13045: Protection of Children From Environmental 
Health Risks and Safety Risks

    The EPA interprets Executive Order 13045 as applying only to those 
regulatory actions that concern environmental health or safety risks 
that EPA has reason to believe may disproportionately affect children, 
per the definition of ``covered regulatory action'' in section 2-202 of 
the Executive Order. This action is not subject to Executive Order 
13045 because it because it does not concern an environmental health 
risk or safety risk.

I. Executive Order 13211: Actions Concerning Regulations That 
Significantly Affect Energy Supply, Distribution, or Use

    This action is not subject to Executive Order 13211 because it is 
not a significant regulatory action under Executive Order 12866.

J. National Technology Transfer Advancement Act (NTTAA)

    This rulemaking does not involve technical standards.

K. Executive Order 12898: Federal Actions To Address Environmental 
Justice in Minority Populations and Low-Income Populations

    The EPA believes that this action does not have disproportionately 
high and adverse human health or environmental effects on minority 
populations, low-income populations and/or indigenous peoples, as 
specified in Executive Order 12898 (59 FR 7629, February 16, 1994). 
This proposed rule does not affect the level of protection provided to 
human health or the environment by applicable air quality standards. 
This action does not relax the control measures on sources regulated by 
the fuel programs and RFS regulations and therefore will not cause 
emissions increases from these sources.

List of Subjects in 40 CFR Part 80

    Environmental protection, Administrative practice and procedure, 
Air pollution control, Diesel Fuel, Fuel additives, Gasoline, Imports, 
Oil imports, Petroleum, Renewable fuel.

    Dated: December 19, 2017.
E. Scott Pruitt,
Administrator.

    For the reasons set forth in the preamble, EPA proposes to amend 40 
CFR part 80 as follows:

PART 80--REGULATION OF FUEL AND FUEL ADDITIVES

0
1. The authority for part 80 continues to read as follows:

    Authority: 42 U.S.C. 7414, 7521, 7542, 7545, and 7601(a).

Subpart M--[Amended]

0
2. Section 80.1401 is amended by adding in alphabetical order a new 
definition for ``distillers sorghum oil'' to read as follows:


Sec.  80.1401   Definitions.

* * * * *
    Distillers sorghum oil means oil recovered at a point downstream of 
where a dry mill grain sorghum ethanol plant grinds the grain sorghum, 
provided that the grain sorghum is converted to ethanol, the oil is 
rendered unfit for food uses without further refining, and the 
distillers grains resulting from the dry mill and oil extraction 
processes are marketable as animal feed.
* * * * *
0
3. Section 80.1426, paragraph (f)(1) is amended by revising entries F, 
H, and I in Table 1 to Sec.  80.1426 to read as follows:

[[Page 61213]]

Sec.  80.1426  How are RINs generated and assigned to batches of 
renewable fuel by renewable fuel producers or importers?

* * * * *
    (f) * * *
    (1) * * *

         Table 1 to Sec.   80.1426--Applicable D Codes for Each Fuel Pathway for Use in Generating RINs
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                              Production process
              Entry                     Fuel type            Feedstock           requirements         D-code
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 
                                                  * * * * * * *
F................................  Biodiesel,           Soy bean oil; Oil    One of the                        4
                                    renewable diesel,    from annual          following:
                                    jet fuel and         covercrops; Oil      TransEsterificatio
                                    heating oil,         from algae grown     n Hydrotreating
                                    biodiesel.           photosynthetically   Excluding
                                                         ; Biogenic waste     processes that co-
                                                         oils/fats/greases;   process renewable
                                                         Non-food grade       biomass and
                                                         corn oil; Camelina   petroleum.
                                                         sativa oil;
                                                         Distillers sorghum
                                                         oil.
 
                                                  * * * * * * *
H................................  Biodiesel,           Soy bean oil; Oil    One of the                        5
                                    renewable diesel,    from annual          following:
                                    jet fuel and         covercrops; Oil      TransEsterificatio
                                    heating oil.         from algae grown     n Hydrotreating
                                                         photosynthetically   Includes only
                                                         ; Biogenic waste     processes that co-
                                                         oils/fats/greases;   process renewable
                                                         Non-food grade       biomass and
                                                         corn oil; Camelina   petroleum.
                                                         sativa oil;
                                                         Distillers sorghum
                                                         oil.
I................................  Naphtha, LPG.......  Camelina sativa      Hydrotreating......               5
                                                         oil; Distillers
                                                         sorghum oil.
 
                                                  * * * * * * *
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

* * * * *
[FR Doc. 2017-27946 Filed 12-26-17; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 6560-50-P