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Ethanol Fuel Cell R&D Legislation Tabled in DC (Reg. & Leg.)
Ethanol
Date: 2021-09-13
In Washington, Rep. Randy Feenstra (R-IA-04) has tabled H.R. 5090, the Biofuel Cell Research Act directing the DOE to establish an R&D and demonstration program for a commercially viable ethanol fuel cell system that generates electricity. This electricity is then used to power vehicle engines, resulting in a net-zero carbon emission power source.

Feenstra previously introduced and sponsored proposals to support biofuel producers, including the bipartisan Small Refinery Exemption and Clarification Act of 2021, in response to the Supreme Court's ruling on small refinery exemptions (SREs). After a D.C. circuit court ruled against E15 year-round, Feenstra also helped introduce the Year-Round Fuel Choice Act of 2021. (Source: Iowa Rep. Randy Feenstra, Website PR, 7 Sept., 2021) Contact: Iowa Rep. Randy Feenstra, 202) 225-4426, www.feenstra.house.gov

More Low-Carbon Energy News Fuel Cell,  Ethanol,  RFS,  


USDA Awards $26Mn in Biofuels Infrastructure Grants (Funding)
USDA, USDA Higher Blends Infrastructure Incentive Program
Date: 2021-08-25
Deputy Under Secretary for Rural Development Justin Maxson announced that USDA is investing $26 million to build infrastructure to expand the availability of higher-blend renewable biofuels, such as E15 and flex fuels such as E85, by 822 million gallons annually in 23 states. USDA is making the awards under the Higher Blends Infrastructure Incentive Program. The announcement includes investments in 23 states including California, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Rhode Island, Texas and Wisconsin.

The announcement marks the one-year anniversary of the Higher Blends Infrastructure Incentive Program. To date, USDA has invested $66.4 million for projects that are expected to increase biofuels sales by 1.2 billion gallons annually.

Through this program, USDA helps transportation fueling and biodiesel distribution facilities offer higher ethanol and biodiesel blends to customers by sharing the costs to install fuel pumps, equipment and infrastructure.

In California, AltAir Paramount LLC will use a $1.5 million grant to install a pump, safety infrastructure and piping at its fuel distribution facility. Funds will also be used to retrofit and upgrade a biodiesel storage tank. This project is expected to increase biodiesel sales by 135 million gallons per year.

In Ohio, United Dairy Farmers Inc. will use a $634,000 grant to replace 21 dispensers and four storage tanks at four fueling stations. The company also will install 13 dispensers at two more fueling stations in Ohio and Kentucky. This project is expected to increase ethanol sales by 4 million gallons per year.

In North Carolina, Zenith Energy Terminals Holdings LLC will use a $614,930 grant to install a truck rack biodiesel blending system at a fuel distribution facility. This project is expected to increase biodiesel sales by 24 million gallons per year.

The National Biodiesel Board notes the funding for 12 projects from California to Connecticut will support nearly 771 million gpy of biodiesel per year and reduce the nation's carbon emissions by more than 7.2 million metric tpy at a cost of less than $2.25 per ton. (Source: USDA, 20 Aug., 2021) Contact: Higher Blends Infrastructure Incentive Program, www.rd.usda.gov/hbiip

More Low-Carbon Energy News Biofuel,  USDA Higher Blends Infrastructure Incentive Program,  USDA,  


"Dear Mr. President... Yours Truly, ACE" (Opinions & Asides)
American Coalition for Ethanol
Date: 2021-08-16
In a letter to President Joe Biden, the American Coalition for Ethanol (ACE) called for the President to set the maximum statutory volumes under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) in the 2021 and 2022 Renewable Volume Obligation rule-making and to pursue all options to ensure uninterrupted market access for E15. The letter notes these actions are the quickest way to reduce GHG emissions from the U.S. transportation fleet in the near term and support net-negative biofuel production that can help achieve a fully decarbonized transportation future.

"We recognize your goal is to electrify the vehicle fleet in the future, but the inconvenient truth is there are hundreds of millions more people driving vehicles capable of using low-carbon substitutes to petroleum such as E15 and E85 today than any other alternative. Since this reality will exist well into the future, increasing the use of ethanol today will immediately reduce GHGs while the production of electric vehicles (EVs) ramps up" the letter notes.

"In the near-term, a properly implemented RFS and year-round availability of E15 will meaningfully reduce the carbon intensity of the U.S. transportation sector by capitalizing on the existing vehicle fleet's ability to use lower-carbon biofuels. In the mid-term, the pending RVO decision will act as a harbinger for companies on how much to rely on your commitment to net-zero emissions by 2050 when making investment decisions," the letter added.

"If the Administration is not willing to ensure the RFS will call for 15 billion gallons of low-carbon ethanol already being produced to replace petroleum at the pump, legitimate questions will be asked about the merits of non-binding executive orders setting national goals for less deployable decarbonization technologies," the letter concluded.

Download the full ACE letter HERE . (Source: American Coalition for Ethanol, Website PR,11 Aug., 2021) Contact: American Coalition for Ethanol, Brian Jennings, CEO, www.ethanol.org

More Low-Carbon Energy News American Coalition for Ethanol,  RFS,  E15,  Ethanol,  Renewable Fuel,  Biofuel,  


Growth Energy Calls for Congressional Biofuel Support (Ind. Report)
Growth Energy
Date: 2021-07-23
Growth Energy has launched a new online digital ad campaign urging President Biden and leaders in Congress to stop oil industry handouts and uphold their commitments to reduce carbon emissions, support low carbon biofuels and strong Renewable Volume Obligations (RVOs) under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS).

According to Growth Energy CEO Emily Skor, "It's time for leaders in Washington to make good on their commitments to clean, renewable energy and put a stop to Big Oil's efforts to restore its monopoly over the US fuel mix. The evidence is clear. Congress and the administration cannot decarbonise transportation without a growing role for low-carbon biofuels, which are vital to our climate, working families, and the economy. The last thing we can afford are more handouts to the oil industry. Policymakers must act swiftly to ensure uninterrupted, year-round access to E15 and set ambitious biofuel blending levels, including a statutory minimum of 15 billion gallons of conventional biofuel, under annual targets." (Source: Growth Energy, Website PR, 22 July, 2021) Contact: Growth Energy, Emily Skor, (202) 545-4000, www.growthenergy.org

More Low-Carbon Energy News Growth Energy,  Renewable Fuels,  


EPA Year-Round E15 Approval Ruling Overruled (Reg & Leg)
Ethanol
Date: 2021-07-19
On 2nd July In Washington, in the American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers, et al. vs. EPA case, the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals reversed a 2019 EPA rule that lifted restrictions on the year-round sale of a 15 pct ethanol fuel blend.

Under the June 2019 expansion, E15 could be sold year-round without additional Reid vapor pressure (RVP) control rather than just eight months of the year. The one pound per square inch waiver for RVP was approved by EPA for year-round E10 sales in 1992, but not for E15.

The Court found that Congress "balanced wide-ranging economic, energy-security and geopolitical implications" and that the law "reflects a compromise, not simply a desire to maximize ethanol production at all costs" and that "Congress did not intend to allow ethanol blends higher than 10 pct to be widely sold year-round." (Source: Various Media, AgriNews, 18 July, 2021)

More Low-Carbon Energy News E10,  E15,  Ethanol Blend,  


Fed. Appeals Court Strikes Down Year-Round E15 Sales (Reg & Leg)
EPA
Date: 2021-07-07
In Washington, Friday 2nd July, the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia reversed the EPA approval of year-round sale of E15 on the grounds that the EPA "overstepped its authority in 2019 when it removed the last remaining barriers to selling the 15-percent ethanol blend in the summer months."

The Court noted "it's clear from federal law that Congress balanced 'wide-ranging economic, energy-security, and geopolitical implications' and that the wording of the law 'reflects a compromise, not simply a desire to maximize ethanol production at all costs."

The court concluded Congress did not intend to allow ethanol blends higher than 10 pct to be widely sold year-round, according the AP. (Source: EPA, Convenience Store News, 6 July, 2021)

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


Growth Energy Warns Against More RFS Waivers (Opinions & Asides)
Growth Energy
Date: 2021-06-30
Addressing a recent U.S. Senate Ag subcommittee meeting, Growth Energy CEO Emily Skor noted there's both a practical and a political downside if the US EPA lets small oil refiners off the hook in blending ethanol or buying biofuel credits.

"In 2019, President Biden said in Iowa, and I quote, 'Those waivers are a gigantic mistake. We should not be exempting, we should be insisting that these major oil companies meet the criteria that are set,' end quote. We wholeheartedly agree. Lowering, waving, caping, or any backtracking on the promise of the Renewable Fuels Standard (RFS) damages our ability to decarbonize our vehicle fleet, threatens large agricultural markets, and jeopardizes hundreds of thousands of jobs supported by the biofuel industry."

According to Skor, a new study shows switching to E15 with incentives pending in Congress would add $18 billion to the economy, $10 billion to household income and 183,000 jobs. (Source: Growth Energy, DRG News, 29 June, 2021). (Source: Growth Energy , Website PR, 25 May, 2021) Contact: Growth Energy, Emily Skor, CEO, www.growthenergy.org

More Low-Carbon Energy News Growth Energy,  RFS,  Hardship Waivers,  Biofuel,  Ethanol,  


POET Lauds Oregon Ethanol Blend Legislation (Ind. Report)
POET, Ethanol Blend
Date: 2021-06-28
In Salem, Oregon Governor Kate Brown (D) has signed into law HB 3051 mandating all gasoline sold in Oregon contain at least 10 pct ethanol while allowing retailers to offer higher ethanol blends, like E15.

"Oregon's diverse geography and unique landscape help make protecting the environment a clear priority for state policymakers. Plant-based renewable ethanol is 46 pct cleaner than traditional gasoline. This new law creates the pathway for higher blends of ethanol -- helping Oregon take meaningful steps to improve air quality and curb the effects of climate change by sustainably decarbonizing the light duty vehicles on Oregon's road today. Ethanol is also less expensive than gasoline, with E15 typically saving consumers three to 10 cents per gallon. By increasing the use of ethanol across the state, this law will also provide significant fuel savings for Oregon drivers," according to Joshua Shields, POET Senior VP.

A study by Air Improvement Resource, Inc. showed that Oregon could reduce greenhouse gas emissions by more than 190,000 metric tpy by increasing the use of higher blends by switching from E10 gasoline to E15, according to the release. (Source: POET, PR, Website, 23 June, 2021) Contact: POET, Joshua Shields, Senior VP, (605) 965-2200, www.poet.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News POET,  Ethanol Blends,  E10,  E15,  


Iowa Farm, Biofuel Leaders Support E15 Legislation (Ind. Report)
POET, Growth Energy
Date: 2021-06-02
Ethanol industry giant POET is reporting it and other biofuel and farm advocates are urging Hawkeye State lawmakers to approve H.F. 859, legislation to ensure all Iowans can benefit from access to E15 at the pump by 2028. The following joint statement was issued by Growth Energy, Iowa Corn Growers Association, Iowa Ethanol Producers Association, and POET: "Every Iowa driver should have the freedom to choose E15, which will provide fuel savings and is made from corn harvested on Iowa farms. We enthusiastically support the work of Governor Reynolds and the Legislature to get Iowa on the road to E15.

"E15 is already popular with consumers, compatible with today's infrastructure and saves motorists an average of five cents per gallon in Iowa. Expanding E15 across the state will grow corn markets by 23 million bushels, inject $140 million into the state's economy, and save Iowa motorists an additional $72 million each year. Now is the time to act, and we're counting on Iowa lawmakers to lead the nation by ensuring access to E15 statewide."(Source: POET, Website PR, 28 May, 2021) Contact: POET, www.poet.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News POET,  Growth Energy,  Biofuel,  E15,  


Growth Energy Launches Consumer Biofuel Campaign (Ind. Report)
Growth Energy
Date: 2021-05-10
Growth Energy, the nation's largest association of biofuel producers and supporters, reports the unveiling of a new consumer initiative to raise awareness of the positive environmental benefits of biofuels and encourage consumers to choose higher biofuel blends like E15 at the pump.

Through a series of targeted digital content, advertising, and digital media, the "Get Biofuel" campaign aligns the benefits of biofuel to an empowerment message titled "Fuel Beyond". "Our industry's passion for showcasing the benefits of biofuels is unparalleled, and I'm thrilled to unveil this new initiative that will help raise awareness with consumers -- reminding them that by choosing a cleaner fuel they are fueling beyond their gas tank and also becoming a part of the climate change solution. With biofuel, you fuel much more than just your car. You also fuel cleaner air and help the planet," said Growrh Energy CEO Emily Skor.

Download Growth Energy "Fuel Beyond" details HERE. (Source: Growth Energy, PR, 7 May, 2021) Contact: Growth Energy, Emily Skor, (202) 545-4000, www.growthenergy.org

More Low-Carbon Energy News Growth Energy,  Biofuel,  


E15 Pump Labeling Vetoed in Indiana Ind. Report, (Reg. & Leg.)
POET
Date: 2021-04-28
In Indianapolis, Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb (R) yesterday vetoed legislation that would have sabotaged sales of E15, a renewable motor fuel blended with 15 pct bioethanol.

The law would have mandated restrictive warning labels on E15 fuel dispensers that would cause unnecessary confusion at the pump, deprive Hoosiers access to significant fuel savings, and destroy future demand for Indiana corn, according to the POET release. (Source: POET, PR, 27 Apr., 2021)

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


Novozymes Notable Quote on Climate Change
Novozymes
Date: 2021-04-16
"As the world's largest industrial biotechnology company, with bio-innovation operations from Copenhagen in Denmark to Milwaukee in the U.S., Novozymes is proud to support the call for at least halving emissions by 2030.

"We can harness the renewable potential of millions of acres of cropland, sequester GHG emissions, boost yields and increase the production of renewable energy made from farm crops, such as corn or soybeans. With smart policy and smart science, the Biden Administration can raise the bar for nations around the world, but to do that, it is vital that biofuels are core in the U.S. strategy.

At Novozymes, we specialize in tapping into the power of nature to deliver advanced biology that does everything from boosting crop yields without added fertilizer, to improving laundry detergents to cut energy and water waste. Our (Novozymes) innovation helps biofuel producers get more energy out of every harvest. These technologies have already helped the U.S. replace about 10 pct of liquid fuels with renewable alternatives.

"The vital importance of these bio-based solutions to address the climate crisis is already recognized, but ideas must be turned into action. Incentives that would allow the entire agricultural supply chain to invest in the future and a fuel market that is open to higher-biofuels blends -- such as E15 -- that allow drivers to save money, while reducing consumption of fossil fuel, are essential. These opportunities would not only drive green economic growth in the U.S., but could also offer a roadmap for other countries." -- Brian Brazeau, North America Novozymes, Apr., 2021)Contact: Novozymes, Brian Brazeau, VP Bioenergy, 646-671-3897, www.novozymes.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Novozymes,  Biofuel,  Climate Change,  


Minn., California and Iowa E15 Sales on the Rise (Ind. Report)
Renewable Fuels Association
Date: 2021-04-09
The Iowa Department of Revenue is reporting sales of E15 jumped 24 pct in Iowa in 2020 , despite the pandemic-related drop in overall fuel consumption. Iowa retailers sold 60.59 million gallons of E15 in 2020, up from 48.96 million gallons in 2019 and more than double the 2017 volume of E15 sales, despite a 14.3 pct drop in the state's overall petroleum consumption from 2019 levels.

Similarly, recent data from the Minnesota Department of Commerce showed 2020 E15 sales there nearly held steady with 2019 sales levels, despite the pandemic. Minnesota E15 sales were 93.46 million gallons, down 4 pct from 97.40 million gallons in 2019.

On the west coast, the California Air Resources Board (CARB) noted 40.37 million gallons of E85 were sold in the Golden State in 2020, down 0.6 pct from the 40.6 million gallons sold in 2019. (Source: Iowa Department of Revenue Renewable Fuels Association, CARB, Biofuels News, 8 Apr., 2021) Contact: Renewable Fuels Association, www.ethanolrfa.org

More Low-Carbon Energy News RFA,  FlexFuel,  E15,  E85,  Biofuel Blend,  


Biofuels Legislation Tabled in Washington (Reg. & Leg.)
Biofuel,EFA
Date: 2021-03-10
In Washington, the following two bi-partisan ethanol focused legislation supported by the National Corn Growers Association, the Renewable Fuels Association, the American Coalition for Ethanol, Growth Energy, and POET have been tabled in Congress:
  • The Renewable Fuels Infrastructure Investment and Market Expansion Act, which would expand access to higher blends of Biofuels, was tabled by U.S. Rep. Rodney Davis (R) and Rep. Cindy Axne, the co-chairs of the House Biofuels Caucus.

    The Act would authorize $500 million over 5 years for infrastructure grants for fuel retailers and direct the EPA Administrator to finalize a proposed rule to repeal E15 labeling requirements warning drivers about E15's potential impact on cars, which may confuse and deter drivers from using E15, a blend of gasoline with 15 percent ethanol. The bill would also direct the EPA Administrator to finalize provisions from the same proposed rule to allow certain existing Underground Storage Tanks (UST) to store higher blends of ethanol.

  • The Adopt GREET Act, which will direct the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to update its greenhouse gas modeling for ethanol and biodiesel, was sponsored by South Dakota Rep. Dusty Johnson (R) .

    The Adopt GREET Act would require the EPA to update its greenhouse gas modeling for ethanol and biodiesel by requiring the EPA to adopt the Argonne National Lab's Greenhouse Gases, Regulated Emissions, and Energy Use in Transportation (GREET) Model for both fuels. EPA would then be required to update its modeling every five years or report to Congress to affirm its modeling is current or otherwise explain why no updates were made. (Source: EPA, Telegraph, 8 Mar., 2021)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Biofuel,  Biodiesel,  Biofuel,  Renewable Fuels Infrastructure,  Renewable Fuel,  GREET,  EPA Legislation,  


  • Iowa Bill Hastens Higher Biofuel Blends (Reg. & Leg., Ind Report)
    Iowa Biofuels
    Date: 2021-02-17
    In Des Moines, Hawkeye State Gov. Kim Reynolds (R) on Feb. 8 introduced a bill that aims to speed the statewide adoption of higher biofuel blends, including E15 and B20. Representatives of the ethanol and biodiesel industries are speaking out in support of the bill.

    For biodiesel, the bill would require most diesel sold in the state to be B11 blend during warmer months, beginning in 2022. The requirement would ramp up to B20 during warmer months in 2024 and later. For ethanol, the bill would make E15 the standard fuel option by 2025. It would also update the E15 promotion tax credit to 3 cents per gallon year-round. Growth Energy estimates that over the first five years, the legislation would increase ethanol demand by more than 117 million gallons. (Source: Office of Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds, Website PR, Feb., 2021) Contact: Office of Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds, (515) 281-5211, www.governor.iowa.gov

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


    POET Applauds Iowa Governor's Drive to E15 by 2025 (Ind. Report)
    POET
    Date: 2021-02-12
    In Souix Falls, South Dakota, POET applauded Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds' proposed legislation to speed the statewide adoption of higher biofuel blends and make E15 the standard fuel option by 2025.

    According to POET Founder and CEO Jeff Broin, "Iowa has always been a major champion for biofuels, and we applaud Governor Reynolds for taking that forward-thinking leadership to the next level with E15. Passing legislation for an E15 standard could lay the foundation for the entire nation. E15 in Iowa would add nearly 30 million bushels of grain demand each year, grow thousands of jobs across the state and inject millions into Iowa’s economy," Broin continued.

    "It would boost farm incomes across the Midwest, grow dependable domestic markets, and be a critical step in securing America's energy independence. Make no mistake -- we need to return to our roots and once again get our energy from the surface of the Earth, and America's farmers will play a pivotal role in the climate solution. Federal and state leaders looking to take action on climate and clean air should start with plant-based biofuels like bioethanol, which is 46 pct cleaner than gasoline from farm to freeway and displaces toxic chemicals in gasoline linked to cancer and other serious health problems," Broin concluded. (Source: POET, PR, 8 Feb., 2021)Contact: POET, Jeff Broin, CEO, (605) 965-2200, www.poet.com

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


    RFA to Assist Retailers with HBIIP (Opinions, Editorials & Asides)
    USDA, HBIIP
    Date: 2021-02-05
    "When the USDA Rural Development office announced the reopening of its Higher Blends Infrastructure Incentive Program (HBIIP) funding opportunity and gave retailers one more shot at a grant award, it set a tight 30-day application period that ended January 19.

    "In the first HBIIP funding opportunity, the Renewable Fuels Association was able to assist applicants secure funding in 22 states which will result in over $50 million in new ethanol infrastructure and bring almost 1,200 new blender dispensers to the marketplace. RFA was front-and-center once again on this second round, working up to the final hour to assist as many retailers as we could. In the end, we helped 11 companies in seven states submit applications for 47 locations that could result in 233 new higher blend dispensers where consumers can enjoy the benefits of higher ethanol blends.

    "According to the USDA, HBIIP was created to increase significantly the sales and use of higher blends of ethanol and biodiesel by expanding the infrastructure for renewable fuels. The program is also intended to encourage a more comprehensive approach to market higher blends by sharing the costs related to building out biofuel-related infrastructure.

    "For retailers, HBIIP can provide the extra support needed to bring higher blends into their marketplace. The cost-share grants provide up to 50 percent of total eligible project costs, not to exceed $3 million per applicant. The program will share the costs related to the upgrading of fuel dispensers (gas and diesel pumps), associated ancillary equipment, and other infrastructure necessary for a location to ensure the environmentally safe availability of fuel containing ethanol blends greater than 10 percent such as E15 and E85 or fuel containing biodiesel blends greater than 5 percent.

    "We're looking forward to seeing this new round of grants announced and fulfilled, so we can help retailers move more low-carbon ethanol into fuel tanks around the country. For those retailers that might have missed out on this funding opportunity, there are some states and individual renewable fuel advocates that offer funding throughout the year. Please reach out to RFA for assistance in navigating these opportunities." (Source: Renewable Fuels Association , 3 Feb. 2021) Contact: Renewable Fuels Association, Cassie Mullen, Dir. Market Development, www.ethanolrfa.org

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


    Growth Energy Comments on Cdn. CFS Regulation (Notable Quote)
    Growth Energy
    Date: 2020-12-30
    "Canada continues to be a trailblazer in addressing climate change and cutting greenhouse gases through biofuels." -- Emily Skor, Growth Energy, CEO commenting the Canadian governments recently announced nationwide Clean Fuel Standard draft regulation.

    The Canadian regulation is an initiative to reduce the lifecycle carbon intensity of fuels and energy used in Canada and achieve a more than 20 million tpy reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2030. The Canadian Clean Fuel Standard aims for an average 15 pct (E15) ethanol-gasoline blend rate by 2030. (Source: Growth Energy, Dec, 2020) Contact: Growth Energy, Emily Skor, (202) 545-4000, www.growthenergy.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News E15,  Growth Energy,  Ethanol,  Ethanol Blend,  Canada Clan Fuels Standard,  


    E15 Poised to Fast-Track Climate Progress (Report Attached)
    Growth Energy
    Date: 2020-12-09
    Growth Energy, the nation's largest association of biofuel producers and supporters, released a new report examining the potential climate benefits of a nationwide transition from the standard 10-pct ethanol blended fuel (E10) to a 15-pct ethanol blend (E15). The report was authored by Air Improvement Resource (AIR) Inc., a leading research firm in the area of mobile source emissions modeling and technology.

    Marketed to consumers as Unleaded 88, E15 is approved by the EPA for all light-duty vehicles model year 2001 and later, which is 95 pct of the vehicle fleet on the road today. Currently, 98 pct of all gasoline contains about 10 pct ethanol, but more than 2,200 retail locations are now offering E15, and in 2020 -- despite COVID-19 -- retail sites offering E15 have increased 10 pct. According to the AIR study, the higher ethanol blend would not only help achieve the nation's climate goals, but also offers individual states the opportunity to lead -- cutting carbon dioxide emissions by 1.88 million tpy in California alone.

    Download the GHG Benefits of 15 pct Ethanol (E15)Use in the United States report HERE. (Source: Growth Energy, PR, 7 Dec., 2020) Contact: Growth Energy, Emily Skor, (202) 545-4000, www.growthenergy.org

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


    Ceres Solutions, CountryMark Score E15 Pump Grant (Funding)
    Ceres Solutions,CountryMark
    Date: 2020-11-18
    Ceres Solutions and CountryMark are reporting receipt of $55,562 in USDA grant funding for the installation of E15 and E85 biofuel blend pumps at the Ceres Solutions owned CountryMark branded filling station in Rensselaer, New York. The new pumps are expected to be in service early in December.

    The grant was awarded through the USDA Higher Blends Infrastructure Incentive Program (HBIIP), which offers $22 million in grants with the expectation to increase national ethanol demand by roughly 150 million gpy. (Source: Cerea Solutions, NewsBug, 16 Nov., 2020) Contact: Ceres Solutions, Jeff Troika, Pres., CEO, www.ceres.coop; USDA Higher Blends Infrastructure Incentive Program, www.rd.usda.gov/hbiip

    More Low-Carbon Energy News HBIIP,  E15,  E85,  Biofuel Blend,  


    Growth Energy Comments on Biofuel Production (Opinions & Asides)
    Growth Energy, USDA
    Date: 2020-11-02
    Growth Energy CEO Emily Skor recently submitted the following comments to the USDA's Agriculture Innovation Agenda regarding readily available technologies that enable our domestic agriculture sector to increase production while reducing its environmental footprint.

    In her comments, Skor argued that biofuels like ethanol play a critical role in achieving the USDA's goals and called for building on current investments to expand renewable fuels role in the nation's transportation infrastructure. "Supporting programs like the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) and initiatives to expand access to higher biofuel blends like E15, E30, and E85 can build on biofuels' environmental progress and expand the market for American agriculture,", said Skor. "USDA's Higher Blends Infrastructure Incentive Program (HBIIP) is a prime example how the agency can support the productivity of our farmers, while decreasing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and encouraging further adoption of sustainable farming practices across our agriculture sector."

    Skor also notes the biofuels industry's continued advancements to capture CO2 and the plant-based fuel's ability to replace harmful toxics and improve air quality. "We have a better option in ethanol, the single most affordable and abundant alternative to petroleum-based fuel additives that threaten air quality in communities across the globe. To expand on these benefits, USDA should continue to promote programs that boost biofuels access and use throughout the country.

    As the department works to streamline programs and seek opportunities to improve sustainable farming across the country, Skor encouraged USDA to continue exploring the strong link between U.S. agriculture and our biofuels industry, and promote the increased use of biofuels so our nation's farmers can continue to rely on these markets as we work to reduce the environmental impact of the agriculture sector.

    The organizations have asked the United States District Court for the District of Columbia to order the following: EPA should not withhold the name of the company submitting an application for an SRE nor the name and location of the refinery for which relief is requested; EPA should immediately produce the information that was unlawfully withheld for Renewable Fuel Standard compliance years 2015, 2016, and 2017, and; EPA should not withhold any of the five data elements identified in the proposed Renewables Enhancement and Growth Support (REGS) rule (Source: Growth Energy, Website PR , 28 Oct., 2020) Contact: Growth Energy, Emily Skor, (202) 545-4000, www.growthenergy.org

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


    Growth Energy Lauds USDA HBIIP Grants Announcement (Ind. Report)
    Growth Energy
    Date: 2020-10-19
    Growth Energy welcomed the USDA's announcement of grants under the Higher Blends Infrastructure Incentive Programme (HBIIP). Growth Energy's network of both large and small retail partners secured nearly $30 million in grants for over 290 sites selling more than 400 million gpy of petroleum .

    "This announcement offers a welcome ray of hope during an otherwise rough year for America's farmers, retailers and biofuel producers. It represents a major milestone in our efforts to ensure more Americans can access cleaner and more affordable ethanol-blended fuel. We're grateful to Secretary Perdue, USDA, and our congressional champions who are working tirelessly to make higher ethanol blends a success. We're especially proud of Growth Energy's incredible network of retail partners, who bring Unleaded88 (E15) to consumers across the nation and are paving the way for higher blends of ethanol," Growth Energy CEO Emily Skor said. (Source: Growth Energy, PR, Oct., 2020)

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


    E15 Retail Market Up 10 pct in 2020, says Growth Energy (Ind. Report)
    Growth Energy
    Date: 2020-10-02
    Washington, DC-based Growth Energy is reporting a growing consumer demand for E15 has resulted in a 10 pct or more increase in the number of locations offering the fuel in 2020.

    "This growth has occurred during one of the most challenging fuel markets in the past 30 years, and is a testament to the strength of E15's growing popularity among American drivers" the Growth Energy release noted.

    Growth Energy has developed the best practices for marketing and selling E15 based on consumer reaction at retail. Also, Growth Energy has been intimately involved in converting more than 2,000 retail sites to sell E15, which provides the organization with vast knowledge and experience in equipment compatibility, and regulatory requirements for offering higher biofuel blends, according to a release. (Source: Growth Energy, 30 Sept., 2020) Contact: Growth Energy, Mike O'Brian, VP Market Dev., (202) 545-4000, www.growthenergy.org

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


    "The Donald" Tweets for Ethanol Ind. Votes -- Notable Quote
    Trump
    Date: 2020-09-14
    "Subject only to State approval, our important Ethanol Industry will be allowed to use the 10 pct Pumps for the 15 pct BLEND. That saves tremendous amounts of money for the people in the ethanol industry. Like hundreds of millions of dollars I hear for the conversion (of pumps for E15) and there's no reason to do it." -- Pres. Donald Trump, 12 Sept., 2020)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Trump news,  E10 news,  E15 news,  Ethanol Blend news,  


    NCGA Helps Build Ethanol Blend Pumps, Infrastructure (Ind. Report)
    National Corn Growers Association
    Date: 2020-09-04
    In the Show Me State, the Chesterfield-headquartered National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) reports it is working with Austin, Texas-based Wayne Fueling Systems to produce and sell fuel pumps certified to deliver fuel containing up to 25 pct ethanol.

    As previously reported, NCGA also recently partnered with the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA), assisting fuel retailers in applying for the USDA Higher Blends Infrastructure Incentive Program (HBIIP). The $100 million program included $86 million to expand the availability of higher blends of ethanol, like E15 and E85.

    NCGA support for this program helped deliver program awareness and technical assistance for applications representing more than 1,100 fuel dispensers across 21 states and 222 locations dispensing more than 250 million gallons of gasoline annually. (Source: NCGA, Sept., 2020) Contact: NCGA, PR, Wayne Fueling Systems, (512) 388-8311, www.wayne.com; National Corn Growers Assoc., Mark Palmer, Renewable Fuels Dir., (636) 733-9004, (636) 733-9005-fax, corninfo@ncga.com, www.ncga.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News National Corn Growers Association,  Ethanol Blend,  E15,  E85 ,  


    Iowa Announces Biofuel Aid Packages (Funding, Ind. Report)
    Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds
    Date: 2020-08-31
    In the Hawkeye State, Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds (R) has allocated approximately $100 million in relief funds from the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act for a range of agricultural programs to offset the impact of COVID-19 on farmers, producers and agricultural industries.

    The $100 million is part of Iowa's share of the $2 trillion CARES Act, which Congress approved in March. Of the $100 million allocated the following biofuel related concerns will receive funding:

  • $15.5 million, State Biofuel Grant Program -- Biofuels producers were excluded from receiving aid under other parts of the CARES Act; this program will provide relief to those Iowa ethanol and biodiesel producers based on gallons produced. Grants will also be awarded through IEDA's existing small business relief program and are capped at a maximum grant of $750,000 per producer. IEDA administers the program.

  • $7 million, Renewable Fuel Retail Recovery Program -- This previously announced funding supports a program that helps expand retail fueling infrastructure for higher blend renewable fuels, including E15 or higher, and B11 or higher. IDALS administers the program.

    Producers can apply for IEDA-administered programs at www.iowabusinessrecovery.com beginning today, Aug. 31. Apply for IDALS-administered programs Aug. 24 at www.iowaagriculture.gov/grants. (Source: Office of Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds, Wallaces Farmer, 31 Aug., 2020) Contact: Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds, 515-281-5211, www.governor.iowa.gov/contact

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds,  Biofuel,  


  • Ethanol Ind. Stabilization Quotes from Growth Energy CEO
    Growth Energy
    Date: 2020-08-28
    "We have to make sure the (Trump) administration follows through on commitments that it has made. Last October, the administration made a series of commitments in terms of evaluating things like E15 labeling. An additional hurdle for us to have unfettered market access for higher blends is making sure the president has EPA follow through on its commitment to uphold a strong Renewable Fuel Standard.

    "We want to be building stronger global markets with free trade. We want expansion of E15. As drivers are hitting the road again as we are recovering from Covid, there's more opportunity to get higher blends like E15. We, ultimately, want to focus on that road to recovery conversation because that's what our future is going to be all about.

    "At this point, I think we may be okay. I think it will have different impacts in different areas regionally, and then certainly in the value chain. We're going to have to just wait and see. It's very disheartening to know what everybody has gone through." -- Emily Skor, Growth Energy, CEO , discussing ethanol industry stability.

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Ethanol,  Growth Energy,  


    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,  

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