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New Tech Converts CO2 to Renewable Natural Gas (New Prod. & Tech.)
Southern California Gas Co., Pacific Gas and Electric , Opus 12
Date: 2020-06-24
Southern California Gas Co., Pacific Gas and Electric Co. and clean-tech startup Opus 12 are reporting further advancement of a new electrochemical technology that converts the CO2 content in raw biogas to pipeline-quality renewable natural gas (RNG). Opus 12's proprietary Polymer Electrolyte Membrane electrolyzer uses electricity to convert water and CO2 into renewable natural gas in one step.

While current biogas-upgrading technology removes the CO2 from biogas, this new technology captures the CO2 and converts it into additional renewable fuel. The new demonstration shows that improved catalyst activity could speed reactions by five times and nearly double conversion efficiency, making the technology commercially competitive with other new biogas upgrading methods, according to the release.

The 12-month R&D effort was funded by SoCalGas and PG&E, and builds on an initial 2018 feasibility study. (Source: PG&E, Market Screener, 22 June, 2020) Contact: Southern California Gas Co., (909) 307-7070, www.socalgas.com; Pacific Gas and Electric, www.pge.com; Opus 12, www.opus-12.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News RNG,  Biogas,  Southern California Gas ,  Pacific Gas and Electric,  Opus 12 ,  


Notable Quote from the RFA
RFA,Biofuel
Date: 2020-06-19
"To say that the last year has been a roller coaster ride for the (ethanol-biofuels) industry would be an enormous understatement." -- Geoff Cooper, Pres., CEO , Renewable Fuels Association Contact: Renewable Fuels Association, Geoff Cooper, Pres., CEO, (202) 289-3835, www.ethanolrfa.org

More Low-Carbon Energy News RFA ,  Geoff Cooper,  Ethanol,  Renewable Fuels,  


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

More Low-Carbon Energy News RFS,  Biofuel,  


Biodiesel Board Urges EPA to Reject RFS "Gap" Waivers (Ind. Report)
National Biodiesel Board
Date: 2020-06-19
The National Biodiesel Board (NBB) is urging EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler to immediately reject the flood of 52 small refinery exemption petitions for previous years going back to 2011.

"EPA's consideration of small refinery exemption petitions going back to 2011 flies in the face of the recent 10th Circuit decision. By rolling back the clock, there appears to be no length EPA won't go to help refiners undermine the RFS. Make no mistake -- this handout to the oil industry comes at the expense of biodiesel producers and soybean farmers across the country, and particularly the Midwest. Allowing these gap filings renders the program completely unpredictable for renewable fuel producers. The agency must immediately reject these petitions to restore confidence that it will abide by the law in administering the RFS." NBB VP for Federal Affairs Kurt Kovarik said.

NBB sent a June 1 letter to Administrator Wheeler saying, "EPA's first step upon receiving any petition for a small refinery exemption should be to evaluate its timeliness and validity before transmitting it to the Department of Energy." The letter makes the case that "gap" petitions or re-submissions of previously rejected petitions are inconsistent with the 10th Circuit's ruling. (Source: National Biodiesel Board, PR, NBB Website, 18 June, 2020) Contact: NBB, Kurt Kovarik, VP of Federal Affairs, (800) 841-5849, www.nbd.org

More Low-Carbon Energy News National Biodiesel Board,  RFS,  RFS Waiver,  EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler ,  


Velocys UK Waste-to-Jet-Fuel Project Wins Additional Support (Int'l.)
Velocys
Date: 2020-06-17
Further to our 29 May coverage, the UK Secretary of State for Transport in London has announced additional funding support for UK-based renewable fuels specialist Velocys Plc's Altalto waste-to-jet fuel facility -- the first of its kind in the UK.

With the funding, the Velocys facility could begin sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) production by the mid 2020s

For the project, Velocys is partnering with British Airways Plc and Shell International Petroleum Company Ltd. Pending additional funding and financial close, construction is slated to get underway in 2022, for fuel production in 2025. (Source: Velocys, Cdn. Biomass, 17 June, 2020)Contact: Velocys Plc, Henrik Wareborn, CEO, +44 1235 838 621, (713) 275-5840 -- Houston Office, info@velocys.com, www.velocys.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Velocys,  Waste-to-Fuel,  sustainable aviation fuel,  SAF,  


Brightmark Delivers RNG to Wisc. Offloading Station (Ind. Report)
Brightmark
Date: 2020-06-15
Following up on our 26th July, 2019 coverage, in the Land of Lakes, Dane County landfill reports receipt of its first shipment of renewable natural gas (RNG) from San Francisco-based Brightmark's (fka Brightmark Energy) recently completed manure digester project in the town of Vienna, Wisconsin.

The biogas, converted from 90,000 gpd of manure from local farms will be injected into the interstate transmission pipeline to be used as renewable fuel for RNG powered vehicles (Source: Brightmark, PR 15 June, 2020) Contact: Brightmark, Bob Powell, CEO, Kavitha Ramakrishnan, kavitha.ramakrishnan@brightmarkenergy.com, www.brightmarkenergy.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Brightmark,  RNG,  Renewable Natural Gas,  


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,  


Biofuel Leaders Question Retroactive RFS Exemptions (Ind. Report)
Renewable Fuels Association
Date: 2020-06-10
In a 9 June letter to EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler, the Renewable Fuels Assoc. wrote:

"We are writing to request further information about petitions reportedly received by the U.S. EPA from small refiners seeking exemption from the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) for past compliance years.

"The petitions in question were discussed during your testimony before the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee on May 20, 2020. On the same day, U.S. DOE Under Secretary Mark Menezes confirmed that EPA is 'send[ing] over' past-year petitions for DOE review. Mr. Menezes described the petitions as 'gap filings' intended to reconstitute after-the-fact a continuous string of exemptions for select oil companies 'to be consistent with the Tenth Circuit decision.'

"This attempt to circumvent the courts and the RFS should be rejected out of hand. Even if EPA granted retroactive 'gap' exemptions without simultaneously returning the number of RINs associated with the exemption to the petitioner, such exemptions would be inconsistent with EPA's own policies and regulations, legal precedent, and Congressional intent.

"These 'gap filings' appear to be little more than the latest in a string of oil industry tactics designed to subvert the law and sidestep a court order to uphold the RFS. Read the full letter HERE. (Source: Renewable Fuels Assoc., 9 June, 2020) Contact: RFA, www.fuelsamerica.org

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


Norsk e-Fuel Plans Norwegian Renewable Fuel Plant (Int'l. Report)
Norsk e-Fuel
Date: 2020-06-10
The Norwegian consortium Norsk e-Fuel reports it is planning Europe's first commercial plant in Heroya, Norway for hydrogen-based renewable aviation fuel. The plant will produce 10 million lpy when commissioned in 2023 before expanding production to 100 million lpy of renewable fuel before 2026, according to a Reuters report.

Using electrolysis, renewable energy, water and CO2 captured from air are converted into syngas. Renewable fuels, such as jet fuel, are then produced through further processing and refining. The end products can then be used directly in existing infrastructures, the consortium said. The upscaled, industrial sized plant will serve as blueprint for a nationwide roll-out of the project, it added.

The consortium members include: Sunfire GmbH; carbon dioxide capture technology firm Climeworks AG; engineering company Paul Wurth SA and green investment company Valinor. (Source: Norsk e-Fuel, Reuters, 9 June, 2020) Contact: Norsk e-Fuel, info@norsk-e-fuel.com, www.norsk-e-fuel.com/en

More Low-Carbon Energy News Norsk e-Fuel news,  Aviation Fuel news,  Renewable Fuel news,  


Shuttered Minnesota Ethanol Plants Rebooting Production (Ind. Report)
Minnesota Ethanol,Ethanol
Date: 2020-06-08
In the Badger State, three of the four recently COVID-19 battered and shuttered ethanol plants in Minnesota are reported to have rebooted production -- Guardian Energy 149 million gpy ethanol plant in Janesville, Granite Falls Energy, and the Denco II ethanol plant in Morris. Of the four shuttered plants, only Gevo's facility in Luverne, the state's smallest ethanol plant, remains closed.

Nationwide, roughly 20 pct of all ethanol plants are still idle, according to the Renewable Fuels Association. U.S. ethanol production rose to 765,000 bpd for the week ending May 29, up from a historic low of 537,000 bpd for the week ending April 24, according to data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA). (Source: MSN, Star Tribune, 4 June, 2020)

More Low-Carbon Energy News Ethanol news,  Guardian Energy news,  Gevo news,  Granite Falls news,  


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

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

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


Bakersfield Renewable Fuels Finds Investors (Ind. Report)
Bakersfield Renewable Fuels
Date: 2020-06-03
Orion Energy Partners L.P., GCM Grosvenor and Voya Investment Management have entered a capital partnership with Bakersfield Renewable Fuels (BKRF), a special purpose vehicle wholly owned by Global Clean Energy Holdings Inc. (GCE). BKRF was created to purchase an existing refinery in Bakersfield, Calif.

BKRF will retool a portion of the refinery into a renewable diesel (RD) bio-refinery. The project will use GCE's camelina oil as well as traditional biofuel feedstocks such as waste fats, oils and greases to produce RD, liquid propane, naphtha and others. (Source: GCE, NatGas, Various Media, June, 2020) Contact: Global Clean Energy Holdings, Richard Palmer, CEO , www.gceholdings.com; Orion Energy Partners, 212.292.0345, Info@OrionEnergyPartners.com, www.orionenergypartners.com; GMC Grosvenor, www.gcmgrosvenor.com; VOYA, www. investments.voya.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Bakersfield Renewable Fuel,  Orion Energy,  Renewable Diesel ,  Camelina,  


Biofuel Quotas to Get Small Lift Under Draft of EPA Plan

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


U.S. Renewable Fuel Use Tops Coal (Ind. Report)
Energy Information Administration
Date: 2020-05-29
In Washington, the Energy Information Administration (EIA) is reporting U.S. consumption of renewable energy surpassed coal in 2019 for the first time since woody biomass was the top fuel source more than 130 years ago, According to EIA data, electricity generated by renewable energy sources like solar, wind and hydro exceeded coal-fired power in the U.S. for a record 40 straight days

U.S. coal consumption, primarily for electric power generation, fell 15 pct in 2019 to the lowest level since 1964, while the use of energy from sources like wind and solar notched slightly higher, according to the EIA .

Total renewable energy consumption in the U.S. grew for the fourth year to a record-high 11.5 quadrillion Btu in 2019. Since 2015, the growth in U.S. renewable energy is almost entirely attributable to the use of wind and solar in the electric power sector. In 2019, electricity generation from wind surpassed hydro for the first time and is now the most-used source of renewable energy for electricity generation in the United States on an annual basis. (Source: BIC, US EIA, May, 2020)

More Low-Carbon Energy News Energy Information Administration news,  


Velocys' UK Waste-to-Jet Fuel Project Wins Approval (Int'l.)
Velocys
Date: 2020-05-29
UK-based renewable fuels specialist Velocys Plc is reporting the North East Lincolnshire Council has given the nod to its Altalto Immingham non-recyclable household and commercial waste into sustainable aviation fuel waste-to-jet fuel (SAF) plant -- the first commercial waste-to-jet fuel facility in the UK.

For the project, Velocys is partnering with British Airways Plc and Shell International Petroleum Company Ltd. Pending additional funding and financial close, construction is slated to get underway in 2022 for fuel production in 2025. (Source: Velocys, Renewables, 22 May, 2020) Contact: Velocys, Henrik Wareborn, CEO, +44 1235 838 621, (713) 275-5840 -- Houston Office, info@velocys.com, www.velocys.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Velocys,  Waste-to-Fuel,  


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,  


Velocys UK Waste-to-Jet Fuel Project Wins Approval (Int'l. Report)
Velocys
Date: 2020-05-27
UK-based renewable fuels specialist Velocys Plc is reporting the North East Lincolnshire Council has given the nod to its Altalto Immingham non-recyclable household and commercial waste into sustainable aviation fuel waste-to-jet fuel (SAF) plant -- the first commercial waste-to-jet fuel facility in the UK.

For the project, Velocys is partnering with British Airways Plc and Shell International Petroleum Company Ltd. Pending additional funding and financial close, construction is slated to get underway in 2022, for fuel production in 2025. (Source: Velocys, Renewables, 22 May, 2020) Contact: Velocys, Henrik Wareborn, CEO, +44 1235 838 621, (713) 275-5840 -- Houston Office, info@velocys.com, www.velocys.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Velocys,  Waste-to-Fuel,  


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

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


"It seems that the worst may be behind us" -- Notable Quote
USDA,Renewable Fuels Association
Date: 2020-05-19
"We are starting to see some plants come back on line. We still have a long way to go to climb out of the hole that Covid-19 put us in."

"Ethanol production fell to record lows during April due to the coronavirus (COVID-19 pandemic) but is showing modest signs of recovery. It seems that the worst may be behind us." -- Geoff Cooper, CEO, Renewable Fuels Association.

Cooper was commenting on a 5-week high 3 pct rise in ethanol production the week ending May 8, to 25.9 million gpd -- 60 plants shuttered and many more working at reduced capacity. (Source: RFA, AgNewsWire. PR, Ethanol Report 5-15-20, 17 May, 2020) Contact: Renewable Fuels Association, Geoff Cooper, (202) 289-3835, www.ethanolrfa.org

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


Idealfuel Project Developing Maritime Renewable Fuel (Int'l.)
Technical University Eindhoven ,Idealfuel
Date: 2020-05-15
In the Netherlands, a consortium of 11 participants led by the Technical University Eindhoven (TU/e) reports it is working to develop methods to convert woody biomass materials into renewable marine fuels through the conversion of lignin from dry plant matter (lignocellulosic biomass). The project is supported by €5 million in grant funding from the European Union's Horizon2020 program.

Idealfuel aims to devise an efficient and low-cost two-step chemical process in order to achieve its goal. In the first step, lignin is extracted from lignocellulosic biomass in the form of Crude Lignin Oil (CLO). This leaves behind a solid cellulose material that can be used in the paper industry or even converted into ethanol. In the second step, the CLO is refined and converted into a Biogenic Heavy Fuel (Bio-HFO) that can be used directly in marine engines or blended with fossil fuels.

Download Making Crude Oil from Paper Pulp project details HERE. (Source: TU/e Idealfuel, Innovation Origin, 13 May, 2020) Contact: TU/e Idealfuel, Dr. Roy Hermanns Barry Fitzgerald, +31 40 247 8067 , B.Fitzgerald@tue.nl, www.tue.nl

More Low-Carbon Energy News Lignin,  Idealfuel,  Woody Biomass,  


ClearFlame Engine Tech. Newest RFA Member (Ind. Report)
Renewable Fuels Association
Date: 2020-05-15
The Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) is reporting Chicago-based ClearFlame Engine Technologies has become their newest member. The company provides a patented set of modifications allow diesel engines to operate on 100 pct ethanol fuel as a substitute for petroleum diesel fuel.

ClearFlame notes that opening the current diesel fuel market to use 100 pct ethanol fuel has the potential to add massive additional ethanol demand over time -- 50 percent replacement of all diesel fuel would require 34 billion gallons of additional ethanol fuel. (Source: RFA, ClearFlame Engine Technologies, PR, 13 May, 2020) Contact: ClearFlame, John Howell, VP of Business Dev., (508) 404-9398, john@clearflameengines.com, www.clearflameengines.com; Renewable Fuels Association, Geoff Cooper, (202) 289-3835, www.ethanolrfa.org

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


Renewable Diesel Plant Planned for Newton, Illinois (Ind. Report)
St. Joseph Renewable Fuels
Date: 2020-05-15
In the Land of Lincoln, St. Joseph Renewable Fuels LLC and the City of Newton, (pop 3,000 +-) in Jasper County have announced plans to construct a $400-million renewable diesel plant.

The new plant, which will process used restaurant "brown" grease into renewable diesel, is expected to break ground this year.

As previously reported, the company cancelled a similar $190 million renewwable diesel project agreement with the city of St. Joseph, Missouri in October, 2018. (Source: St. Joseph Renewable Fuels, WTWO/WAWV, Wabash Valley, 13 May, 2020) Contact: St. Joseph Renewable Fuels LLC., (316) 977-8585

More Low-Carbon Energy News Renewable Diesel,  Biodiesel,  St. Joseph Renewable Fuels,  Renewable Fuel,  Biodiesel,  


Enerkem, NOVA Chemicals Announce Collaboration (Ind. Report)
Enerkem, NOVA Chemicals
Date: 2020-05-13
Montreal-based biofuels-renewable fuels from wastes specialist Enerkem and Calgary-headquartered NOVA Chemicals Corp. are reporting a joint development agreement to research advanced recycling technology to transform hard-to-recycle municipal waste, including items such as plastics, household waste, and construction materials, into ethylene at full commercial scale.

Enerkem is the world's first to produce renewable methanol and ethanol from non-recyclable, non-compostable municipal solid waste at full commercial scale. Enerkem's technology replace the use of fossil sources like petroleum and natural gas to produce sustainable chemicals and transportation fuels. Calgary-based NOVA Chemicals develops and manufactures chemicals and plastic resins. (Source: NOVA Chemicals, Enerkem Inc., May, 2020) Contact: NOVA Chemicals, Todd Karran, Pres., Jennifer Nanz, Communications, Jennifer.Nanz@novachem.com, www.novachem.com; Enerkem, Dominique Boies, CEO and CFO, 514-375-7800 communications@enerkem.com, www.enerkem.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News NOVA Chemicals,  Enerken,  Waste-to-Fuel,  


Trump Urged to Reject Waiver Requests (Opinions, Editorials & Asides)
EPA,Renewable Fuel Standard
Date: 2020-05-11
In the nation's capitol, a bipartisan group of 24 U.S. senators -- including Sens. Joni Ernst (R-Iowa), Tina Smith(D-Minn) Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) and Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich) have written the following to the White House:

"We are writing to urge you to uphold the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) and immediately reject the requests for a waiver of the RFS under Section 211(o)(7) of the Clean Air Act recently received by the Environmental Protection Agency(EPA) from five state governors.

"Across our states, biofuels lower fuel prices, create hundreds of thousands of jobs in the new energy economy, many of which are in rural areas, provide an important market for farmers, cut our reliance on foreign oil, reduce emissions and harmful air pollutants, and provide critical inputs to our food supply.

"Our nation is facing unprecedented challenges as a result of the global health pandemic caused by COVID-19, with the impacts being felt across all of society. Waiving the RFS would cause further harm to the U.S.economy, especially our most vulnerable rural communities. It would also exacerbate the effects experienced by the biofuel sector as a result of COVID-19, causing far-reaching detrimental impacts on employment, farmers, food security, fuel prices, and the environment. The resiliency of America's renewable fuel industry has already suffered as a result of the EPA's drastic expansion of the small refinery waiver program in recent years.

"The U.S. Department of Homeland Security identified the biofuels sector as an essential critical infrastructure workforce during the COVID-19 response. However, as motor fuel demand has plummeted, prices have slumped to record lows and producers are suffering heavy losses. At this point more than 70 ethanol facilities with an annual production capacity of 6.1 billion gallons have been fully idled, and approximately 70 more plants have reduced their operating rates by a combined amount of 1.9 billion gallons annualized. At least 46 pct of the ethanol industry's total production capacity is now idled, and eight biodiesel and renewable diesel facilities remain offline. Highly-skilled jobs across the country are being lost at an alarming rate.

"Biofuel plant closures have ripple effects through the U.S. economy. Farm income is directly linked to the health of the renewable fuel industry. Plant shutdowns are causing commercial CO2 supply shortages and inhibiting the ability of meat packers and other food sectors to refrigerate, preserve,and supply food and beverages at current, affordable rates. Ethanol plants also produce low cost, high-protein animal feed (distillers grains). Supply shortages as a result of biofuel plant closures are impacting livestock feed procurement, rations, and prices. Biodiesel producers provide value to surplus and waste oils, fats and greases from food, feed and other biofuel production. Without the biodiesel industry, excess feedstocks will clog the supply chain, causing livestock producers to potentially raise prices for consumers. Removing biofuels from gasoline and diesel will also lead to an increase of greenhouse gas emissions, particulate matter, and toxics-causing degradation to our air quality.

"Recent requests for a waiver of the RFS are unjustified and clearly do not satisfy the rigorous requirements necessary for EPA consideration. RFS waivers can only be granted by EPA if there is a demonstration of 'severe harm' to the economy or environment of a state, region or the United States that is directly caused by the RFS. None of these standards are met today and the following reasons clearly demonstrate the case for rejecting the waiver requests:

  • Challenging market conditions in the oil sector are the directresult of oversupply from international competitors combined with falling gasoline, diesel and jet fuel demand as a result of the COVID-19, not the RFS.

  • The RFS already accommodates demand reductions and provides flexibility to reflect the reality of motor fuel demand. EPA translates the annual RFS requirements into a percentage share of gasoline and diesel. Thus, the existing structure of the RFS regulations already results in an oil refiner's renewable volume obligations being proportionally reduced if overall motor fuel demand drops over the year

  • EPA has repeatedly found that RIN prices do not negatively impact refiners, a position reinforced by the 10th Circuit court in January 200. In addition, a record-large supply of RINs is available to refiners today, largely as a consequence of EPA's abusive expansion of the small refinery exemption program, so the threat of high RIN prices is currently non-existent.

    "We urge you to direct the EPA to reject all calls to waive the RFS. The RFS is more important now than ever as farmers, the biofuel sector, and rural America struggle to remain operational during the COVID-19 crisis." (Source: US Senate, 8 May, 2020)

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


  • 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 ,  


    CVR Energy Considering Renewable Diesel Production (Ind. Report)
    CVR Energy
    Date: 2020-05-08
    Reuters is reporting Sugarland, Texas-based CVR Energy Inc. is looking to convert certain units in its petroleum refineries to renewable diesel production (RNG) to reduce its exposure to the cost of renewable fuel credits (RINs) which it estimate will come in at roughly $65 million to $75 million in 2020.

    The project, which would involve using excess hydrogen capacity and converting some desulfurization units for renewable diesel production, is still in its early stages, according to the company.

    The use of RNG as a transportation fuel has reportedly increased 291 pct over the past 5 years, displacing close to 7.5 million tons of carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2e). That is the greenhouse gas emissions equivalent of driving 18.6 trillion miles in a typical passenger cat. It is the CO2 emissions equivalent of consuming 842 million gallons of gasoline. This equates to the total amount of fuel used by 63,171 transit buses every year, according to trade data. (Source: CVR Energy, Reuters 7 May, 2020) Contact: CVR Energy Inc., (281) 207-3200, www.cvrenergy.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News CVR Energy ,  Renewable Diesel,  RINs,  RNG,  


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

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

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

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

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

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


    Ethanol Producer Aemetis Begins Messer CO2 Deliveries (Ind. Report)
    Aemetis,Messer
    Date: 2020-05-06
    Cupertino, California-based advanced renewable fuels and biochemicals specialist Aemetis, Inc. reports it has begun CO2 deliveries from its 65 million gpy ethanol plant to Messer Group, the world's largest privately run industrial gas specialist, for processing into liquid CO2 -- a key product in the food freezing and chilling, carbonated beverage, and electronics sectors. The new Messer plant is connected via pipeline to the Aemetis ethanol production facility.

    Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the supply of liquid CO2 has been significantly disrupted in California and throughout the United States as ethanol production plants have decreased production rates. Aemetis anticipates selling Messer approximately 450 tpd of CO2 from its ethanol fermentation process. (Source: Aemetis Inc., PR, 4 May, 2020) Contact: Messer Group, www.messergroup.com; Aemetis, Eric McAfee, CEO , Todd Waltz, (408) 213-0940, emcafee@aemetis.com, www.aemetis.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Aemetis,  Ethanol,  CO2 ,  


    Clean Fuels Deployment Act of 2020 Introduced (Reg & Leg)
    Biofuel
    Date: 2020-05-01
    In Washington, U.S. Congresswoman Abby Finkenauer (Dem, IA-01)is reporting the introduction of the bipartisan Clean Fuels Deployment Act of 2020 authorizing $600 million over six years to help retailers offer higher ethanol blends, expand the geographic area selling ethanol blends, support biodiesel, bioheat, and sustainable aviation fuel markets, and accelerate the deployment of fueling infrastructure.

    The legislation, co-sponsored by Reps. Angie Craig (D-MN), Don Bacon (R-NE), and Roger Marshall (R-KS), would provide funding for installing and converting fuel pump infrastructure to deliver higher blends of ethanol and biodiesel.

    The bill, given recent uncertainties in the renewable fuels industry, is more important than ever to fund infrastructure improvements and remove market barriers to accessing clean and renewable fuels. In addition to supporting the distribution of higher ethanol and biodiesel blends at fueling stations, the program could also be used to enhance pipelines and terminals to blend and carry ethanol and biodiesel.

    Program grant funding could be used to incentivize the deployment of ethanol and biodiesel fueling infrastructure and convert existing infrastructure to deliver ethanol blends greater than 10 percent and biodiesel blends greater than 20 pct. (Source: Office of Congresswoman Abby Finkenauer, Website, 28 April, 2020) (202) 225-2911, (319) 364-2288, www.finkenauer.house.gov

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Biofuel,  Ethanol,  Biodiesel,  


    Valero Updates Ethanol, Renewable Diesel Results (Ind. Report)
    Valero Energy
    Date: 2020-05-01
    In its just released Q1 financial results report, San Antonio-headquartered Valero Energy Corp., the second-largest U.S. oil processor by capacity, noted that while operations are being impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic the demand for transportation fuels is beginning to rebound.

    As per our 8 November, 2019 report, Valero has temporarily idled several of its ethanol plants. Ethanol production volumes for Q1 averaged 4.1 million gpd -- in line with production levels for Q1, 2019.

    Valero's ethanol segment reported a $197 million operating loss for the first quarter of 2020, compared to $3 million in operating income for the same period of 2019. The decrease in operating income was primarily attributed to lower ethanol prices and higher corn prices, according to the report.

    The report noted the impacts to its renewable diesel operations have not been as severe and progress is continuing on the Diamond pipeline expansion and the Diamond Green Diesel project, both of which are expected to be complete in 2021. Capacity at the Diamond Green Diesel facility is being expanded to 675 MMgy. Renewable diesel sales averaged 867,000 gpd during Q1 this year -- up 77,000 gpd when compared to the same period 2019. (Source: Valero, April, 2020) Contact: Valero Renewable Fuels, Joe Gorder, Pres., (800) 324-8464, www.valero.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Renewable Biesel,  Valero Energy,  Ethanol,  


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

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

    As previously noted, "hardship waivers" were intended for refineries producing 75,000 bpd or less and suffered "disproportionate economic hardship" from the costs of RFS compliance. The waiver frees the refineries from an obligation to provide the EPA with biofuels credits proving compliance. Under the now vanquished administrator Greg Pruitt's direction, the EPA handed out 54 exemptions over two years and not a single request for an exemption was denied.Under the U.S. Renewable Fuel Standard, the nation's oil refineries are required to blend billions of gallons of biofuels such as ethanol into the fuel or buy credits from those that do. But the EPA can waive their obligations if they prove compliance would cause them financial distress.(Source: Various Trade Media, ICIS, 17 April, 2020)

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


    73 US Ethanol Plants Idled (Ind. Report)
    Renewable Fuels Association
    Date: 2020-04-24
    According to the ethanol trade group, the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA), of the 204 operating ethanol plants in the U.S., 73 plants are now idled and another 71 plants have reduced production as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. RFA estimates that ethanol production could fall by around 3bn gallons in 2020, a nearly 20 percent cut from previously expected levels.

    The RFA also notes 2020 U.S. ethanol sales could fall by more than $10 billion and the ethanol industry's contribution to gross GDP could fall by nearly one third. (Source: RFA, ICIS, 20 April, 2020) Contact: Renewable Fuels Association, Geoff Cooper, (202) 289-3835, www.ethanolrfa.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Renewable Fuels Associatio,  RFA,  Ethanoln ,  


    NCGA Calling for Low Carbon, High Octane Fuel Standard (Ind Report)
    National Corn Growers Association
    Date: 2020-04-24
    According to the National Corn Growers Association's (NCGA) Mark Palmer, director of renewable fuels, the corn ethanol industry is presently dealing with some major challenges right now but is working on legislation to establish a federal low carbon, high octane fuel standard for automobiles.

    A low carbon, high octane standard would allow sales of 20 pct or higher ethanol blends. Palmer says they hope to have legislation introduced in the House by late summer or early fall. (Source: National Corn Growers Association, Brownfield Ag News, 21 April, 2020) Contact: 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,  Low-Carbon Fuel,  Coen,  Corn Ethanol,  


    Seattle Cutting CO2 Emissions, Funding "Blue Carbon" Research Project (Ind. Report)
    Port of Seattle, US Gain
    Date: 2020-04-17
    In Washington State, the Port of Seattle Commission reports approval of a 10-year Renewable Natural Gas (RNG) supply contract with U.S. Gain to enable the Port to reach its 2030 goal to cut carbon emissions by 50 pct almost a decade early.

    The $23 million contract allows the Port to purchase sufficient fuel to heat 55 pct of the Seattle-Tacoma International Airport (SEA) terminal and to power 100 pct of its bus fleet to reach its 50 pct port-wide carbon reduction goal. The fuel delivery begins October 1, 2020.

    Natural gas accounts for 75 pct of the Port's annual climate-warming greenhouse gas emissions. This contract will result in the reduction of approximately 11,000 tpy of emissions the Port directly produces -- equivalent to heating 4,000 Seattle homes or taking 2,400 passenger vehicles off the roads each year of the contract.

    Port Commissioners also approved an Inter-local agreement with the Washington State Departments of Ecology and Natural Resources for the Smith Cove "Blue Carbon" pilot project. Blue Carbon is the carbon stored in coastal ecosystems of mangroves, tidal marshes and sea grass meadows contain large stores of carbon deposited by vegetation and various natural processes over centuries. These ecosystems sequester and store more carbon per unit area than terrestrial forests. The goal of the study is to evaluate how well transplanted kelp and eelgrass offshore of Smith Cove Park sequester carbon and reduce ocean acidification associated with carbon concentrations. (Source: Port of Seattle, PR, Travel Daily News, 16 April, 2020) Contact: US Gain, Bryan Nudelbacher, Dir. RNG Business Development, 920.381.2190, www.usgain.com; Port of Seattle Commission, 206-787-3034, www.portseattle.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Blue Carbon,  US Gain,  Port of Seattle ,  Renewable Fuel,  


    Valero Energy Halts 60 pct of Ethanol Production (Ind. Report)
    Valero
    Date: 2020-04-15
    San Antonio-headquartere Valero Energy Corp., the second-largest U.S. oil processor by capacity, is reporting the temporary shutdown of 60 pct of its ethanol plant production capacity.

    On 8 Nov., 2019, Valero stopped ethanol production at its corn ethanol facilities in Riga, Michigan and Bluffton, Indiana, due to "weak margins" and "market conditions". The plants will resume production "as soon as favorable economic conditions exit", according to the company's website. (Source: Valero, Website, 14 April, 2020) Contact: Valero Renewable Fuels, Joe Gorder, Pres., (800) 324-8464, www.valero.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Valero Energy,  Ethanol,  


    Senators Seeking Ethanol Ind. Support (Editorials, Opinions & Asides)
    Ethanol,Chuck Grassley
    Date: 2020-04-10
    In a recent letter to USDA Secretary Sonny Perdue Iowa's Sen. Chuck Grassley (R )and Sen. Joni Ernst(R) and a group of midwest senators, called for additional biofuel industry funding through the Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC).

    "As the country follows the advice of local and state governments and remain at home, motor fuel use has rapidly decreased. The decrease in fuel consumption has left (biofuel) production facilities little choice but to idle production or close completely.

    "Farm income and prices for corn and other crop commodities are directly linked to the health of the renewable fuel industry. Ethanol plants use 40 percent of all corn grown in the United States. Among other feedstocks, biodiesel and renewable diesel producers currently use over 8 billion pounds of soybean oil a year, creating demand that adds 13 percent to the cash price of a bushel of soybeans.

    "We have seen a significant drop in the price of corn and soybeans because of the decline in demand. Keeping plants open is vital for our states and we ask that you use the authority given by Congress to assist the biofuel industry during extremely difficult times. We are supportive of the proposals the biofuel industry has put forward to reimburse feedstocks and also believe that adding additional CCC funds to the Higher-Blends Infrastructure Incentive Program will drive future biofuel demand,” the senators continued," the letter said. (Source: Various Media, Atlantic News Telegraph, 8 April, 2020)Contact: Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), www.grassley.senate.gov; Sen. Joni Ernst, www.ernst.senate.gov

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Chuck Grassley,  Ethanol,  


    Alliance BioEnergy's Next-Gen CTS 2.0 Underway (Ind Report)
    Alliance BioEnergy
    Date: 2020-04-10
    In the Sunshine State, Palm Beach Gardens-based Alliance BioEnergy Plus Inc. reports construction is underway on its new 4th generation Cellulose-to-Sugar (CTS 2.0) prototype.

    CTS 2.0 can convert virtually any plant material -- grasses, wood, paper, farm waste, yard waste, forestry products, fruit casings, nut shells, and the cellulosic portion of municipal solid waste -- into sugars and subsequently into biofuels, and bioplastics, without the use of enzymes or liquid acids. CTS stands for Cellulose to Sugar. The cellulose is converted into sugar and lignin. The sugar is further converted into bio-ethanol and other biofuels; the lignin may be further converted into bioplastics. The company notes that biofuel originating from the CTS process will receive the generous D3 cellulosic Renewable Fuel Credits (RINs) which are currently $1.40/gallon of ethanol. (Source: Alliance Bioenergy, PR, 9 April, 2020) Contact: Alliance Bioenergy Plus, Inc., Ben Slager, CEO, Ben.slager@alliancebioe.com; www.Alliancebioe.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Cellulosic,  Biomass,  Alliance BioEnergy,  Biomass,  Biofuel,  


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

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

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


    Military Veterans Major Ethanol Industry Employees (Ind. Report)
    Renewable Fuels Association,
    Date: 2020-03-30
    2020 U.S. Energy and Employment Report, a new study from the National Association of State Energy Offices and Energy Futures Initiative has found the U.S. ethanol industry employs a significantly more military veterans than any other segment of the energy industry -- roughly one in five ethanol industry employees is a veteran.

    Per 100 workers, the ethanol industry employs more than twice as many veterans as the petroleum, natural gas, nuclear, coal, and wind energy sectors. (Source: Renewable Fuels Association, 24 Mar.,2020) Contact: Renewable Fuels Association, Geoff Cooper, (202) 289-3835, www.ethanolrfa.org

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


    Cielo, Renewable U Medicine Hat RF JV Progressing (Ind.Report)
    Cielo Waste Solutions
    Date: 2020-03-27
    Vancouver, BC-based Cielo Waste Solutions Corp is reporting its joint-venture (JV) partner Renewable U Medicine Hat Inc. has secured an agreement in principle and secured funding for the purchase of an 80 acre site in Cypress County, Alberta for their joint renewable fuels (RF) production facility, subject to numerous conditions, before or on July 1, 2020.

    The planned facility will convert 65,000 tpy of various feedstocks into 32.7 million lpy of renewable fuels that can be blended into conventional highway transportation, marine and aviation fuels. (Source: Cielo. PR Mar., 2020) Contact: Cielo Waste Solutions Corp., Don Allan, Pres., CEO, (403) 348-2972 Ext. 101, donallan@cielows.com, www.cielows.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Cielo Waste Solutions,  Biofuel,  Waste-to-Fuel,  Landfill Waste,  


    Renewable Fuels Coalition Comments on Admin's Not Seeking SRE Ruling Re-hearing (Opinions, Editorials & Asides)
    Americans for Clean Energy
    Date: 2020-03-27
    Further to our 20th Jan. coverage, a coalition of the Renewable Fuels Association, National Corn Growers Association, American Coalition for Ethanol and National Farmers Union released the following statement:

    "We are pleased the Trump administration has decided not to side with oil refiners in seeking a re-hearing of this unambiguous and well-reasoned court decision in the Tenth Circuit. We trust this also means the administration does not plan to petition the Supreme Court for an appeal. Abiding by the court's ruling is the right thing to do at a time when our industries and rural America are already suffering from the effects of COVID-19, the Saudi-Russia oil price war and ongoing trade disputes.

    "We look to the RFS as a source of demand stability and certainty, especially in these troubling times. Requesting a re-hearing would have only prolonged uncertainty in the marketplace and exacerbated the pain and frustration already being experienced in the Heartland.

    "With this key milestone now behind us, we look forward to EPA applying the Tenth Circuit decision nationwide to all SRE (small refiner exemption) petitions, beginning with the 25 pending petitions for 2019 exemptions."

    The coalition also noted that fully restoring the integrity of the RFS means immediate action to restore 500 million gallons of inappropriately waived 2016 blending requirements, as ordered by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. District in 2017. (Source: Various Media, The Fence Post, 25 Mar., 2020) Contact: Renewable Fuels Association, Geoff Cooper, (202) 289-3835, www.ethanolrfa.org; American Coalition for Ethanol, Brian Jennings, CEO, (605) 334-3381 ext. 3389, www.ethanol.org; National Farmers Union, Roger Johnson, Pres., (202) 554-1600, www.nfu.org; NCGA, (636) 733-9004, (636) 733-9005 -fax, corninfo@ncga.com, www.ncga.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News RFS,  Americans for Clean Energy,  RFS "Hardship" ,  Waivers,  Renewable Fuels Associatio,  National Farmers Union,  National Corn Growers Association,  American Coalition for Ethanol,  


    Notable Quote on Renewable Fuels Production
    RFA,Biofuel
    Date: 2020-03-25
    "It looks to us like we're nearing 2 billion gallons of (renewable fuel) capacity on an annualized basis that was operating as recently as a month ago that we think by the end of this week will be offline." -- RFA President Geoff Cooper commenting on production cuts due to declined demand. Contact: Renewable Fuels Association, Geoff Cooper, (202) 289-3835, www.ethanolrfa.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News RFA ,  Geoff Cooper,  Ethanol,  Renewable Fuels ,  


    Gasum, Forchem Ink Liquified Biogas Delivery Agreement (Int'l.)
    Gasum,Forchem Oy
    Date: 2020-03-23
    In Helsinki, Finnish energy company Gasum has entered into an agreement with the cleantech company Forchem Oy for the supply of liquefied biogas (LBG) for the Forchem tall oil biorefinery in Rauma, Finland. Forchem switched to using liquefied natural gas (LNG) in 2019.

    Forchem supplies products for global actors operating in many different markets. The company's operations are characterized by the principles of sustainable development and minimized environmental impacts. The liquefied biogas (LBG) is received at the Forchem reception terminal, vaporized and used in the company's production processes. The switch from using LNG to using LBG can be made without any additional investments.

    Liquefied biogas (LBG) is equal to liquefied natural gas (LNG) in terms of its properties and suitable for use as a road and maritime transport fuel and for industrial purposes. LBG is a renewable fuel that can be distributed by using the existing LNG infrastructure. Biogas is produced from feedstocks including biodegradable side streams of industrial and other enterprises as well as from consumer biowaste. (Source: Gasum, Renewable News, 23 Mar.,2020) Contact: Gasum, Tommy Mattila, +358 20 4471, www.gasum.com; Forchem Oy, +358 2 478 4400, info@forchem.com, www.forchem.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News LNG,  Gasum,  Forchem,  tall oil,  Biogas,  Liquified Biogas,  ,  LBG,  


    Renewable Fuel Feedstock Sought in Nova Scotia (Ind. Report)
    Cielo Waste Solutions
    Date: 2020-03-23
    Two Canadian companies, Cielo Waste Solutions and Renewable U Halifax report they are seeking sources of waste feedstock for the production of transportation diesel, jet fuel and naphtha fuel at their planned Joint Venture Renewable Fuel Facility to be located in or within 150 kilometres of the provincial capital, Halifax.

    The proposed plant is being engineered to convert eight tonnes of dried waste per hour into approximately 32.7 million lpy of high-grade renewable fuel Cielo uses a refining process referred to as Thermal Catalytic Depolymerization, which blends waste with a chemical catalyst and low heat to change the composition of the material, producing renewable transportation diesel, jet fuel and naphtha fuel (Source: cielo, MINING.COM, 23 Mar., 2020) Contact: Cielo Waste Solutions Corp., Don Allan, Pres., CEO, (403) 348-2972 Ext. 101, donallan@cielows.com, www.cielows.com; Renewable U Halifax, www.renewableu.ca

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Cielo Waste Solutions,  Biofuel,  Waste-to-Fuel,  Landfill Waste,  


    Renewable Fuels Coalition Urges EPA to NOT Appeal Court "Hardship" Waiver Decision (Ind. Report, Reg. & Leg.)
    American Coalition for Ethanol
    Date: 2020-03-20
    With the need for a decision only days away, the Renewable Fuels Association, National Corn Growers Association, American Coalition for Ethanol and National Farmers Union -- the coalition that scored a unanimous court decision against the U.S. EPA -- is now calling for the agency to not appeal the decision.

    The coalition took the EPA to court and won over several "hardship" exemptions the EPA granted to small refineries, releasing them from their renewable fuel obligations in 2016 and 2017. The Trump Administration sought and secured an extension of the appeal deadline until Tuesday, March 24, this year.

    "With the renewable fuels industry reeling from coronavirus, trade disputes and small refinery exemptions, now is certainly not the time for the Trump administration to take any action that would cause further pain for ethanol producers or the farmers that supply them. The best thing they could do to support our industry and keep ethanol plants open is to announce immediately that they will not appeal," the coalition wrote.

    As previously noted, "hardship waivers" were intended for refineries producing 75,000 bpd or less and suffered "disproportionate economic hardship" from the costs of RFS compliance. The waiver frees the refineries from an obligation to provide the EPA with biofuels credits proving compliance. Under the now vanquished administrator Greg Pruitt's direction, the EPA handed out 54 exemptions over two years and not a single request for an exemption was denied.Under the U.S. Renewable Fuel Standard, the nation's oil refineries are required to blend billions of gallons of biofuels such as ethanol into the fuel or buy credits from those that do. But the EPA can waive their obligations if they prove compliance would cause them financial distress. (Source: American Coalition for Ethanol , Various Trade Media, 18 March 2020) Contact: U.S. Grains Council, Tom Sleight, Pres., (202) 789-0789, (202) 898-0522, www.grains.org; Renewable Fuels Association, Geoff Cooper, (202) 289-3835, www.ethanolrfa.org; American Coalition for Ethanol, Brian Jennings, CEO, (605) 334-3381 ext. 3389, www.ethanol.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News American Coalition for Ethanol,  RFS,  "Hardship Wiver",  Renewable Fuel ,  


    PREEM Selects Topsoe Hydroflex for Gothenburg Refinery (Int'l.)
    PREEM. Haldor Topsoe
    Date: 2020-03-13
    Stockholm-headquartered PREEM reports its selection of Lyngby, Denmark-based Haldor Topsoe A/S's HydroFlex renewable-fuel technology to produce clean renewable diesel and jet fuel at its Gothenburg refinery in Sweden. The 16,000 bpd unit, which is expected to come on line in 2024, will produce renewable fuels from tall oil, tallow, and other renewable feedstocks.

    Preem is the largest fuel company in Sweden, with a refining capacity of more than 18 million m3 of crude oil per year.

    Topsoe's HydroFlex is an industry-proven technology that produces renewable fuels, such as gasoline, diesel, and sustainable aviation fuel, from all renewable feedstocks. Topsoe will license and supply basic engineering, proprietary equipment, catalysts and technical services. (Source: PREEM, PR, Chem Engineering, 12 Mar.,2020) Contact: Haldor Topsoe, Morten Schaldemose, , EVP, www.topsoe.com; PREEM, Petter Holland, CEO, Pres., +46 (0) 10 459 1000, www.preem.se/en/in-english

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Renewable Fuels,  PREEM,   . Haldor Topsoe,  Renewable Fuel,  Renewable Diesel,  


    UK Planning Interim E10 Introduction (Int'l. Report)
    UK E10
    Date: 2020-03-06
    In London, the UK Transport Secretary reports the government is consulting on plans to introduce a 10- pct ethanol and gasoline fuel blend (E10) as an interim step for a possible ban on the sale of new gasoline and diesel cars within the next 15 years.

    As part of a move to "decarbonize" transport, the introduction of E10 could have the equivalent impact on CO2 emissions as taking roughly 350,000 cars off the highway.

    E10 was introduced in France in 2009 and is also used in Germany, Belgium, and Finland driven by EU targets for renewable fuel sources. (Source: euronews.com, 3 Mar., 2020) Contact: UK Transport Secretary, Grant Schapps, www.gov.uk/government/people/grant-shapps

    More Low-Carbon Energy News E10,  Ethanol Blend,  


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

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

    As previously noted, "hardship waivers" were intended for refineries producing 75,000 bpd or less and suffered "disproportionate economic hardship" from the costs of RFS compliance. The waiver frees the refineries from an obligation to provide the EPA with biofuels credits proving compliance. Under the now vanquished administrator Greg Pruitt's direction, the EPA handed out 54 exemptions over two years and not a single request for an exemption was denied.Under the U.S. Renewable Fuel Standard, the nation's oil refineries are required to blend billions of gallons of biofuels such as ethanol into the fuel or buy credits from those that do. But the EPA can waive their obligations if they prove compliance would cause them financial distress.

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

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


    Diamond Green Diesel Inks Distribution, Terminal Deal (Ind. Report)
    Darling Ingredients ,Diamond Green Diesel
    Date: 2020-02-28
    In the Lone Star State, Irving-based Darling Ingredients Inc. is reporting its joint venture with Valero Energy Corporation -- Diamond Green Diesel (DGD) has entered into a long-term lease agreement allowing DGD use of the St. Rose IMTT Terminal as a logistics hub for DGD's expanding renewable diesel facility in Norco, LA.

    Under the agreement, IMTT will construct two pipelines connecting the terminal with the DGD Norco, LA renewable diesel facility, as well as re-purpose approximately 790,000 barrels of storage capacity from petroleum storage to renewable diesel feedstock and finished product prior to the end of 2021 -- coinciding with the anticipated startup of DGD's current 400-million gpy expansion project. (Source: Darling Ingredients, PR, 25 Feb., 2020) Contact: Darling Ingedients, Melissa A. Gaither, VP IR , (972) 281-4478, mgaither@darlingii.com, www.darlingii.com;Diamond Green Diesel, sales@diamondgreendiesel.com, www.diamondgreendiesel.com; Valero Renewable Fuels, Joe Gorder, Pres., (800) 324-8464, www.valero.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Darling Ingredients ,  Diamond Green Diesel,  


    UPM Biofuels, INEOS Inks Supply Agreement (Int'l. Report)
    INEOS, UPM
    Date: 2020-02-26
    Helsinki, Finland-headquartered renewable fuels specialist UPM Biofuels is reporting a supply agreement with German chemicals giant INEOS under which INEOS will use UPM BioVerno, a sustainable raw material from a residue of wood pulp processing, to produce bio-attributed polyolefins "drop-in products at a plant in Germany.

    As previously reported, UPM Biofuels is touting "Forest Film", a new product developed with UPM BioVerno naphtha, a 100 pct wood-based solution originating from sustainably managed forests. The new product replaces traditional fossil-based virgin materials and offers an efficient way to reach sustainability goals without compromising on product performance, according to a release. (Source: INEOS, PR, BioMarket Insight, 24 Feb., 2020) Contact: INEOS, www.ineos.com; UPM Biofuels, Panu Routasalo, +358 45 265 1345, sari.mannonen@upm.com, Maiju Helin, Head of Sustainability and Market Development, +358 204 15 111, +358 204 15 110 - fax, www.upmbiofuels.com, www.upm.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News INEOS,  UPM,  Bioplastic,  Biofuel,  

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