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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,  


North Dakota E15 Expansion Program (Ind. Report)
North Dakota Ethanol Council
Date: 2020-06-03
In Fargo, the North Dakota Corn Utilization Council and the North Dakota Ethanol Council (NDEC) have launched the North Dakota Unleaded88 Expansion Program. The goal is to partner with fuel retailers to provide drivers with Unleaded88, a higher octane fuel containing 15 pct ethanol and 85 pct gasoline.

"Expanding the availability of Unleaded88 creates more market stability when the agriculture industry is struggling with a number of significant uncertainties," according to a statement from North Dakota Corn Utilization Council chairman Terry Wehlander. (Source: North Dakota Corn Utilization Council, North Dakota Ethanol Council, June, 2020)Contact: North Dakota Corn Utilization Council, North Dakota Ethanol Council, (701) 566-9322, info@ndcorn.org, www.ndgorn.org

More Low-Carbon Energy News North Dakota Ethanol Council news,  Ethanol news,  E15 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,  


RFA CEO Comments on USDA $100Mn Infrastructure Grant Program (Opinions, Editorials & Asides)
Renewable Fuels Association
Date: 2020-05-08
"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." -- Geoff Cooper, CEO, Pres., Renewable Fuels Association

Cooper was commenting on the USDA's just announced $100 million grant program for activities designed to expand the availability and sale of higher blends of ethanol like E15 and E85, as well as other renewable fuel blends. (Source: RFA, PR, Various Media, 4 May, 2020) Contact: Renewable Fuels Association, Geoff Cooper, (202) 289-3835, www.ethanolrfa.org

More Low-Carbon Energy News Ethanol,  USDA,  Ethanol Infrastructure,  Renewable Fuels Association ,  


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,  


  • Cornhusker Governor Promotes Ethanol Blends in Detroit (Ind. Report)
    Ethanol
    Date: 2020-02-26
    In a letter to the Big Three US automakers, Nebraska State Governor Pete Ricketts (R) urged Ford, Fiat-Chrysler and GM to increase production of passenger vehicles designed to run on higher ethanol blends, such as E20, E30, E40, and E85.

    In his letter, the Governor emphasized the benefits of ethanol to the environment, the economy, and to family finances. He reminded the automakers that E15 is now available all twelve months of the year at gas stations throughout the United States. Additionally, he informed automakers about Nebraska's year-long, E30 demonstration program aimed at showing that conventional, non-flex-fuel, light-duty vehicles can safely run on E30. (Source: Office of Gov. Governor Pete Ricketts, Media Release, 23 Feb., 2020) Contact: Office of Governor Pete Ricketts, 402-471-2244, 402-471-6031 - fax, www.governor.nebraska.gov › contact-governor

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Ethanol Bleand,  Ethanol,  Biofuel,  E20,  E30,  E40,  E85,  


    Growth Energy Applauds Biofuel Targets in USDA's Agriculture Innovation Agenda (Opinions, Editorials & Asides)
    Growth Energy
    Date: 2020-02-24
    "We applaud USDA for setting these clear goals for E15 (by 2030) and E30 (by 2050) and Growth Energy's members are ready to deliver ahead of their timetable. Biofuels are a critical piece of meeting the demands of our future transportation needs while lowering our carbon footprint.

    "Today's recognition by USDA and Secretary Perdue's unwavering support will help drive biofuel innovation in the coming years and decades. We look forward to continuing our longstanding working relationship with USDA to ensure that Americans across the country have expanded access to cleaner fuels like E15 and E30 at the pump."

    Growth Energy is the leading biofuel trade association in the country. We represent producers and supporters of ethanol who are working to bring consumers better choices at the fuel pump, grow America's economy, and improve the environment for future generations. Our growing membership base now represents nearly half of all American ethanol plants along with many of the largest and most prominent fuel retailers in the country and the industry's top associate members whose businesses support the ethanol industry, according to the Growth Energy website.(Source: Growth Energy, 21 Feb., 2020) Contact: Growth Energy, Emily Skor, CEO, Elizabeth Funderburk, (202) 545-4000, EFunderburk@GrowthEnergy.org, www.growthenergy.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News USDA,  Growth Energy,  Biofuel,  Biofuel Blens,  RFS,  


    E15 Sales Surge After Removal of Regulatory Barrier (Report Attached)
    Renewable Fuels Association
    Date: 2020-02-07
    New analysis from the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) has revealed that around 500 million gallons of E15, a blend of 15% ethanol fuel, were sold across the US I 2019, setting a new record. The review, carried out by, extrapolated the Minnesota data nationally, finding that 499 million gallons of E15 were sold in 2019. This volume contained 75 million gallons of ethanol.

    The data also suggests that the impact of small refinery "hardship" waivers under the RFS took a toll on the industry. On a per-station basis, sales of E15 were lower in the first few months of 2019 than during the same period the year before. This change can be attributed to the fact that the EPA granted numerous exemptions under the RFS to small refineries, causing the price of RFS compliance credits (RINs) to fall. thus reducing the incentive for retailers to offer blends of fuel with higher ethanol content, reducing their ability to discount higher blends relative to gasoline.

    The full RFA analysis is HERE (Source: RFA, 4 Feb., 2020) Contact: RFA, Scott Richman, Economist, (202) 289-3835, www.ethanolrfa.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Renewable Fuels Association,  RFA,  Ethanol,  Ethanol Blend,  


    Nebraska Corn Board Supports E15 Service Expansion (Ind. Report)
    Nebraska Corn Board
    Date: 2020-01-13
    Last week in Omaha, the Nebraska Corn Board (NCB) announced it is supporting gas bar and convenience store chain Casey's expand its statewide offering of statewide offering of E15 Unleaded88 ethanol blended fuel through its blender pump incentive infrastructure program.

    The NCB program provides grant assistance to help ethanol blend fuel retailers upgarde existing equipment to delver ethanol blends.

    Nine of Casey's first 12 upgraded locations are in Omaha. Other upgraded locations are in La Vista, Papillion and about 46 miles north in Norfolk.

    This summer, Casey's added Unleaded88 infrastructure to more than 60 of its locations. In Nebraska, the retailer also began offering E85 at its stores in Ogallala and Cozad. (Source: Nebraska Corn Board, Columbus Telegram,10 Jan., 2020) Contact: Nebraska Corn Board, Roger Berry, Market Development, (402) 471-2676, www.nebraskacorn.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Nebraska Corn Board,  E15,  Unleaded88,  Ethanol,  Ethanol Blend,  


    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,  


    E15 US Summer Sales Rise 46 pct in 2019 (Ind. Report)
    Growth Energy
    Date: 2019-11-20
    Growth Energy is reporting summer sales of E15 -- aka Unleaded 88 -- are up 46 pct in 2019 compared to 2018 on a per-store basis. The 2019 summer driving season was the first summer Unleaded 88 was sold without restriction and this increase underscored the fuel's popularity with drivers who have logged more than 11 billion miles on it, according to the Growth Energy release.

    Additionally, this past summer saw the number of stores offering Unleaded 88 increase with the addition of 149 stores bringing the nation-wide total to more than 2,000 retail fuel stations, according to the release. (Source: Growth Energy, Green Car Congress, 19 Oct., 2019) Contact: Growth Energy, Emily Skor, CEO, Elizabeth Funderburk, (202) 545-4000, EFunderburk@GrowthEnergy.org, www.growthenergy.org

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


    Growth Energy Calls on EPA to Fix Flawed RFS Proposal (Ind. Report)
    Growth Energy, EPA, RFS
    Date: 2019-11-01
    In testimony before the US EPA on the agency's proposed supplemental rule on 2020 biofuel targets under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) Growth Energy CEO Emily Skor called on EPA to fix this flawed draft proposal and reverse the demand destruction that has shuttered biofuel plants across the heartland. "As drafted, EPA's plan fails to accurately account for lost gallons and betrays President Trump's promise to rural America. It cuts the fix we were promised in half, if not more, and destroys what may be our last chance to bring back the ethanol plants that have shut down and help ease the burden facing American farmers," Skor said.

    To begin repairing the damage, Skor called on the EPA to uphold the president's commitment to farmers and biofuel workers. "Midwestern lawmakers and governors have seen the damage firsthand and worked with the president to secure a deal that would start to undo the damage -- a deal that would honor this administration's commitments to farmers, biofuel producers, rural America, as well as small refineries. But instead, the EPA has undercut the president's promise and has yet again tilted the table in favor of the nation's largest oil companies -- all at the expense of the American farmer," Skor said.

    Skor urged regulators to use the rolling average of actual exempted volumes from the three most recently completed compliance years in the final rule, as promised by the administration. She also called on the agency to formally bind itself to the revised methodology for future years and expedite work to remove additional barriers to the sale of E15. "EPA must fix this rule immediately by properly accounting for exempted gallons and restoring lost demand. American biofuel producers and farmers cannot afford anything less," concluded Skor. (Source: growth Energy, PR, 30 Oct., 2019)Contact: Growth Energy, Emily Skor, CEO, Elizabeth Funderburk, (202) 545-4000, EFunderburk@GrowthEnergy.org, www.growthenergy.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News RFS,  Growth Energy,  


    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, USDA Agree to 15Bn Gal. Ethanol Blend Minimum (Ind. Report)
    US EPA, USDA, Renewable Duel Standard
    Date: 2019-10-07
    On Friday in Washington, the Trump administration U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced a long awaited agreement on the Renewable Fuels Standard (RFS) and will now request public comment on expanding biofuel requirements beginning in 2020.

    The agreement will ensure the blending of 15 billion gallons of ethanol with fuel supplies starting in 2020 and will also ensure the biomass-based diesel volume is met. EPA will also start the process for streamlining labeling and removal of other barriers for the sale of E15 fuel.

    Among other changes, the EPA will begin to account for projected numbers of gallons exempted when coming up with Renewable Volume Obligations (RVO) for refiners, which means greater certainty for farmers and producers. It will ensure that more than 15 billion gallons of conventional ethanol are blended into the nation's fuel supply starting in 2020. Additionally, the USDA will invest in infrastructure projects to facilitate higher blends of biofuel, such as E85. (Source: US EPA, McDonough County Voice, Various Other Media, 4 Oct., 2019)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News RFS,  Biofuel,  Ethanol Blend,  USDA,  US DOE,  


    EIA Data Questions RFS "Hardship" Waivers Effect on Ethanol Demand (Ind. Report)
    EIA
    Date: 2019-10-04
    As previously reported, ethanol industry proponents have petitioned the EPA to cease issuing Small Refinery "Hardship" Exemptions (SREs) allowable under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS). The ethanol industry is trying to convince the EPA that the waivers are hurting their business and, therefore, the agency should stop issuing them.

    Month-over-month, official government data tells a very different story. According to the US Energy Information Administration (EIA), the ethanol blend rate has remained within normal statistical variation, despite the flood of "hardship" waivers. EIA data shows:

  • The overall physical ethanol consumption for Q1 2019 (the most recent, complete data available) is higher than it was in 2018.

  • The average ethanol blend rate was higher in Q1 2019 (10.21 pct) than in Q1 2018 (10.09 pct).

  • In February 2019, the ethanol blend rate was 10.53 percent -- the highest in the 12 months preceding. And the March 2019 ethanol blend rate was 10.18 percent -- higher than the March 2018 blend rate of 9.75 percent.

    These blend rates have been stable for the past few years, underscoring the truth that ethanol demand is premised partially on the RFS, partially on demand for clean octane and partially on other factors -- not SREs.

    Similarly, when it comes to mid-level ethanol blends like E15, there is no data indicating that SREs are reducing demand. E15 and other mid-level ethanol blend sales have been growing all year and, in the case of E15, sales are higher at this point than they were last year, according to the Minnesota Bio-Fuels Association.

    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: American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers (AFPM), EIA, Business & Industry Connection, 3 Oct., 2019) Contact: AFPM, Derrick Morgan, Snr, VP, (202) 586-8800, www.afpm.org; EIA, www.eia.gov

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


  • Corn Growers Praise, Plead Trump for RFS Action (Ind. Report)
    Trump
    Date: 2019-09-30
    In a recent letter to Pres. Donald Trump, corn grower organizations in 23 states called on the President to direct his administration's EPA to account for projected waivers beginning with the pending 2020 RFS volume rule and to simply uphold the law.

    "Dear President Trump,

    "We are writing on behalf of the more than 300,000 corn farmers across the country who are being negatively impacted by a perfect storm of challenges in rural America. The 31 new Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) waivers to big oil companies, recently approved by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and bringing total waivers issued under your Administration to 85, could not have come at a worse time for agriculture.

    "Ethanol plants in several states, including Iowa, Ohio, Wisconsin, Michigan, Indiana, Minnesota and Mississippi have closed or idled. These closures have cost 2,700 rural jobs and impacted demand for more than 300 million bushels of corn. Corn farmers are beginning harvest and continuing to lose markets to deliver their corn. Frustration in the countryside is growing.

    "Corn farmers are not asking for a special deal. We are simply asking, as we have been for the past two years, that your EPA uphold the law. To effectively stop the harm caused by RFS waivers, EPA needs to account for projected waivers beginning with the pending 2020 RFS volume rule. Accounting for waivers in the annual RFS volume process restores integrity to the RFS. It also allows your Administration to continue granting waivers, as allowed by the law, while keeping the RFS whole."

    "While adding gallons and improving market access for higher blends of ethanol are all policies farmers appreciate and support, future waivers will continue to minimize the RFS, unless your Administration acts to account for waivers beginning this coming year first.

    "We were pleased to see press reports indicating that, following a meeting with farm-state lawmakers, an agreement had been reached to address the harm caused by waivers. With more than 4 billion gallons waived out of the RFS, we appreciate you listening to our elected representatives about what is needed to restore meaning to the RFS. Farmers across the country are anxiously awaiting the release of more details about this agreement. Ethanol plants will continue to close if you don't act soon, creating a rippling effect throughout the rural economy.

    "Corn farmers are appreciative of your past support for agriculture and ethanol. We especially appreciate your efforts to remove the barrier to year-round sales of E15, but EPA's current use of waivers undermines growth potential for higher blends of ethanol, reduces demand, lowers the value of our crop, and puts the outlook for the rural economy in jeopardy.

    "Mr. President, we firmly ask that you uphold your commitment to America's farmers and the RFS." (Source: Ag Ohio, Various Trade Media, Sept., 2019)

    Editor's Note: For our reader's convenience, we have underlined the few lines that actually call on Trump to honestly do his job and uphold the RFS. The remaining five paragraph's are, in our opinion, little more than flattery to the White House.

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Trump,  "Hardship" Waivers,  Corn Ethanol,  


    N.D. Fuel Retailers Offering "Unleaded88" E15 Fuel (Ind. Report)
    North Dakota Corn Utilization Council
    Date: 2019-09-18
    The North Dakota Corn Utilization Council (NDCUC) in partnership with the North Dakota Ethanol Council (NGEC) is implementing the North Dakota Unleaded 88 Expansion Program. Unleaded 88 is a higher-octane 15 pct ethanol (E15), 85 pct gasoline blend approved for use in light-duty vehicle models from 2001 and newer.

    The Unleaded 88 Expansion Program provide funds for duel dispensing, piping, hardware and signage for distribution of blended of Unleaded 88 E15 or higher.

    (Source: North Dakota Corn Utilization Council, KFGO Radio, 16 Sept., 2019) Contact: North Dakota Corn Utilization Council, Jerry Wehlander, Chairman, www.ndcorn.org; North Dakota Ethanol Council, Jeff Zueger, Chairman, 701-355-4458, www.ndethanol.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News North Dakota Ethanol Council,  Ethanol,  E85,  


    NCGA Take Legal Action To Support E15 (Ind. Report, Reg & Leg)
    National Corn Grower’s Association
    Date: 2019-09-16
    The Chestrfield, Missouri-based National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) reports it has moved to intervene in an effort by big oil to challenge the EPA's final RVP rule by filing a motion in support of the and the final rule allowing for year-round sales of E15. If successful, the oil industry's lawsuit would overturn the E15 rule

    The NGCA has been a long-time advocates of removing the unnecessary and outdated barrier to year-round E15, which took several years to accomplish. This present action is a continuation of NCGA efforts to increase corn grind by expanding the sales of higher ethanol blends. NCGA will be joining efforts with other ethanol advocates as the legal process continues. (Source: NCGA, High Plains Journal, 15 Sept., 2019) Contact: NCGA, (636) 733-9004, (636) 733-9005 -fax, corninfo@ncga.com, www.ncga.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News NCGA,  E15,  Ethanol,  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,  


    "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,  


    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,  


    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,  


    EPA Now Allows E15 Ethanol Blend Summer Sales (Reg & Leg Report)
    EPA
    Date: 2019-06-03
    Today in Washington, the US EPA announced the ending a summertime ban on the E15 blend imposed out of concerns for increased smog from the higher ethanol blend. Until the change, the only ethanol blend fuel typically found in summer months was a 10 pct (E10) ethanol blend . The move may well be challenged by environmental groups on the grounds that the U.S. Clean Air Act disallows year-round E15 sales over smog and air quality concerns.

    The change removes a barrier to wider sales of E15 and is expected to expand the market for ethanol -- although immediate effects on the market are expected to be minimal since only about 1,000 to 1,500 of more than 150,000 U.S. gas stations currently sell the higher-ethanol blend, according to the EPA Office of Air and Radiation. (Source: EPA, PBS New, 31 May, 2019)

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


    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,  


    NBB Comments on the EPA's E15, RIN Reform Proposals (Opinions, Editorials & Asides)
    National Biodiesel Board
    Date: 2019-05-03
    The National Biodiesel Board (NBB) filed the following formal comments on the U.S. EPA's proposed Modifications to Fuel Regulations to Provide Flexibility for E15 -- Modifications to RFS RIN Market Regulations rules. NBB respectfully disagreed with EPA's proposal to modify RIN market regulations without first showing data-based evidence of problems within the RIN market.

    "The proposed RIN market reforms are unnecessary, as EPA has yet to see data-based evidence of RIN market manipulation. Reforming a system that, while certainly not perfect, is working as intended with no evidence of manipulation has the potential to disrupt and even undermine the system that obligated parties use to demonstrate compliance with the RFS. We ask that the agency use this proposed rule as an opportunity to provide transparency to the small refinery exemption process and address the timing of granting these exemptions. Increasing transparency in the small refinery exemption process is what is actually needed to prevent manipulation in the RIN market.

    "Right now, retroactive small refinery exemptions are having the most negative impact on RIN markets, destroying demand for more than 360 million gallons of biodiesel and renewable diesel. Rather than unneeded reforms that could further disrupt the RIN market, EPA should increase transparency around the small refinery exemptions, end its practice of encouraging retroactive petitions, and ensure that annual volumes that it set are met,"Kurt Kovarik, VP federal affairs, added. (Source: NBB, 30 April, 2019) Contact: NBB, Donnell Rehagen, CEO, Kurt Kovarik, VP Federal Affairs, (800) 841-5849, www.biodiesel.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News National Biodiesel Board,  E15,  RINs ,  


    EPA Urged to Reconsider E15 (Opinions, Editorials & Asides)
    American Petroleum Institute
    Date: 2019-05-01
    NMMA, the American Petroleum Institute (API) and the American Motorcyclist Association (AMA) have joined forces in opposition to the EPA's proposal to allow year-round sale of E15 gasoline:

    "We are not fighting against year-round E15 sales just for fun -- we oppose EPA's reckless proposal because it will increase the availability of a fuel that destroys marine engines and jeopardizes the safety of boaters," said NMMA senior VP of government and legal affairs Nicole Vasilaros. "With more than three in five Americans mistakenly assuming that any gas sold at gas stations is safe for all of their products, it is clear that the federal government has shirked its responsibility to effectively protect consumers from a fuel deemed so dangerous that its federally prohibited from being used in countless consumer products. And the last thing the government should do is pump more E15 into the fuel supply. Instead of jamming through a policy that almost nobody likes, EPA should focus on preventing consumers from misfueling -- including better labeling and stronger safeguards at the pump.

    "EPA's decision to expand the sale of E15 gasoline to the summer months makes no sense. It is clearly contrary to the law and it reverses nearly 30 years of statutory interpretation from the agency. Studies have shown that E15 gasoline can damage vehicle engines and fuel systems -- potentially leaving Americans with expensive car repair bills as a result of bad policy from Washington. In fact, nearly three out of four vehicles on the road today were not designed for E15." said API VP of downstream and industry operations Frank Macchiarola.

    "To make matters worse, the agency's proposed changes to the RINs market could increase costs for fuel producers and lead to higher prices for consumers. Additionally, fuel producers who have complied with the law and have already made capital investments and business decisions based on the existing RFS and RINs program will be faced with uncertainty and a moving goal post." (Source: American Petroleum Institute, NMMA, PR, 30 April, 2019) Contact: API, Frank Macchiarola, Dir., (202) 682-8114, www.api.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News RFS,  American Petroleum Institute,  E15,  Ethanol,  Ethanol Blend,  Biofuel,  


    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,  


    USDA Study Shows Significant GHG Benefits of Ethanol Compared with Gasoline (Report Attached)
    USDA
    Date: 2019-04-03
    The Greenhouse Gas Benefits of Corn Ethanol -- Assessing Recent Evidence, a new study from the USDA finds greenhouse gas emissions from corn-based ethanol are about 39 pct lower than gasoline. The study also states that when ethanol is refined at natural gas-powered refineries, the GHG emissions are even lower, around 43 pct below gasoline.

    "These new findings provide further evidence that biofuels from America's heartland reduce greenhouse gases even more than we thought, and that our farmers and ethanol plants continue to become more efficient and effective," said Secretary Sonny Perdue. "Expanding the sale of E15 year-round will provide consumers with more choices when they fill up at the pump, including environmentally friendly fuel with decreased emissions. I appreciate EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler moving expeditiously to finalize the E-15 rule before the start of summer driving season," Perdue added.

    The study, led by Dr. Jan Lewandrowski of USDA's Office of the Chief Economist, and published in the journal Biofuels, supports findings of other research that ethanol has a significantly better GHG profile than previously estimated.

    The study attributes much of these additional benefits to revised estimates of the impacts of land-use change as a result of demand for ethanol. Where previous estimates anticipated farmers bringing additional land into production as a result of increased corn prices, recent analysis finds only modest increases in crop acreage. Additional improvements at ethanol refineries, combined with on-farm conservation practices that reduce GHG emissions, such as reduced tillage and cover crops, have further decreased emissions associated with corn ethanol. The study projects that with added improvements in refineries and on farms, a reduction of over 70 pct in lifecycle emissions is possible by 2022.

    The study is available for download HERE. Additional information on the greenhouse gas profile of biofuels is available at www.usda.gov/oce/oeep. (Source: USDA, 2 April, 2019) Contact: USDA, www.usda.gov

    More Low-Carbon Energy News USDA,  Ethanol,  Corn Ethanol,  Carbon Emissions,  GHGs,  


    Nat. Corn Growers Assoc. Supports Year-round E15 (Ind. Report)
    National Corn Growers Association
    Date: 2019-04-02
    "Farmers stand ready to work with the Administration to clear obstacles to higher blends of ethanol such as E15 and ensure a final rule works for the full ethanol and fuel supply chain. To ensure E15 sales are not interrupted, NCGA urges EPA to complete this rulemaking by June 1." -- Kevin Ross, VP, National Corn Growers Assoc., 29 Mar., 2019) Contact: NCGA, Kevin Ross, VP, (202) 326-0644, www.ncga.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News National Corn Growers Association,  NCGA,  E15 Ethanol Blend,  


    EPA Proposes E-15 Fuel Regulatory Changes (Ind. Report, Reg & Leg)
    EPA
    Date: 2019-03-18
    In Washington, the US EPA has proposed regulatory changes to allow E-15 ethanol blended gasoline to take advantage of the 1-psi Reid Vapor Pressure (RVP) waiver for the summer months that has historically been applied only to E10. Under the proposed expansion, E15 would be allowed to be sold year-round without additional RVP control, rather than just eight months of the year.

    EPA is also proposing regulatory changes to modify elements of the renewable identification number compliance system under the Renewable Fuel Standard program to enhance transparency in the market and deter price manipulation. Proposed reforms to RIN markets include: prohibiting certain parties from being able to purchase separated RINs; requiring public disclosure when RIN holdings exceed specified thresholds; limiting the length of time a non-obligated party can hold RINs; and increasing the compliance frequency of the program from once annually to quarterly.

    Download details on proposed rulemaking HERE. (Source: US EPA, Irrigation & Green Energy, Mar., 2019) Contact: US EPA, www.epa.gov

    More Low-Carbon Energy News E-15,  E15,  Biofuel Blend,  EPA,  Alternative Buels,  Renewable Fuel,  Biofuel,  


    OMB Reviewing EPA E15, RIN Reform Rules (Reg & Leg, Ind Report)
    EPA
    Date: 2019-03-11
    In Washington, the US EPA reports it has sent sent a draft rule to allow for year-round sales of E15 ethanol fuel blends to the Office of Management & Budget (OMB) for review -- the next step in the regulatory process and for meeting expectations that this rule-making be completed when the summer driving season begins on June 1, 2019. A separate rule aims to curb market speculation in biofuel credits.

    The proposed rule does not have to be approved by Congress to be finalized, but it does have to be published and put out for public comment. In order for E15 to be available for summer sales, the process has to be completed before June 1, 2019. (Source: US EPA, Feedstuffs, 8 Mar., 2019)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News EPA,  RINs,  E15,  Biofuel Blend,  


    American Coalition for Ethanol Presses Senate on EPA Acting Administrator Wheeler's Confirmation (Opinions, Editorial & Asides)
    American Coalition for Ethanol
    Date: 2019-02-01
    The American Coalition for Ethanol (ACE) submitted the following letter to US Senators regarding acting EPA administrator Andrew Wheeler's confirmation:

    " As the Senate proceeds to consider the nomination of Andrew Wheeler to serve as Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), I write to encourage you to secure tangible documentation from Mr. Wheeler that EPA will resolve two critically important issues before casting your confirmation vote: finalizing a legally -defensible Reid vapor pressure (RVP) rule to allow E15 use year-round before June 1, and reallocating ethanol blending obligations waived for 2016 and 2017 through the Small Refinery Exemption (SRE) provision of the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS).

    "I urge you hold Acting Administrator Wheeler to this high standard because of the harm done to renewable fuels by former EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt. Prior to his confirmation by the Senate, Mr. Pruitt pledged to support the RFS as the law of the land and the President's commitment to expanding ethanol use. However, while leading EPA, he undermined the RFS through an unprecedented number of backdoor refinery waivers which erased more than 2 billion gallons of ethanol blending obligations between 2016 and 2017. Furthermore, he refused to reallocate those blending obligations to other refiners, as called for under the law, and failed to initiate a rulemaking to allow E15 use year-round despite the fact it is a priority for the President. EPA's broken promises and abuse of the RFS compel Acting Administrator Wheeler to repair the damage by reallocating the blending obligations and finalizing a legally-defensible rule to allow E15 use year-round before June 1.

    "During his recent confirmation hearing, Acting Administrator Wheeler assured Environment and Public Works committee members that EPA is 'still on schedule to issue a final rule allowing year-round E15 sales' but added there 'may be a slight delay' due to the recent government shutdown. The shutdown is not a credible excuse for a delay in the E15 rulemaking. In fact, recent history proves the Trump Administration can expedite high-priority rulemakings.

    "Take for example the USDA newly-proposed work requirements for recipients of supplemental nutrition assistance program (SNAP) benefits. In December, as Congress was negotiating the Farm Bill, the Senate insisted that House conferees drop new food stamp work requirements from the final legislation. In response, to secure enough Republican votes in the House of Representatives to pass the Farm Bill conference report, USDA put forward a rulemaking to impose the work requirements through executive action. The Farm Bill conference report was adopted by Congress on December 12. The President waited to sign the Farm Bill until December 20, the same day USDA published the SNAP work requirement rulemaking.

    "In just eight days USDA was able to issue a rule at the direction of the President to fulfill a promise to Republicans in the House of Representatives. It has been more than 100 days since the President Directed EPA to initiate a rulemaking to allow E15 use year-round. What is taking EPA so long to act? There is no better way to guarantee the RVP rule and reallocation of refinery waivers are addressed than by insisting Mr. Wheeler provide tangible evidence of his intentions on these issues prior to voting to confirm him.

    "The RVP rule is particularly time-sensitive. Under EPA's existing and outdated RVP regulations, E15 cannot be sold in most areas of the country from June 1 to September 15, leaving just four short months from today to complete the rulemaking process. Unfortunately, EPA needlessly plans to combine the RVP rule with reforms to the way Renewable Identification Numbers (RINs) are handled under the RFS. RIN reforms are highly-controversial among oil refiners so EPA's proposal will likely pit refiners against each other, causing a protracted dispute. If RIN reforms prevent EPA from finishing the RVP rule by June 1, it will result in another summer that E15 cannot be sold in many parts of the country when fuel demand is at its peak. Acting Administrator Wheeler should be encouraged to decouple RIN reforms from the RVP rule to ensure E15 can be offered for sale by June 1." (signed) Brian Jennings, CEO American Coalition for Ethanol. (Source: ACE, 29 Jan., 2019)Contact: American Coalition for Ethanol, Brian Jennings, CEO, Ron Lamberty, VP, (605) 334-3381, https://ethanol.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News ANdrew Wheeler,  American Coalition for Ethanol,  Andrew Wheeler,  Ethanol.Ethanol Blend,  


    Bosselman Opens New E-15, E-85 Fueling Stations (Ind. Report)
    Bosselman
    Date: 2018-12-17
    Grand Island, Nebraska-headquartered Bosselman Enterprises is reporting the opening of its new E15 and E85 retail facility in Iowa. With the opening, the 75-year old company now has 45 outlets spread across 22 states.

    There are 25 ethanol plants producing approximately 2.5 billion gpy of ethanol from more than 700 million bushels of corn grown by Nebraska farmers. (Source: Bosselman Enterprises, Grand Island Independent, 14 Dec., 2018) Contact: Bosselman Enterprises, (308) 381-2800, www.bosselman.com

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


    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,  


    CPI Expands E15 Distribution in Nebraska (Ind. Report)
    Cooperative Producers
    Date: 2018-11-07
    According to a news release from the Nebraska Ethanol Board, Hastings, Nebraska-based Cooperative Producers Inc. (CPI) is dropping ethanol-free gasoline from its product line and adding E15 ethanol blend fuel at its farmer's cooperative locations in the state.

    The EPA is set to release a proposed rule in February 2019 to allow year-round E15 sales in time for the driving season in Jun (Source: Cooperative Producers Inc., DTN, 5 Nov., 2018) Contact: Cooperative Producers Inc., (402) 463-5148, info@cpicoop.com, www.cpicoop.com

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


    Growmark Offers Pre-blended E15 at Six Terminals (Ind. Report)
    Growmark Energy
    Date: 2018-11-07
    Bloomington, Illinois-headquartered Growmark Energy reports it is now offering pre-blended E15 at its company-owned terminals in Amboy, Ashkum, and Petersburg, Illinois, Fort Dodge, Iowa, and St. Joseph, Missouri. Growmark has been working with the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) on a number of issues related to offering E15 at the terminals, including regulatory compliance, participation in the EPA's required fuel survey, and adoption of RFA's misfueling mitigation plan (MMP).

    The RFA noted it will continue to work with interested retailers serviced by the six Growmark-owned terminals to assist them with the transition to offering E15 at retail. (Source: Renewable Fuels Association , Growmark Energy, 5 Nov., 2018) Contact: Growmark Energy, (309) 557-6000, contactus@growmark.com​, www.growmark.com; RFA, Bob Dinneen, Pres., (202) 289-3835, www.ethanolrfa.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News RFA,  Biofuel Blend,  E15,  


    Washington Should Eliminate Costly Boondoggles Like the RFS, says Americans for Prosperity (Opinions, Editorials & Asides)
    Americans for Prosperity
    Date: 2018-10-12
    In response to President Trump's announcement that his administration will be promoting the use of ethanol by allowing year-round sales of E15, Americans for Prosperity Chief Government Affairs Officer Brent Gardner issued the following statement:

    "President Trump has revitalized our economy in part by rolling back counterproductive, job-killing federal mandates and regulations, but this move would undo some of that success by preserving the harmful renewable fuel standard (RFS) at the expense of taxpayers and consumers. Rather than trying to make this market-distorting boondoggle viable with yet another rule written by bureaucrats in Washington, DC, he (Trump) should consign the costly and misguided RFS to the dustbin as well. The best way to make a mandate easier to meet is to eliminate it."

    Americans for Prosperity, founded in 2004, is a U.S. libertarian/conservative political advocacy group funded by David H. Koch and Charles Koch. As the Koch brothers' primary political advocacy group, it is one of the most influential American conservative organizations. (Source: Americans for Prosperity, 11 Oct., 2018) Contact: Americans for Prosparity, Brent Gardner, Gabrielle Braud, Press, GBraud@afphq.org, www.AmericansForProsperity.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News RFS,  Renewable Fuels Standard,  Biofuel,  Ethanol,  


    Trump Admin. Expected to Change E15 Biofuel Rules (Reg & Leg)
    E15,Trump
    Date: 2018-10-10
    It is being widely reported that U.S. Pres. Donald Trump will order acting EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler to lift the Renewable Fuel Standard summertime ban on the sale of E15 and thus help limit market speculation in biofuel credits.

    E15 sales are currently blocked from the beginning of June through the middle of September because the fuel blend does not meet ozone standards spelled out in the Clean Air Act.

    It is even more widely speculated that Trump's move is focused on stroking his biofuels and farm belt base before for the November mid-term elections. (Source: CNBC, Various Media, 8 Oct., 2018)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News E15,  Trump,  RFS,  Biofuel,  


    Kansas Ethanol Producer Supports Healthcare Foundation (Ind. Report)
    Prairie Horizon USA Clean Fuels
    Date: 2018-10-05
    In Phillipsburg, Kansas, Prairie Horizon USA Clean Fuels reports it has partnered with the charitable Phillips County Healthcare Foundation (PCHF) to promote the health benefits of using ethanol blended fuel. For every gallon of E15, E20, E30 and E85 sold at USA Clean Fuels in Phillipsburg, three cent a gallon will be donated to the Phillips County Healthcare Foundation (PCHF).

    Prairie Horizon produces more 40 million gpy of ethanol and grinds 15 million bpy of grain to produce 127,000 tpy of high protein livestock feed (DDGs). (Source: Prairie Horizon, USA Clean Fuels, Hays Post, 1 Oct., 2018) Contact: Prairie Horizon USA Clean Fuel, (785) 543-6719, www.prairiehorizon.com; Phillips County Healthcare Foundation, www.pchc.foundation

    More Low-Carbon Energy News DDGs,  Ethanol,  Biofuel,  Prairie Horizon USA Clean Fuels,  


    Growth Energy Launches UNL88.com Website (Ind. Report)
    Growth Energy
    Date: 2018-10-05
    Growth Energy is launching a new consumer-focused website for Unleaded 88 fuel: Unl88.com. Unleaded 88 is the unified brand identify for E15 ethanol blended fuel and is approved by the EPA for cars model year 2001 and newer -- about nine out of 10 cars on the road today.

    (Source: Growth Energy, Convenience Store Decisions, 3 Oct., 2018) Contact: UNL88.com, www.UNL88.com; Growth Energy, Mike O'Brien, VP Market Dev., Emily Skor, CEO, (202) 545-4000, www.growthenergy.org

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


    Nebraska E-30 Flex-Fuel Pilot Program Launched (Ind. Report)
    Nebraska Ethanol
    Date: 2018-09-28
    This week in Lincoln, Cornhusker State Republican Governor Pete Ricketts approved the E-30 pilot program which is intended to address the misconception that higher ethanol blends harm or damage vehicle engines.

    The program will be kicked-off in state-owned fleet vehicles and will assesses the effects of E-15 and E-30 blends on vehicle performance, fuel economy and emissions control systems. The pilot program is expected to launch within the next few weeks. (Source: Office of Gov. Pete Ricketts, NTV ABC, 27 Sept., 2018) Contact: Office of Gov. Pete Ricketts, www.governor.nebraska.gov

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Ethanol Blends,  E15,  E30,  Biofuel,  Flex-Fuel,  


    White House Expected to Push E15 in Oct. (Reg & Leg, Ind. Report)
    E15
    Date: 2018-09-26
    Argus News is reporting that within a matter of weeks the Trump administration will renew its push to allow the year-round sale of 15 pct (E15) ethanol gasoline blends.

    Exactly what they would offer US refiners and importers to support the change remained unclear and under discussion , but a quick approval of the change risk an almost certain court challenge. An announcement is reportedly expected in October. (Source: Argus News, Others, 24 Sept., 2018)

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


    Ethanol Players Tell Trump Ethanol Industry Needs Help (Opinions, Editorials & Asides)

    Date: 2018-09-14
    The Renewable Fuels Association and other agriculture and ethanol groups on Wednesday appealed to President Donald Trump to immediately approve year-round sales of E15 and to reallocate Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) small-refinery waivers to larger refiners as originally intended under the RFS.

    In a joint letter, the groups stress that small-refinery waivers have given refiners "exactly what they asked for: artificially low RIN (renewable identification numbers) credit prices and weaker biofuel blending requirements." Ethanol RIN prices have been trading between 20 and 30 cents since May as a result of the waivers, or a decrease of about 80 pct since last fall, the groups said.

    Read the letter HERE. (Source: RFA, DTN/Progressive Farmer , Others, 12 Sept., 2018)

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


    Hawkeye State Secretary of Agriculture Comments on Proposed RFS Changes (Opinions, Editorials & Asides)
    Renewable Fuel Standard
    Date: 2018-08-13
    In Iowa City, Iowa Secretary of Agriculture, Mike Naig, has submitted the following comments on the proposed Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) levels for conventional, advanced and cellulosic biofuels for 2019 and biodiesel for 2020, to the U.S. EPA

    "A strong RFS that follows the law is critically important to ensuring market access for ethanol and biodiesel and to giving consumers additional choices at the pump. I will reiterate to acting Administrator Wheeler when he visits Iowa next week the need to support the RFS, allow year-round sale of E15 and end the small-refinery waivers that have cut ethanol demand by 1.5 billion gallons over the past two years."

    Iowa has the capacity to produce 4.4 billion gpy of ethanol, including 55 million gpy of cellulosic ethanol and 400 million gpy of biodiesel, all from approximately 1 billion bushels of corn. The biofuels industry contributes about $5 billion to the state's DGP. (Source: Iowa Secretary of Agriculture, Mike Naig, CBC OnLIne, 12 Aug., 2018) Contact: Iowa Secretary of Agriculture, Mike Naig, www.iowaagriculture.gov/MichaelNaig.asp

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


    Iowa Gov. Comments on RFS (Opinions, Editorials & Asides)
    Iowa Gov. Kim Reynols
    Date: 2018-07-20
    "Our (Iowa) farmers need some positive news. It's our hope new EPA leadership will adhere to promises made by President Trump to protect the RFS and grow demand for our homegrown fuels. It's time to end the domestic demand destruction by undermining of the RFS. It's time to open up the market for higher ethanol blends, E15 and above, to be sold year round. Unfortunately, the proposed RFS rule before us does neither of those things.

    "On the surface, the numbers appear positive. Conventional biofuels like corn ethanol are set at 15 billion gallons and cellulosic ethanol, biodiesel and total advanced levels are all proposed to increase. But the EPA's decision to grant numerous small-refinery waivers and to not reallocate those volumes as the law envisioned, undercuts the 15 billion gallon level.

    "These small refinery waivers have created the backdoor destruction of 1.5 billion gallons of ethanol demand. That means 500 million bushels of corn will be left in the bins, putting added pressure on already low commodity prices. Every RFS category is reduced by these small refiner waiver exemptions. In fact, it almost wipes out the proposed increase for advanced biofuels.

    "And the 15 billion gallons ethanol number is in reality more like 13.5 billion. To put that in context, nearly 1 billion gallons less ethanol than was blended into U.S. gasoline in 2017. That is not progress. That is not the letter or spirit of the RFS. And that is not what President Trump promised the voters of Iowa. This issue must be addressed. The criteria for exemptions must be reasonable and transparent, and any exemptions must be reallocated to the remaining obligated parties. Correcting the small refinery exemption excesses need to be in the final rule. 15 billion gallons must mean 15 billion gallons.

    "The former head )Pruitt) of the EPA often said that the decision to allow year-round sales of E15 was a matter of authority, not policy. The EPA has publicly acknowledged it has the authority, so it's time to act. It's also time for the EPA to stop ignoring a court order to restore 500 million gallons of conventional ethanol demand that was illegally waived by the Obama Administration for the 2016 compliance year." (Source: Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds (R), 18 July, 2018) Contact: Office of Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds, https://governor.iowa.gov

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


    ACE Testifies on Proposed 2019 RVOs (Opinions, Editorials & Asides)
    American Coalition for Ethanol
    Date: 2018-07-20
    The American Coalition for Ethanol (ACE) VP Ron Lamberty testified on July 18 during the public hearing in Ypsilanti, Mich., on the EPA's proposed Renewable Volume Obligations (RVOs) for the 2019 Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS):

    "With the departure of the previous EPA Administrator (Pruitt) , I hope EPA will take this opportunity to return to implementing the RFS as intended by Congress. Pruitt's seemingly sole focus on helping merchant refiners ignore or skirt their longstanding obligations under the RFS has further shaken the rural farm economy while undermining Congress' goal of increasing renewable fuel use in the United States.

    "EPA's misapplication of the small refiner (hardship) waiver authority has destroyed an estimated 2.25 billion gallons of biofuel demand in 2016 and 2017 alone. The 2019 proposal does nothing to reallocate the gallons of ethanol lost due to RFS waivers, nor does it restore the 500 million gallons of biofuel demand lost because of EPA's actions in misapplying the economic harm waiver in the 2016 RVO as determined by the courts that ordered EPA to return those gallons as well. This RVO rulemaking is the perfect place for EPA to restore these biofuel volumes under the RFS, allow for E15 and higher blends to be sold year-round, and discard of its refiner win-at-all-costs mentality."

    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.(Source: American Coalition for Ethanol, Convenience Store Decisions, 19 July, 2018) 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,  Pruitt,  HJardship Waiver,  


    Notable Quote and Duly Noted
    POET
    Date: 2018-07-13
    "With Scott Pruitt's resignation, we hope we will now see an EPA that's willing to uphold President Trump's commitments to rural America and finally deliver the win-win he's been looking for with year-round sales of E15.

    " It's time to turn the page on the disastrous demand destruction practices of Scott Pruitt and start a new chapter." -- Kyle Gilley, POET Snr. VP External Affairs , Communications

    More Low-Carbon Energy News POET news,  Pruitt news,  E15 news,  


    Notable Quotes on Pruitt's Exit
    Renewable Fuels Association
    Date: 2018-07-09
    "We don't see how we can do much worse than we had with Mr. Pruitt. He had been waging war against the RFS and really waging war against the farmers and rural Americans that had helped Donald Trump win the presidency, and so it isn't surprising to us that this resignation happened. I guess we're a little surprised it didn’t happen sooner." -- Geoff Cooper, Senior VP, Renewable Fuels Association

    "He had completely undermined the ethanol industry. He was handing out waivers like candy. The last number I saw was 2.25 billion gallons of ethanol had been waived from the RFS. President Trump continues to talk about giving E15 full-year access, and these refiner waivers are just unacceptable." -- Lisa Richardson, Exec. Dir., South Dakota Corn Growers Association

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Pruitt,  Ethanol,  RFS,  Ethanol Blend,  Renewable Fuels Association,  


    Growth Energy Predicts 2,800 New E15 Retailers by 20121 (Ind. Report)
    Growth Energy,Prime the Pump
    Date: 2018-06-22
    According to the biofuel trade association Growth Energy, over 2,800 retail sites will sell 350 million gpy of E15 by 2021.

    The Growth Energy release credits the not-for-profit Prime the Pump market development campaign for: doubling the number of E15 stations four years in a row to include 1,400 stations across 30 states; securing commitments of more than 2,800 retail sites that will offer E15 by 2021 generating approximately 350 million new gpy of ethanol; and adding three major new retailers to the program in 2017, including a game-changing partnership with Kwik Trip which successfully rolled out E15 at 300 sites in just four months.

    Both Growth Energy and Prime the Pump are arguing for relief from the current Reid Vapor Pressure (RVP) limitations to further spur the growth of E15 sales. Volatility defines its evaporation characteristics of a liquid fuel; RVP -- expressed in pounds per square inch (psi) -- is a common measure of and generic term for gasoline volatility. The RVP of gasoline can range from 7 to 15 psi. Ethanol itself has a very low volatility: -2 psi RVP. The higher the RVP of a fuel the worse its emissions are. (Source: Growth Energy, Green Car Congress, 21 June, 2018)Contact: Growth Energy, Emily Skor, CEO, (202) 545-4000, www.growthenergy.org; Prime the Pump, http://primethepumpfund.com

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


    Duly Noted
    Advanced Biofuels Business Council
    Date: 2018-05-28
    According to Advanced Biofuels Business Council Exec. Director Brooke Coleman, "EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt is going against the President's commitment to rural America. If the EPA head keeps granting hardship waivers to the many refiners who have requested them, then the President's commitment to year-round use of E15 will be rendered useless. It's ridiculous for the EPA administrator to claim he's following the intent of the RFS and the President's commitment to it while at the same time granting those waivers."

    Coleman says the RFS renewable fuel obligation rule for 2019 is expected out soon but if the waivers keep getting granted, then the numbers called for in that rule don't mean anything because refiners aren't held accountable to them. (Source: Advanced Biofuels Business Council, May, 2018) Contact: Advanced Biofuels Business Council, Brooke Coleman, Exec. Dir., www.advancedbiofuels.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Advanced Biofuels Business Council ,  EPA,  Pruitt,  RFS,  

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