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Indian Ethanol Producer Praj Pursues RCM Opportunities (Int'l.)
Praj Industries
Date: 2020-07-10
On the sub-continent, Mumbai-based sugarcane ethanol producer Praj Industries is reporting a MoU with National Chemical Laboratory for joint opportunities in the global renewable chemical and materials (RCM) sector.

Praj also reports it is making inroads into the RCM industry through its newly launched Bio-PrismTM portfolio of bio-industrial products, including bio plastics , cellulose-lignin refinery products and specialty products with automotive, packaging, construction and various other applications. (Source: Praj Industries, India Times, 9 July, 2020) Contact: Praj Industries Ltd., +91 20 7180 2000 / 2294 1000, info@praj.net, www.praj.net

More Low-Carbon Energy News Praj Industries,  Advanced Biofuel,  Biochemical,  Bioplastic,  


SD Senator Introduces RFS Pathway Biofuels Legislation (Re g & Leg)
Biofuel
Date: 2020-06-19
South Dakota Senator John Thune (R) has introduced bipartisan legislation that would help approve certain Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) pathway applications like corn fiber. The measure would compel the EPA to move forward on advanced biofuel applications rather than letting them sit idled at the agency awaiting action refinery applications for waivers move through the system, according to the Senator's release. (Soure: WNAX, 19 June, 2020) Contact: Senator John Thune, (202) 224-2321, (605) 348-7551, www.thune.senate.gov

More Low-Carbon Energy News RFS,  Biofuel,  


Biofuel Quotas to Get Small Lift Under Draft of EPA Plan

Date: 2020-05-29
(Bloomberg) -- The Environmental Protection Agency has drafted a plan to slightly lift biofuel-blending targets next year, while so far skirting potentially controversial decisions about exempting refineries from U.S. mandates to use plant-based fuels, according to three people familiar with the matter. Under a proposed rule now undergoing White House review, the EPA would require refiners to use 5.17 billion gallons of advanced biofuels in 2021, up from 5.09 billion gallons this year, according to two of the people. That would include 670 million gallons of cellulosic renewable fuels, such as those made from crop residue, switchgrass and biogas harvested at landfills, up from 590 million gallons required this year. The EPA is expected to propose the quotas in coming months, and under federal law faces a Nov. 30 deadline to finalize the targets. Representatives of the EPA did not immediately respond to requests for comment. (Source: Yahoo, Bloomberg, 19 May, 2020)


HEROS Act Includes Renewable Fuel Reimbursement (Ind. Report)
Biobased and Renewable Products Advocacy Group
Date: 2020-05-20
In the nation's capital on May 12, the U.S. House of Representatives introduced the Health and Economic Recovery Omnibus Emergency Solutions Act (HEROES) which would make emergency supplemental appropriations for the fiscal year ending on September 30, 2020.

HEROS addresses various issues, including the introduction of a Renewable Fuel Reimbursement Program that would make payments to eligible entities that experienced market losses due to the COVID-19 pandemic between January 1, 2020, and May 1, 2020. Eligible entities include facilities that produced renewable fuel or advanced biofuel in calendar year 2019. The amount of payment to an eligible entity will be the sum of $0.45 multiplied by the number of gallons of qualified fuel produced in that period. Should a determination be made that an entity was unable to produce qualified fuel for one or more months during the applicable period due to the pandemic, $0.45 multiplied by 50 pct of the number of gallons produced in the corresponding month in 2019 will be paid. (Source: Biobased and Renewable Products Advocacy Group, 15 May, 2020) Contact: Biobased and Renewable Products Advocacy Group, 202-833-6580, www.braginfo.org


Praj, Sekab E-Technology Partner on Advanced Biofuels (Int'l Report)
Praj Industries,Sekab E-Technology
Date: 2020-05-20
Praj Industries and Ornskoldsvik, Sweden-based Sekab E-Technology AB are reporting an agreement to cooperatively upgrade and commercialize technology to produce advanced biofuels and bio-chemicals from forest residue as feedstock. As a part of this cooperation,

The partnership will facilitate CO2 reduction by offering Bio-mobility solutions for the transportation industry in the form of advanced biofuels produced from softwood. Praj's Bio-Mobility platform promotes the use of renewable resources to produce low carbon transportation fuel modes of mobility, namely surface, air and water, according to Praj, a global process solutions company offering solutions to add significant value to bio-energy facilities, compressed biogas plants, wastewater treatment systems and others.

Sekab is a Swedish Chemistry and Cleantex company that refine ethanol into biofuels and chemicals and develops biorefinery technology for new sustainable product possibilities based on cellulose raw materials, according to the company website. (Source: Praj Ind., Business Standard, 18 May, 2020)Contact: Praj Industries Ltd., +91 20 7180 2000 / 2294 1000, Jayant Godbole, Pres., Praj Americas, info@praj.net, www.praj.net; Sekab E-Technology AB, +46 (0)660-793 00, info@sekab.com, www.sekab.com/en/products-services/biorefinery

More Low-Carbon Energy News Praj Industries,  Advanced Biofuel,  


POET Temporarily Curtailing Corn Purchases (Ind. Report)
POET
Date: 2020-03-25
On Monday, Sioux Falls, South Dakota-based ethanol producer POET reported it is evaluating its production levels and temporarily suspended corn purchases at several of its locations due to weak biofuel demand.

Demand for motor fuels has fallen dramatically due to coronavirus pandemic "stay at home" and limited social interaction policies. (Source: POET, Reuters, 23 Mar., 2020) Contact: POET-DSM Advanced Biofuels, Steve Hartig, General Manager, (630) 780-8171, steve.hartig@dsm.com, www.poetdsm.com; POET, Jeff Broin, CEO., (605) 965-2200, www.poet.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News POET,  Poet-DSM,  Corn Ethanol,  Ethanol,  


Advanced Biofuels -- Potential for Cost Reduction (Ind. Report Attached)
IEA Bioenergy
Date: 2020-03-02
"Bioenergy already plays an important role in the global energy economy, and it's expanded use is a critical element in future low carbon scenarios, where it can especially play an important role in reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from the transport sector. Decarbonising transport will require a range of bio-based transport fuels, and especially advanced low carbon fuels which are suitable for long-haul transport applications including aviation. A number of appropriate technologies to produce such fuels are being developed and commercialised. However so far, their production has only reached a limited scale.

"The costs of these advanced Biofuels are currently higher than those of the fossil fuels which they can displace and of more conventional biofuels such as ethanol from sugar or corn, or biodiesel. It is therefore important to consider what scope there is to reduce the production costs of a range o advanced biofuels, and to identify under what conditions they could become affordable."

Download the full IEA Advanced Biofuels -- Potential for Cost Reduction report HERE. (Source: IEA Bioenergy, Feb., 2020) Contact: IEA Bioenergy, www.ieabioenergy.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News IEA Bioenergy,  Biomass,  Biofuel,  Bioenergy,  


NBB Supports USDA Biodiesel Infrastructure Program (Ind. Report)
National Biodiesel Board
Date: 2020-02-03
In response to the USDA's request for information on the Higher Blends Infrastructure Incentive Program, the National Biodiesel Board (NBB) noted: "Investments would be best served on opportunities that would afford the greatest additional volumes of biodiesel to enter the marketplace. The greatest barriers to biodiesel distribution are at the terminal and pipeline terminal level, as well as railways to reach distribution centers."

NBB VP of Federal Affairs, Kurt Kovarik noted NBB is "grateful to the USDA for following through on a pledge to support infrastructure projects that facilitate higher biofuel blends. "American consumers are increasingly demanding access to clean, low-carbon, advanced biofuels, like biodiesel. We look forward to working with the USDA to strengthen the market for higher blends of biodiesel," Kovarik added. (Spource, NBB, NAFB, 1 Feb., 2020) Contact: NBB, Kaleb Little, Dir. Communications, Kurt Kovarik, VP Federal Affairs, (800) 841-5849, www.biodiesel.org

More Low-Carbon Energy News National Biodiesel Board,  


Biobutanol Market Pegged for Expansion by 2024 (Report Offered)
Biobutanol
Date: 2020-01-22
Biobutanol Market Pegged for Robust Expansion by 2024 With the increase in population our demand for energy is also increasing day by day, hence we are always looking for some alternate source of energy that can fulfill our energy demands.

Biobutanol can be used as a substitute of gasoline as a cleaner fuel. Europe and North America are two major markets for Biobutanol. Key players in the market that are producing Biobutanol includes: Arbor Biofuels, Butalco GmBH, Bioenergy International, Butamax advanced Biofuels LLC (DuPont/British Petroleum), Cobalt Biofuels, Gevo, GreenBiologics and others, according to the report.

Report details and PDF brochure is available HERE. (Source: Transparency Market Research, PR, 21 Jan., 2020) Contact: Transparency Market Research, 866-552-3453 - (US-Canada Toll Free), rohit@transparencymarketresearch.com, www. transparencymarketresearch.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Biobutanol,  


UK DfT Announces Biofuel Projects Funding (Int'l. Report)
UK Department for Transport
Date: 2020-01-06
In London, the UK Department for Transport (DfT) has announced funding for four British plants producing biofuels from feedstock including household waste, unused straw from farmland and old wood.

According to the DfT release, two of the projects are being funded under the government's £20 million Future Fuels for Flight and Freight Competition (F4C).

KEW Projects and Rika Biogas have been awarded a share of £6.5 million for the production of biofuel for trucks. The KEW project will also begin research on aviation biofuel.

Tow additional projects being funded under the £25 million Advanced Biofuels Demonstration Competition (ABDC) are in the final stages of development. This includes Nova Pangaea Technologies which will focus on the production of bio-ethanol from wood waste that can be blended with existing petrol used in road transport.

These latest investments build on the government's push to go further and faster to harness innovation, drive down emissions and improve air quality -- including through the ground-breaking Transport Decarbonisation Plan which will set out plans to end the UK's transport emissions by 2050, according to the DfT website. (Source: Gov. of UK, DfT Website, Jan., 2019)Contact: UK Department for Transport, www.gov.uk/government/organisations/department-for-transport

More Low-Carbon Energy News Department for Transport,  Biofuel,  


USDA Adv. Biofuel Payment Program Final Rule Released (Ind. Report)
USDA
Date: 2020-01-03
The USDA Rural Business-Cooperative Service has released a final rule for the Advanced Biofuel Payment Program. The program provides quarterly payments to producers of eligible advanced biofuels. To be eligible for payments, the advanced biofuels produced must be derived from renewable biomass other than corn kernel starch at a biorefinery located in the U.S.

Download the full Advanced Biofuel Payment Program HERE (Source: USDA Rural Business-Cooperative Service, USDA, 27 Dec., 2019) Contact: Rural Business-Cooperative Service, Bette Brand, Admin., (202) 690-4730, 202-690-4737 - fax., www.rd.usda.gov

More Low-Carbon Energy News USDA,  RFS,  Advanced Biofuel,  


NBB Survey Finds Strong Support for Biodiesel Industry (Ind. Report)
National Biodiesel Board
Date: 2020-01-03
Each year the NBB conducts online surveys of U.S. voters to track trends and gauge awareness of biodiesel. This year the poll gathered responses from 1,064 registered voters nationwide and showed consistent results with prior polling from 2017 and 2018. Among this years survey findings:
  • 54 pct of 2019 respondents had a positive impressions of biodiese, 44 pct had no impression and 3 pct negative;

  • 57 pct of respondents agreed that federal policy should encourage use of biodiesel and renewable diesel; Nearly 80 pct expressed support for existing federal programs that encourage increased production and use of advanced biofuels;

  • 78 pct of respondents support the federal tax incentive for biodiesel, 79 pct support the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS), 79 pct of respondents would encourage local communities and governments to promote use of biodiesel.

  • 83 pct of respondents agreed that the government should "stand with American workers, manufacturers, rural economies and businesses" to support a clean fuels industry and "follow the law to implement an existing mandate that creates jobs and economic development across the country." (Source: National Biodiesel Board, 31 Dec., 2019) Contact: NBB, Kaleb Little, Dir. Communications, Kurt Kovarik, VP Federal Affairs, (800) 841-5849, www.biodiesel.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News National Biodiesel Board,  Biodiesel,  


  • White House Confirms 2020 Biofuel RVO Plan (Ind. Report)
    Renewable Fuel Standard
    Date: 2019-12-20
    Reuters is reporting the Trump administration plans to stick with its proposed 2020 Renewable Volume Obligations (RVO) biofuel blending requirements as proposed in October, despite the farming sector's complaint that the plan does too little for corn growers.

    Under the U.S. Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) oil refiners are required to blend some 15 billion gpy of corn-based ethanol into their gasoline, but small facilities can be exempted if compliance would hurt them financially.

    The October proposal was intended to placate corn growers and compensate the biofuel industry for the administration's expanded use of refinery exemptions, but which the industry has largely panned as insufficient, according to Reuters. The EPA's October plan would raise the biofuels volumes that some refineries must blend in 2020 based on DOE recommendations for volumes that should be exempted.

    As previously noted, "hardship waivers" were intended for refineries producing 75,000 bpd or less and suffered "disproportionate economic hardship" from the costs of RFS compliance. The waiver frees the refineries from an obligation to provide the EPA with biofuels credits proving compliance. (Source: Reuters, Various Media, 19 Dec., 2019)

    For details see our Oct. 21 report as follows -- Proposed Volumes for 2020 and Biomass-Based Diesel Volume for 2021. The Trump administration EPA has issued the attached supplemental notice of proposed rulemaking seeking additional comment on the recently proposed rule to establish the cellulosic biofuel, advanced biofuel, and total renewable fuel volumes for 2020 and the biomass-based diesel volume for 2021 under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) program.

    The notice does not change the proposed volumes for 2020 and 2021. Instead, it proposes and seeks comment on adjustments to the way that annual renewable fuel percentages are calculated. Annual renewable fuel percentage standards are used to calculate the number of gallons each obligated party is required to blend into their fuel or to otherwise obtain renewable identification numbers (RINs) to demonstrate compliance.

    Specifically, the agency is seeking comment on projecting the volume of gasoline and diesel that will be exempt in 2020 due to small refinery exemptions based on a three-year average of the relief recommended by the BOE, including where DOE had recommended partial exemptions. The agency intends to grant partial exemptions in appropriate circumstances when adjudicating 2020 exemption petitions. The agency proposes to use this value to adjust the way it calculates renewable fuel percentages. The proposed adjustments would help ensure that the industry blends the final volumes of renewable fuel into the nation's fuel supply and that, in practice, the required volumes are not effectively reduced by future hardship exemptions for small refineries. Consistent with the statute, the supplemental notice seeks to balance the goal of the RFS of maximizing the use of renewables while following the law and sound process to provide relief to small refineries that demonstrate the need.

    Download the Renewable Fuel Standard Program -- Proposed Volumes for 2020 and Biomass-Based Diesel Volume for 2021 HERE. Contact: EPA Renewable Fuel Standard, 800-385-6164, www.epa.gov/fuels-registration-reporting-and-compliance-help/forms/fuels-program-helpdesk

    More Low-Carbon Energy News RFS,  "Hardship" Waiver,  Ethanol.Ethanol Blend,  Iowa Renewable Fuels Association,  Red Trail Energy,  


    GEVO, Delta Ink Aviation Biofuel Agreement (Ind. Report)
    GEVO
    Date: 2019-12-18
    Englewood, Colorado-based Gevo, Inc. is reporting a long-term offtake agreement under which air carrier Delta Airlines will purchase 10 million gpy of advanced renewable biofuels from Gevo. The agreement complements the airline's recent $2 million investment in Northwest Advanced Bio-fuels, LLC for a feasibility study of a facility to produce sustainable aviation fuel and other biofuel products in Washington State.

    The sustainable aviation fuel to be sold to Delta is expected to be produced upon completion of an expansion to Gevo's existing advanced biofuel production facility in Luverne, Minn. and is expected to be available for use by Delta between 2022-2023. (Source: GEVO, Yahoo Finance, 17 Dec., 2019)Contact: GEVO, Patrick Gruber, CEO, 303-858-8358, pgruber@gevo.com, www.gevo.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News GEVO,  Delta,  Aviation Biofuel,  Jet Biofuel,  


    Diamond Green Diesel Seeks Ren. Diesel Pathways Cert. (Ind. Report)
    Diamond Green Diesel
    Date: 2019-12-06
    Diamond Green Diesel -- a JV formed between a subsidiary of Valero and Irving, Texas-based low-carbon feedstock supplier Darling Ingredients Inc. -- reports it has filed an application with the California Air Resources Board (CARB) seeking carbon intensity (CI) certification for the Low Carbon Fuel Standard (LCFS) of renewable diesel (RD) pathways from distillers corn oil; rendered animal fat; and used cooking oil (UCO) at the Diamond Green Diesel LLC facility in Norco, Louisiana.

    The Norco plant uses the UOP Ecofining Process to produce renewable diesel. The process hydrogenates triglycerides and free fatty acid feedstocks which are then isomerized to create a high-quality hydrocarbon fuel (RD). In addition to RD, the process produces a liquid petroleum gas vapor stream (LPG vapor); a liquid petroleum liquid stream (naphtha LPG); and a purge gas stream. All of the co-product streams go to the adjacent Valero oil refinery to be separated into fuel gas, propane, and naphtha through a distillation process. For the purposes of the CI certification, displacement credit was given to the fuel gas used as fuel gas for hydrogen production at the Valero refinery.

    Producing 275 million gpy of Honeywell Green Diesel™, Diamond Green Diesel is the largest commercial advanced biofuel facility in the US. (Source: Diamond Green Diesel,Green Car Congress, 5 Dec., 2019) Contact: Diamond Green Diesel, sales@diamondgreendiesel.com, www.diamondgreendiesel.com; Valero Renewable Fuels, Joe Gorder, Pres., (800) 324-8464, www.valero.com; Darling Ingedients, Melissa A. Gaither, VP IR , (972) 281-4478, mgaither@darlingii.com, www.darlingii.com; Honeywell UOP, Bryan Glover, VP Petrochemicals & Refining Technologies, www,uop.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Diamond Green Diesel,  


    Acciona to Construct Paraguayan Alt. Fuels Plant (Int'l.)
    Acciona
    Date: 2019-11-27
    Madrid-headquartered engineering group Acciona SA reports it has been selected to construct a 20,000 bpd advanced biofuels HVO and SPK project using Honeywell UOP technology near the Paraguayan capital city of Assuncion. HVO is a renewable substitute for diesel and and SPK is a renewable aviation fuel.

    Financial details of the agreements were not disclosed but the project is expected to come in at roughly $88 million. (Source: Acciona SA, Successful Farming, Reuters, 25 Nov., 2019) Contact: Acciona SA, +34 91 663 28 50 / Fax - +34 91 663 28 51, www.acciona.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Acciona ,  Alternative Fuels,  


    POET Temporarily Halting Project Liberty Biofuel Prod. (Ind. Report)
    POET, Poet-DSM
    Date: 2019-11-22
    Sioux Falls, South Dakota-based POET-DSM Advanced Biofuel reports it is temporarily halting production of cellulosic biofuels at its Emmetsburg, Iowa, facility due in part to the uncertainties surrounding the EPA's Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) policies.

    The company, a 50/50 joint venture between Royal DSM and POET, LLC., will now focus on R&D aimed at improving mechanical reliability, creating additional technological efficiencies and licensing technologies in countries that support the use of low carbon fuels from crop residue and other biomass, according to the company. (Source: Poet-DSM, Biofuels 20 Nov., 2019) Contact: POET-DSM Advanced Biofuels, Steve Hartig, General Manager, (630) 780-8171, steve.hartig@dsm.com, www.poetdsm.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Project Liberty,  POET,  Poet-DSM,  Cellulosic Biofuel,  Advanced Biofuel,  


    ABA's EPA Biofuel Waivers Lawsuit Dismissed (Reg. & Leg.)
    Advanced Biofuels Association
    Date: 2019-11-15
    Following up on our 26th April coverage, the Washington, D.C., District Court of Appeals has dismissed the Advance Biofuels Association's (ABA) lawsuit challenging the EPA's use of small refinery exemptions on the grounds that the ABA failed to "identify a final agency action."

    In its suit, the ABA claimed the EPA was exceeding its authority when it granted a larger number of waivers under the Renewable Fuels Standard (RFS) to small oil refineries. The court did, however, note "the EPA's briefing and oral argument paint a troubling picture of intentionally shrouded and hidden agency law that could have left those troubled by the agency's actions without a viable avenue for judicial review."

    Since 2016, the EPA has granted a total of 85 waivers accounting for 4.04 billion gallons of biofuels that were not blended into the nation's fuel supply.

    As previously noted, "hardship waivers" were intended for refineries producing 75,000 bpd or less and suffered "disproportionate economic hardship" from the costs of RFS compliance. The waiver frees the refineries from an obligation to provide the EPA with biofuels credits proving compliance. (Source: Various Media, NAFB News Service, 13 Nov., 2019) Contact: Advanced Biofuels Association, www.advancedbiofuelsassociation.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Advanced Biofuels Association,  EPA RFS,  RFS Waiver ,  


    Technip FMC, BTG-BTL Tout Swedish Bio-oil Project (Int'l Report)
    BTG-BTL,Technip FMC
    Date: 2019-10-21
    Following up on our 27 Sept. coverage, Enschede, The Netherlands-based BTG-BTL reports it is partnering with TechnipFMC to design and construct a production facility in Sweden to convert 3,000 -- 40,000 tpy of dry wood residues such as sawdust into bio-oil for advanced biofuel production. The two Netherlands firms have received an order to construct a similar facility in Finland, with the choice to increase to four.

    BTG Bioliquids is focused on the delivery and deployment of a patented fast pyrolysis technology. The company doesn't produce pyrolysis oil but instead focus on delivering to our clients the core components of a pyrolysis installation, according to the company website. (Source: BTG-BTL, PR, 21 Oct., 2019) Contact: BTG-BTL, +31 (0)53 486 2287, office@btg-btl.com, www.btg-btl.com; TechnipFMC, +31 (0)79 3293 600, tpbenelux@technipfmc.com, www.technipfmc.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News BTG-BTL,  TechnipFMC,  Bio-oil,  Biofuel,  


    RFS Proposed Volumes for 2020 and Biomass-Based Diesel Volume for 2021 (Ind. Report)
    EPA, Renewable fuel Standard
    Date: 2019-10-21
    The Trump administration EPA has issued the attached supplemental notice of proposed rulemaking seeking additional comment on the recently proposed rule to establish the cellulosic biofuel, advanced biofuel, and total renewable fuel volumes for 2020 and the biomass-based diesel volume for 2021 under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) program.

    The notice does not change the proposed volumes for 2020 and 2021. Instead, it proposes and seeks comment on adjustments to the way that annual renewable fuel percentages are calculated. Annual renewable fuel percentage standards are used to calculate the number of gallons each obligated party is required to blend into their fuel or to otherwise obtain renewable identification numbers (RINs) to demonstrate compliance.

    Specifically, the agency is seeking comment on projecting the volume of gasoline and diesel that will be exempt in 2020 due to small refinery exemptions based on a three-year average of the relief recommended by the Department of Energy (DOE), including where DOE had recommended partial exemptions. The agency intends to grant partial exemptions in appropriate circumstances when adjudicating 2020 exemption petitions. The agency proposes to use this value to adjust the way we calculate renewable fuel percentages. The proposed adjustments would help ensure that the industry blends the final volumes of renewable fuel into the nation's fuel supply and that, in practice, the required volumes are not effectively reduced by future hardship exemptions for small refineries. Consistent with the statute, the supplemental notice seeks to balance the goal of the RFS of maximizing the use of renewables while following the law and sound process to provide relief to small refineries that demonstrate the need.

    Download the Renewable Fuel Standard Program -- Proposed Volumes for 2020 and Biomass-Based Diesel Volume for 2021 HERE. Contact: EPA Renewable Fuel Standard, 800-385-6164, www.epa.gov/fuels-registration-reporting-and-compliance-help/forms/fuels-program-helpdesk

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Renewable Fuel Standard,  Biofuel,  Biofuel Blend,  


    NBB Poll Finds Voter Support for RFS and Biodiesel (Ind. Report)
    National Biodiesel Board
    Date: 2019-10-11
    According to a recently released National Biodiesel Board (NBB) poll of registered U.S. voters, 81 pct of respondents indicated that a candidate's position on renewable fuels is important, 86 pct said a candidate's position on clean energy is important or very important and 85 pct agreed that it is important that Pres. Trump keep his promises on the RFS.

    Nearly 80 pct expressed support for existing federal advanced biofuels programs, 78 pct support the federal tax incentive for biodiesel, and 79 pct support the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) while 79 pct would encourage local communities and governments to promote use of biodiesel. (Source: NBB,Oct., 2019) Contact: NBB, Kurt Kovarik, VP Federal Affairs, (800) 841-5849, www.biodiesel.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News National Biodiesel Board,  RFS,  Biodiesel,  Ethanol,  Biofuel ,  


    Diamond Green Diesel Plans $1.1Bn Expansion (Ind. Report)
    Diamond Green Diesel
    Date: 2019-10-02
    Honeywell is reporting the Valero Energy and Darling Ingredients joint venture Diamond Green Diesel facility in Norco, Louisiana, will invest $1.1 billion to expand its annual production capacity of renewable diesel using Honeywell UOP's Ecofining™ process technology to meet growing demand for renewable fuels in North America and Europe.

    Producing 275 million gpy of Honeywell Green Diesel™, Diamond Green Diesel is the largest commercial advanced biofuel facility in the US. The expansion, which will increase the facility's annual production by nearly 150 pct to 675 million gpy, will also produce about 60 million gpy of renewable naphtha when completed and operational in late 2021.

    Diamond Green Diesel's product is a qualified Advanced Biofuel under the US EPA Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS). (Source: Honeywell, Hydrocarbon Engineering, Oct., 2019) Contact: Diamond Green Diesel, sales@diamondgreendiesel.com, www.diamondgreendiesel.com; Valero Renewable Fuels, Joe Gorder, Pres., (800) 324-8464, www.valero.com; Darling Ingedients, Melissa A. Gaither, VP IR , (972) 281-4478, mgaither@darlingii.com, www.darlingii.com; Honeywell UOP, Bryan Glover, VP Petrochemicals & Refining Technologies, www,uop.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Honeywell UOP,  Diamond Green Diesel,  Renewable Diesel,  Valero,  Green Diesel,  Darling Ingedients,  


    Dow, UPM Biofuels Partner on Bio-Based Plastics (Ind. Report)
    Dow Chemical, UPM Biofuel
    Date: 2019-09-25
    Chemicals giant Dow Chemical Company rports it is partnering with advanced biofuels producer UPM Biofuels for the commercialization of a plastics offering for the packaging industry made from a bio-based renewable feedstock.

    Dow is integrating wood-based UPM BioVerno renewable naphtha -- a key raw material used to develop plastics -- into its slate of raw materials, creating an alternative source for plastics production. Dow is using this feedstock to produce bio-based polyethylene (PE) at its production facility in Terneuzen, The Netherlands, for use in food and other packaging applications.

    Following a successful year-long trial program, Dow is now planning to scale production and address the increasing global demand for renewable plastics.

    UPM BioVerno naphtha is produced at UPM's biorefinery in Lappeenranta, Finland, from crude tall oil, which is a residue of paper pulp production. (Source: Dow Chemical Co., PR, 24 Sept., 2019)Contact: Dow CHemicals, www.dow.com; UPM Biofuels, Sari Mannonen, VP . +358 45 265 1345, sari.mannonen@upm.com, www.upmbiofuels.com, www.upm.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News UPM BioVerno,  UPM Biofuel,  Dow Chemical,  Woody Biomass,  


    Trump Plan Would Boost Biofuel Quotas 10 pct in 2020 (Reg & Leg)
    Teump
    Date: 2019-09-16
    Reuters is reporting U.S. Pres. Trump has tentatively approved a plan to increase the amount of biofuels that oil refiners are required to blend each year to compensate for the large number of financial "hardship" exemptions granted to "small" -- 75,000 bpd or less -- refiners by the EPA.

    Under the plan, the EPA will calculate a three-year rolling average of total biofuels gallons exempted under its Small Refinery Exemption program and add that figure to its annual biofuel blending quotas each year -- about 1.35 billion gallons in 2020. That would come in addition to a tentative agreement to boost 2020 blending volumes by 1 billion gallons, including 500 million gallons for conventional biofuels like corn-based ethanol and 500 million gallons for advanced biofuels like biodiesel, according to the Reuters report.

    As previously noted, "hardship waivers" were intended for refineries producing 75,000 bpd or less and suffered "disproportionate economic hardship" from the costs of RFS compliance. The waiver frees the refineries from an obligation to provide the EPA with biofuels credits proving compliance. Under the now vanquished administrator Greg Pruitt's direction, the EPA handed out 54 exemptions over two years and not a single request for an exemption was denied. (Source: Reuters, Various Media, 16 Sept., 2019)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News RFS,  "Hardship" Waiver,  Ethanol Blend,  


    Associations Call for Canadian Clean Fuel Strategy (Ind. Report)
    Wood Pellet Association of Canada
    Date: 2019-09-13
    Advanced Biofuels Canada, Canadian Biogas Association, Canadian Gas Association, Electric Mobility Canada and Wood Pellet Association of Canada are forecasting greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions reductions of over 50 million metric tons (Mt) per year by 2030 through greater production and use of renewable energy in Canada.

    Collectively, the associations say they represent technologies that can, with the right policy measures in place, exceed the proposed federal Clean Fuel Standard's objective of 30 Mt of annual GHG emission reductions by 2030.

    To that end, the associations are calling on the Canadian federal government to adopt a Clean Fuel Strategy by 2020. The strategy would include setting a clear path to clean and renewable fuel use by 2030 by: establishing clear market signals for clean fuels and electric vehicles; aligning clean and renewable fuel regulations to meet targeted clean fuel and EV use; establish clean fuel program funding to support clean and renewable fuel production capacity and infrastructure investments, and support EV adoption; and Support research and development programs to maintain Canadian leadership in clean fuel technologies and innovation. (Source: Wood Pellet Association of Canada, Biomass Mag., Sept., 2019) Contact: Wood Pellet Association of Canada, www.pellet.org; Canadian Biogas Association, (613) 822-1004, www.biogasassociation.ca; Advanced Biofuels Canada, Ian Thompson, Pres., (604) 947-0040, ithomson@advancedbiofuels.ca, www.advancedbiofuels.ca

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Advanced Biofuels Canada,  Canadian Biogas Association,  Wood Pellet Association of Canada,  Clean Fuel,  Biofuel,  


    More RFS "Hardship" Waivers! (Ind. Report)
    EPA,American Soybean Association
    Date: 2019-08-26
    On Friday the 23rd, the EPA announced it was granting 31 more Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) "hardship" waivers -- a whopping 31 of 38 total Small Refinery Exemption (SRE) applications for the 2018 compliance year.

    In July, EPA announced biomass-based diesel and advanced biofuels volumes for 2021 will remain stagnant but again failed to account for the significant gallons lost because of SRE, which makes the proposed volume, in effect, a reduction for biofuels.

    The waivers announced Friday evening combined with those issued for 2016 and 2017 RFS volumes brings the total number to more than 80 retroactive waivers, which significantly reduces biodiesel demand and results in billions of dollars in economic harm to the U.S. biodiesel industry, including soybean farmers.

    Kentucky soybean grower and American Soybean Association (ASA) president Davie Stephens responded to the latest round saying "Of course ASA is unhappy. These exemptions undermine President Trump's pledge to support the RFS and undermine the Administration's efforts to support farmers who are already bearing the brunt of trade disruptions. EPA's decision is another blow to yet another market for soybean farmers." (Source: American Soybean Association, Daily American, Various Media, 26 Aug., 2019) Contact: American Soybean Association, Dave Stephens, Pres., (314) 576-1770, www.soygrowers.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News EPA,  "Hardship" Waivers,  American Soybean Association,  


    "We've Had Enough!" -- NBB Comments on EPA's RFS Waivers (Opinions, Editorials & Asides)
    NBB
    Date: 2019-08-16
    "Here we go again. Last week, the U.S. EPA granted 31 out of 38 retroactive small refinery exemptions for 2018. I can't contain the frustration and utter disappointment I have with how this administration is handling its responsibility of administering the RFS.

    "Congress passed the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) back in 2007, signed into law by George W. Bush -- a lifelong oil and gas guy. The law was passed to encourage investment in advanced biofuels like biodiesel, renewable diesel and renewable jet fuel. Biodiesel producers responded, making the investments and building an industry that today produces more than 2 billion gallons of transportation fuel each year. This market also provides added value to feedstocks such as soybean oil, used restaurant oil and animal fats.

    "The oil industry feverishly insists that the ethanol industry isn't harmed by small refinery exemptions because production has grown. But what about biodiesel? They never mention us because they know that small refinery exemptions disproportionately affect biodiesel because of the way the RFS is constructed.

    "We have said again and again -- biodiesel is very different from ethanol. The president (Trump) was instrumental in clearing the path for higher blends of ethanol year-round when he lifted the RVP waiver this summer, which we were supportive of. He and his EPA administrator have mentioned E15 when they have spoken about what they believe to be the minor impact of exempting RFS gallons. It's as though they think we are dumb enough to not understand that they are giving with one hand but taking away with the other.

    "Now, back to biodiesel. E15 does nothing to expand demand for biodiesel. Ethanol is not biodiesel. In fact, the RFS recognized this by establishing its own category for biodiesel, separate from ethanol, called biomass-based diesel. Policymakers at the time recognized the need to segment biodiesel and renewable diesel within the bigger RFS pool so that growth in those products could be differentiated in the overall program and we would see advancements of biofuels in both the gasoline and diesel sector.

    "Fast forward to 2019 and we now have an EPA that, two months ago, proposed a draft rule to hold the biomass-based diesel category flat for 2020, keeping it at 2.43 billion gallons for the second year in a row and then, just last week, the same EPA grants nearly one-half billion gallons of biomass-based diesel waivers. To highlight the hypocrisy in this action, while filing the draft rule two months ago, the EPA documented, in writing, the fact that they expected to grant zero (that's zero as in none, zilch, nada) gallons of small refinery waivers in 2020. And we're supposed to understand and accept that move?

    "Biodiesel and renewable diesel year after year fill more than 90 percent of the RFS volumes reserved for advanced biofuels. But EPA complains that advanced biofuels have not materialized quickly enough to meet the goals of the RFS. Now -- as seen last week -- the agency is holding its thumb on the industry and blocking growth. Not only blocking growth, but helping to reduce demand through small refinery exemptions.

    "As the agency continues to hand them out to every refiner that asks, the damage could reach $7.7 billion or 2.54 billion gallons, according to Scott Irwin, an agricultural economist from the University of Illinois. A 'small' oil refinery, by RFS definition -- one that processes 75,000 bpd of oil and produces nearly a billion gallons of fuel a year -- would have an RFS obligation to use just 20 million gallons of biodiesel or renewable diesel. Many U.S. biodiesel producers are smaller than that -- just one small refinery exemption would eliminate their entire market. And the EPA granted 31 of them.

    "President Trump vowed to protect and defend American farmers. In fact, he calls them patriots. But his actions will put the biodiesel producers those same farmers depend on for their market, out of business. It's already happening, and it's having a devastating impact on rural communities across the nation.

    "President Trump and EPA Administrator Wheeler should clearly know what this means to the workers, producers, farmers and investors in the biodiesel and renewable diesel industry -- their new round of unwarranted RFS exemptions just destroyed jobs and a valuable marketplace for hardworking Americans, including those patriotic soybean farmers who Trump has called on to be his willing allies in the trade dispute with China. If this is how the EPA administrator treats the president’s allies, I'd hate to see how he treats his enemies. (Source: NBB, 15 Aug., 2019) Contact: NBB, Donnell Rehagen, CEO, Kurt Kovarik, VP Federal Affairs, (800) 841-5849, www.biodiesel.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News NBB,  Biodiesel,  


    Calif. Updates B20 Underground Storage Regulations (Reg. & Leg.)
    National Biodiesel Board,California Advanced Biofuels Alliance.
    Date: 2019-08-09
    In Sacramento, the California State Water Board reports it has approved the storage of biodiesel blends of up to 20 pct (B20) in underground storage tanks, removing the final barrier to ensuring the state has access to sufficient volumes of the biofuel. A 10-year campaign to prove that B20 is compatible underground was supported by the National Biodiesel Board (NBB), several member companies and the California Advanced Biofuels Alliance.

    Biodiesel is key to the state meeting its Low Carbon Fuel Standard. The California Air Resources Board claims that biodiesel reduces greenhouse gases by at least 50 pct, and up to as much as 81 pct , compared to petroleum. The California State Water Resources Board ruled that a 20 pct blend of biodiesel (meeting the ASTM standard for B20, D7467) "shall be recognized as equivalent to diesel for the purpose of complying with existing approval requirements for double-walled USTs, unless any material or component of the UST system has been determined to not be compatible with B20." The regulation comes into force from 1 October 2019. (Source: California State Water Board, California Advanced Biofuels Alliance, Biofuels Int'l, 7 Aug., 2019) Contact: California State Water Board, www.waterboards.ca.gov; NBB, Donnell Rehagen, CEO, Kurt Kovarik, VP Federal Affairs, (800) 841-5849, www.biodiesel.org; California Advanced Biofuels Alliance, www.caadvancedbiofuelsalliance.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Biodiesel,  National Biodiesel Board,  NBB,  California Advanced Biofuels Alliance.,  


    EPA Releases 2020 RVOs Proposal (Ind. Report, Reg & Leg)
    EPA, RVO
    Date: 2019-07-24
    The US EPA's recently proposed 2020 and 2012 renewable volume obligations (RVOs) under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) require 91 billion litres of renewable fuels to be blended into the US fuel supply in 2020, up from 90.5bn litres in 2019 -- 23 billion litres of advanced biofuels, 11 billion litres of biomass-based diesel - which was set last year and is the same for 2021, and 2.4 billion litres of cellulosic biofuel -- up 545 million litres from the 2019 figure.

    The proposed RVO would require biofuels to make up 10.92 pct of US transportation fuel, including 2.75 pct advanced biofuels, 1.99 pct biomass-based diesel and 0.29 pct cellulosic biofuel.

    The rule making also proposed amendments to the RFS regulations including: clarification of diesel RVO calculations; pathway petition conditions; a biodiesel esterification pathway; distillers corn oil and distillers oil pathways; renewable fuel exporter provisions allowing the production of biomass-based diesel from separated food waste; flexibilities for renewable fuel blending for military use; heating oil used for cooling; RFS facility ownership changes; additional registration deactivation justifications; a new Renewable Identification Number (RIN) retirement; a new pathway for co-processing biomass with petroleum to produce cellulosic diesel, jet fuel and heating oil; public access to information; and other revisions. The amendments came as part of the as yet finalized Renewables Enhancement and Growth Support rule. (Source: EPA, Oils & Fats Int'l., 22 July, 2019)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Renewable Fuel Standard,  RVO,  Biofuel Blend,  


    Biofuels in Canada 2019 Report Released (Ind. Report)
    Advanced Biofuels Canada
    Date: 2019-07-17
    Vancouver-based Advanced Biofuels Canada (ABC) reports the release of its Biofuels in Canada 2019 report prepared by Navius Research Inc. (Navius). Advanced Biofuels Canada is a national industry association established to: promote the production and use of advanced biofuels in Canada; collaborate with other stakeholders to expand market access for sustainable low-carbon biofuels in Canada, and; collaborate broadly to de-carbonize transportation.

    This 2019 analysis updates the Biofuels in Canada 2016, 2017 and 2018 reports, and is intended to evaluate and communicate the impact of renewable and low-carbon fuel policy in Canada by: quantifying the volumes of renewable transportation fuels consumed in each Canadian province(i.e. biofuel), characterized by fuel type, feedstock, and CI. The biofuels include ethanol, biodiesel and hydrogenation derived renewable diesel (HDRD); estimating their impact on GHG emissions and; estimating their impact on energy costs, now with an additional focus on how fuel taxes affect these costs.

    View the Biofuels in Canada 2019 report HERE (Source: Advanced Biofuels Canada, July, 2019) Contact: Advanced Biofuels Canada, Ian Thompson, Pres., (604) 947-0040, ithomson@advancedbiofuels.ca, www.advancedbiofuels.ca

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Advanced Biofuels Canada,  


    Attis Industries Joins the Advanced Biofuels Assoc. (Ind. Report)
    Attis Industries, Advanced Biofuels Association
    Date: 2019-07-10
    Milton, Georgia-headquartered Attis Industries Inc., a diversified innovation and technology holding company with a corn ethanol production asset in Fulton, NY, reports it joined the Advanced Biofuels Association (ABFA).

    The ABFA supports and advocates for public policies that are technology neutral, utilize sustainable feedstocks, and offer subsidy parity to ensure all viable advanced biofuels can compete with the benefit of a level playing field. The ABFA engages government at all levels to secure support for the advanced biofuels industry, allowing its member companies to commercialize their technologies and bring products to market that are competitive and compatible with petroleum-based fuels and byproducts. (Source: Attis Industries, PR, Globe Newswire, 10 July, 2019) Contact: Advanced Biofuels Association

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Attis Industries news,  Ethanol news,  Advanced Biofuels Association news,  


    Are EPA's Proposed RFS 'Obligations' Actually Just Suggestions?" asks RFA (Opinions, Editorials & Asides)
    RFA, RFS
    Date: 2019-07-08
    By neglecting to prospectively reallocate small refinery exemptions and blatantly ignoring a court order to restore improperly waived gallons, the U.S. EPA's proposed 2020 renewable volume obligations (RVOs) completely betrays President Trump's commitment to uphold the integrity of the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS), according to the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA).

    "As long as EPA continues to dole out compliance exemptions to oil refiners without reallocating the lost volume, the agency may as well start referring to the annual RFS levels as 'renewable volume suggestions' rather than renewable volume 'obligations'. It is a complete misnomer to call these blending volumes 'obligations' when EPA's small refinery bailouts have essentially transformed the RFS into a voluntary program for nearly one-third of the nation's oil refineries.

    "In its announcement today, EPA has proposed a total renewable fuel volume of 20.04 billion gallons, of which 5.04 billion gallons are advanced biofuel, including 540 million gallons of cellulosic biofuel. That leaves, on paper, a 15-billion-gallon requirement for conventional renewable fuels like corn ethanol, unchanged from 2019.

    "Most notably, EPA failed to prospectively account for any expected small refinery exemptions in the 2020 proposal, even though it is almost a foregone conclusion at this point that the Agency will continue to grant more exemptions.

    "Congress gave EPA the direction and tools necessary to ensure that the statutory RFS volumes are enforced, and that includes prospectively reallocating exempted volumes to non-exempt parties. Instead, EPA has chosen to continue its demand destruction campaign that has been crippling to both ethanol producers and the farmers who supply our industry. Enough is enough.

    "EPA approved 54 exemptions for 2016 and 2017 and an additional 38 requests for 2018 exemptions are pending. Not a single exemption request has been denied by EPA since 2015. The exemptions effectively lowered the total RFS requirement for 2017 by 1.82 billion gallons and cut the 2016 requirement by nearly 800 million gallons.

    "Making matters worse, EPA's proposal continues to flout the D.C. Circuit Court's 2017 order requiring the Agency to restore 500 million gallons of renewable fuel obligations that it inappropriately and illegally waived from the 2016 RVO. Unbelievably, the Agency is proposing to snub the court's ruling by refusing to restore the 500 million gallons remanded volume. EPA's stubborn refusal to obey a court order to restore lost demand is yet another kick in the teeth to U.S. renewable fuel producers and farmers already facing the worst market conditions in a generation. EPA's suggestion that following the court's directive would place an 'additional burden' on obligated parties is an insult and an affront to the farmers and ethanol producers who trusted this administration would follow the law. The RFS wasn't intended to make oil refiners comfortable; it was intended to change the status quo by guaranteeing renewable fuels would have access to a marketplace otherwise closed to competition.

    "EPA appears to be selling out to oil refiners -- again -- at the expense of rural America. The court found in favor of renewable fuel producers in 2017 because it was clear our industry had been harmed by EPA's illegal use of a general waiver -- now EPA is doubling down on that harm to the ethanol industry and farmers.

    "Today's proposal undermines the pledge President Trump made to farmers and renewable fuel producers that his administration would enforce the statutory RFS volumes. By failing to prospectively reallocate, failing to commit to a more judicious and restrained approach to refinery waivers, and failing to follow a court's order to restore lost demand, EPA is blatantly undercutting President Trump's commitment to ethanol, which he restated less than a month ago when he visited the Southwest Iowa Renewable Energy ethanol plant. We urge the President to resolve the disconnect between the oval office and EPA and get the RFS back on track." (Source: RFA, PR, 8 July, 2019) Contact: Renewable Fuels Association, Geoff Cooper, (202) 289-3835, www.ethanolrfa.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News RFA,  RFS,  


    Attis Praises EPA's Approval of Year Around E15 Dales (Ind. Report)
    Attis Industries
    Date: 2019-06-21
    Milton, Georgia-headquartered corn ethanol producer and technology holding company Attis Industries Inc. is lauding the Trump Administration's May 30th approval of the expansion of 15 pct (E15) ethanol blends in on-road transportation fuels. Previously, the sale of E15 was restricted to just eight months of the year.

    The rule change has the potential to create a significant increase in market demand for corn-based ethanol as well as other advanced fuels such as cellulosic ethanol. Even so, the administration continues to undermine the enforcement of the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) through its abuse of the small refiner "hardship" exemptions (SREs) which have had a drastic effect on renewable fuel demand over the past two years, according to Attis. "Attis encourages the Administration to continue its support of the nation's farmers and renewable fuel producers by limiting SREs to those refiners who truly have encountered hardships by complying with the Renewable Fuel Standard," the Attis release notes.

    Attis Biofuels, LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Attis Industries Inc., currently operates a 100 million gpy corn-based ethanol facility in Fulton, NY and has plans to expand the production of renewable fuels to include cellulosic ethanol and various other advanced biofuels, according to the release. (Source: Attis Ind., PR, June, 2019) Contact: Attis Ind., David Winsness, President of Attis Innovations, Jeff Cosman, CEO, 678-580-5661, www.attisind.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Attis Industries,  Biofuel,  E15,  Ethanol Blend,  RFS,  


    Attis Creating NY Ethanol Plant Green Tech Campus (Ind Report)
    Attis Industries
    Date: 2019-06-07
    Following up on our previous coverage, Georgia-based Attis Industries Inc. reports its recently acquired Sunoco LP's nameplate 100-million gpy corn ethanol plant and grain malting operation in Fulton, New York, will become the centerpiece of its proposed Green Tech Campus. The company will focus on byproduct optimization of the corn ethanol plant and the new production of advanced biofuels and biobased products while also looking to generate "green" power, thus reducing the overall carbon footprint of the Fulton campus and taking advantage of valuable carbon credits to increase the site's profitability.

    Attis plans to immediately begin the process of deploying its patented biorefinery technology to further diversify the biofuel and biobased product manufacturing at the campus. Attis will convert extracted locally sourced woody biomass pulp into cellulosic fuels and lignin into bioplastics, carbon fiber and advanced biofuels like renewable diesel and jet fuel.

    Attis also aims to improve the quality and volume of co-products currently being produced at the Fulton ethanol plant by implementing its patented and licensed corn oil extraction technology that will almost double the current corn oil production yields at the plant and provide an augmented revenue stream. (Source: Attis Industries, DTN, June, 2019) Contact: Attis Ind., Jeff Cosman, CEO, 678-580-5661, www.attisind.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Attis Industries,  Ethanol,  Sunoco LP,  


    BP, NEXT Ink Renewable Diesel Feedstock Deal (Ind. Report)
    BP,NEXT Renewable Fuels
    Date: 2019-05-31
    Portland, Oregon-based advanced biofuels producer NEXT Renewable Fuels reports entering into a long-term feedstock supply agreement with BP Products North America (BP) for approximately 2 million tpy of renewable feedstocks -- animal fats and tallows, used cooking oil,greases and virgin seed oils -- for NEXT's planned renewable diesel facility in Port Westward, Oregon.

    The Port Westward facility is slated for completion and commissioning in 2021. (Source: NEXT Renewable Fuels, Biofuels Int'l., 29 May, 2019) Contact: NEXT Renewable Fuels, Lou Soumas, Pres., info@nextrenewables.com, www.nextrenewables.com; BP, Jason Breslaw, Renewable Feedstock and Bio-distillate Business Development Manager, www.bp.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News BP,  NEXT Renewable Fuels,  Renewable Diesel,  Biodiesel,  


    EPA Proposes Slight RFS Biofuel Mandate Increase (Reg & Leg)
    RFS, US EPA
    Date: 2019-05-15
    In Washington, the Trump administration EPA is reported to be proposing to increase volume of biofuels refiners must blend into their fuel annually from the present 19.92 billion gallons to 20.04 billion gallons in 2020. The proposed mandated increase is awaiting review by other government agencies before being finalized.

    The mandate includes 15 billion gallons of conventional biofuels -- ethanol -- unchanged from 2019, and 5.04 billion gallons of advanced biofuels, up from 4.92 billion in 2019. The biodiesel mandate of 2.43 billion gallons for 2021, would be unchanged from 2020. (Source: US EPA, AgWEB, 14 May, 2019)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Biofuel Blend,  RFS,  Renewable Fuel Standard ,  


    ABFA Acts Against Additional EPA "Hardship Waivers" (Reg. & Leg.)
    Advanced Biofuels Association
    Date: 2019-05-01
    Further to our 11 March coverage, on April 24th, the Advanced Biofuels Association (ABA) filed a motion for a preliminary injunction to prevent U.S. EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler from granting additional small refinery "hardship waivers" until the resolution of its pending lawsuit against EPA.

    "Since EPA began granting these additional exemptions behind closed doors, we have seen devastating market impacts and dropping prices for renewable identification numbers (RINs). We need to stop the bleeding and prevent EPA from ABFA's lawsuit against EPA challenges its methodology for granting these exemptions, arguing the agency more than doubled the number of exempted refineries by illegally changing its petition review process behind closed doors," said ABFA Pres. Michael McAdams.

    "Administrator Wheeler has indicated his intention to move forward on decisions for as many as 39 additional exemptions this year. ABFA cannot stand by while EPA unilaterally and illegally undermines the integrity of the RFS program. These new exemptions provide a financial windfall to refineries at the expense of biofuel producers and distributors. EPA is punishing the parties who have worked to increase the amount of renewable fuel blended into the U.S. transportation fuel supply as Congress intended by enacting the RFS first in 2005 and expanding it in 2007.

    "For the first time since the inception of the RFS, we are seeing reductions in U.S. renewable fuel blending, and EPA's actions are to blame. Until the court is able to rule on the merits of ABFA's pending lawsuit, the agency should be prevented from taking further action."

    "Hardship waivers" were intended for refineries producing 75,000 bpd or less and suffered "disproportionate economic hardship" from the costs of RFS compliance. The waiver frees the refineries from an obligation to provide the EPA with biofuels credits proving compliance. In 2017, the number of small refineries filing for exemptions retroactively for 2016 jumped from 14 the previous year to 20. The rate in which EPA granted these petitions also increased dramatically from 53 pct to 95 pct. (Source: Advanced Biofuels Association, 30 April, 2019)Contact: Advanced Biofuels Association, www.advancedbiofuelsassociation.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News "Hardship Waiver",  Advanced Biofuels Association ,  


    ABA Asks Court to Quash EPA RFS "Hardship Waivers" (Reg. & Leg.)
    Advanced Biofuels Association
    Date: 2019-04-26
    According to a recent brief filed by attorneys on behalf of the Advanced Biofuels Association (ABA) in a U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit court in Washington, the US EPA broke away from Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) requirements for granting small-refinery waivers starting in May 2017 and continued to deny a congressional order regarding which refiners qualify.

    The suit contends the EPA approved waivers for small refiners that didn't meet the minimum U.S. DOE score to qualify, and improperly considered the debts of small-refiners' parent companies when considering waiver requests. The brief also noted the agency considered small-refiners' operating losses whether or not they were related to RFS compliance. The agency also considered what small refiners might spend on biofuel credits, without looking at revenue the refiners would later generate from sales of Renewable Identification Numbers (RINs). Accordingly, the ABA suit asked the court to declare the EPA's methodology for determining disproportionate economic hardship "unlawful" and to strike down the agency's economic "hardship" policy.

    As previously noted, "hardship waivers" were intended for refineries producing 75,000 bpd or less and suffered "disproportionate economic hardship" from the costs of RFS compliance. The waiver frees the refineries from an obligation to provide the EPA with biofuels credits proving compliance. In 2017, the number of small refineries filing for exemptions retroactively for 2016 jumped from 14 the previous year to 20. The rate in which EPA granted these petitions also increased dramatically from 53 pct to 95 pct. (Source: ABA, DTN, April, 2019) Contact: Advanced Biofuels Association, www.advancedbiofuelsassociation.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Advanced Biofuels Association,  "hardship Waiver: RFS,  


    ABA Claims EPA Strayed on RFS "Hardship Waivers" (Reg & Leg)
    EPA,Advanced Biofuels Association
    Date: 2019-03-11
    According to a brief filed by attorneys on behalf of the Advanced Biofuels Association (ABA) in a U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit court in Washington last Wednesday, the US EPA broke away from Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) requirements for granting small-refinery waivers starting in May 2017 and continued to deny a congressional order regarding which refiners qualify.

    The suit contends the EPA approved waivers for small refiners that didn't meet the minimum U.S. DOE score to qualify, and improperly considered the debts of small-refiners' parent companies when considering waiver requests. The brief also noted the agency considered small-refiners' operating losses whether or not they were related to RFS compliance. The agency also considered what small refiners might spend on biofuel credits, without looking at revenue the refiners would later generate from sales of Renewable Identification Numbers (RINs).

    Accordingly, the ABA suit asked the court to declare the EPA's methodology for determining disproportionate economic hardship "unlawful" and to strike down the agency's economic "hardship" policy.

    As previously reported, "hardship waivers" were intended for refineries producing 75,000 bpd or less and suffered "disproportionate economic hardship" from the costs of RFS compliance. The waiver frees the refineries from an obligation to provide the EPA with biofuels credits proving compliance. In 2017, the number of small refineries filing for exemptions retroactively for 2016 jumped from 14 the previous year to 20. The rate in which EPA granted these petitions also increased dramatically from 53 pct to 95 pct. (Source: ABA, DTN, 8 Mar., 2019) Contact: Advanced Biofuels Association, www.advancedbiofuelsassociation.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Advanced Biofuels Association ,  RFS,  Hardship Waiver,  


    McGill Biomass Cluster Scores $7Mn for Biomass R&D (Funding)
    BioFuelNet Canada,McGill
    Date: 2019-02-20
    In Montreal, McGill University's Macdonald Campus in Ste-Anne-de-Bellevue is reporting receipt of a $7 million investment in the Biomass Cluster under the Canadian Agricultural Partnership. The Cluster, which is led by the BioFuelNet Canada Network, will include an additional $3.1 million in contributions from industry, for a total investment of $10.1 million for biomass R&D.

    BioFuelNet Canada is a network that brings together the Canadian biofuels research community to aggressively address the challenges impeding the growth of an advanced biofuels industry, while focusing on non-food biomass as biofuel feedstocks. BioFuelNet includes renowned, multi-disciplinary experts from academia, government, industry and investment working together in a concerted and synergistic way. This group is working to develop and apply novel and innovative science, engineering and socio-economic strategies that will enhance environmental sustainability for future generations. (Source:BioFuelNet Canada Website, , McGill University, Montreal Gazette, 19 Feb., 2019) Contact: McGill University, 514.398.4455, www.mcgill.ca; BioFuelNet Canada, Dr. Donald L. Smith, CEO, (514) 398-7861, www.biofuelnet.ca

    More Low-Carbon Energy News BioFuelNet Canada,  Biomass,  


    PNNL Seeking Algae Bioenergy, Biofuel Collaborations (Ind Report)
    Pacific Northwest National Laboratory
    Date: 2019-02-20
    The U.S. DOE's Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) reports it is seeking algae industry partners and academic researchers to help find the best algae strains for biofuels and bioproducts to reduce the cost of producing bioenergy from algae feedstocks.

    PNNL leads the Development of Integrated Screening, Cultivar Optimization and Verification (DISCOVR) project that employs the unique complementary capabilities of the four participating national laboratories -- Los Alamos National Laboratory, National Renewable Energy Laboratory, and Sandia National Laboratorie -- sand the outdoor testbed at the Arizona Center for Algal Technology and Innovation to identify and test high productivity microalgae strains for year-round outdoor cultivation. The goal is to provide a framework to accelerate meeting DOE's advanced biofuel goals with microalgae.

    "A key cost driver for algae biofuels is productivity, which is directly tied to which algae strain is chosen and how it's cultivated," said Taraka Dale, a scientist at LANL. "By collaborating with industry and academia, we aim to bring together the best of the best strains and cultivation strategies to rapidly boost productivity and reduce costs."

    "So far, we have tested more than 40 new microalgae strains and identified strains with up to 34 percent greater biomass productivity than benchmark strains," said Huesemann. "The success of the DISCOVR strain down selection and testing pipeline was demonstrated in 2018 by achieving more than 13 pct improvement in outdoor pond productivity relative to 2017, reducing the biomass selling price by about 10 pct."

    The goal of the call for collaboration is to solicit algae strains, tools and techniques from the algae community to further boost algae productivity. This call gives industry and academia an opportunity to partner with the four national laboratories in DISCOVR, as well as AzCATI. (Source: Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, PR, Feb., 2019) Contact: PNNL, Michael Huesemann, DISCOVR Consortium leader, discovr.algae@lanl.gov, https://discovr.labworks.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Algae,  Algae Biofuel,  Pacific Northwest National Laboratory ,  


    RFS2 Emissions Reductions Beat EPA Expectations (Ind. Report)
    Renewable Fuel Standard ,Renewable Fuels Association, RFA
    Date: 2019-02-08
    A recently released Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) commissioned study claims the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS2) has been a tremendous success in reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, with nearly 600 million metric tons of GHG reduction since 2007 -- surpassing the EPA original expectations of 422 million metric tons, according to the study. The analysis was conducted by Life Cycle Associates, a California-based scientific consulting firm, and commissioned by the Renewable Fuels Foundation (RFF).

    The study credits the larger-than-expected GHG reductions to: the adoption of technology improvements in the production of corn-based ethanol, resulting in far greater GHG reductions than originally estimated by EPA; the GHG emissions of petroleum are higher than the baseline estimates originally projected by EPA; and advanced biofuels like biodiesel, renewable diesel, and renewable natural gas have contributed additional GHG reductions, even though actual cellulosic biofuel production has been lower than initially projected. The study also notes that the conventional ethanol consumed in 2018 reduced GHG emissions by 43 pct compared to EPA's initial projections that conventional ethanol would achieve only a 20 pct GHG reduction versus petroleum.

    Download the study HERE. (Source: RFA, 6 Feb., 2019) Contact: Renewable Fuels Association, Geoff Cooper, Pres., CEO, (202) 289-3835, www.ethanolrfa.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News GHG Emissions,  Renewable Fuel Standard,  Renewable Fuels Association,  Climate Change,  RFA ,  


    NATSO Comments on Draft Legislation to Reform Renewable Fuel Standard (Opinions, Editorials & Asides)
    NATSO,RFS
    Date: 2018-12-12
    Alexandria, Virginia-headquartered truck stop and travel plaza industry group NATSO testified before the U.S. House Committee on Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Environment, Congress on Tuesday to discuss new legislation that would reform the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) and transition the gasoline market to a high octane fuel performance standard.

    In his testimony, NATSO VP of Government Affairs David Fialkov focused on the diesel market and the opportunities for policymakers to incentivize diesel retailers to incorporate increasing amounts of advanced biofuels such as biodiesel into the nation's diesel fuel supply.

    "NATSO supports the provisions of the 21st Century Transportation Fuels Act that would facilitate market conditions and opportunities for its members to lower prices for consumers for advanced biofuels. Fialkov also recommended revisions to the draft legislation that would eliminate unnecessary obstacles to market investment in renewable fuels infrastructure and that undermine the returns on those investments that industry has already made.

    "Specifically, Fialkov testified in favor of the provisions that would extend the advanced biofuels mandate for another decade. But Fialkov strongly urged lawmakers to revise the draft legislation to address NATSO's concerns about the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) practice of issuing small refinery waivers that exempt small refineries from their obligations under the RFS, including small refineries that are owned by profitable refining entities.

    "The bill's rules-based Renewable Volume Obligations system will only achieve the objectives of enhanced certainty and less volatility if it addresses the Program's current flawed small refinery exemption regime," Fialkov testified. "The fact that the Legislation is silent on this topic is a real flaw. Any legislation to reform the RFS must remedy this situation." (Source: NATSO Inc. , PR, 11 Dec., 2018) Contact: NATSO, David Fialkov, VP Gov. Affairs, Tiffany Wlazlowski Neuman (703) 739-8578, www.natso.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News RFS,  NATSO,  Renewable Fuel Standard,  


    Celtic Renewables Partners with Indian Brewing Industry (Int'l)
    Celtic Renewables
    Date: 2018-12-07
    Edinburgh Napier University pin-out Celtic Renewables is reporting a partnership with New Delhi-based Indian renewables firm, Dross Energy Pvt. Ltd . The partnership will use Celtic's technology to convert whisky production residues into advanced biofuel transp[ortation fuel.

    A Dross Energy spokesperson said, "We are hugely excited to be the company to bring this ground-breaking technology to India. The technology is innovative and exciting, and we want to be the second country in the world, behind Scotland, to commercialise the process for the benefit of the environment." (Source: Celtic Renewables, insider.uk.co, 5 Dec., 2018) Contact: Celtic Renewables, Martin Tangney, Pres., CEO, +44 (0) 141 548 4417, www.celtic-renewables.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Celtic Renewables,  Biofuel,  


    Biofuel Players Comment on New RFS (Opinions, Editorials & Asides)
    RFS,Advanced Biofuels Business Council
    Date: 2018-12-07
    "Specifically, I'm glad levels for biodiesel are maintained and slightly increased. And although the levels for advanced biofuels and cellulosic biofuels don't represent the full potential of the industry, they are very promising and will help significantly." -- Sen. Chuck Grassley (R), www.grassley.senate.gov

    "It is time to get our America First fuel policy back on track, and we encourage the acting EPA administrator to hold oil refiners accountable and maintain the integrity of the Renewable Fuel Standard." -- Kyle Gilley, Snr VP External Affairs and Communications, POET, www.poet.com

    "The final targets open new possibilities for advanced and cellulosic biofuels, but without a check on abusive EPA waivers, we'll continue to see plants closing their doors or idling production. The agency cannot fulfill the president's commitments in the heartland without putting a lid on handouts to oil giants like Chevron and Andeavor." -- Brooke Coleman, Exec. Dir., Advanced Biofuels Business Council, www.advancedbiofuels.org

    "It reflects continued growth in the renewable natural gas industry. The growth in production of renewable natural gas and the completion of nearly 50 new production facilities from coast to coast since 2014 is proof positive that the RFS is working as intended for cellulosic and advanced biofuels." -- Johannes Escudero, CEO, Coalition for Renewable Natural Gas, www.rngcoalition.com

    "While the numbers are a positive step forward and they hold promise with a 15-billion-gallon commitment to starch ethanol and 418 million gallons of cellulosic biofuels, the billions of lost gallons due to excessive small refinery exemptions need to be accounted for." -- Emily Skor, CEO, Growth Energy, www.growthenergy.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Grassley,  POET,  RFS,  Growth Energy,  


    CleanBC Cimate Plan Stresses Renewable Fuels (Ind. Report)
    Renewable Fuel, Biofuel
    Date: 2018-12-07
    In Vancouver, the Government of British Columbia's just released CleanBC climate plan, which charts a path to 19 million tonnes of GHG emissions reductions by 2030 , puts low-carbon biofuels at the forefront of the Province’s climate efforts. The CleanBC plan includes:
  • Strengthening the low carbon fuel standard to a 20 pct reduction in fuel carbon intensity by 2030;
  • Supporting the ramp-up of new renewable fuel production to 650 million litres by 2030;
  • Zero-Emission Vehicles to make up 10 pct of new light duty vehicle sales in 2025, 30 pct in 2030, and 100 pct in 2040;
  • 15 pct minimum renewable content in industrial natural gas consumption, and cleaner industrial operations through electrification, CO2 storage, and direct air capture.

    The 19 million tonnes of reductions in the CleanBC plan represent approximately 75 pct of the Province's overall emissions reduction goal in 2030. The remaining 25 pct of the reduction measures will be determined over the next 18 to 24 months and will include new clean energy options, waste management, and reducing emissions in forestry, land use and agriculture. The plan also suggests that by 2030, over 40 pct of diesel and 10 pct of gasoline could come from biofuels.

    Download CleanBC lan details HERE. (Source: Government of British Columbia, PR, EIN, 6 Dec., 2018) Contact: Government of British Columbia, (604) 660-2421, www2.gov.bc.ca; Advanced Biofuels Canada, Ian Thompson, (604) 947-0040, www.advancedbiofuels.ca

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Renewable Fuels,  ,  


  • Ontario Upping Biofuels Blend to E15 as soon as 2025 (Ind. Report)
    Ontario, E15
    Date: 2018-12-05
    The province of Ontario is touting its "Greener Gasoline" plan to move from a E5 blend to a E10 ethanol fuel blend by 2020. Key elements of the Greener Gasoline plan include: increasing renewable fuels content in gasoline to 15 pct as early as 2025; the increased use of renewable natural gas and other lower-carbon fuels will be encouraged; large emitters will be subject to emission performance standards; and a $350 million Carbon Trust Fund and a $50 million Ontario Reverse Auction Fund will provide financial assistance for emission reduction initiatives.

    The plan builds on the amended Ethanol in Gasoline & Greener Diesel regulations that will come into effect on Jan. 1, 2020.

    Download details of Canada's Clean Fuel Standard HERE. (Source: Prov. of Ontario, Farm Progress, 3 Oct., 2018) Contact: Advanced Biofuels Canada, Ian Thomson, Pres., (604) 947-0040, info@advancedbiofuels.ca, www.advancedbiofuels.ca

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Advanced Biofuels Canada,  E15,  Biofuel,  Biofuel Blend,  


    EPA 2019 Final Renewable Fuel Standards Quota (Summary Report)
    EPA,RFS
    Date: 2018-12-05
    On November 30, 2018, the US EPA finalized volume quotas under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) program for 2019 for cellulosic biofuel, biomass-based diesel, advanced biofuel, total renewable fuel, and biomass-based diesel for 2020.

    In brief,the conventional renewable fuel quota, which is met primarily by corn-based ethanol, will be maintained at 19 billion gal in 2019, while required advance biofuel volumes will climb by 630 million gal from 2018 to 19.92 billion gal. The 2019 quota for cellulosic biofuels increased nearly 130 million gal to 418 million gal.

    Download the EPA RFS summary HERE. (Source: EPA, Dec., 2018) Contact: US EPA, www.epa.gov

    More Low-Carbon Energy News RFS,  Biofuel,  Biomass,  Ethanol,  Biodiesel,  Biofuel Blend,  


    Industry Comments on New RFS (Opinions, Editorials & Asides)
    Iowa Renewable Fuels Association , National Biodiesel Board
    Date: 2018-12-05
    "Without reallocation of small-refinery exemptions, the numbers released today may look good on the outside, but just like the chocolate bunnies my children open up on Easter morning, they are hollow on the inside. While any increase is better than a flatline, these modest increases vastly underrate the potential of advanced biofuels." -- Monte Shaw, Exec. Dir., Iowa Renewable Fuels Association, (515) 252-6249, info@irfa.org, http://iowarfa.org

    "EPA's failure to properly account for small refinery exemptions will continue to destroy biodiesel demand. EPA recognizes that the biodiesel and renewable diesel industry is producing fuel well above the annual volumes. The industry regularly fills 90 percent of the annual advanced biofuel requirement. Nevertheless, the agency continues to use its maximum waiver authority to set advanced biofuel requirements below attainable levels. The method is inconsistent with the RFS program's purpose, which is to drive growth in production and use of advanced biofuels such as biodiesel." -- National Biodiesel Board, Donnell Rehagen, CEO, (800) 841-5849, www.biodiesel.org

    "Of the 418 million gallons of cellulosic biofuel called for in the RFS, the vast majority, 388 million gallons, are requested from biogas and that represents a 45 pct increase in production from the 2018 volumes." -- American Biogas Council, Patrick Serfass, Executive Director, (202) 640-6595, www.americanbiogascouncil.org

    "When the EPA continues to grant waivers and does not account for those volumes in this rule, domestic demand for our crop is lost, impacting farmers' livelihood and the economy of rural America." -- National Corn Growers Association (NCGA), Lynn Chrisp, (202) 326-0644, www.ncga.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News American Biogas Council,  NCGA,  ,  RFS,  Iowa Renewable Fuels Association,  National Biodiesel Board ,  


    CO2-Algae Biofuel R&D Funded at Arizona State Univ. (Funding, R&D)
    Arizona State University
    Date: 2018-11-09
    The U.S. DOE has announced the awarding of a total of $80 million tp 36 early-stage bioenergy projects aimed at reducing the cost of algae-based, drop-in fuels to $3 per gallon by 2022, Of the $80 million total, two Arizona State University (ASU) research teams received a total grant of nearly $4.5 million.

    The two ASU teams are headed by Wim Vermaas, Foundation Professor in the School of Life Sciences and a member of the Center for Bioenergy and Photosynthesis, and Bruce Rittmann, director of Biodesign Swette Center for Environmental Biotechnology.

    Both ASU projects are developing innovative approaches for improving the efficiency of microalgae to capture waste CO2 and convert it into biodiesel transportation fuels and other valuable products.

    Rittmann will explore ways to make CO2 delivery to algae more efficient. Traditional methods involve sparging (bubbling) CO2 within the liquid used to grow the algae, which releases about 60-80 pct of the CO2 back into the atmosphere. This wasteful process defeats a major goal of using microalgae to remove this greenhouse gas from the atmosphere and decreases cost efficiency.

    Rittmann's team developed a membrane carbonation process that uses inexpensive plastic fibers to deliver pure CO2 with nearly 100 pct efficiency directly to the microalgae. The team estimates that the technology will capture fourfold more CO2 than traditional sparging methods.

    The team is partnering with the Salt River Project to develop methods for harvesting CO2 from power plant emissions. They are also partnering with the city of Mesa to remove CO2 from the biogas generated from anaerobic digesters at their wastewater treatment facilities. Rittmann's team will investigate whether the fibers can be used with microalgae to remove CO2 from the biogas, which would leave nearly pure methane which could be distributed through existing natural gas pipelines.

    Vermaas and his team were awarded $2.5 million to pursue an innovative multi-pronged approach toward improved CO2 utilization. One approach is to increase the solubility of carbon dioxide in growth medium by developing a nanobubble gas delivery system.. A second approach is to utilize amines in the medium, which greatly enhance the solubility of CO2, allowing the gas to be taken up by photosynthetic microbes for producing biofuel. The researchers anticipate at least a 50 pct increase in the efficiency of CO2 use with advanced biofuel production under industrially relevant conditions. (Source: ASU, PR, Nov., 2018) Contact: ASU, Prof. Bruce Rittmann, Dir. Biodesign Swette Center for Environmental Biotechnology, (480) 727-8322, www.biodesign.asu.edu/environmental-biotechnology; Willem Vermaas, ASU School of Life Sciences, 480-965-6250, wim@asu.edu, www.sols.asu.edu/willem-vermaas

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Micro Algae,  Biodiesel,  Drop-In Fuel,  CO2,  Algae,  Biofuel,  Carbon Dioxide,  

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