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MORE Small Refinery "Hardship" Waivers Announced (Ind. Report)
EPA,RFS,Renewable Fuels Association,American Coalition of Ethanol
Date: 2019-08-12
On Friday the 9th, the Trump administration EPA, under the administration of former coal industry lobbyist Andrew R, Wheeler, granted 31 more controversial "hardship waivers" allowing refiners to ignore Renewable Fuels Standard (RFS) ethanol blending requirements in what might be construed as the administration's and the agency's attempt to bury the RFS in blatant favor of Big Oil. The agency denied 6 waiver requests and left one additional waiver request undecided.

Needless to say, the President has yet again misled his supporters and the biofuels industry -- along with just about everyone else both domestic and foreign. In response, ethanol and biofuels players and industry organizations wasted no time in venting their rightful outrage.

"The Trump Administration's approval of 31 refinery exemptions from the Renewable Fuel Standard is just devastating news for our industry. With this action, President Trump has destroyed over a billion gallons of biofuel demand and broken his promise to Iowa voters to protect the RFS. The vast majority of these exemptions are not justified under the law. Since this news began to leak this afternoon, RFS credit prices have freefallen to nearly zero, destroying much of the incentive to blend an incremental gallon of ethanol." -- Monte Shaw, Iowa Renewable Fuels Association (IRFA) Exec. Dir.,

"At a time when ethanol plants in the Heartland are being mothballed and jobs are being lost, it is unfathomable and utterly reprehensible that the Trump Administration would dole out more unwarranted waivers to prosperous petroleum refiners. Today's announcement comes as a total shock, as just two months ago Trump himself heard directly from Iowa farmers and ethanol plant workers about the disastrous economic impacts of these small refinery handouts. In response, he (Trump) told us he would 'look into it' and we believed that would lead to the White House and EPA finally putting an end to these devastating waivers. Instead, the Trump administration chose to double down on the exemptions, greatly exacerbating the economic pain being felt in rural America and further stressing an industry already on life support." -- Geoff Cooper, Pres., CEO, Renewable Fuels Association.

"EPA's refiner-win-at-all-costs oversight of the RFS is doing real damage to America's farmers and renewable fuel producers who are already suffering from trade wars and volatile markets. The RFS is supposed to ensure the use of ethanol and biodiesel increases from one year to the next, but 85 Small Refinery Exemptions later and over 3 billion waived gallons represents an enormous step backwards." -- Brian Jennings, CEO, American Coalition of Ethanol.

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: Various Media, AgPro, 9 Aug., 2019) Contact: Iowa Renewable Fuels Association, Monte Shaw, Exec. Dir., info@IowaRFA.org, (515) 252-6249, www.iowarfa.org; Renewable Fuels Association, www.ethanolrfa.org; American Coalition of Ethanol, www.ethanol.org

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


UK Parliamentarians Call for B10 Ethanol Blend Rate (Int'l)
All-Party Parliamentary Group for British Bioethanol
Date: 2019-07-22
In London, the All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) for British Bioethanol has suggested increasing the ethanol-petroleum blend rate be increased fro the present 5 pct to 10 pct (E10). The parliamentarians suggest the increase would protect the jobs of the 6,000 or so people currently working to grow feed stock crops used to produce ethanol an thus help keep the country's struggling bioethanol industry afloat.

According to the APPG, "The British bioethanol industry is in a state of collapse, and ministers can not allow the fog of Brexit to distract them any longer from saving a £1 billion industry that will not only make our cars cleaner and greener, but provide thousands of green jobs in the North and prove that the government is serious about championing the green economy."

(Source: All-Party Parliamentary Group for British Bioethanol, GIZMODO, 18 July, 2019)Contact: All-Party Parliamentary Group for British Bioethanol, Nic Dakin, Chairman, info@britishbioethanol.com, www.britishbioethanol.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News B10,  Ethanol,  UK Ethanol,  All-Party Parliamentary Group for British Bioethanol,  


Small Refiners Threaten "Hardship Waivers" Legal Action (Ind. Report)
EPA
Date: 2019-07-19
In Washington, Reuters is reporting a coalition of small U.S. refineries are planning on legal action against the the US EPA unless the agency issues issue its decisions on 2018 petitions for "hardship waivers" from the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) within 60 days.

The Trump administration EPA has more than quadrupled the number of waivers it has granted to refinerswhile at the same time raising the ire of the corn industry who claim the move threatens ethanol demand.

The small refinery coalition's letter to the EPA said the "EPA is required to act on a petition within 90 days after receipt" and that it also failed to issue decisions on the outstanding 40 petitions for 2018 by March 31, 2019, which the letter said was the compliance deadline.

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: Reuters, Various Media, 18 July, 2019)

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


EPA's RFS Obligations Another Setback for American Farmers, says NFU (Ind. Report)
RFS,EPA,National Farmers Union
Date: 2019-07-08
Last Friday, the EPA released its proposed renewable volume obligations (RVOs) under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) for the year 2020. The proposal would set required biofuel use at 20.04 billion gallons next year, a marginal increase over this year's 19.92 billion gallons. The difference is primarily attributable to an expansion of cellulosic biofuel, from 420 million to 540 million gallons. The rule maintains the current 15-million-gallon target for corn ethanol.

In the face of the EPA's proposal, the National Farmers Union (NFU) has expressed its disappointment in the almost unlimited issuance of RFS refinery "hardship waivers", the newly released RVO's and the that the agency's failure not only to factor the lost demand into its proposed RVOs but to increase biofuel use at all.

"At every turn, EPA and this (Trump) administration have undermined the intent of RFS and destroyed demand for billions of gallons of ethanol", NFU President Roger Johnson added. (Source: The Cattle Site, National Farmers Union, PR, 8 July, 2019) Contact: National Farmers Union, Roger Johnson, Pres., (202) 554-1600, www.nfu.org

More Low-Carbon Energy News "Hardship Waiver",  RFS,  National Farmers Union,  Biofuel,  Ethanol Blend,  


Senators Want Ag Sec. Out of RFS "Hardship Waiver" Decision Process (Opinions, Editorials & Asides)
RFS
Date: 2019-07-03
Following up on our June 12 coverage, DTN Progressive Farmer is reporting thirteen Republican senators from oil-producing states are calling for President Trump to keep Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue out of EPA Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) small refinery "hardship waiver" decision-making process which the Senators claim the Agriculture Secretary has no authority. Under the Clean Air Act, the EPA administrator decides, after consulting with the Energy secretary, which refiners receive or are denied a hardship waiver, the Senators note.

"We strongly oppose giving the Secretary (Perdue) any role in the decision-making process over the petitions. We would view any decisions to further delay, reduce, or deny hardship relief to small refineries, or reallocate the obligations of small refineries to other refineries, as the result of the Secretary of Agriculture's impermissible interference. We are confident that others, including the federal courts, would do the same," the thirteen Senators wrote.

The small-refinery exemptions have reduced ethanol use by about 2.6 billion gallons, and 38 refiners are waiting for EPA to decide on new exemptions.

Senators writing the letter included Sen. John Barrasso (R-Wyo.) as well as senators representing Louisiana, Montana, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Texas, Utah and West Virginia.

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: Various Media, DTN, Progressive Farmer, July, 2019) Contact: Office of Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue,(202) 720-2791, feedback@oc.usda.gov, www.usda.gov/contact-us

More Low-Carbon Energy News Hardship Waiver,  Ethanol,  Ethanol Blend,  RFA,  Sonny Perdue,  


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,  


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

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

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

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

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

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

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


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

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

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


    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,  


    Maine Governor's B10 Ethanol Blend Veto Upheld (Reg. & Leg.)
    B10,Ethanol Blend
    Date: 2019-05-13
    In Augusta, Maine's legislators have sustained Democratic Governor Janet Mills' veto of a bill to ban the sale of B10 ethanol-blended gas in the Pine Tree State. The Republican-sponsored bill initially sailed through the Legislature last month.

    According to the Governor, B10 is not presently sold in Maine and there's not enough evidence that ethanol-blended gas harms public health. (Source: Various Media, WABI5, 11 May, 2019)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News B10,  Ethanol,  Ethanol Blend,  


    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,  


    EPA Stalls on RFS "Hardship Waiver" Transparency (Ind. Report)
    RFS
    Date: 2019-05-01
    Reuters is reporting the U.S. EPA has suspended work on its plan -- as announced on 12 April -- to publish the names of refineries granted "hardship waiver" exemptions from federal biofuels law after receiving blowback from the White House and parts of the oil industry.

    The EPA currently does not name companies that apply for or receive the waivers, arguing the information is confidential. The corn industry wants that changed because it believes profitable companies are securing waivers, which is hurting farmers. Small refineries owned by profitable oil majors like ExxonMobil and Chevron are among those that have gotten waivers since 2017, according to the Reuters report.

    "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: Yahoo Finance, Reuters, 30 April, 2019)

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


    Costa Rican Refinery Announces 8 pct ECO95 Ethanol Blend (Int'l)
    RECOUPE
    Date: 2019-04-08
    The Costa Rican state-owned refinery reports it will be pumping 8 pct ethanol blended "ECO95" Super Gasoline at is fueling stations beginning 29 May, 2019.

    The refinery is warning users to condition their equipment since the blend can block filters and fuel injectors and damage soft parts. (Source: RECOUPE Costa Rica, Costa Rican Times, 6 April, 2019)Contact: RECOUPE, (506) 2284-2700, recopecomunicacion@recope.go.cr, www.recope.go.cr

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Ethanol,  Ethanol Clend,  


    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,  


    Growth Energy Calls for Rail Assistance During Midwest Flooding (Opinions, Editorials & Asides)
    Growth Energy
    Date: 2019-03-27
    Growth Energy CEO Emily Skor called on the U.S. Department of Transportation to help expedite rail delivery of biofuels amid historic flooding. In her letter to U.S. Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao, Skor wrote: "On behalf of Growth Energy, the nation's leading organization of biofuel producers and supporters, I write to you about a matter of utmost importance to not only to our industry, but to consumers across the country regarding the rail transportation of American-made biofuels.

    "It has been reported by several sources that ethanol supplies in several markets in the Rocky Mountain and Pacific Northwest have become very tight and ethanol prices have risen in those markets because of the supply situation. Additionally, markets in Texas are now solely providing finished ethanol-free gasoline, usually sold at a cost of 20-40 cents higher than regular ethanol blended fuel, as a result of these supply disruptions.

    "This situation is not being caused by a lack of ethanol production or supply at the more than 200 ethanol facilities in the U.S. In fact, the logistics problems these plants face could force plants to reduce production as their storage capacity becomes fully utilized.

    "While we certainly understand and appreciate that these rail issues have been caused by the calamitous flooding currently occurring in the Midwest, it is imperative that all possible actions be taken by the nation's railroads to ensure that these critical fuel supplies are immediately prioritized and reach markets as quickly as possible. Further delays could not only impact our industry but could ultimately increase fuel costs for American drivers.

    "We would be happy to work with you and your staff to provide any further information you may need and to get biofuels into the hands of American drivers." (signed) Emily Skor (Source: Growth Energy ,PR, 22 Mar. 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,  Ethanol,  


    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,  


    China's Shanxi Province Trialing E10 Ethanol Blend (Int'l)
    China Ethanol
    Date: 2019-03-04
    The news Agency Xinhua is reporting North China's coal-rich Shanxi Province will provide ethanol-gasoline E10 blended fuel for trial in Taiyuan, Yangquan, Changzhi and Jincheng cities and is constructing an ethanol gasoline distribution center and remodeling thousands of gas stations in support of the trial project. Subject to test results, the project will be expanded to the entire province from Jan. 1, 2020, according the the government release.

    The E10 biofuel pilot is in keeping with China’s plan to cut carbon emissions per unit of GDP by 60-65 pct from 2005 levels by 2030 and raise the share of non-fossil energy use in total consumption to about 20 pct. (Source: Xinhua, 4 Mar., 2019)

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


    NOIC Seeking $1.5Mn for Ethanol Storage Project (Int'l Report)
    National Oil Infrastructure Company of Zimbabwe
    Date: 2019-02-25
    In Epworth, the National Oil Infrastructure Company of Zimbabwe (NOIC) reports it is seeking approximately $1.5 million to complete the construction of two ethanol storage tanks at its Mabvuku depot in Harare.

    According to the company, an acute shortage of foreign currency has stalled the completion of the tanks, which have a combined storage capacity of six million litres. The project was supposed to be in full swing by December 2018. the Zimbabwean government is promoting ethanol blending to cut the cost of petroleum imports amid worsening foreign currency challenges. T that end, the mandated ethanol- unleaded gasoline bland rate was raised from 15 pct to 20 pct ethanol (E20). (Source: National Oil Infrastructure Company of Zimbabwe, The Standard, 24 Feb., 2019) Contact: National Oil Infrastructure Company of Zimbabwe, Wilfred Matukeni, CEO, +263 4 748 518, www.noic.co.zw

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Ethanol,  Ethanol Storage,  


    IEA Confirms Ethanol's Role in Cutting Air Pollutants (Ind. Report)
    ePure,IEA
    Date: 2019-02-13
    In a recent report, the International Energy Agency (IEA) found that blending ethanol in petrol has an immediate impact on reducing emissions of harmful air pollutants from today's cars. The report also notes that E85 is one of the best overall performers in terms of reducing NOx and PM emissions in modern and older cars. The report adds that ethanol use reduces tailpipe emissions of carbon monoxide Accordingly, the report supports the need for higher ethanol blends as EU countries struggle to achieve their decarbonization targets.

    Other studies have demonstrated the role of ethanol in reducing emissions in heavy duty vehicles, notably through ED95 blend in dedicated engines. Comparing natural gas, diesel and ED95, the French environment agency ADEME indicated that ED95 vehicles were the best solution to reduce CO and NOx emissions and improve energy efficiency. And, on a full lifecycle analysis, ED95 reduced CO2 emission by more than 88 pct compared to diesel. (Source: IEA, ePure, 22 Jan., 2019) Contact: ePure, www.epure.org; International Energy Agency, Dr. Fatih Birol, Exec. Dir., +33 1 40 57 65 00, www.iea.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News International Energy Agency,  ePure,  Biofuel,  Ethanol,  


    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,  


    Methanol-Petrol Blending Cuts CO2 Emissions (R&D, Int'l Report)
    Pune-based Automotive Research Association of India
    Date: 2019-01-21
    A recent study from the Pune, India-based Automotive Research Association of India (ARAI) on methanol-gasoline blending (M-15) for use as transportation fuel in BS-IV standard automobile engines can significantly remove CO2 emissions. The report was supported by the Federal government Union Minister for Transport which is aiming to increase methanol-gasoline blend rates India-wide to 20 pct (M-20) by the year 2030.

    The study evaluated M-15 emissions in vehicles over 3,000 km in real-world conditions. Based on the study's conclusions, the agency says the use of M-20 blend would reduce pollution in the country by more than 40 pct at the cost of approximately 30 pct less than other available fuels. (Source: Automotive Research Association of India, Union Minister for Transport , The Hindu Businessline, 19 Jan., 2019) Contact: Automotive Research Association of India, +91-020-30231111, +91-020-30231104 - fax., info@araiindia.com, www.araiindia.com; India Union Minister for Transport, www.india.gov.in/official-website-ministry-road-transport-and-highways

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Methanol news,  Methanol Blend news,  


    China Plans Tripling of Ethanol Production (Int'l Report)
    China Ethanol,China National Renewable Energy Centre
    Date: 2018-12-12
    According to the China National Renewable Energy Centre in Guangzhou, China is set to more than triple its ethanol production capacity by 2020 to meet an expected surge in demand for clean fuels. The country is currently building or seeking approval for new ethanol plants totaling 6.6 million tpy capacit.

    China produced 2.8 million tonnes of ethanol in 2017. Current capacity is estimated at approximately 3.38 million tonnes, including recently approved plants still under construction. Of those, corn-based ethanol capacity is around 1.45 million tpy, followed by cassava, wheat, sorghum and rice. (Source: China National Renewable Energy Centre, Reuters, 10 Dec., 2018) Contact: China National Renewable Energy Centre, Dou Kejun, Researcher, www.cnrec.org.cn/english

    More Low-Carbon Energy News China Ethanol,  Ethanol Blend,  China National Renewable Energy Centre,  


    Indian Ethanol Blend Rate Raised to 8 pct (Int'l Report)
    Ethanol Blend
    Date: 2018-12-10
    In New Delhi, the Indian Petroleum Ministry reports the "blending of ethanol with petrol has reached 4 pct from 1-1.5 pct in the last four years. In the 2018-19 sugar year (October-September), the blending level will reach 7-8 pct." The Indian government launched a pilot biofuel-petrol blending program to promote the use of alternative and environment-friendly fuels in 2003. The original programs 10 pct ethanol blend goal has not yet been met met. (Source: Indian Petroleum Ministry, PTI, First Post, 7 Dec., 2018) Contact: Indian Petroleum Ministry, petroleum.nic.in

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


    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,  


    Conservationists Upbraid EPA Over Biofuel Crop Legislation (Reg. & Leg., Ind. Report)
    EPA
    Date: 2018-11-02
    Following on the heels of the Trump administration's allowance of year-round E-15 ethanol blend sales,several U.S. Conservation groups have petitioned and accused the US EPA of failing to enforce the 2007 Energy Independence and Security Act (EISA) and thus turning a blind-eye to the illegal destruction of wildlife habitat nationwide.

    The petitioners contend that rather than follow the 2007 Energy Independence and Security Act, which only allows land cultivated before 2007 to grow corn and soybeans for biofuels, the EPA, at Trump's instruction, has been adhering to a change in the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) which allows new land to be farmed as long as the total amount of U.S. farmland dedicated to biofuel feedstock production doesn't exceed 402 million acres.

    The EPA estimates cropland in the U.S. has increased somewhere between 4 million and 7.8 million acres since 2007, but is uncertain how much of that is cultivated for biofuel feed stock production.

    The petitioning conservation groups say recent mandates to increase the use of corn and soybeans in gasoline have led to more habitat destruction, water pollution, and greenhouse gases. (Source: wfiy, National Public Radio, Oct., 2018)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Biofuel Feedstock,  E-15,  RFS,  


    RFN Calls for Level Playing Field for High Octane Fuels (Ind. Report)
    Renewable Fuels Nebraska
    Date: 2018-10-29
    Renewable Fuels Nebraska (RFN), in response to the EPA's proposal to amend greenhouse gas standards in the existing Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) rule is calling on the EPA to approve high octane fuels using 25 to 30 pct ethanol in the blend. The RFN is also calling for a "level the playing" field in what they say unfairly favors the electric vehicle industry over other advanced fuels such as high octane, ethanol blended fuels.

    According to RFN Exec. Dir. Troy Bredenkamp, "Our comments to the EPA pointed out that Nebraska's ethanol industry would strongly support the EPA if they were to establish minimum octane standards for future fuels that would utilize 25 to 30 pct ethanol blends, and approve a corresponding alternative certification fuel so automakers can begin testing future engines on a high-octane blend. it is our belief that high octane E25-30 blends would help bring down the cost for consumers compared to the premium-priced octane level manufactured and advocated by oil refiners, while being significantly better for the environment." said Bredenkamp. (Source: Renewable Fuels Nebraska, NTV/ABC, 26 Oct., 2018) Contact: Renewable Fuels Nebraska, Troy Bredenkamp, Exec. Dir., (402)325-0045, (402) 310-8038, troyb@renewablefuelsne.org, www.renewablefuelsne.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Renewable Fuels Nebraska,  


    Indian Groups Testing Sorghum Ethanol Profitability (Int'l)
    Indian Institute of Millet Research
    Date: 2018-10-29
    Reporting from Hyderabad, India, the Indian Institute of Millet Research (IIMR) reports that with India falling short of sugarcane ethanol production to meet its national Ethanol Blending Programme, it is investigating the use of sweet sorghum juice as an ethanol production feedstock.

    According to IIMR's Dr. AV Umakanth, principal scientist and sweet and high biomass sorghum investigator, with ethanol prices at Rs 59.13 per litre, the time is ripe to push sweet sorghum.

    The National Federation of Cooperative Sugar Factories Ltd (NFCSFL) reports it will test the profitability of sorghum ethanol at two mills. (Source: Indian Institute of Millet Research, New Indian Express, 27 Oct., 2018) Contact: Indian Institute of Millet Research, : +91 40 2459 9301, www.millets.res.in

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


    BPCL Announces Second-Gen. Ethanol Plant in Odisha (Int'l)
    Bharat Petroleum Corporation
    Date: 2018-10-08
    India's state-run oil company Bharat Petroleum Corporation Ltd (BPCL) is touting its second generation (2G) ethanol biorefinery at Odisha's Bargarh district. Commissioning and production startup of the Rs 10 billion, 30 million lpy rice straw-to-ethanol plant is expected no later than December 2020.

    About 12 such refineries are proposed in different states to meet India's National Biofuel Policy 2018 target of 20 pct ethanol blending to petrol by the year 2030. Presently, ethanol blending in Petrol is between 3 and 4 pct. (Source: Bharat Petroleum Corporation, Business Standard, 7 Oct., 2018) Contact: Bharat Petroleum Corporation, www.bharatpetroleum.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Bharat Petroleum Corporation,  Ethanol,  India Biofuel,  India Ethanol,  


    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,  


    U.S. Ethanol Industry Groups Support E10 in the UK (Ind. Report)
    Growth Energy, U.S. Grains Council, Renewable Fuels Association
    Date: 2018-09-21
    On 16 Sept., the U.S. Grains Council, Growth Energy and the Renewable Fuels Association jointly submitted comments to the United Kingdom's Department of Transport which is considers implementing a nationwide E10 ethanol blend.

    The comments highlight the benefits of ethanol for fuel and draw on the experience of the United States in implementing a similar nationwide E10 fuel blend. They also support moving directly to an E10 blended fuel, as the overwhelming majority of gasoline-powered vehicles are approved for this fuel. Doing so would offer benefits for consumers and ensure certainty for U.K. producers, the groups note.

    Read the comments submitted to the UK Department of Transport HERE (Source: Renewable Fuels Association, Growth Energy, U.S. Grains Council , 19 Sept., 2018): Contact: RFA, Bob Dinneen, Pres., (202) 289-3835, www.ethanolrfa.org; Growth Energy, Emily Skor, CEO, (202) 545-4000, www.growthenergy.org; U.S. Grains Council, (202) 789-0789, www.grains.org; UK Department of Transport, www.gov.uk/government/organisations/department-for-transport

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Growth Energy,  E10,  Biofuel,  Ethanol,  Ethanol Blend,  U.S. Grains Council,  Renewable Fuels Association,  


    India Ups Sugarcane Ethanol Price for Blending by 25 pct (Int'l Report)
    Sugarcane
    Date: 2018-09-14
    In New Delhi, the Indian government Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs on Wednesday approved an over 25 pct increase in the price of ethanol produced directly from 100 pct sugarcane juice for blending in petrol in a bid to cut surplus sugar production and reduce oil imports. The announcement raised the procurement price of sugarcane ethanol to Rs 59.13 per litre from the current rate of Rs 47.13.

    Ethanol so extracted would be blended with petrol to cut reliance on imports. The government is looking at scaling up the blending to 10 pct in the next couple of years from the present 4-5 pct rate. (Source: PTI, 14 Sept., 2018)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Ethanol news,  India Ethanol news,  Sugarcane Ethanol news,  Ethanol Blend news,  


    India Aims to Triple Ethanol Production by 2022 (Int'l Report)
    India Ethanol
    Date: 2018-08-13
    Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi last week announced his country will triple its ethanol production over the next four years. The Prime Minister also blamed his predecessor's government for not encouraging the production and adoption of ethanol, saying his government has planned 12 biofuel refineries in the country at an investment of Rs. 10,000 crore (1 crore = 10 million).

    The Prime Minister claimed "previous governments did not take the ethanol programme seriously" but his government will increase ethanol production fro the present 141 crore litres per year to 450 crore litres of ethanol in the next four years. The government also plans to achieve 10 pct ethanol blending in petrol by 2022 and is aiming to double it to 20 pct. The government also plans to establish 12 modern refineries for generating advanced biofuel.

    Like a true politician, the Prime Minister was quick to note that all previous government plans to advance ethanol had "fallen through." (Source: The Hindu, Various Media, 11 August, 2018)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News India Ethanol,  


    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,  


    Proposed CAFE Standards Positive for Ethanol, says ACE CEO (Opinions, Editorials & Asides)
    American Coalition for Ethanol
    Date: 2018-08-06
    In response to the US EPA and the Department of Transportation (DOT) recently announced proposed amendments to the current fuel economy and emissions standards for cars and light trucks for model years 2021-2026, American Coalition for Ethanol (ACE) CEO Brian Jennings says that while the proposals are less stringent they are also exploring the role higher octane fuel could provide a pathway for higher blends of ethanol as they maintain fuel economy in smaller engines and help reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Jennings noted that the premium high octane fuel on the market now is petroleum which is costlier than ethanol. He says ethanol has several advantages and is also a high octane fuel.

    According to Jennings, the EPA's proposal to flatline the standards will lead to increased gasoline use and tailpipe pollution, but not if the final rule paves the way for E25-E30 high octane fuel in future engines. (Source: American Coalition for Ethanol, WNAX Radio, 3 Aug., 2018)Contact: American Coalition for Ethanol, Brian Jennings, CEO, Ron Lamberty, VP, (605) 334-3381, https://ethanol.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Ethanol Blend,  CAFE Standard,  American Coalition for Ethanol,  


    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,  


    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,  


    EPA Stalls Biofuel Blend Quota Announcement (Ind. Report)
    EPA
    Date: 2018-06-25
    Bloomberg and others are reporting oil industry criticism has caused the Trump Administration to reconsider a proposal to require large refineries to blend more biofuel to make up for "hardship" exemptions granted to smaller refineries. Accordingly, the EPA has put a planned announcement on proposed biofuel quotas for 2019 on hold.

    Ethanol producers and farm-state lawmakers say that recent waivers granted to small refiners have undercut the Renewable Fuels Standard. The Trump administration's plan to make up for the lost biofuel gallons would have put the burden on non-exempted refineries, prompting an outcry from the two top oil industry trade groups.

    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: Various Media, Bloomberg, HoosierAg Today, 24 June, 2018)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Renewable Fuel Standard,  Ethanol Blend,  Pruitt,  


    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,  


    LanzaTech, Shougang Launch Chinese Sustainable Ethanol Refinery (Int'l)
    LanzaTech
    Date: 2018-06-11
    New Zealand-founded LanzaTech and China's Shougang Group are reporting the launch of an ethanol plant at the Jingtang Steel Mill in Caofeidian, Hebei province, China -- the commercial facility converting industrial emissions to ethanol globally.

    The plant utilizes LanzaTech's technology which relies on anaerobic bacteria to ferment stell mill waste emissions. The installation has an ethanol production capacity of 46,000 tpy and has been operational since early May, this year.

    According to LanzaTech, the performance of this type of sustainable ethanol in fuel blending applications is indistinguishable from sugar-derived ethanol and meets the ASTM International D4806 standard. (Source: LanzaTeck, Renewables, 11 June, 2018) Contact: LanzaTech, Dr. Jennifer Holmgren, CEO, (630) 439-3050, jennifer@lanzatech.com, www.lanzatech.com; Shougang Group, www.shougang.com.cn/en

    More Low-Carbon Energy News LanzaTech,  Biofuel ,  Ethanol,  Ethanol Blending,  


    Tianjin City Announces Ethanol Blended Gasoline Plan (Int'l)
    Ethanol
    Date: 2018-06-11
    In China, Reuters is reporting that by the end of Sept. the port city of Tianjin -- pop 15,000,000 -- will use ethanol-blended gasoline in most vehicles, according to the city government's website.

    Tianjin is expected to use 260,000 tpy of fuel ethanol produced from approximately 780,000 tpy of corn. China is currently sitting on huge stocks of corn estimated to be at about 200 million tonnes, following a now discontinued government stockpiling scheme to support farmers. Although China currently produces under 2.5 million tpy of ethanol the new policy could increase demand to 15 million tpy by 2020, according to a Reuters estimate.

    As previously reported, in 2017, China announced plans to roll out E-10 ethanol blended fuel on a national scale by 2020. (Source: Various Media, Reuters, 11 June, 2018)

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


    EPA Waivers Lower Ethanol Production, says RFA (Ind. Report)
    Renewable Fuels Association
    Date: 2018-04-30
    The US EPA has granted Renewable Fuels Standard (RFS)waivers to dozens of refineries over the last couple of years. The Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) analyzed the EPA's own compliance data and found that the exemptions lowered volumetric obligations by at least 1.6 million gallons over that time period. The volume lost over the last two years is ten times greater than the collective losses from 2013-2015, according to the RFA. The EPA reportedly has not disclosed the number of waivers it has granted and how much blending volume those exemptions effectively erased.

    According to the RFA, "The EPA data strongly implies that small refiner exemptions have effectively lowered the 2017 required volume of renewable fuels by 1.1 billion gallons, or six percent." (Source: US EPA, NAFB, Others, 28 April, 2018)Contact: RFA, Bob Dinneen, Pres., (202) 289-3835, www.ethanolrfa.org

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


    USGC Seeks to Expand Ethanol Exports to India (Ind. Report)
    US Grains Council
    Date: 2018-03-26
    The US Grains Council (USGC) representing US ethanol producers reports it is interested in supplying ethanol for India's 10 pct (E-10) ethanol-blending programme, which suffers from an inadequate supply of domestically produced ethanol. India's sugar producers produce enough ethanol to meet only 4 pct of the country's ethanol blend mandate.

    USGC presently exports 50 million lpy of ethanol to India, which is used for industrial applications. A significant percentage of India's ethanol refining capacity is frequently idled due to feed stock and other shortfalls, according to the Federation of Indian Chamber Of Commerce & Industry (FICCI) which estimates 3.13 billion lpy are required to meet the E-10 mandate. However, as of end-December 2017, Indian sugar and ethanol producers have entered into an agreement for only 1.4 billion litres of ethanol, leaving a huge gap. (Source: US Grains Council, Hindu Business Line, 25 Mar., 2018) Contact: US Grains Council, Kurt Shultz, (202) 789-0789, https://grains.org, Federation of Indian Chamber Of Commerce & Industry, +91 44 4284 9613, /www.ficci-hes.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News US Grains Council,  Ethanol,  Ethanol Blend,  India Ethanol,  


    Pruitt Looks to Limit RFS RINs Speculation (Reg & Leg)
    Scott Pruitt
    Date: 2018-03-14
    The Houston Chronicle is reporting that US EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt is considering limiting what he sees as speculative trade of ethanol Renewable Identification Numbers (RINs) in an effort to keep prices down. .

    "There's some things on the trading platform I think should happen no matter what. There seems to be a hoarding of RINs which inflates the price of RINs. Some have talked about limiting the participants who buy and sell, so you can get away from some of the speculation that's taking place," Pruitt told the Houston Chronicle.

    Reforming the RINs program has been a top request of refiners and their allies in recent months, particularly after a major Philadelphia refiner declared bankruptcy in January, blaming RIN costs.

    Pruitt also told the Houston Chronicle he supports letting fuel stations sell higher ethanol blends in the summer than they are currently allowed to, but only if such a change can withstand legal challenges. (Source: US EPA, Houston Chronicle, The Hill, 12 Mar., 2018) Contact: EPA Scott Pruitt, www.facebook.com/EPAScottPruitt; www.epa.gov/aboutepa/about-office-administrator

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Ethanol,  RINs,  RFS,  Scott Pruitt,  


    NCGA Claims Negative Consequences of RFS Changes (Ind. Report)
    RFS,National Corn Growers Associatiom
    Date: 2018-03-12
    Following up on our February 28th coverage, National Corn Growers Assn. (NCGA) president Kevin Skunes on March 1 commented as follows on the Trump White House meetings aimed at reaching a compromise to proposed changes to the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS): "For corn farmers, the question for the ongoing White House discussions is simple -- what is the problem you are trying to solve? According to EPA, refiners don't have a problem. "EPA concluded in November that refiners are able to recover the cost of RINs through the prices they receive for refined products and that RIN values are not causing economic harm to refiners.

    "For farmers, ethanol blending equals corn demand. Farmers care about RIN values, not because we want them to be high, but because we want the RIN market mechanism to work freely to incentivize (ethanol) blending. Increased blending will, in turn, lower RIN values, exactly the way the RFS is intended to work. Government manipulation of the RIN market, on the other hand, disrupts the incentive to blend."

    An Iowa State study concluded that: a leading Renewable Fuel Standard reform proposal considered by policymakers would allow E15 sales throughout the year and implement a cap on D6 RIN prices between $0.10 to $0.20/RIN; while year-round sales of E15 would encourage retailers to sell the fuel, capping D6 RIN prices would reduce consumption of E15 and E85: a cap on D6 RIN prices between $0.10/gal to $0.20/gal would likely reduce the effective ethanol mandate from 15 billion gallons to about 14.3 billion gallons in 2018; and unless increased ethanol exports compensate for the reduced mandate, corn prices would decrease under the proposal's D6 RIN price cap. (Source: NCGA, Farm Equipment, 9 Mar., 2018) Contact: NCGA, (202) 326-0644, www.ncga.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News NCGA,  Corn Ethanol,  Ethanol Blends,  RFS,  


    Praj Considering EU 2nd Gen Ethanol Plants (Int'l)
    Praj Industries
    Date: 2018-03-12
    Praj Considering EU 2nd Gen Ethanol Plants (Int’l) Following on our 1o May, coverage, Pune, India-based Praj Industries reports it is in advanced stage of discussions with several unidentified potential partners to establish second generation ethanol plants in two counties of the European Union.

    According to Praj, its techno-socio-economic model of 2nd gen ethanol technology is already progressing in India and can be replicated in the developed region like Europe.

    Praj Industries opened India's first integrated bio-refinery for renewable fuels and chemicals from agri-residue including rice and wheat straw, cotton stalk, bagasse, cane trash, corn cobs and stover, and other feedstocks in May, 2017. The second-generation bio-refinery demonstration plant boasts a 2nd generation ethanol production capacity of 1 million lpy.

    The Indian governments is calling for a 20 pct ethanol blend ratio in auto fuels. To meet that goal, 10 to 12 second generation ethanol projects with an average 100,000 lpy capacity are expected to be developed. (Source: Praj Industries, Economic Times of India, 11 Mar., 2018)Contact: Praj Industries Ltd., +91 20 7180 2000 / 2294 1000, info@praj.net, www.praj.net

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Praj Industries,  Cellulosic,  Ethanol,  


    Bolivia Investing in Sugar-Based Ethanol Expansion (Int'l)
    Erthanol
    Date: 2018-03-12
    In a recent announcement, Bolivian, President Evo Morales indicated the Bolivian government and several sugar and fuel industry players would invest $1.6 billion by the year 2025 to increase ethanol made from sugarcane by 25 pct over existing levels.

    Morales said that the project would increase the cultivation of sugarcane by 18,000 hectares (44,479 acres) to a total of 155,000 hectares by 2025 -- sufficient acreage to produce 8.2 million lpy of ethanol and 6.6 million liters of E85 ethanol blend within a period of seven years, President Morales noted. (Source: Latin American Herald Tribune, 10 Mar., 2018)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Ethanol,  Brazil Ethanol,  Sugarcane Ethanol,  


    Vertimass Wins New Uses for Field Corn as Feedstock for Sustainable Chemicals Challenge (Ind. Report)
    Vertimass, NCGA
    Date: 2018-03-07
    The National Corn Growers Association named Irvine, California-headquartered Vertimass LLC as one of six awardees of the Consider Corn Challenge: New Uses for Field Corn as Feedstock for Making Sustainable Chemicals Competition.

    Vertimass believes their technology of converting sustainable ethanol into fungible gasoline, diesel, jet fuel blend stocks and the chemical building blocks benzene, toluene, and xylene (BTX) can substantially increase corn demand in the US. This innovative technology eliminates the ethanol blend wall that currently limits ethanol use and allows for further expansion of renewable fuels and chemicals while maintaining a low greenhouse gas footprint.

    According to Vertimass, "This innovative technology will be fully applicable to conversion of ethanol from cellulosic biomass such as agricultural residues and dedicated energy crops and sugars into BTEX and hydrocarbon fuels as it is to corn ethanol." (Source: Vertimass LLC, PR, 5 Mar., 2018) Contact: Vertimass, Charles Wyman, CEO, John Hannon, COO, (949) 417-4307, www.vertimass.com; : NCGA, (202) 326-0644, www.ncga.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News NCGA,  Vertimass,  Corn,  Ethanol,  Biofuel Feedstock,  

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