Federal government program could risk the status of the Toledo Refinery

Federal government program could risk the status of the Toledo Refinery

TOLEDO, OH (WTOL) - One of Toledo's oldest and most vital employers is the Toledo Refinery.

The refinery supports 1,000 jobs and contributes $5.2 billion annually to Northwest Ohio's economy. But the status of the refinery could be at risk.

A federal government program is preventing the refinery from creating jobs and threatening existing jobs across the country.

The Renewable Fuel Standard requires local independent refineries to demonstrate that renewable fuels are blended into the nation's gas supply, even when the capability and resources are not there.

Representatives of the Toledo Refinery are calling on Washington to change the system that subsidizes large, multinational oil companies at the expense of local refineries, and costs them millions of dollars in the process.

Officials say the because the Toledo Refinery is independent and sells to wholesalers, they are required by the EPA to pay for "credits" that ensure their product is blended with the proper amount of ethanol.

Paying for these credits, called RINs, cost the refinery more that $100 million last year.

Officials say they've already seen what this has done to other refineries across the country.

"There's a refinery in Philadelphia that had to lay people off, and it sited the excessive cost of these credits as a reason for doing so. We don't want to have that spread to other refineries like the one here in Toledo," said Brendan Williams, director of government relations for PBF Energy.

A Monday press conference at 1 Government Center brought together the mayors of Toledo and Oregon, as well as union members and lobbyists to call on President Trump to change the way the credit system unfairly costs independent refineries.

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