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Trump Reportedly Denies Retroactive RFS Waivers (Ind. Report)
RFS
Date: 2020-09-11
Reuters is reporting U.S. Pres. Trump has instructed the EPA to deny dozens of oil refiner requests for retroactive "hardship waivers" under the Renewable Fuels Standard.

The president's could be seen as an effort to shore up his support in the Corn Belt states.

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.Under the U.S. Renewable Fuel Standard, the nation's oil refineries are required to blend billions of gallons of biofuels such as ethanol into the fuel or buy credits from those that do. But the EPA can waive their obligations if they prove compliance would cause them financial distress. (Source: Chronicle Herald, 10 Sept., 2020)

More Low-Carbon Energy News Trump,  RFS,  Refinery Waivers,  Biofuel Blend,  


Ottawa Plans Fuel Carbon Cuts, Clean Fuel Standard (Reg. & Leg.)
Clean Fuel Standard
Date: 2020-09-11
In Ottawa, Reuters is reporting the Canadian Liberal Gov. of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau plans to require reductions in carbon intensity of fuels by 12 pct by 2030.

The move would require refiners to blend cleaner ethanol and other renewable fuels with gasoline and fossil fuels under a Clean Fuel Standard aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 30 million tonnes by 2030. The requirement would come into force in 2022, according to the Reuters report. Presently, Canada imports about 40 pct of the ethanol it uses. (Source: Canada Minister of Environment and Climate Change, Reuters, 11 Sept., 2020) Contact: Canada Minister of Environment and Climate Change, Hon.Jonathan Wilkinson, 613-995-1225, Jonathan.Wilkinson@parl.gc.ca

More Low-Carbon Energy News Low-Carbon Fuel,  Biofuel,  Ethanol,  Biodiesel,  Biofuel Blend,  Clean Fuel Standard,  


Growth Energy Pushes CARB to Encourage Biofuels (Opinions & Asides)
Growth Energy
Date: 2020-08-10
In a letter to the California Air Resources Board (CARB) Growth Energy's Regulatory Affairs VP Chris Bliley called for the agency to expand the use of higher biofuel blends to make California's fuel mix more environmentally sustainable.

According to Growth Energy, "Higher ethanol blends can be immediately deployed in existing vehicles to achieve immediate greenhouse gas reductions, reduce harmful air toxics, and reduce consumer costs at the pump. In fact, biofuels like ethanol have generated more than 75 percent of LCFS credits. Additionally, even with room to further improve greenhouse gas lifecycle modeling, CARB recognizes the significant improvement in ethanol's carbon intensity. As has been researched by the University of California -- Riverside and the University of Illinois, the use of more ethanol and ethanol-blended fuel reduces air toxics such as carbon monoxide, benzene, and other harmful particulates.'

Download Growth Energy's full comments HERE. Source: Growth Energy,CStore Decisions, Aug., 2020) Contact: Growth Energy, Chris Bliley, Senior VP Regulatory Affairs, www.growthenergy.org

More Low-Carbon Energy News Growth Energy news,  Biofuel news,  CARB news,  


EPA Considering Retroactive Small-Refinery Waivers (Ind. Report)
EPA, RFS
Date: 2020-07-17
The EPA on Thursday posted six additional pending requests for retroactive small-refinery exemptions to the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) to the agency dashboard, bringing the grand total to 58 such requests for waivers for compliance years 2011 through 2018.

The agency now lists seven pending requests each for 2011 and 2012, 11 each for 2013 and 2015, 12 in 2014, eight in 2016 and two in 2018, as well as 27 listed for 2019 and one for 2020. The agency granted 85 waivers for the period 2016 to 2018.

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.Under the U.S. Renewable Fuel Standard, the nation's oil refineries are required to blend billions of gallons of biofuels such as ethanol into the fuel or buy credits from those that do. But the EPA can waive their obligations if they prove compliance would cause them financial distress. (Source: EPA,DTN, 16 July, 2020)

More Low-Carbon Energy News RFS,  Hardship Waivers,  Biofuel Blend,  


Indonesia Claims 100 pct Palm Oil Biodiesel Success (Int'l. Report)
Pertamina
Date: 2020-07-15
In Jakarta, Indonesian state oil company PT Pertamina is reporting production of its first 100 pct palm oil biodiesel (D100) at its refinery in Dumai last week. With this initial success, the company plans to quickly ramp up production to 1,000 bpd, according to a release.

Indonesia, which has one of the world's most ambitious biodiesel programmes, raised the bio-content in its biodiesel mandate from 20 pct to 30 pct (B30) in 2019, with the goal of gradually reaching 100 pct.

Indonesia is the world's largest palm oil producer. (Source: PT Pertamina, PR, Reuters, 8 July, 2020) Contact: Pertamina, pcc@pertamina.com, www.pertamina.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Pertamina,  Biofuel Blend,  Palm Oil,  Biodiesel,  


RFA Urges Trump to Reject Refinery Waivers (Ind. Report)
RFA
Date: 2020-06-12
"One year ago today, you visited Southwest Iowa Renewable Energy in Council Bluffs to join us in celebrating a monumental achievement. At your direction, EPA had just completed regulatory changes finally allowing year-round sales of gasoline containing 15 pct ethanol (E15).

"This long-awaited move unlocked the door to future demand growth for ethanol and corn. It also meant consumers would have increased access to cleaner and more affordable fuel options at the pump.

"Just as expected, the marketplace responded quickly. In the year since the red-tape barrier was removed, E15 sales are up 50pct.

"But E15 growth would have been exponentially larger if not for your EPA continuing to excuse oil refiners from their legal obligations to blend renewable fuels. As we told you a year ago, EPA's refinery waivers have caused devastating demand losses for ethanol and corn, and they under mine the expansion of E15.

"Even after a federal court overturned some refinery waivers in January, your EPA continues to receive dozens of exemption requests from oil companies. EPA is now even considering giving retroactive waivers for years that pre-date your administration.

"This needs to stop. It is hurting farmers, costing consumers, and derailing progress on energy and environmental security.

"The economic pain in farm country caused by these refinery waivers was compounded this spring—first by the Saudi-Russia oil price war, and then by the COVID-19 pandemic. As a result of this 'perfect tsunami,' half of the ethanol industry was recently shut down, leading to layoffs across rural America. The ethanol industry and farmers are hurting like never before.

Mr. President, we need your help. We ask that you stand up for the Renewable Fuel Standard. Please direct your EPA to abide by the January court ruling and end the abuse of the refinery waiver loophole.

"You stood by us, farmers, and consumers when you directed EPA to allow year-round E15. Now, we humbly ask that you stand with us again and ensure ethanol demand is not eroded by illegal refinery waivers. Thank you,"

Geoff Cooper, Pres. & CEO Renewable Fuels Associationwww.EthanolRFA.org

More Low-Carbon Energy News RFS news,  Refinery Waivers news,  Biofuel Blend news,  RFA news,  


HollyFrontier Refinery Re-purposing to Renewable Diesel (Ind. Report)
HollyFrontier
Date: 2020-06-03
Dallas-based independent petroleum refiner and marketer HollyFrontier Corporation reports it will spend between $125 million to $175 million to re-purpose its Cheyenne, Wyoming petroleum refinery to produce roughly 90 million gpy of renewable diesel by Q1, 2022. With the move, the Cheyenne refinery is effectively shedding its Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) biofuel blending obligation to produce saleable renewable diesel and compliance credits.

"Demand for renewable diesel, as well as other lower carbon fuels, is growing and taking market share based on both consumer preferences and support from substantial federal and state government incentive programs," according to a statement from HollyFrontier CEO Mike Jennings. (Source: HollyFrontier, PR, Bloomberg, 3 June, 2020) Contact: HoolyFrontier, Craig Biery, Inv. Relations, 214-954-6510, www.hollyfrontier.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News HollyFrontier,  Renewable Diesel,  Biouel Blending,  RFS,  


Jakarta Allowing Ethanol- Gasoline Blended Fuel Imports (Int'l.)
Pertamina
Date: 2020-06-01
In Jakarta, the Indonesian state-owned oil company Pertamina, which controls the nationwide sale of fuel blends, reports the Indonesian federal government is expected to allow imports of 88 Ron gasoline blended with up to 3pc ethanol and higher-octane 92 Ron gasoline containing up to 7 pct (B7) ethanol, according to the US Grains Council (USGC).

As previously reported, Indonesia has fuel-ethanol blending targets of 5-10 pct by 2020 and 20 pct across all transport and industry sectors by 2025. (Source: US Grains Council, Pertamina, Argus, June, 2020) Contact: US Grains Council, www.grains.org; Pertamina, pcc@pertamina.com, www.pertamina.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Pertamina news,  Biofuel Blend news,  


IRFA Seeks Legislative Biofuel Tax Action (Ind. Report, Reg & Leg)
Iowa Renewable Fuels Association
Date: 2020-05-29
In the Hawkeye State, the Iowa Renewable Fuels Association (IRFA) is calling for legislators to act on House File 2279 and Senate File 2403 that would extend and modernize fuel tax differentials for E15 and higher ethanol blends and B11 and higher biodiesel blends, which are set to expire on June 30, 2020.

With the passage of either bill, Iowa will not only continue to support renewable fuels but put millions of dollars back into the road use tax fund each year for vital infrastructure projects, according to IRFA. "If the legislature allows the biofuel tax differentials to expire, not only will it raise prices on consumers at the pump, it will also hurt Iowa's farmers and biofuels producers who are suffering as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic and trade disputes. Since the implementation of the current tax differential, we've seen biofuel blend sales increase dramatically, but with June 30 just around the corner, it is imperative the legislature take action now. Iowa cannot afford to take a step backward in promoting the use of renewable fuels," according to IRFA Policy Director Nathan Hohnstein, (Source: Iowa Renewable Fuels Assoc., 27 May, 2020) Contact: IRFA, Nathan Hohnstein, Policy Director , (515) 252-6249, (515) 225-0781 -- fax, www.iowarfa.org

More Low-Carbon Energy News Iowa Renewable Fuels Association,  Biofuel,  


Higher Biofuel Blends Infrastructure Grants Offered (Funding)
USDA
Date: 2020-05-19
In Washington, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) reports the launch of an online portal to begin accepting applications for Higher Blends Infrastructure Incentive Program (HBIIP) grants.

USDA plans to make available up to $100 million in competitive grants for activities designed to expand the sale and availability of ethanol and biodiesel fuels. The funds will be directly available to help transportation fueling and biodiesel distribution facilities convert to higher ethanol and biodiesel blends by sharing the costs related to the installation of fuel pumps, related equipment and infrastructure.

Higher Blends Infrastructure Incentive Program details HERE. Application information HERE.

(Source: USDA Higher Blends Infrastructure Incentive Program, 15 May, 2020) Contact: USDA, www.rd.usda.gov/hbiip

More Low-Carbon Energy News USDA,  Biofuel Blend,  Biofuel Infrastructure,  


Jakarta Delaying Boost in B30 Biodiesel Mandate (Int'l. Report)
Indonesia Palm oil
Date: 2020-05-11
In Jakarta, the Coordinating Ministry of Economic Affairs Indonesia has announced the government will likely delay its planned raising of its present 30 pct (B30) palm oil blend rate to 40 pct (B40) by 2022, as previously reported. The Indonesian biodiesel programme is a key part of the government's strategy to use excess palm oil and curb fuel imports, one of the main contributors to the country's current account deficit problem.

The delay is being attributed to disruptions in world fuel demand caused by the coronavirus pandemic. (Source: Coordinating Ministry of Economic Affairs Indonesia, The Star, 9 May, 2020) Contact: Coordinating Ministry of Economic Affairs Indonesia, www.developmentaid.org/#!/donors/view/143865/coordinating-ministry-for-economic-affairs-indonesia

More Low-Carbon Energy News Palm Oil,  B40,  B30,  Indonesia Palm oil,  Biodiesel,  Biofuel Blend,  


Bankrupt Philly Refiner Offered Cap on RFS Obligation (Ind Report)
Philadelphia Energy Solutions
Date: 2020-05-11
The Trump administration has offered to place a $10 million cap on bankrupt Philadelphia Energy Solutions' biofuel blending obligations, effectively cutting the refiner's regulatory liability by more than 70 pct and freeing more cash for the company's creditors. Under the deal PES will either surrender 161.8 million biofuel blending credits (RINs) valued at roughly $35 million or pay up to $10 million to meet its RFS obligations, according to Reuters.

The Trump EPA previously waived $350 million in biofuels compliance costs for PES after its initial bankruptcy in 2018.

As reported in Jan., Philadelphia-headquartered bioenergy developer SG Preston dropped its previously expressed interest in redeveloping the shut-down fire-damaged 335,000 bpd Philadelphia refinery, which is now being sold by creditors for $252 million and redeveloped under a bankruptcy court approved plan. (Source: Various Media,Reuters, May, 2020)

More Low-Carbon Energy News Philadelphia Energy Solutions,  RFS,  Biofuel Blend,  RINs,  


$100Mn Biofuel Blends Infrastructure Incentives Available (Funding)
USDA,Renewable Fuels Association
Date: 2020-05-06
In the Nation's capital, the USDA reports it intends to make up to $100 million available in competitive grants under the Higher Blends Infrastructure Incentive Program to support activities designed to expand the availability and sale of ethanol and biodiesel.

According to the USDA release, funds will be made directly available to assist transportation and fueling and biodiesel distribution facilities with converting to higher ethanol and biodiesel blends by sharing the costs related to and/or offering sales incentives for the installation of fuel pumps, related equipment and infrastructure. distribution facilities.

Of the total $100 million, $86 million will be available for implementation activities related to ethanol blends above E10 and $14 million will be available for implementation activities related to blends of biodiesel above B5. Grants for up to 50 percent of total eligible projects costs, up to $5 million, are available to vehicle fueling facilities, including local fueling stations/locations, convenience stores, hypermarket fueling stations, fleet facilities, fuel terminal operations, midstream partners and/or distribution facilities.

The agency expects the $100 million in funding to support approximately 150 awards and provide assistance to approximately 1,500 locations.

As an aside, Renewable Fuels Association President and CEO Geoff Cooper offered the following statement in response: "U.S. ethanol producers today are facing the worst economic conditions in the industry's 40-year history due to COVID-19, and they need immediate emergency relief to survive this catastrophe. Once the pandemic is over and fuel markets are showing signs of recovery, expanding infrastructure via the Higher Blends Infrastructure Incentive Program will be important to the long-term future of the ethanol industry and rural America. We thank the USDA for its efforts to support the future of renewable fuels." (Source: USDA, May, 2020)Contact: USDA, Sonny Perdue, Sec., www.usda.gov; Renewable Fuels Association, Geoff Cooper, (202) 289-3835, www.ethanolrfa.org

More Low-Carbon Energy News Renewable Fuels Association,  USDA,  Biofuel,  Biofuel Blend,  


IPPCA Supports Philippine Ethanol Blending Suspension (Int'l.)
Independent Philippine Petroleum Companies Association
Date: 2020-05-06
In Manila, the Philippines, the Independent Philippine Petroleum Companies Association (IPPCA) has come out in support of the Philippine Department of Energy's suggested diversion of biofuel production into the creation of ethyl alcohol on the grounds that "diverting it [biofuels] to ethyl alcohol, or even as alcohol beverage, will be more beneficial for the economy."

Under 2006 legislation, the Philippines mandates a 10 pct bioethanol-gasoline blend rate. The energy Department noted "Let's use the ethanol to produce alcohol and since the price of oil is low, we can use 100 pct gasoline." Under the country's Biofuels Act, prohibits the "diversion of biofuels, whether locally produced or imported, to purposes other than those envisioned in the Act." (Source: Independent Philippine Petroleum Companies Association, Business World, 5 May, 2020) Contact: Independent Philippine Petroleum Companies Association, www.facebook.com/pages/category/Nonprofit-Organization/Independent-Philippine-Petroleum-Companies-Association-IPPCA-120279771348470

More Low-Carbon Energy News Ethanol,   Ethanol Blend,  Philippine Ethano,  Biofuel Blendl Blend,  


Governors Seeking RFS Refinery "Hardship" Waivers (Ind. Report)
EPS, Renewable Fuel Standard
Date: 2020-04-27
ICIS is reporting the governors of Louisiana (D), Texas (R), Oklahoma (R), Utah (R) and Wyoming (R) have written to the US EPA asking for "hardship" waivers for the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) for refiners in their states. In their appeal, the governors noted plunging fuel demand as the reason for the request.

According to the Energy Information Administration (EIA) the states currently under the COVID-19 pandemic "stay at home orders" account for 95 pct of US fuel demand. Meanwhile, ethanol market producers and players say that it is a "convenient reason for them (oil refiners) to escape a US law", and that doing so would further harm ethanol demand.

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.Under the U.S. Renewable Fuel Standard, the nation's oil refineries are required to blend billions of gallons of biofuels such as ethanol into the fuel or buy credits from those that do. But the EPA can waive their obligations if they prove compliance would cause them financial distress.(Source: Various Trade Media, ICIS, 17 April, 2020)

More Low-Carbon Energy News RFS,  Hardship Waiver,  Biofuel Blend,  


Romania Temporarily Suspends Biofuel Blending (Int'l Report)
Romania
Date: 2020-04-22
In Bucharest, the Romanian government reports it has changed its mandatory biofuel blending to allow derogation until the COVID-19 crisis, which has interrupted biofuel imports which are used in the county's biofuel blending program.

Romania is 100 pct dependent on imports for the biofuel used in the gasoline blend, but it only imports 30 pct of the biofuel used in diesel blends.

As part of the Renewable Energy Directive (RED) and transport's decarbonisation push, EU countries are obliged to use 10 pct of renewables, basically biofuels, in the transport sector. (Source: Various Trade Media, Euractiv, 17 April, 2020)

More Low-Carbon Energy News Biofuel Blend,  


EU Biofuel Groups Concerned Over Possible Biofuel Blending Cutbacks (Opinions, Editorials & Asides)
European Biodiesel Board
Date: 2020-04-06
The European Biodiesel Board, ePURE and several other European biofuel trade organizations have penned the following outlining their concerns that some EU countries were considering "derogations" to their blending operations:

"If implemented, such derogations would exacerbate the negative effects already experienced by our sectors. The resulting reduction in demand would cause the shutdown of biofuel plants. It would also jeopardize the supply of products needed to produce hand sanitiser products, impact the proper function of the EU internal market for fuels and reduce the supply of animal feed. In addition, European renewable energy and climate commitments would be jeopardized."

"The production of the European biofuels value chain is (already) severely affected by the strong drop in fuel consumption and the corresponding reduction for the demand for our products, accentuated by the drop in fuel prices. (Source: European Biodiesel Board, ePure, Various Trade Media, April, 2020) Contact: European Biodiesel Board, ; ePURE, Emmanuel Desplechin, Sec. General, +32 2 657 6679, info@epure.org, www.epure.org

More Low-Carbon Energy News Biofuel Blending,  European Biodiesel Board,  ePure,  Biodiesel,  


EPA Considering RFS Blending Compliance Delay (Ind. Report)
Renewable Fuel Standard
Date: 2020-04-03
Reuters is reporting US EPA chief Andrew Wheeler is considering delaying the deadline for oil refineries to comply with the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) biofuel blending regulation past March 31 to help the industry cope with fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic.

Since the pandemic's onset, the oil industry has asked for broad regulatory relief to help it survive sharply reduced global demand for fuel and to lower related costs. (Source: US EPA, Reuters, 27 Mar., 2020) Contact: US EPA, Andrew Wheeler, Administrator, www.epa.gov/aboutepa/epas-acting-administrator

More Low-Carbon Energy News US EPA,  Andrew Wheeler,  Renewable Fuel Standard,  


Viva Energy Joins Bioenergy Australia Trade Organization (Int'l)
Viva Energy Australia
Date: 2020-03-11
In the Land Down Under, liquid fuel supplier and biofuel blender Viva Energy Australia Pty Ltd. reports it has joined BioEnergy Australia, the Australian national bioindustry trade association

Viva, which operates biodiesel blending facilities in Qweensland, Victoria and New South Wales, has recently invested over $20 million, (AUS) in biofuels projects and established various supply agreements with local biofuels producers and the construction of a new biofuels blending facility in Queensland. (Source: Viva Energy Australia, PetrolPlaza, 8 Mar.,2020) Contact: Viva Energy Australia, www.vivaenergy.com.au; Bioenergy Australia, Shahana McKenzie, CEO, www.bioenergyaustralia.org.au

More Low-Carbon Energy News Viva Energy Australia,  Biodiesel,  Biofuel,  


India Increasing Ethanol Production, Blending Rate (Int'l.)
India Biofuel
Date: 2020-03-04
The Times of India is reporting the Indian federal government plans to increase the country's ethanol from sugarcane and molasses production capacity from 3.55 billion lpy to 9 billion lpy within two years. The government has also "approved in principle" 362 new ethanol facilities in sugar mills and an increase in the national ethanol-petrol blending rate to 10 pct (B10) by 2022.

The increases are intended to redirect 700,000-800,000 tpy of surplus sugar in each of the next two years for ethanol production, cut fuel and oil imports and to maximize profitability of sugar companies, according to officials. (Source: Economic Times India, 3 Mar., 2020)

More Low-Carbon Energy News Ethanol India Ethanol,  Biofuel Blend,  


USDA Offers $100Mn Biofuels Infrastructure Grant Program, Increases Biofuels Fleet (Ind. Report, Reg. & Leg.)
USDA
Date: 2020-03-02
In Washington,the USDA is reporting Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue has directed the agency to acquire alternative fueled -- biodiesel, E85 -- vehicles (AFV) when replacing conventionally fueled vehicles. USDA owns and operates 37,000 vehicles and replaces approximately 3,000 every year.More specifically, the USDA will:
  • Acquire E85 or biodiesel-capable vehicles that meet USDA mission requirements;

  • Use station locator websites and applications to fuel with E15, E85, and biodiesel where available;

  • Prioritize the purchase of E15 for gasoline vehicles without E85 capability and the purchase of renewable diesel blends for diesel vehicles without B20 capability

  • For USDA locations that have in-house refueling pumps, coordinate with fuel vendors to acquire and provide biofuel blends, including E15, E85, B20 and higher biodiesel blends, and renewable diesel blends.

    These actions have the potential to increase USDA's annual consumption of E15 by up to 9 million gallons, E85 by 10 million gallons, and biodiesel and renewable diesel blends by up to 3 million gallons.

    The agency also announced it will offer $100 million in grant funding this year for the newly created Higher Blends Infrastructure Incentive Program (HBIIP) to help transportation fueling and biodiesel distribution facilities install, retrofit, and/or upgrade fuel storage, dispenser pumps, related equipment and infrastructure to be able to sell ethanol and biodiesel.

    Download HBIIP program details HERE. Download the USDA order HERE. (Source: USDA, 28 Feb., 2020) Contact: USDA, Sonny Perdue, Sec.,www.usda.gov

    More Low-Carbon Energy News USDA,  Biofuel Fleet,  Biofuel,  Biodiesel,  Biofuel Infrastructure,  


  • US Renewable Fuel Prices Up With RFS "Hardship Waiver" Program Announcement (Ind. Report)
    Renewable Fuel
    Date: 2020-02-28
    Reuters is reporting U.S. renewable fuel prices were up by 25 pct the week following a Bloomberg reports that the Trump administration has decided to cut back on "hardship waiver" exemptions for oil refineries from the renewable fuel standard biofuel blending laws.

    Following the Bloomberg report, renewable fuel credits for 2019 traded at 35 cents each , up 7 cents while credits for 2020 traded at 40 cents each.

    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.Under the U.S. Renewable Fuel Standard, the nation's oil refineries are required to blend billions of gallons of biofuels such as ethanol into the fuel or buy credits from those that do. But the EPA can waive their obligations if they prove compliance would cause them financial distress.

    (Source: Various Media, Successful Farming, Reuters, 26 Feb., 2020)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Renewable Fuel Standard,  RFS,  "Hardship" Waiver,  


    "New USDA Mandate for Biofuels Should be Withdrawn" (Opinions, Editorials & Asides)
    USDA
    Date: 2020-02-24
    "When the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced its 'innovation agenda' to align USDA's resources, programs, and research to help the agriculture industry meet the 'climate demands of the future' the first reaction at Citizens Against Government Waste (CAGW) is that this looks and sounds far too much like more taxpayers subsidies for programs that already exist. According to an April 30, 2018 Government Accountability Office report, the Office of Management and Budget found $13.2 billion in climate change funding across 19 agencies in 2017. The GAO reviewed six agencies and found that 94 pct of their reported climate change funding went to programs that touch on, but aren't dedicated to climate change, such as nuclear energy research. The government should determine whether those are effective and consolidate or terminate ones that are not before creating costly new mandates and programs.

    "The plan to reach 30 pct for biofuels in 2050 is especially troubling. The USDA's historic approach to 'market-driven blend rates' has been to aggressively pursue unachievable biofuel mandates that put manufacturing jobs at risk, result in more emissions and create a reliance on foreign fuels. Ethanol is cheaper than gasoline and does not need a mandate. If the USDA is truly interested in 'market driven' approaches, it should advocate eliminating the renewable fuel standard (RFS) so that renewable energy can economically compete on its own, rather than trying to promote mandates that drive quantities of ethanol-laced fuels that consumers may not want, while putting jobs at risk and raising costs at the pump. In fact, the blend rate is gradually increasing despite falling renewable identification numbers and small refinery exemptions. This shows that ethanol is economic on its own and that markets, not mandates, should determine our nation's fuel mix.

    "Calling for a 30 pct biofuels goal for 2050 is not something that should be coming out of the Trump administration. It sounds like an objective of the $93 trillion Green New Deal which President Trump and every free market and taxpayers group including CAGW has said is both unachievable and devastating to the economy. The USDA should withdraw its proposal and the RFS should be eliminated."(Source: The Waste Watcher - Against Government Waste , 21 Feb. 2020) Contact: The Waste Watcher -Against Government Waste www.cagw.org

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


    Co-Optima Offers Biofuel, Bioenergy R&D Funding (Funding, R&D)
    US DOE Co-Optima Initiative
    Date: 2020-02-21
    The US DOE Co-Optima Initiative is overseeing a Directed Funding Opportunity (DFO) to apply the unique, world-class capabilities of the consortium toward addressing specific challenges identified by applicants from industry and academia.

    The Co-Optimization of Fuels & Engines (Co-Optima) National Laboratory consortium is jointly sponsored by the DOE's Office of Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy’s Bioenergy Technologies Office and Vehicle Technologies Office. Co-Optima focuses on developing new high-performance fuels that, when combined with advanced combustion approaches, can boost engine efficiency and cut emissions.

    The Co-Optima DFO is seeking proposals that overcome key technical challenges to accelerating adoption of new fuel-biofuel blend stocks from renewable resources, enabling higher efficiency and lower emissions in on-highway vehicles. For this DFO, biofuel blendstocks, biofuel production, bio-blendstock/biofuel property R&D is of particular interest and importance.

    Selected projects are anticipated to range from $200,000 up to $300,000 of Co-Optima National Laboratory assistance over the project duration of 12-18 months. Up to $2,000,000 will be available for this call and Co-Optima anticipates a total of 7-10 projects will be selected for funding. Industry partners will fund their own labor, materials, and other expenses directly, which contribute toward a 20 pct minimum cost-share requirement.

    Directed Funding Opportunity for Collaboration with National Laboratories details HERE. (Source: Co-Optima, PR, 18 Feb., 2020) Contact: DOE Co-Optima, www.cooptima.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Clean Fuel,  Low-Carbon Fuel,  Renewable Fuels,  Biofuel,  


    Hapag-Lloyd Testing Maritime B20 Biofuels Blend (Ind. Report)
    Hapag-Lloyd
    Date: 2020-02-03
    Hamburg, Germany-headquartered maritime shipping giant Hapag-Lloyd is reporting its ship, the Montreal Express was recently refueled in Rotterdam with B20 biofuel -- 80 pct low sulphur fuel oil and 20 pct biodiesel -- based on cooking oils and fats.

    The Montreal Express, which operates in the St. Lawrence Coordinated Service 2 between Europe and Canada, B20 test run is intended "gain experience and information on the properties of the fuel in real-world use" and bring the company closer to meeting its climate-protection goals and reducing specific CO2 emissions by 50 pct compared to the reference year 2008.

    Hapag-Lloyd AG is the world's fifth largest container carrier in terms of vessel capacity. (Source: Hapag-lloyd, PR, Bunkerspot, Fe., 2020) Contact: Hapag-Lloyd, www.hapag-lloyd.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News B20,  Biofuel Blend,  Biodiesel ,  


    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,  


    Manitoba Raising Ethanol, Biodiesel Blend Rates (Ind. Report)
    Manitoba Premier Brian Pallister
    Date: 2020-01-31
    On the Canadian prairies, Manitoba Premier Brian Pallister (PC) is touting his government's Manitoba Climate and Green Plan and the implementation of new clean fuel standards to reduce Manitoba's emissions by almost 400,000 metric tons cumulatively over the next five years -- equivalent to removing 100,000 vehicles from the province's highways.

    Under the plan, Manitoba will increase the ethanol content requirement of gasoline to 10 pct from 8.5 pct, and the biodiesel content of diesel to 5 pct from 2 pct. (Source: Office of Manitoba Premier Brian Pallister, Government of Manitoba, 28 January , 2020) Contact: Office of Premier Brian Pallister, 204-945-3714, Fax - 204-949-1484, premier@leg.gov.mb.ca

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Biofuel Blend,  Clean Fuel,  Ethanol,  Biodiesel,  


    China Scraps National E10 Ethanol Blend Program (Int'l. Report)
    China’s National Development and Reform Commission
    Date: 2020-01-10
    In Beijing, it is being widely report that China's National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) has suspended its planned implementation of a nationwide E10 gasoline-ethanol blend program due to a sharp decline in the country's corn stocks and limited biofuel production capacity.The few provinces that have already implemented full or partial blends will, however, continue the program.

    In 2018, China was the eighth-biggest market for U.S. ethanol exports, taking up 52.9 million gallons of the corn-based fuel, according to the RFA. Reaching the 2020 target would have required about 15 million tonnes of the biofuel annually, more than four times current output, or some 45 million tonnes of corn -- roughly 16 pct of the country's current consumption, according to Reuters. (Source: BOE Report, ETAuto, Reuters, 8 Jan., 2020) Contact: China National Development and Reform Commission, en.ndrc.gov.cn

    More Low-Carbon Energy News E10,  Biofuel Blend,  China Biofuel,  Ethanol,  China National Development and Reform Commission ,  


    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,  


    MSC Commits to Rotterdam Biofuel-Blend Bunkering (Int'l. Report)
    Mediterranean Shipping Company
    Date: 2019-12-11
    Geneva, Switzerland-headquartered Mediterranean Shipping Company S.A.(MSC) notes it is committed to using "responsibly sourced" biofuels on a regular basis when bunkering vessels in Rotterdam. The company initially trialed using 10 pct biofuel blends and has now increased this to 30 pct for a significant reduction in CO2 emissions.

    Mediterranean Shipping Company S.A. is a Swiss-Italian international shipping line operating in all major ports of the world. It is the world's second-largest shipping line in terms of container vessel capacity. (Source: Mediterranean Shipping Company , Seatrade, 9 Dec., 2019) Contact: Mediterranean Shipping Company, Bud Darr, exec. VP, Policy & Government Affairs , +41227038888, info@msc.com, www.msc.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Mediterranean Shipping Company,  Biofuel,  Marine Biofuel,  Biofuel Blends,  


    Empire State OKs E15 Fuel Sales (Ind. Report)
    New York Department of Agriculture and Markets
    Date: 2019-11-22
    In Albany, the New York Department of Agriculture and Markets reports it has finalised a rule allowing the sale of E15 ethanol blend fuels in the Empire State -- America's fourth-largest fuel market.

    The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has approved E15 for all vehicle models year 2001 and newer. (Source: New York Department of Agriculture and Markets, Biofuels Int'l. 21 Nov., 2019) Contact: New York Department of Agriculture and Markets, 800-554-4501, www.ny.gov › agencies › department-agriculture-and-markets

    More Low-Carbon Energy News E15,  Biofuel Blend,  


    Canola Growers Seek Increased Biofuel Blend Rates (Ind. Report)
    Alberta Canola.
    Date: 2019-11-15
    On the oil-soaked Canadian prairies, Alberta Canola reports it is labbying the Province of Alberta to boost the amount of biofuels blended into diesel fuel to 5 pct from the existing 2 pct as mandated under the Alberta duel standard. The trade association notes the increase could provide new markets for hard-hit canola producers and encourage more processing capacity. Alberta's fuel standard also dictates gasoline sold in the province must meet a minimum 5 pct average of renewable fuels, such as ethanol.

    Alberta farmers produced nearly 6 million tonnes of canola in 2018. (Source: Alberta Canola, Red Deer Advocate, Nov., 2019) Contact: Alberta Canola, John Guelly, (780) 454-0844, www.albertacanola.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Alberta Canola,  Canola,  Biouel,  Biofuel Blend,  


    Biofuels Coalition Challenges EPA's "Hardship Waivers" (Ind Report)
    Growth Energy, U.S. Grains Council,Renewable Fuels Association
    Date: 2019-10-25
    Previously this week in Washington, a coalition of the American Coalition for Ethanol, Growth Energy, National Biodiesel Board, National Corn Growers Association, National Farmers Union, and Renewable Fuels Association filed a petition with the Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, challenging the process by which the U.S. EPA issue economic "hardship waivers" to over 30 small refineries from their respective Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) biofuel blending obligations for 2018.

    The coalition's brief noted, "Even as the Trump Administration indicates it is taking steps to account for future small refinery exemptions, the coalition remains concerned that EPA's abuse of the small refinery exemption program diverges from the spirit and letter of the Clean Air Act. From a substantive and procedural perspective, this is not the way for a federal agency to make such a momentous decision." (Source: Growth Energy, U.S. Grains Council, and Renewable Fuels Association , 23 Oct., 2019) Contact: Growth Energy, Emily Skor, CEO, Elizabeth Funderburk, (202) 545-4000, EFunderburk@GrowthEnergy.org, www.growthenergy.org; U.S. Grains Council, Tom Sleight, Pres., (202) 789-0789, (202) 898-0522, www.grains.org; Renewable Fuels Association, Geoff Cooper, (202) 289-3835, www.ethanolrfa.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News RFS,  Growth Energy,  U.S. Grains Council,  Renewable Fuels Association,  


    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,  


    Trump administration reaches regulatory deal on Renewable Fuel Standard
    EPA,RFS
    Date: 2019-10-09
    U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Andrew Wheeler and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Secretary Sonny Perdue announced that President Donald Trump is promoting a new Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS). Under the agreement, the following actions will be undertaken by EPA and USDA. In a forthcoming supplemental notice building off the recently proposed 2020 Renewable Volume Standards and the Biomass-Based Diesel Volume for 2021, EPA will propose and request public comment on expanding biofuel requirements beginning in 2020. EPA will seek comment on actions to ensure that more than 15 billion gallons of conventional ethanol be blended into the nation’s fuel supply beginning in 2020, and that the volume obligation for biomass-based diesel is met. This will include accounting for relief expected to be provided for small refineries; the EPA intends to take final action on this front later this year. In the most recent compliance year, EPA granted 31 small refinery exemptions. Building on the president’s earlier decision to allow year-round sales of E15, EPA will initiate a rule making process to streamline labeling and remove other barriers to the sale of E15; EPA will continue to evaluate options for RIN market transparency and reform; and USDA will seek opportunities through the budget process to consider infrastructure projects to facilitate higher biofuel blends. (Source: Talk Business & Politics , 7 Oct., 2019)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Trump. RFS news,  Renewable Fuel Standard news,  "Hardship" Waiver news,  


    EPA Halts RFS "Hardship" Waiver Changes (Ind. Report)
    RFS,"Hardship Waivers"
    Date: 2019-10-02
    It is being widely reported by Fox News and others that the EPA has stalled on updates to the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) biofuels policy regarding biofuel blending "hardship" waivers (exemptions) that have been issued at near wholesale levels.

    The EPA appears to be acting on instructions from Trump who is no doubt preoccupied with his own whistleblower and impeachment worries.

    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: Fox News, Various Other Media, 2 Oct., 2019)

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


    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,  


    Growth Energy CEO Rebuts EPA Zero Demand Destruction Claim (Opinions, Editorials & Asides)
    Growth Energy, RFS, EPA
    Date: 2019-08-21
    In response to the EPA's recent claim -- "There is zero evidence that EPA's congressionally mandated small refinery exemption program has had any negative impact on domestic corn ethanol producers" -- Growth Energy CEO Emily Skor issued the following statement.

    "The latest reports say President Trump 'felt misled' about the EPA's most recent batch of small refinery exemptions. That's hardly a surprise. The EPA spent months trying to paper over the devastating impact these refinery (waiver) handouts have had on farm communities and rural workers in America's biofuel sector. They can't hide the simple fact that dozens of biofuel plants have cut production, and ethanol consumption fell for the first time in 20 years in the wake of these exemptions. Closures in Iowa, Illinois, Kansas, Minnesota, Florida, Virginia, Texas, Pennsylvania, Missouri and Nebraska are only the beginning.

    "Just today, the world's largest ethanol producer closed a major plant in Indiana and cut production across seven states. Hundreds of millions of gallons of production are offline, and hundreds of millions of bushels of grain are falling in value, just as farmers face the worst economic conditions in a generation.

    "The Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) creates an incentive that opens the market to biofuel blends, including the E15 that President Trump personally embraced. These exemptions destroy that incentive, pure and simple. You cannot carve billions of gallons from America's biofuel targets and still keep this administration's promises to farm families. EPA needs to account for these lost gallons immediately and start repairing the damage before more rural communities lose hope for a comeback."

    Growth Energy represents producers and supporters of ethanol working to bring consumers better choices at the fuel pump, grow America's economy and improve the environment. (Source: Growth Energy, 21 Aug., 2019) Contact: Growth Energy, Emily Skor, CEO, Elizabeth Funderburk, (202) 545-4000, EFunderburk@GrowthEnergy.org, www.growthenergy.org

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


    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,  


    UK NFU Calls for E10 Ethanol-Petrol Blend (Int'l Report)
    UK NFU
    Date: 2019-07-19
    In Warwickshire, the UK National Farmers Union (NFU) is calling for the introduction of E10 -- ethanol from wheat and sugar beet -- petrol. This is opposed to the current proportion that limits the content of bioethanol to a maximum of 5 pct (E5).

    The call comes as an All-Party Parliamentary Group for British Bioethanol (APPG) issued a report urging the Department of Transport to prioritize the introduction of E10.

    According to NFU Combinable Crops board chairman Tom Bradshaw, "Increasing the bioethanol content in fuel is a win-win for the environment, farmers and the economy. The industry is desperate to see both Vivergo and Ensus plants back up and running so they can continue to convert British wheat into bioethanol. But at the moment there simply isn't enough demand to keep these plants going." Bradshaw added, "Now is the time for legislative action. Farmers want to help deliver renewable fuel for the nation but the government needs to step up and provide supportive policy, especially if we are to hit their target of becoming a net zero economy by 2050." (Source: FarmingUK, GIZMODO, 18 July, 2019) Contact: UK NFU, +44 024 7685 8500, www.nfuonline.com; All-Party Parliamentary Group for British Bioethanol, info@britishbioethanol.com, www.britishbioethanol.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News E10,  Biofuel Blend,  


    Virgin's Australian Flights Fueled by GEVO SAJF (Ind. Report)
    GEVO
    Date: 2019-06-26
    Englewood, Colorado-headquartered renewable fuels and chemicals manufacturer Gevo, Inc. reports Virgin Australia has used Gevo's sustainable aviation jet fuel (SAJF) on 1 million kilometers of flights, for all aircraft operating in and out of Brisbane Airport. The Gevo fuel was dispensed through the airport's general fuel supply system.

    Since the first container of SAJF was delivered to Brisbane back in August 2018, Virgin Australia has continued to work with GEVO and has welcomed three more deliveries of the SAJF since this time, according to the Gevo release.

    As previously reported, in October, 2017, Virgin (Airlines) Australia announced a two-year project with Brisbane airport, GEVO and the Queensland Government and worked on the trial with supply partners Caltex and DB Schenker. The first test saw a biofuel blend pumped to 195 domestic and international flights that traveled more than 430,000 kilometres. Additional trials were expected to follow over the next 12 to 18 months. (Source: GEVO, PR, Ethanol Producer, 24 June, 2019) Contact: GEVO, Patrick Gruber, CEO, pgruber@gevo.com; Virgin Australia, +61 7 3295 2296, www.virginaustralia.com/uk; Brisbane Airport, www.bne.com.au

    More Low-Carbon Energy News GEVO,  Aviation Biofuel,  


    UK's £1bn Bioethanol Ind. at Risk, claims APPG Report (Int'l Report)
    All Party Parliamentary Group for British Bioethanol
    Date: 2019-06-12
    In the UK, the All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) for British Bioethanol is reporting release of its its interim Introducing E10 in the UK report considering the to barriers to the introduction of E10 ethanol blended transportation fuel into the UK. The report notes:
  • The UK economy will likely lose its £1 billion ($1,272,225,000 US) bioethanol industry without the introduction of E10 by 2020 at the latest, and will continue to decline and likely disappear.

  • Introducing E10 would help the UK meet its greenhouse gas (GHG) reduction targets, saving the equivalent of taking 700,000 cars off the road.

  • Petrol fuel sales volumes in the UK are now increasing, due to the decreasing popularity of diesel cars. With widespread adoption of electric vehicles still decades away, the use of increasing blends of biofuels in petrol to make cars greener and cleaner must be a priority.

  • E10, or a higher blend of bioethanol, could help tackle the UK's air quality problems and health issues caused by high particulate levels.

  • If the British bioethanol industry is lost, the UK is unlikely to attract further investment, including for the next generation of biofuels and enhanced animal feed co-products, which would deliver further economic and environmental benefits.

  • Lose of the UK Biofuels industry could also increases the country's dependence on imported biofuels, force British farmers to source animal feed from less sustainable sources, and contribute the the UK missing its fuels quality directive target -- 4 pct rising to 6 pct in 2020 -- and miss its GHG emissions targets. (Source: All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) for British Bioethanol, June, 2019) Contact: All Party Parliamentary Group for British Bioethanol, info@britishbioethanol.com, www.britishbioethanol.com/about-the-appg

    More Low-Carbon Energy News UK Bioethanol,  Ethanol,  Biofuel,  Biofuel Blend,  B10,  


  • US Drivers Cover 10 billion Miles on E15 Biofuel Blend (Ind. Report)
    Growth Energy
    Date: 2019-06-12
    According to Growth Energy, US drivers have logged more 10 billion miles on American highways using E15 fuel which has just been approved for year-round sales by the US EPA. Growth Energy notes the E15 – aka Unleaded88 – is available at mobe than 1,800 filling states across 31 US states.

    (Source: Growth Energy, Various Media, June, 2019) Contact: Growth Energy, Emily Skor, CEO, Elizabeth Funderburk, (202) 545-4000, EFunderburk@GrowthEnergy.org, www.growthenergy.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Growth Energy,  E15,  Ethanol Blend,  Biofuel Blend,  


    Senators Call for RFS "Hardship Waiver" Halt (Reg. & Leg.)
    RFS,"Hardship Wsivers"
    Date: 2019-06-12
    Last week in Washington, a dozen Democrattic US Senators wrote to the Trump Administration appointed EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler advising that the small refiner "hardship waiver" provision was NOT intended to undermine the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS). Accordingly, the Senators added,

    "We request that you cease issuing any further small refinery exemptions, immediately reallocate the remaining gallons, and make public the information regarding any recipients of these exemptions

    "We are extremely concerned about the EPA's recent actions to continue to improperly grant small refinery hardship waivers under the RFS. EPA's continued manipulation and misuse of the small refiner waiver authority is undermining the integrity of the RFS and disadvantaging farmers. Rather than follow congressional intent in the RFS and follow through on the promises made to rural America, the EPA and the (Trump) Administration are providing waivers, in secret, to help some of the largest oil companies and refiners evade their compliance obligations under the Clean Air Act.

    The letter's signatories included Senators Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) and Tammy Duckworth (D-IL), Senators Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), Michael Bennet (D-CO), Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Dick Durbin (D-IL), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), Mazie Hirono (D-HI), Jeff Merkley (D-OR), Tina Smith (D-MN), Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), and Ron Wyden (D-OR).

    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: Farm Journal, Various Media, AgPro, 11 June, 2019)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Biofuel Blend,  RFS,  "Hardship Waivers" ,  Andrew Wheeler,  


    Candidate Klobuchar Proposes RFS Exemption Changes (Ind Report)
    Klobuchar
    Date: 2019-05-27
    Last week while on the campaign trail in Iowa, Minnesota Senator and 2020 Presidential wannabe Amy Klobuchar (D) called for the revamping of the EPA's RFS "hardship waiver" rules governing small refineries.

    According to Klobuchar, EPA waivers that allow small refineries to avoid the requirements are "misguided" and manipulated by financial institutions and the biofuels credit trading market. The senator proposed new compliance standards and additional oversight. Klobuchar also supports year-round sales of E15.

    To date in the presidential primary race, Klobuchar is near the bottom of the pack and playing on the small refinery waiver program could play well in the Corn-husker State.

    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: IJR, Various Media, Reuters, 25 May, 2019) Contact: Sen. Amy Klobuchar, www.klobuchar.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/mobile/email-amy

    More Low-Carbon Energy News RFS,  Biofuel Blend,  


    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 ,  


    U.S. Soybean Oil for Biodiesel Production Rising (Ind. Report)
    US EIA
    Date: 2019-05-10
    According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), the share of total soybean oil consumed as a biodiesel feedstock doubled from the current 15 pct to 30 pct as the total U.S. soybean oil supply grew from about 22.5 billion pounds to nearly 26.0 billion pounds between marketing year 2010-2011 and 2017-2018.

    Soybean oil is the most commonly used vegetable oil for biodiesel production, and inputs reached 7.1 billion pounds during the latest soybean oil marketing year which ran from Oct. 1, 2017, to Sept. 30, 2018. Between marketing year 2010-2011 and marketing year 2017-2018, U.S. domestic biodiesel production grew from 700 million gpy to 1.8 billion gpy. The production increase was largely driven by the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) biofuel blending mandate. (Source: US EIA, Xinhua, 8 May, 2019)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News US EIA,  Soybean,  Soybean Oil,  BiodieselBiofuel,  


    Hawkeye State Ag Sec. Supports Year-Round E15 (Ind. Report)
    E15
    Date: 2019-05-01
    Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig submitted the following comments in support of the US EPA's proposed changes to E15 fuel-blend regulations to allow year-round sales of E15:

    "The Iowa renewable fuels industry accounts for more than $5 billion (roughly 3 pct) of Iowa's GDP, generating $2.5 billion of income for Iowa households and supporting almost 50,000 jobs throughout the state. Year-round access to E15 represents a long-overdue step toward creating a truly competitive fuel market, where cleaner, lower-cost biofuel blends are available to all consumers. This means stronger markets for farm families across Iowa who have been struggling with ongoing low commodity prices and trade tensions." Naig said.

    "In addition to allowing year-round sales of E15, the EPA's proposed regulatory changes would modify certain elements of the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) compliance system to improve the renewable identification number (RIN) market." Iowa is expected to have nearly 1,000 E-15 pumps at 200 stations statewide by the end of 2019. (Source: Iowa Dept. of Agriculture, Crop Life, 30 April, 2019) Contact: Iowa Dept. of Agriculture, Mike Naig, Sec., (515) 281-5321, www.IowaAgriculture.gov

    More Low-Carbon Energy News RFS,  Ethanol Blend,  E15,  


    Notable Quotes on Biofuel Blends (Opinions, Editorials & Asides)
    Iowa Renewable Fuels Assoc., Renewable Fuels Association
    Date: 2019-04-02



    EPA Issuing Partial RFS "Hardship" Waivers for 2018 (Ind. Report)
    EPA, RFS,American Coalition for Ethanol
    Date: 2019-03-25
    The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will reportedly issue partial waivers to some of the 39 refiners asking for exemptions from the Renewable Fuels Standard (RFS). The agency also notes it will keep granting partial waivers until the end of March and won’t retroactively reallocate those waived obligations.

    According to the American Coalition for Ethanol the EPA's position is "disappointing and has caused a lot of ethanol demand destruction."

    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: American Coalition for Ethanol, EPA, WNAX Radio, 25 Mar., 2019) Contact: American Coalition for Ethanol, Brian Jennings, CEO, Ron Lamberty, VP, (605) 334-3381, https://ethanol.org.

    More Low-Carbon Energy News American Coalition for Ethanol,  RFS,  Hardship Waivers,  Biofuel Blend,  

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