Biden Admin Quietly Asked Tesla for Help in Crafting Renewable Fuel Policy: Report

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While U.S. President Joe Biden has been known to the Tesla community for leaving the electric vehicle (EV) pioneer out of the conversation, a new report shows the White House has leaned on Tesla to guide new policies on renewable energy.

The Biden administration has been working with Tesla to expand the U.S. Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS), a renewable fuel subsidy program, according to Reuters.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the agency managing the initiative, is expected to share an updated RFS policy later this year, which could determine the next round of winners and losers in a multibillion-dollar clean energy market.

American Biogas Council Federal Policy Director Maureen Walsh said, “We have heard through the grapevine that car companies are really, really going to like this rule.” Walsh continued, “We have all been scrapping at that pile.”

The move is expected to benefit EV makers like Tesla, using renewable energy subsidy credits, called RINs, to continue supporting corn growers and other biofuels — as they have done for over a decade.

The Biden administration seems to be leaning toward a rule benefitting Tesla and other EV companies, offering them access to electric RINs, or e-RINs, a set of EV-specific credits.

Specifically, the White House reached out to Tesla on its first day in office, according to emails, reports Reuters.

“On the morning of Biden’s presidential inauguration in January 2021, EPA staffer Dallas Burkholder emailed a top Tesla lobbyist, Rohan Patel, to set up a meeting on how to incorporate electric cars into the RFS,” reports Reuters, citing documents reviewed by the publication. A meeting was set for one week later.

Additionally, the administration could use the subsidy reform to affect other industries such as car charging companies and landfills supplying renewable biogas to power plants, as detailed by industry officials.

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