WASHINGTON (WKBN) – The United States Environmental Protection Agency issued an emergency fuel waiver Monday in response to the cyberattack on Colonial Pipeline, resulting in its shutdown.
EPA administrator Michael Regan issued this waiver in order to ensure areas impacted by the pipeline shutdown will still have access to fuel while it is in short supply.
The waiver affects fuel sold in Reformulated Gasoline areas, which includes Pennsylvania, Virginia, Maryland and the District of Columbia.
In order to alleviate the fuel shortage problem plaguing these and other states, the EPA issued a temporary waiver of the federal Reid vapor requirements for fuel sold, which means the volatility of the gasoline does not have to meet the federal regulation standards for now.
This requirement was established in the Clean Air Act, which also allows Regan to waive it in the rarest of circumstances.
The unusual and extreme circumstances of the recent ransomware attack, Regan explained, greatly impacted fuel supply, prompting him to waive the requirement with advice from the Department of Energy.
The effort, Regan hopes, will make gasoline available in areas affected by the Colonial Pipeline shutdown, which transports more than 100 million gallons of fuel daily.
The waiver will continue through May 18.