Renewable Identification Numbers (RINs)

Marketers who wish to be considered the “blender of record” in order to own RINs for resale must register with EPA. Sign up at this link on the EPA website and check “Register or Update a Gasoline/Ethanol Facility.”

Those buying denatured fuel ethanol to become a “blender of record” must also register with EPA to track Renewable Identification Numbers (RINs), which the agency calls the “currency of the renewable fuels program.” Under the Renewable Fuels Standard, obligated parties are required to buy renewable fuels, like ethanol, each year. RINs are the way those “obligated parties” show that they have purchased the required amount. Quarterly reports and an annual attest audit are required for those who register to be blenders and track RINs. There are also third-party companies that will administer RINs on your behalf.

epa_web_site_graphicBecause refiners and importers are required to have RINs, they have value; that value will change depending on availability of ethanol. Obviously, volume would be the most important factor to consider when weighing whether potential RIN profits would offset increased bookkeeping and auditing costs.

While the bookkeeping and reporting can be complicated, registration is not. Simply go to this link on the EPA website, and check the box for “Register or Update a Gasoline/Ethanol Facility.” The necessary form will then pop up on screen; fill it out using all capital letters. After submission, a signed printed form must also be mailed to EPA. Instructions are included on the site. We recommend talking with your accounting personnel about RINS before making any decision.

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