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GCEH Converting Calif. Refinery to Biodiesel Production (M&A)
Global Clean Energy Holdings
Date: 2020-05-11
In the Golden State, Torrance-based Global Clean Energy Holdings (GCEH) Inc. is reporting the $40 million purchase of the idled Alon USA Energy Inc. Big West gasoline and diesel refinery in Kern County.

GCEH plans to convert the 70,000 bpd facility to produce biodiesel from used cooking oil, soybean oil and camelina. The refinery has not run for 12 consecutive months since 2012. (Source: GCEH, PR, The Bakersfield Californian, 8 May, 2020) Contact: GCEH, Richard Palmer, CEO, www.gceholdings.com; Alon USA Energy www.delekus.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Global Clean Energy Holdings,  DELEK,  Delek,  Biodiesell,  


UAE Biodiesel Producer Neutral Fuels Touts Expansion (Int'l. Report)
Neutral Fuels
Date: 2020-04-29
Following up on our 27 May, 2017 coverage, Dubai-based biodiesel producer Neutral Fuels reports it is the first company in the world to commercialize an "enzymatic biodiesel" using a strain of enzyme derived from the fungus that grows on a soy bean to allow it to process poor quality used cooking oil into good biodiesel.

The company is now reporting the upcoming opening of 4,700 t/yr B100 certified to Europe's EN14214 biodiesel standard production plant in South Africa. In 2019 the company expanded into India's Delhi and Bahrain in 2019 with B100 plants of 4,700 t/yr and 2,400 t/yr respectively. Funds raised from green bonds listed on Germany's Frankfurt stock exchange in 2019 are partly financing the company's growth.

Neutral Fuels notes it has no plan to export to international markets but rather aims to enhance waste-based biodiesel consumption in the regions where it is located by replicating the localized supply chain model used in its Dubai operations. (Source: Neutral Fuels, Argus, 28 April, 2020) Contact: Neutral Fuels, Karl Feilder, CEO, kwf@theneutralgroup.com, www.tng.ae, www.biodiesel.ae

More Low-Carbon Energy News Neutral Fuels,  Biodiesel ,  


Soil & Water Outcomes Fund Rewards Carbon Capture (Ind. Report)
Cargill,Iowa Soybean Association.
Date: 2020-04-13
Minneapolis-headquartered global commodities trader Cargill Inc is reporting the launch of the Soil & Water Outcomes Fund with funding support from Cargill and the Walton Family Foundation.

The Fund, a partnership with the Iowa Soybean Association and third-party verification company Quantified Ventures, will pay American farmers from $30 to $45 per acre for capturing carbon in their field soils and cutting fertiliser runoff. The Fund will then sell the environmental credits created to polluters such as cities and companies, including Cargill itself.

Cargill estimates the practices would prevent runoff of 100,000 pounds of nitrogen and 10,000 pounds of phosphorus this year and sequester 7,500 tonnes of carbon in soils, equivalent to taking 1,480 cars off the road. (Source: Cargill, 5m The Pig Site, April, 2020) Contact: Cargill, David MacLennan, CEO, Frank van Lierde, Exec. VP, Ryan Sirolli, Director of Row Crop Sustainability, www.cargill.com; Iowa Soybean Association, (515) 251-8640, www.iasoybeans.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Iowa Soybean Association,  Cargill ,  Carbon Emissions,  Carbon Capture,  


Congressional Biofuels Caucus Seeking Direct Biofuels Industry Relief (Opinions, Editorials & Asides)
USDA
Date: 2020-04-13
Iowa Congressman Steve King (R), a member of the Congressional Biofuels Caucus, reports he has signed the attached bi-partisan letter to USDA Secretary Sonny Perdue requesting that the USDA use "funds from the CARES Act to provide direct relief to the biofuels industry."

Dear Secretary Perdue,

"The Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act provided USDA with additional resources to support farm income and prices during this economic downturn. The CARES Act included a reimbursement of $14 billion to the Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC), and $9.5 billion for the Secretary to respond to the economic impacts of COVID-19. As the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) prepares to address financial hardship in agriculture, we urge you to use funds from the CARES Act to provide direct relief to the biofuels industry.

"Demand for fuel is declining as states implement stay-at-home orders and discourage travel. This sudden shift in demand is worsening market conditions to the point ethanol plants are halting production. The biofuels industry is a vital market for the commodities our farmers produce, and USDA must take immediate action to ensure plants can retain skilled workers and continue production when market conditions improve.

"The biofuels sector provides a direct and significant boost to the value of corn and soybeans. Ethanol plants purchase two out of every five bushels of U.S. corn and biodiesel producers use over 8 billion pounds of soybean oil a year. Ethanol plants produce dried distillers grains (DDGs) as a byproduct, providing livestock farmers with a low-cost, high-protein component of animal feed. To assist with the response to COVID-19, some ethanol and biofuels plants have volunteered to produce hand sanitizer and disinfectant products to address nationwide shortages. And, ethanol plants produce high purity carbon dioxide that is critical for medical facilities and food processing. The biofuels sector plays a large role in the livelihood of America's commodity and livestock producers, and biofuels plants are major employers in many rural communities.

"USDA should take immediate action to stabilize the biofuels industry with resources provided by the CARES Act. We look forward to working with you on this issue as USDA assists producers through this challenging time. Thank you for considering this request." (Source: Congressman Steven King, KIOW Radio, 12 April, 2020) Contact: Rep Steve King, steveking.house.gov

More Low-Carbon Energy News Biofuel,  USDA,  


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,  


B100 Biodiesel Technology Partnership Announced (Ind. Report)
Optimus Technologies,Archer Daniels Midland
Date: 2020-02-24
A wide range of organizations has announced a partnership to conduct a year-long validation project of revolutionary biodiesel technology to demonstrate its viability in real-world, high-mileage fleet applications.

Under this partnership, five trucks owned by Archer Daniels Midland (ADM) will be outfitted with Pittsburgh-based Optimus Technologies' Vector fuel system, an innovative technology that enables diesel engines to run almost entirely on sustainable biodiesel. The trucks will be used in daily fleet operations for a yearlong period, with each vehicle anticipated to travel 160,000-180,000 miles and reduce up to 500,000 pounds of CO2. Advanced monitoring protocols will compare the performance and results of the new technology with five other trucks comprising a control group operating on conventional diesel. All biodiesel used in the project will come from ADM's refinery in Mexico, Missouri.

While nearly all diesel engine manufacturers support at least 20 pct biodiesel (B20), the Optimus Vector System is designed to allow conventional diesel engines to run on 100 pct biodiesel in a wide range of climates. The system is already in use in shorter-mileage, local fleet applications. This new project is designed to evaluate its use for longer-haul over-the-road fleets, potentially opening a pathway to significantly higher volumes of biodiesel in the U.S. truck fleet.

Optimus' technology coupled with ADM's fuel provides heavy-duty fleets an immediate pathway to reduce these emissions over 80%. While the promise of heavy-duty fleet electrification is still decades off, this project demonstrates the ease, low cost, and efficacy of integrating biodiesel into existing fleet equipment and operations.

In addition to ADM and Optimus, this project is supported by the American Lung Association, the National Biodiesel Board, the Illinois Soybean Association, and the Missouri Soybean Merchandising Council. (Source: Optimus Technologies, PR, Website, 20 Feb., 2020) Contact: Optimus Technologies, Colin Huwyler, CEO, 412.727.8228, 888.727.2966 - fax, info@optimustec.com,www.optimustec.com; Archer Daniels Midland, www.adm.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Biodiesel,  Optimus Technologies,  Archer Daniels Midland,  


NDSP Abandons Planned N.D. Soybean Crushing Plant (Ind. Report)
North Dakota Soybean Processors
Date: 2020-02-19
Brewster, Minnesota-based North Dakota Soybean Processors (NDSP) reports it has been forced to abandon efforts to build a large-scale soybean crushing facility at the Spiritwood Energy Park in Spiritwood, North Dakota, after more than three years and a $6 million investment.

If constructed, the NDSP soybean-crushing facility would have processed 42 million bpy of locally grown soybeans and produce approximately 935,000 tons of soybean meal and 475 million pounds of soybean oil for sale into domestic and export animal feed and soybean oil markets, including with respect to the soybean oil serving as a renewable feedstock for planned or existing renewable diesel refinery facilities in North Dakota and throughout the western U.S., according to the company website (Source: North Dakota Soybean Processors, , Website, 17 Feb., 2020) Contact:North Dakota Soybean Processors, Robin Skrivan (507) 842-6715, info@ndsoy.com, www.ndsoy.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News North Dakota Soybean Processors,  Soybean,  


ANP Reports 71th Brazilian Biodiesel Auction Results (Int'l.)
Brazil's Petroleum, Natural Gas and Biofuels Agency
Date: 2020-02-14
In Brasilia, the Brazilian Petroleum, Natural Gas and Biofuels Agency (ANP) is reporting 1.12 billion litres (296.66 million gallons) of biodiesel from 42 producers have been contracted at a total price of $744 million in the 71th national biodiesel auction. (Source: ANP. United Soybean Board, Renewables, 13 Feb., 2020) Contact:Brazil Petroleum, Natural Gas and Biofuels Agency, www.en.wikipedia.org/wiki/National_Agency_of_Petroleum,_Natural_Gas_and_Biofuels_(Brazil)

More Low-Carbon Energy News Biodiesel,  


NIFA Supports Bio-jet Fuel Technology R&D (R&D Report)
USDA,National Institute for Food and Agriculture
Date: 2019-12-18
In the Cornhusker State, the University of Nebraska-Lincoln (UNL) is reporting receipt of grant funding from the USDA National Institute for Food and Agriculture (NIFA) to support collaborative research by Washington State University and University of Nebraska-Lincoln on the use of camelina oilseeds and other vegetable oil crops in renewable bio-based jet fuel manufacturing.

The research is aimed at developing new bio-based jet fuel manufacturing technology and crop feedstocks with vegetable oil compositions tailored for this technology.

The research team will use camelina as an oilseed platform to develop vegetable oil formulations with shorter carbon chains that are better suited for the processing technology. These genetic strategies will be transferred to other vegetable oil feedstocks, such as soybean and oil-rich sorghum, which are currently being developed by university faculty for the U.S. DOE Center for Advanced Bioenergy and Bioproducts Innovation (CABBI).

Research at UNL builds on prior US DOE and Nebraska Center for Energy Sciences Research'funding. (Source: University of Nebraska, Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources, UNL IANR NEWS, 17 Dec., 2019) Contact: UNL Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources, 402-472-2081, www.unl.edu; National Institute for Food and Agriculture, www.nifa.usda.gov; U.S. DOE Center for Advanced Bioenergy and Bioproducts Innovation, www.cabbi.bio

More Low-Carbon Energy News Camelina,  Oilseed,  USDA,  National Institute for Food and Agriculture,  


HollyFrontier Plans 125Mn GPY Renewable Diesel Plant (Ind Report)
HollyFrontier
Date: 2019-12-11
In the Lone Star State, Dallas-based independent petroleum refiner and marketer HollyFrontier Corporation reports it will construct a new 125-million gpy renewable diesel (RD) from soybean oil and other feedstocks unit at its Artesia, New Mexico refinery (Navajo Refinery). The company expects renewable diesel production to generate 600,000 LCFS credits in its first year.

The RDU project, corresponding rail infrastructure and storage tanks, is estimated to come in at $350 million upon completion in Q1, 2022.

HollyFrontier owns and operates refineries in Kansas, Oklahoma, New Mexico, Wyoming and Utah and markets its refined products principally in the Southwest US, the Rocky Mountains extending into the Pacific Northwest and in other neighboring Plains states. (Source: HollyFrontier, PR, 9 Dec., 2019) Contact: HollyFrontier Corp., George John Demiris, CEO, Craig Biery, Inv. Relations, 214-954-6510, www.hollyfrontier.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News HollyFrontier,  Renewable Diesel ,  


ACENY Promotes Case for Carbon Pricing at the NYISO Ind Report)
Alliance for Clean Energy New York
Date: 2019-12-09
Reporting from Albany, the Alliance for Clean Energy New York (ACENY) has released The Case for Carbon Pricing at the NYISO, a new paper laying out the arguments for New York to integrate the cost of carbon pollution into the State's wholesale electricity market. ACENY is hoping the State will align the markets with New York's ambitious renewable energy goals.

The Case for Carbon Pricing at the NYISO, puts forth clear arguments in favor of Carbon Pricing:

  • Carbon Pricing will set an example for the Nation of how carbon policy can align with markets;
  • It will complement NY's new climate law and make it more likely that NY's ambitious goals will be met;
  • Lower the costs that would otherwise be paid by state agencies in achieving the Empire State's goals, lower the costs the State needs to invest in transmission, and lower the overall costs of achieving the climate law's mandates; and
  • Be able to be implemented quickly and cost-effectively, with little to no consumer impact, if it has NYS support.

    ACENY is a broad coalition dedicated to promoting clean energy, energy efficiency, a healthy environment, and a strong economy for the Empire State, and is New York's premier advocate for the rapid adoption of renewable energy and energy efficiency technologies. (Source: ACENY, Dec., 2019) Contact: ACENY, Anne Reynolds, Executive Director, 518.432.1405 x222 (o), 518.248.4556 (m), areynolds@aceny.org, www.aceny.org; NYISO, www.nyiso.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Alliance for Clean Energ,  NYISOy New York,  Carbon Price,  Carbon Tax,  


  • HollyFrontier Planning 125Mn GPY Renewable Diesel Unit (Ind. Report)
    HollyFrontier
    Date: 2019-11-18
    In the Lone Star State, Dallas-based independent petroleum refiner and marketer HollyFrontier Corporation is reporting a planned 125 million gpy renewable diesel unit (RDU) to process soybean oil and other renewable feedstocks into renewable diesel. This investment will provide HollyFrontier the opportunity to meet the demand for low-carbon fuels while covering the cost of our annual RIN purchase obligation under current market conditions.

    The RDU, along with corresponding rail infrastructure and storage tanks, is estimated to have a total capital cost of $350 million, and is expected to be completed in Q1 of 2022. The RDU will be funded with cash on hand and is expected to generate an internal rate of return between 20 pct and 30 pct.

    HollyFrontier owns and operates refineries located in Kansas, Oklahoma, New Mexico, Wyoming and Utah and markets its refined products principally in the Southwest U.S., the Rocky Mountains extending into the Pacific Northwest and in other neighboring Plains states. (Source: HollyFrontier, PR, 18 Nov., 2019) Contact: HollyFrontier Corp., George John Demiris, CEO, Craig Biery, Inv. Relations, 214-954-6510, www.hollyfrontier.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News HollyFrontier,  Renewable Diesel ,  


    Trump Asked to Honor RFS Pledge (Opinions, Editorials & Asides)
    NBB,National Biodiesel Board
    Date: 2019-09-11
    "DearMr.President,

    "We are writing to express dismay at your recent decision to grant 31 waivers from the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) program. Plainly stated, that decision is putting U.S.biodiesel producers out of business and worsening the year's outlook for soy farmers. And while you have expressed concern to save small petroleum refineries, you should also understand that small U.S. biodiesel producers need a positive signal.

    "Within a week of your decision on the 31 waivers, one U.S. biodiesel producer announced plans to close three plants -- in Pennsylvania, Georgia, and Mississippi. Other producers have announced closings and laid off workers. More than 200 million gallons of domestic biodiesel production has been idled this year, due to instability in federal policy. We anticipate that additional facilities will close over the next several months if you do not take quick action to restore RFS volumes for biodiesel and renewable diesel.

    "Every small refinery waiver issued by the EPA has the potential to put a U.S.biodiesel producer out of business. A small oil refiner processing 75,000 barrels of oil per day can produce nearly 1 billion gallons of fuel in a year. The RFS program requires that oil refiner blend about 20 million gallons of biodiesel or renewable diesel during the year -- a very small fraction of overall fuel production. However, there are dozens of biodiesel producers who produce 20 million gallons of fuel or less each year; three-fifths of U.S. producers are small, non-integrated facilities.

    Small refinery waivers destroy demand for all biofuels across the board, with a significant impact on domestic biodiesel and renewable diesel producers. According to University of Illinois economist Scott Irwin, the exemptions especially harm biodiesel and renewable diesel producers because of the way the RFS is constructed. The 1.4 billion gallons of renewable fuel eliminated from the 2018 RFS through the 31 waivers includes hundreds of millions of gallons of biodiesel and renewable diesel in the biomass-based diesel, advanced and overall volumes.

    "The small refinery exemptions are compounding the policy headwinds our industry is facing. Biodiesel producers have waited more than 20 months for Congress to address expired tax incentives. Additionally, your U.S. Department of Commerce is proposing to virtually eliminate countervailing duties on unfairly subsidized Argentine biodiesel. Those duties were put in place to counteract years' worth of unfair trade practices by Argentina. Soy farmers have faced closed markets, depressed crop prices, and weather-related challenges. Those forces have reduced soy planting by 15 percent for the current marketing year. Biodiesel is a value-added market driver for America's soybeans, at a time when markets have been shut or diminished.

    "The biodiesel industry continues to rely on the RFS to incentivize growth. Biodiesel and renewable diesel can be used in any existing diesel engine without special equipment for blending or dispensing. Producers therefore rely on a positive signal and support from federal programs to continue opening the transportation market to higher volumes.

    "Biodiesel producers and soy farmers rely on the RFS program. Growth in the biodiesel market is the only way to keep domestic producers operating and protect U.S. workers' jobs. Unfortunately, EPA is proposing zero growth for biomass-based diesel. We have asked the agency to do two things: first, properly account for the small refinery exemptions handed out over the past few years and going forward; and second, provide growth in the biomass-based diesel market for 2020 and 2021.

    "We ask that you continue to support the RFS and save small biodiesel producers. (signed) National Biodiesel Board (NBB)" (Source: NBB, 9 Sept., 2019) Contact: NBB, Donnell Rehagen, CEO, Kurt Kovarik, VP Federal Affairs, (800) 841-5849, www.biodiesel.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News NBB,  Biodiesel,  RFS,  


    Shell Sinks $7.7Mn in Punjab Biomass Supply Business (Int'l Report)
    Royal Dutch Shell,Punjab Renewable Energy Systems
    Date: 2019-08-30
    Netherlands-based Royal Dutch Shell Plc reports is subsidiary Shell India has invested $7.7 million in the Indian biomass supply company Punjab Renewable Energy Systems Pvt. Ltd. which is backed by Neev Fund and responsAbility.

    Punjab Renewable, is involved in the collection, processing, storage and supply of paddy straw, cotton stalk, soya husk, maize cob and mustard stalk biomass for use in to power plants, biofuel production and various other applications.

    Punjab Renewable notes it can handle more than 1,000 tpd and plans to scale up to 10,000 tpd in the next few years. (Source: VCCircle, Royal Dutch Shell, 29 Aug., 2019) Contact: Shell India, www.shell.in; Punjab Renewable Energy Systems, +91 22 2757 0498, www.prespl.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Royal Dutch Shell,  Biomass,  


    More RFS "Hardship" Waivers! (Ind. Report)
    EPA,American Soybean Association
    Date: 2019-08-26
    On Friday the 23rd, the EPA announced it was granting 31 more Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) "hardship" waivers -- a whopping 31 of 38 total Small Refinery Exemption (SRE) applications for the 2018 compliance year.

    In July, EPA announced biomass-based diesel and advanced biofuels volumes for 2021 will remain stagnant but again failed to account for the significant gallons lost because of SRE, which makes the proposed volume, in effect, a reduction for biofuels.

    The waivers announced Friday evening combined with those issued for 2016 and 2017 RFS volumes brings the total number to more than 80 retroactive waivers, which significantly reduces biodiesel demand and results in billions of dollars in economic harm to the U.S. biodiesel industry, including soybean farmers.

    Kentucky soybean grower and American Soybean Association (ASA) president Davie Stephens responded to the latest round saying "Of course ASA is unhappy. These exemptions undermine President Trump's pledge to support the RFS and undermine the Administration's efforts to support farmers who are already bearing the brunt of trade disruptions. EPA's decision is another blow to yet another market for soybean farmers." (Source: American Soybean Association, Daily American, Various Media, 26 Aug., 2019) Contact: American Soybean Association, Dave Stephens, Pres., (314) 576-1770, www.soygrowers.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News EPA,  "Hardship" Waivers,  American Soybean Association,  


    "We've Had Enough!" -- NBB Comments on EPA's RFS Waivers (Opinions, Editorials & Asides)
    NBB
    Date: 2019-08-16
    "Here we go again. Last week, the U.S. EPA granted 31 out of 38 retroactive small refinery exemptions for 2018. I can't contain the frustration and utter disappointment I have with how this administration is handling its responsibility of administering the RFS.

    "Congress passed the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) back in 2007, signed into law by George W. Bush -- a lifelong oil and gas guy. The law was passed to encourage investment in advanced biofuels like biodiesel, renewable diesel and renewable jet fuel. Biodiesel producers responded, making the investments and building an industry that today produces more than 2 billion gallons of transportation fuel each year. This market also provides added value to feedstocks such as soybean oil, used restaurant oil and animal fats.

    "The oil industry feverishly insists that the ethanol industry isn't harmed by small refinery exemptions because production has grown. But what about biodiesel? They never mention us because they know that small refinery exemptions disproportionately affect biodiesel because of the way the RFS is constructed.

    "We have said again and again -- biodiesel is very different from ethanol. The president (Trump) was instrumental in clearing the path for higher blends of ethanol year-round when he lifted the RVP waiver this summer, which we were supportive of. He and his EPA administrator have mentioned E15 when they have spoken about what they believe to be the minor impact of exempting RFS gallons. It's as though they think we are dumb enough to not understand that they are giving with one hand but taking away with the other.

    "Now, back to biodiesel. E15 does nothing to expand demand for biodiesel. Ethanol is not biodiesel. In fact, the RFS recognized this by establishing its own category for biodiesel, separate from ethanol, called biomass-based diesel. Policymakers at the time recognized the need to segment biodiesel and renewable diesel within the bigger RFS pool so that growth in those products could be differentiated in the overall program and we would see advancements of biofuels in both the gasoline and diesel sector.

    "Fast forward to 2019 and we now have an EPA that, two months ago, proposed a draft rule to hold the biomass-based diesel category flat for 2020, keeping it at 2.43 billion gallons for the second year in a row and then, just last week, the same EPA grants nearly one-half billion gallons of biomass-based diesel waivers. To highlight the hypocrisy in this action, while filing the draft rule two months ago, the EPA documented, in writing, the fact that they expected to grant zero (that's zero as in none, zilch, nada) gallons of small refinery waivers in 2020. And we're supposed to understand and accept that move?

    "Biodiesel and renewable diesel year after year fill more than 90 percent of the RFS volumes reserved for advanced biofuels. But EPA complains that advanced biofuels have not materialized quickly enough to meet the goals of the RFS. Now -- as seen last week -- the agency is holding its thumb on the industry and blocking growth. Not only blocking growth, but helping to reduce demand through small refinery exemptions.

    "As the agency continues to hand them out to every refiner that asks, the damage could reach $7.7 billion or 2.54 billion gallons, according to Scott Irwin, an agricultural economist from the University of Illinois. A 'small' oil refinery, by RFS definition -- one that processes 75,000 bpd of oil and produces nearly a billion gallons of fuel a year -- would have an RFS obligation to use just 20 million gallons of biodiesel or renewable diesel. Many U.S. biodiesel producers are smaller than that -- just one small refinery exemption would eliminate their entire market. And the EPA granted 31 of them.

    "President Trump vowed to protect and defend American farmers. In fact, he calls them patriots. But his actions will put the biodiesel producers those same farmers depend on for their market, out of business. It's already happening, and it's having a devastating impact on rural communities across the nation.

    "President Trump and EPA Administrator Wheeler should clearly know what this means to the workers, producers, farmers and investors in the biodiesel and renewable diesel industry -- their new round of unwarranted RFS exemptions just destroyed jobs and a valuable marketplace for hardworking Americans, including those patriotic soybean farmers who Trump has called on to be his willing allies in the trade dispute with China. If this is how the EPA administrator treats the president’s allies, I'd hate to see how he treats his enemies. (Source: NBB, 15 Aug., 2019) Contact: NBB, Donnell Rehagen, CEO, Kurt Kovarik, VP Federal Affairs, (800) 841-5849, www.biodiesel.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News NBB,  Biodiesel,  


    JBS Announces New Brazilian Biodiesel Plant (Int'l Report)
    JBS Biodiesel,
    Date: 2019-07-31
    Brazilian global food company JBS reports it will invest approximately $48 million in another biodiesel plant in Mafra, Santa Catarina, Brazil.

    The new 900 tpd plant, which will be operated by JBS Biodiesel, a JBS Novos Negocios division, will use locally sourced pork and poultry fat supplements with soybean as a a feedstock . (Source: JBS, PR, 31 July, 2019) Contact: JBS Biodiesel, www.jbs.com.br

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Biodiesel,  JBS Biodiesel,  ,  


    MERCOSUR, EC Deal Opens South American Biofuels Market (Int'l)
    European Commission,MERCOSUR
    Date: 2019-07-15
    The European Union's European Commission (EC) is reporting a trade deal with the South American Mercosur trading bloc that will open the European market to more imports of ethanol and crops that are used to make high-emitting biofuel.

    Under the deal crops and ethanol produced in MERCOSUR member countries -- Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay -- could be used to meet the EU's green transport fuel targets. The agreement also allows for a lower tariff rate on ethanol imports to be phased in over five years: a quota of 200,000 tonnes with an in-quota rate of one-third of the current high duty of up to €19/hectolitre will be opened for fuel and other uses beyond the chemical industry, according to a EC briefing. The agreement also reduces or eliminates duties that MERCOSUR currently imposes on exports of soybean products to the EU, the Commission said. This could make soy a more attractive feedstock for biodiesel producers in Europe.

    Argentine soy diesel, imports of refined biodiesel tripled from 2017 to 2018, with palm oil and soy accounting for around 86 pct of all biodiesel imports. (Source: EU EC, Transport & Environment, 11 July, 2019) Contact: MERCOSUR, www.mercosur.int/en/about-mercosur/mercosur-countries

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Biofuel,  Biodiesel,  Soy Biodiesel,  Palm Oil,  


    Flint Hills Closes Beatrice Neb. Biodiesel Plant (Ind. Report)
    Flint Hills Resources
    Date: 2019-07-03
    Citing "tough economic times", Flint Hills Resources reports it is closing its 50-million gpy biodiesel plant in Beatrice, Nebraska. The plant, which produces biodiesel from waste fats and oils, tallow, and distillers' corn oil, is at an unusual competitive disadvantage to plants that use lower priced soybean oil.

    The 2008 vintage, $50 million plant was acquired by Flint Hills for $5 million at a 2011 and began production in 2016 after Flint Hills spent roughly $100 million to retrofit the facility to use corn oil and grease. In a 2016 news release, the company touted what was the first commercial-scale application of Benefuel Inc.'s ENSEL technology. (Source: Flint Hills Resources, DTN, 2 July, 2019) Contact: Flint Hills Resources, Brad Razook, CEO, (316) 828-3477, www.fhr.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Benefuel,  Beatrice,  Flint Hills Resources,  Ethanol,  


    DRAX, Deep Branch Biotech to Turn CO2 into Animal Feed (Int'l)
    DRAX
    Date: 2019-06-24
    In the UK, power plant operator DRAX and Nottingham-startup Deep Branch Biotechnology, a lab located at DRAX's giant power station in Yorkshire, reports the two organizations will explore ways to capture and process CO2 into protein for sustainable animal feed.

    Deep Branch Biotechnology is to run the new pilot project within the DRAX power plant's Carbon Capture Usage and Storage (CCUS) Incubation Area. For the pilot project, scientists will gather waste CO2 from energy generation and feed it to microbes which will use it to make single-cell proteins that could replace soy and fish meal in fish and livestock feeds.

    Deep Branch claims it can convert "up to 60-70 pct of CO2 into protein, helping to both minimize the greenhouse gases released into the atmosphere during power generation and other industrial processes, whilst producing protein for animal feeds which will help reduce the impact of agricultural sectors on the environment as well."

    The Deep Branch pilot, which is slated to get underway this autumn, aims to capture enough CO2 to produce 100kg of protein. If successful, Deep Branch Biotechnology plans to build a larger production facility by 2020. DRAX has been capturing CO2 since February through its Bioenergy Carbon Capture and Storage (BECCS) pilot project, which uses technology developed by Leeds University spin-out company C-Capture. (Source: Deep Branch Biotechnology, DRAX, June, 2019) Contact: Deep Branch Biotechnology, Peter Rowe, CEO, info@deepbranchbio.com, www.deepbranchbio.com; DRAX, Will Gardiner, CEO, www.drax.com; C-Capture, Caspar Schoolderman, Director of Engineering, Tel/Fax +44 0 113 245 0418, www.c-capture.co.uk

    More Low-Carbon Energy News C-Capture,  CCUS,  DRAX,  CO2,  Carbon Capture,  


    U. Minn. Soy-Biodiesel Innovation Campus Funded (Funding)
    University of Minnesota
    Date: 2019-06-07
    The University of Minnesota reports $5 million in government funding for a soybean crush and biodiesel facility for the Soy Innovation Campus in Crookston has been approved, effective July, 2020.

    The Soy Innovation Campus will include a specialty crushing facility conducive to educational purposes. (Source: University of Minnesota, Crookston Times, 6 June, 2019) Contact: Soy Innovation Campus University of Minnesota Crookston, www.mnsoybean.org, mnsoybean.org/blog-msga/soy-innovation-campus-gaining-traction-in-st-paul

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Soy,  Biodiesel,  


    Ag.Groups Call for Biodiesel Tax Credit Extension (Reg & Leg.)
    NBB,National Biodiesel Board
    Date: 2019-05-24
    Thirteen trade groups representing farmers, rural lenders, crop and biobased oil producers, and biodiesel producers today wrote leaders of the House of Representatives and Senate, asking them to act on bipartisan legislation to extend the biodiesel tax incentive:

    "America's farmers and rural communities are facing a mounting economic threat. With your leadership, Congress can help mitigate the crisis by taking immediate action on a policy that enjoys bipartisan, bicameral support. We are writing today to ask you to renew and extend the biodiesel tax incentive at the earliest opportunity.

    "Income for America's farmers is falling, and the impact is beginning to be felt in other sectors of the rural economy. Biodiesel production adds value to oil seed crops and recycled oils, providing one bright spot for the agriculture sector. Congress can take rapid action to renew the biodiesel tax incentive -- a policy that enjoys broad bipartisan support -- to help U.S. biodiesel producers continue growing."

    The letters group include the Agricultural Retailers Association, American Farm Bureau Federation, American Soybean Association, CoBank, Corn Refiners Association, Farm Credit Council, National Biodiesel Board, National Council of Farmer Cooperatives, National Farmers Union, National Oilseed Processors Association, National Renderers Association, National Sorghum Producers, and U.S. Canola Association.

    A copy of the letter is available for download HERE. (Source: National Biodiesel Board , KTIC, 22 May, 2019) Contact: National Biodiesel Board, Kurt Kovarik, VP Federal Affairs, (800) 841-5849, www.biodiesel.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Biodiesel,  National Biodiesel Board,  NBB,  


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

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

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


    Minn. Soy for Biodiesel Innovation Campus Advancing (Ind. Report)
    Minnesota Soybean Growers Association
    Date: 2019-04-22
    In St. Paul, the Minnesota Soybean Growers Association (MSGA) is reporting funding for a soybean crush and biodiesel facility at the proposed Soy Innovation Campus, University of Minnesota Crookston will receive $5 million in funding as part of a bill authored by Minn. State Sen. Torrey Westrom (R-Elbow Lake), chairman of the Senate Agriculture, Rural Development and Housing Finance Committee.

    According to a University of Minnesota Extension economic impact study, a soybean crush and biodiesel facility could potentially reignite Northwest Minnesota's agriculture economy where more than 1.5 million acres of soybeans were harvested in 2018. Soybean production throughout Northwest Minnesota has increased by more than 300 percent in the past 20 years; the 11 counties that would benefit from the SI Campus produced more than 62 million bushels of soybeans in 2018. (Source: Minnesota Soybean Growers Association, 19 April, 2019) Contact: MSGA, Joe Smentek, Exec. Dir., (507) 388-1635, https://mnsoybean.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Minnesota Soybean Growers Association,  


    Neev Fund Backs Punjab Biomass Renewable Energy Firm (Int'l)
    Neev Fund
    Date: 2019-03-06
    Mumbai-based Neev Fund, a $110 million partnership between State Bank of India and UK's Department for International Development (DFID), reports it has invested $5 million (Rs 35.4 crore) in biomass company Punjab Renewable Energy Systems Pvt. Ltd, The funds will be used for the expansion of the company's biomass supply chain in underdeveloped states.

    Mumbai-based Punjab Renewable Energy Systems is an end-to-end biomass value chain management company involved in the collection, processing, storage and supply of paddy straw, cotton stalk, soya husk, maize cob and other biomass material for use in biomass-based power plants and process industries including biofuels. (Source: Neev Fund, VCCiRCLE, Mar., 2019) Contact: Neev Fund, Manav Bansal, CIO, +91 22 4921 2800, contactsvl@sbicaps.com, https://sbicapventures.com/neev_fund; Punjab Renewable Energy Systems, +91 22 2757 0498, www.prespl.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Biomass,  Biofuel,  


    CABBI Sustainable Crop Byproduct Energy Project Progressing (R&D)
    Center for Advanced Bioenergy and Bioproducts Innovation
    Date: 2019-03-04
    The Urbana, Illionis-based Center for Advanced Bioenergy and Bioproducts Innovation (CABBI) reports that with $115 million in us DOE grant funding, its project to develop energy using sustainable crop byproducts is progressing steadily.

    CABBI is working with soy gum, which is converted into products like biodiesel by looking at the gene structure of the plant stem and extracting the oil and gases which can be used directly as biodiesel or further processed into different value-added products,” according to CABBI director Evan DeLuc1a. (Source: Center for Advanced Bioenergy and Bioproducts Innovation, Illinois News Network, 2 Mar., 2019) Contact: CABBI, Evan DeLuc1a , (217)244-1586 cabbi-bio@illinois.edu, www.cabbi.bio

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


    Renewable Diesel Complex Planned for Paraguay (Int'l Report)
    ECB Group
    Date: 2019-02-27
    Brazilian investment holding company ECB Group is reporting its planned, $800 million, Omega Green renewable diesel complex is nearing construction startup. The "first of its kind" in South America plant is expected to produce as much as 693,000 gpd of renewable diesel and synthetic paraffinic kerosene from soybean oil extracted with renewable hexane, animal fats and used cooking oil. The plant's production is slated for export.

    Construction is expected to last 30 months for startup and full production in 2022. (Source: ECB Group, Biodiesel, 25 Feb., 2019) Contact: ECB Group, Erasmo Carlos Battistella, Pres., +55 54 3632 0800, www.ecbgroup.com.br

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Biodiesel,  Renewable Diesel,  


    Restalk Plans California Cannabis Waste Bio-Refinery (Ind. Report)
    Restalk,Circular Systems
    Date: 2019-02-22
    In the Golden State, Los Angeles-based Restalk Inc., a company focused on diversifying technologies and applications for cannabis bio-waste, reports the signing of a Letter of Intent (LoI) with Circular Systems, a social purpose company focused on transforming food crop waste into high value fiber for various industrial applications.

    Under the LoI, the two companies will undertake multiple joint venture projects to facilitate the development and scaling of Circular Systems' "Agraloop™" biomass processing technologies.

    The "Agraloop-Restalk" joint venture's primary activity will be processing cannabis and other agricultural waste biomass starting with waste generated within the Americas, particularly Northern California. The Agraloop Bio-Refinery pilot mill will develop strategically geolocated infrastructure. Which includes mobile and regional processing equipment to provide value added bio-mass focusing on up-cycling female cannabis waste as well as other regional biomass feedstocks including: industrial hemp, soy straw, wheat straw, rice straw, almond shells/hulls, and wool.

    The initial project is being coordinated with the assistance of the University of California, as well as Fibershed, a non profit organization focused on propelling sustainable and regenerative fiber production. (Source: Restalk Inc., Feb., 2019 Contact: Restalk Inc., Lucas Hildebrand, Pres., info@restalk.org, www.restalk.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Cannabis,  Biomass,  Bio-waste,  


    EU Lifts Duties on Argentinian Biodiesel Producers (Int'l Report)
    Argentina Biodiesel
    Date: 2019-02-13
    Reuters is reporting Argentina and the 28-member EU have agreed to end a dispute over biodiesel exports and eight Argentinian biodiesel producers will now be permitted to export to the EU duty-free as long as a minimum price is maintained, according to the EU's Official Journal.

    The EU imposed anti-dumping duties on Argentina, the world's top producer of soyoil, the main ingredient used to make biodiesel, in 2013, but lifted most suties in March 2018 after they were successfully challenged at the World Trade Organization and the European Court of Justice.

    According to the EC, with the lifted duties the EU's annual biodiesel imports would equal approximately 10 pct of the trading bloc's biodiesel consumption per year from 2014 to 2017. The price would be linked to the average monthly soybean price quotations published by Argentina's agriculture ministry, which reflect the inclusion of the export tax. The duties and the minimum price scheme is now in effect. (Source: EC, Successful Farming, Reuters, 12 Feb., 2019)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Argentina Biodiesel,  Biodiesel,  


    Argentina, EU Settle Biodiesel Imports Dispute (Int'l. Report)
    Biodiesel, Union for the Promotion of Oil and Protein Crops
    Date: 2019-02-04
    The Union for the Promotion of Oil and Protein Crops (UFOP) is reporting European oilseed producers are the losers due to the decision of the representatives of the EU Member States in the Trade Defence Instruments Committee (TDI), according to UFOP.

    The UFOP criticises the Committee's approval of the Argentine Government's proposed "price undertaking" agreement, allowing Argentinean biodiesel producers to export around 1.2 million tpy of biodiesel duty-free to the EU an amount equal to 10 pct of the EU’s annual biodiesel consumption. This market access is coupled with compliance with a minimum import price, which is to be calculated on the basis of monthly average soy bean oil prices.

    UFOP fears that as a result of the procedure for setting the minimum import price, the details of which are still unknown, market access will be ensured through a price level which will have an overall negative effect on the EU biodiesel price and consequently on oilseed producer prices. (Source: UFOP, Petrol Plaza, Feb., 2019) Contact: Union for the Promotion of Oil and Protein Crops, www.ufop.de


    Plant Based Biomass Products Council Launched (Ind. Report)
    Plant Based Products Council
    Date: 2019-02-04
    The newly formed Plant Based Products Council (PBPC), a group of organizations working to promote the adoption and use of products derived from renewable biomass, has reported its official launch. The industry organization will seek plant-based solutions and bring together government, nonprofit, and corporate entities to address environmental challenges while driving economic opportunity.

    The new council's membership includes businesses of varying sizes from across the United States that produce, distribute, or sell products or packaging from renewable biomass inputs as well as organizations that made related public sustainability commitments.

    Members include Tate & Lyle, Georgia-Pacific, Archer Daniels Midland, and Cargill, Ingredion, WestRock-Multi Packaging Solutions, Stone Straw, Loliware, Visolis Biotechnology, Newtrient, Future iQ, Emerald Brands, Hemp Road Trip, Hemp Industries Association, and Tree Free Hemp.

    The PBPC advisory board includes GreenBlue, Californians Against Waste, International Conservation Caucus Foundation, University of California Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources, and Professor Ramani Narayan, of Michigan State University's Department of Chemical Engineering & Materials Science.

    According to the council's website, plant-based products are derived from sustainable biomass found on six continents. Feedstocks include agricultural residues, algae, bamboo, cassava, dent corn, palm leaf, rice husk, soybeans, sugar beet, sugarcane and wood. (Source: PBPC, Feb., 2019) Contact: PBPC, www.pbpc.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Biomass,  Bioplastic,  


    EU Biodiesel Market Open to US Soybeans (Ind. Report)
    American Soybean Association
    Date: 2019-01-30
    The European Commission (EC) is reporting that U.S. soybean production now meets EU sustainability standards as outlined in its Renewable Energy Directive (RED). Accordingly, biodiesel produced from documented soybeans can now be used in the EU.

    The U.S. soy industry has its own sustainability guideline, the Soybean Sustainability Assurance Protocol that the EU now acknowledges meets its rigorous RED requirements through July 1, 2021 or longer.

    The U.S. is the EU's largest soybean for biodiesel supplier. (Source: American Soybean Association, 29 Jan., 2019) Contact: American Soybean Association,(314) 576-1770, www.soygrowers.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Soybean,  Biodiesel,  American Soybean Association,  


    Epitome Energy Planning Minn. Soybean Biodiesel Plant (Ind. Report)
    Epitome Energy
    Date: 2019-01-16
    Red Wing, Minnesota-based Epitome Energy is reporting plans to construct a 30-million-gpy biodiesel facility and a 21-million bushel specialty soybean mechanical extraction plant as part of a specialty oil refining operation near the town of Crrokson, Minnesota.

    When fully operational, the plant is expected to generate $322.8 million in new economic activity, support 80 to 100 jobs and have an estimated payroll and benefits of more than $5 million. Construction of the soybean crush and biodiesel facility would begin in 2021. (Source: Epitome Energy, PR, Grand Forks Herald, Jan., 2019) Contact: Epitome Energy, Dennis Egan, Owner, www.bizapedia.com/mn/epitome-energy-llc.html

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Epitome Energy,  Soybean,  Biodiesel,  


    IRFA Touts Iowa's 2018 Biodiesel Production (Ind. Report)
    Iowa Renewable Fuels Association
    Date: 2019-01-04
    In a recent release, the Iowa Renewable Fuels Association (IRFA) notes that the Hawkeye State's 12 biodiesel plants produced a record-breaking 365 million gallons of biodiesel in 2018. The record production is due in part to the plummeting level of biodiesel imports following a verdict against Argentina and Indonesia for illegally subsidizing imports to the U.S.

    According to the IRFA, Iowa's biodiesel production is expected to make up nearly 20 pct of total U.S. production for 2018. The IRFA Shaw also emphasized that the state could do even more if the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) level for biodiesel was set to at least mirror projected U.S. biodiesel consumption and not undermined by small-refinery exemptions.

    Compared to 2017, there was a shift in feedstock usage across the state toward more soybean oil. Soybean oil increased its market share to nearly 81 pct while animal fat usage declined from 11 pct to nearly 5 pct. Corn oil continued to make up about 10 pct of feedstock while used cooking oil (UCO)increased to about 4 percent. (Source: Iowa Renewable Fuels Association, KMA Land, 3 Jan., 2019) Contact: Iowa Renewable Fuels Association, Monte Shaw, Exec. Dir., (515) 252-6249, info@irfa.org, http://iowarfa.org

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


    Biodiesel Tax Credit Still in Limbo (Reg. & Leg.)
    American Soybean Association
    Date: 2019-01-04
    According to an American Soybean Association posting, on Dec. 20, 2018, the U.S. House of Representatives passed a package of tax provisions, including extension of the biodiesel tax credit, by a vote of 220-183. However, that tax package did not get a vote in the Senate prior to the stalemate on the remaining government funding bills that resulted in a partial government shutdown and time running out on the 115th session of Congress. A new Congress is sworn in on Jan. 3 marking the start of a new session and any legislation will have to be re-introduced in the House or Senate. Given the on-going stand-off on government funding and the border wall, it is unclear when or if pending tax issues will be addressed. ASA notes it will continue to reiterate the value and importance of the biodiesel tax credit and urge Congress to enact a long-term extension as soon as possible. (Source: American Soybean Association, 3 Jan., 2019) Contact:

    More Low-Carbon Energy News American Soybean Association,  Biodiesel,  Biodiesel Tax Credit,  


    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,  


    Argentinian Biodiesel Price Bumped Up 17 pct (Int'l. Report)
    Argentina Biodiesel
    Date: 2018-09-12
    In Buenos Aires, Juan Jose Aranguren, the Argentinian Energy Secretary's office reports it has raised the price of biodiesel used in domestic fuel blends from 22,589 Pesos per ton to 26,509 pesos ($710.70) per ton -- a 17 pct increase. The increase is being attributed primarily to monetary fluctuations.

    The government, which sets the price of domestic biofuels, mandates diesel fuel mixes sold in Argentina contain 10 pct biodiesel. Argentina consumed 1.17 million tons of biodiesel in 2017, according to that state statistics agency, Indec. Argentina is the world's largest exporter of soybean oil and soymeal for livestock feed, and the No. 3 exporter of raw soybeans. (Source: Argentinian Energy Secretary, Merco Press, 11 Sept., 2018) Contact: Juan Jose Aranguren, Argentinian Energy Secretary, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Juan_Jose_Aranguren

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Biodiesel,  Argentina Biodiesel,  


    AFBF Comments on Biofuels Volumes, Small Refinery Hardship Waivers (Opinions, editorials & Asides)
    American Farm Bureau Federation
    Date: 2018-08-27
    "Though pleased with EPA's proposal to increase renewable fuel volumes, the American Farm Bureau Federation (AFBF) warned that the agency's excessive use of small refinery "hardship" waivers diminishes the likelihood that volume targets will be met.

    "EPA's excessive use (of small refinery waivers) will undermine the goals that were set by Congress to create a more robust renewable fuels industry and greater energy independence. EPA's actions could result in an estimated 1.5 billion gallons of lost demand for renewable fuels," the AFBF said.

    "EPA's proposed renewable fuels volume standards for 2019 would maintain the statutory requirement for conventional renewable fuel at 15 billion gallons, increase cellulosic fuels to 381 million gallons and bump up total advanced biofuels to 4.88 billion gallons. It would also increase the biomass-based diesel volume to 2.43 billion gallons for 2020.

    "The AFBF touted the Renewable Fuel Standard's many successes, including the growth it spurred within the agriculture sector as corn and soybean farmers expanded their crop production to meet growing demand for corn- and soybean-based biofuels.

    "Beyond the boost to the agricultural economy, the RFS2 is intended to spur investment in cleaner, domestic fuels; give consumers more choices at the pump; lower gas prices; and boost the country's energy security. But EPA has allowed dozens of oil refineries off the hook from their legal obligations to blend renewable fuels with gasoline and diesel fuel, which is jeopardizing this progress, according to Farm Bureau.

    "Given the accomplishments of the RFS program to date, EPA's excessive and unreasonable use of the small refinery waiver dampens the prospects for reduced emissions and increased energy security," the organization cautioned.

    "AFBF also addressed the RIN market as it relates to the current RFS2 program, noting that RINS are functioning properly and providing incentives for refiners to offer higher blends of ethanol in the market at prices that are increasingly competitive with conventional gasoline. A RIN is a serial number assigned to a batch of biofuel for the purpose of tracking its production, use and trading.

    "In addition, the organization emphasized that the petroleum industry's unwillingness to offer higher blends of biofuels should not be taken as evidence that the RFS2 is unworkable. Rather, it is evidence that they are unwilling to adapt to policies enunciated by Congress. But making space in the market for alternative fuels that contribute to energy independence, environmental improvement, and economic development is exactly the point of RFS2." (Source: American Farm Bureau Federation, FBNews, 21 Aug., 2018) Contact: American Farm Bureau Federation, Sarah Brown Dirkes, Exec. Director, Industry Relations, (202) 406-3684, sarahd@fb.org, www.fb.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News RFS,  Hardship Waiver,  EPA,  


    Andeavor N.D. Refinery Considers Renewable Diesel (Ind. Report)
    Andeavor
    Date: 2018-08-03
    Andeavor, fka Tesoro, the owner of a small crude oil refinery in Dickinson, North Dakota is proposing to convert the facility to process vegetable oil, soybean oil and other renewable feedstocks instead of petroleum to produce renewable diesel.

    The renewable diesel would meet both the federal Renewable Fuels Standard and California's Low Carbon Fuel Standard and would be marketed in California.

    The proposal builds on a pilot project at the Dickinson Refinery, which has involved processing vegetable oil along with Bakken crude to produce a 5 pct renewable diesel blend. The new project, which would process 12,000 bpd of locally sourced renewable feedstocks, is expected to be complete in late 2020, subject to permitting approval. (Source: Andeavor, Bismark Tribune, 2 Aug., 2018) Contact: Andeavor, (210) 626-6000, www.andeavor.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Andeavor ,  Renewable Diesel,  Biodiesel,  


    EPA Report Notes Ethanol Environmental Damage (Ind. Report)
    Ethanol,Clean Air Task Force
    Date: 2018-08-03
    According to a recent, federally-mandated EPA assessment of the environmental impact of corn and soybean based ethanol production, ethanol is creating several ill effects on the enviroment and wildlife habitat.

    The EPA report documents millions of acres of wildlife habitat lost to ethanol crop production, increased nutrient pollution in waterways and air emissions and side effects worse than the gasoline the ethanol is replacing. According to Johnathan Lewis, senior counsel for climate policy with the Clean Air Task Force, ethanol from corn in particular is linked to increased emissions of nitrogen oxides (NOX) which contributes to and increases ozone formation.

    In March, the Growing Renewable Energy through Existing and New Environmentally Responsible (GREENER) Fuels Act to reform the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) was introduced to the US Senate and Congress. The GREENER Fuels Act sets out a clear goal of moving U.S. mandates away from a heavy reliance on food-based -- corn -- biofuels that have been linked to food price spikes and large-scale environmental contamination in the United States and around the world. (Source: EPA, Public News Service - NY, Aug., 2018) Contact: Clean Air Task Force, www.catf.us

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Ethanol,  EPA,  RFS,  Clean Air Task Force,  


    Wichita Approves Cargill Biodiesel Expansion Bonds (Ind. Report)
    Cargill
    Date: 2018-07-11
    Following up on our December 8m 2017 report, in Kansas, the Wichita Eagle reports the Wichita city council has given the nod to more than $38 million in industrial revenue bonds to help pay for Cargill's new $87 million, 42,000 sq-ft biodiesel plant in Wichita.

    Cargill currently operates a soybean processing plant, a grain elevator and truck and rail bulk loadout operation at the site of the new 60 million gpy biodiesel plant which is expected to be operational early in 2019. (Source: Wichita Eagle, AP, Bradenton Herald, 10 July, 2018)Contact: Cargill, Frank van Lierde, Exec. VP, www.cargill.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Cargill,  Biodiesel,  


    ADM, Cargill Launch Egyptian Soybean JV SoyVen™ (Ind. Report)
    ADM, Cargill
    Date: 2018-07-09
    Chicago-based Archer Daniels Midland Company (ADM) and Cargill are reporting the launch of their SoyVen™ 50-50 joint venture to provide soybean meal and oil for customers in Egypt.

    SoyVen owns and operates the National Vegetable Oil Company soy crush facility in Borg Al-Arab, along with related commercial and functional activities, including a separate Switzerland-based entity supplying soybeans to the Egypt crush plant. The plant's crush capacity has been doubled to 6,000 metric tpd to meet increasing Egyptian demand for soybean meal and soy oil.

    SoyVen will have offices and operations in Cairo and Borg Al-Arab in Egypt, as well as offices in Rolle, Switzerland. (Source: Cargill Website, 6 July, 2018) Contact: Cargill, www.cargill.com; ADM, Juan Luciano, Pres., CEO, (312) 634-8100, Collin Benson, VP Bioactives, Jackie Anderson, ADM Media, (217) 424-5413, www.adm.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Soybean,  Soy Oil,  Archer Daniels Midland,  ,  Cargill,  


    Study Finds Crop Rotation Reduces GHG Emissions (R&D Report)
    University of Illinois
    Date: 2018-06-25
    A University of Illinois - Urbana study conducted at the Northwestern Illinois Ggricultural Research and Demonstration Center has found that rotating crops increases yield and lowers greenhouse gas emissions compared to the continuous planting of either corn or soybean.

    Gevan Behnke, research specialist and doctoral candidate in University of Illinois' Department of Crop Sciences, compared greenhouse gas emissions from fields that had been maintained as continuous single crop planting, rotated corn-soybean or rotated corn-soybean-wheat planting and no-till management, for 20 years.

    Comparing the corn phase of a corn-soybean rotation to continuous corn showed an increased yield and a cumulative reduction in nitrous oxide emissions of approximately 35 pct. Nitrous oxide (N2O) is an extremely potent greenhouse gas, with a global warming potential almost 300 times higher than carbon dioxide. Tillage did not impact greenhouse gas emissions. (Source: University of Illinois, Farm & Field, 22 June, 2018) Contact: University of Illinois - Urbana, University of Illinois' Department of Crop Sciences, Gevan Behnke, (217) 333-3420, https://cropsciences.illinois.edu

    More Low-Carbon Energy News CO2,  Nitrous Oxide ,  GHGs,  Greenhouse Gas Emissions,  University of Illinois,  


    Kittson Soybean Growers Promoting Minn. Biodiesel (Ind. Report)
    Kittson County Soybean Growers
    Date: 2018-06-04
    In Minnesota, the Kittson County Soybean Growers Association is teaming up this summer in northwestern Minnesota by partnering with the Minnesota Soybean Research and Promotion Council (MSR&PC) to promote biodiesel. The highlight of the biodiesel promotion is the opportunity to host the long-awaited biodiesel truck built by the DieselSellerz, stars of Discovery Channel's "Diesel Brothers" program.

    Minnesota moved to using a 20 pct blend of biodiesel in May this year until Sept. 30 when the blend will go back to 5 pct during the winter months.

    The Minnesota Soybean Research & Promotion Council (MSR&PC) is the elected board of soybean producers from Minnesota who direct investments of the state's checkoff dollars in programs designed to increase profitability to Minnesota soybean farmers. (Source: Kittson County Soybean Growers Association , Kittson County Enterprise, 6 June, 2018) Contact: Minn. Soybean Growers Assoc., https://mnsoybean.org; Minnesota Soybean Research and Promotion Council, https://mnsoybean.org/msrpc

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Biodiesel,  


    2017 Global Biodiesel Industry Research Report -- Report Available (Ind. Report)

    Date: 2018-05-14
    The Market Desk 2017 Global Biodiesel Industry Research Report presents key information on the market status of biodiesel manufacturers and is a valuable Biodiesel industry resource.

    The report details the biodiesel industry by type -- Rapeseed Oil Based Feedstock, Soybean Oil Based Feedstock, Waste and Residues Based Feedstock -- and by application -- Industrial Fuels, Transportation Fuels, and Chemical Industry. Similarly, within the report, the Biodiesel market is analyzed for rate, value and gross. those three factors are analyzed for sorts, companies, and regions. In continuation of this statistics, sale rate is for numerous kinds, applications and area is likewise included.

    The report also details biodiesel industry key companies including product details, potential, rate, value, gross consumption, and sales. Biodiesel market investors and vendors evaluation are given along with details on material and equipment providers.

    Report details are HERE. A PDF report sample is available HERE. {Source: Market Desk, Expert Consulting, 14 May, 2018) Contact: Market Desk, www.marketdesk.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Biodiesel,  


    Iowa Study Examines Switchgrass as Biofuel Feedstock (R&D)
    Iowa State University
    Date: 2018-05-07
    Where can Switchgrass Production be More Profitable than Corn and Soybean? An Integrated Subfield Assessment in Iowa, USA, a newly published research study by Iowa State University (ISU) examines converting underperforming areas in Iowa crop fields to switchgrass, which could provide an economic benefit from a future bioenergy crop market.

    The study, which examines how to grow dedicated bioenergy crops without converting land already under perennial cover, identifies areas within fields suitable for conversion from corn/soybean to switchgrass as indicated by publicly available agronomic, management and economic information.

    Under the assumptions that land is fully owned by farmers, and switchgrass sells for $55 per short ton, the study showed that 4.3 pct of the corn/soybean area in Iowa could break even when converted to switchgrass yielding up to 4 tons per acre. In some counties, converting corn/soybean areas to switchgrass could add up to millions of dollars in total annualized producer benefits. With a future bioenergy crop market for switchgrass, the researchers conclude their approach could be used beyond Iowa and could be applied to other intensively farmed regions globally with similar data availability.

    The study is available HERE. (Source: Iowa State University, High Plains AG Journal, May, 2018) Contact: Iowa State University, Alejandro Plastina, assistant Professor of Economics, www.econ.iastate.edu/people/alejandro-plastina

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Switchgrass,  Biofuel Feedstock,  Iowa State University,  


    Ethanol RINs Cap Would Cut Biodiesel Market, says NBB (Ind. Report)
    National Biodiesel Board
    Date: 2018-03-19
    According to a new analysis by the National Biodiesel Board (NBB) and the World Agricultural Economic and Environmental Services (WAEES), capping the price of conventional biofuels' Renewable Identification Numbers (RINs) would lead to: a reduction of up to 300 million gpy in biomass-based diesel volumes -- in part, because these volumes would no longer be utilized for compliance with the conventional biofuels requirements; $185 million more in feed costs for livestock producers, likely leading to an increase in food costs for consumers; and $.16 less per bushel for soybeans.

    Biomass-based diesel and cellulosic biofuels (advanced biofuels) can qualify for RINs for their advanced biofuel category, as well as conventional biofuels (which has a lower threshold of greenhouse gas emissions reductions). The interconnected nature of the program and how RINs can qualify for multiple categories is one reason that capping one type of RINs impacts other fuels. (Source: Kentucky Soybean Board , Dennis Clark, Marshall County Daily, 15 Mar., 2018) Contact: Kentucky Soybean Board, www.kysoy.org; National Biodiesel Board, (800) 841-5849, www.biodiesel.org

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


    Notable Quote

    Date: 2018-03-19
    "It's a very big boost for the domestic biofuels industry and we (Trump) intend to continue to protect the growers in America and the processors of biofuels." -- U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross speaking to a Senate panel on Trump's soyoil-based biodiesel and palm oil tariffs to protect US biofuel producers. Contact: U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, www.commerce.gov/directory/wilburross


    Oregon Lawmakers Considering Ethanol Mandate Reforms (Reg & Leg)

    Date: 2018-03-14
    In Salem, Oregon legislators are considering The GREENER Fuels Act, a bill to reform the biofuels mandate and gradually reduce the amount of biofuels such as corn ethanol in the nation's fuel supply.

    It would also stop more land from being converted into biofuel sources and invest over $10 billion to restore lost fish and wildlife habitat over the next decade. Nationally, more than 7 million acres have been plowed to make way for biofuel feed stock crops such as corn and soy since the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS)standard came into force in 2007.

    According to National Wildlife Federation Pres. Collin O'Mara, the legislation could correct a mistake Congress made 10 years ago. The bill would eliminate a loophole that allows older biofuel plants to bypass climate pollution standards, and would incentivize truly renewable biofuels, such as those derived from farm waste and plant cellulose.

    Download the GREENER Fuels Act. HERE. (Source: Public News Service Oregon, 12 Mar., 2019)

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


    Ag Groups Admonish The Donald to Leave RFS As Is (Ind. Report)
    RFS
    Date: 2018-02-28
    A coalition of farm groups sent President Trump -- aka The Donald -- a letter on Monday asking him to leave the Renewable Fuels Standard (RFS) as is.

    "Rural America supported President Trump last year, now we need the President to support rural America. Supporting policy changes that undermine the RFS will hurt farmers, renewable fuel plant workers, and rural America. Mismanagement of a single refinery should not be used as an excuse for undoing ten-years of sound policy," said National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) President Kevin Skunes in a statement.

    The NCGA, American Farm Bureau Federation, American Soybean Association, National Wheat Growers Association, National Sorghum Growers Association and National Farmers Union all signed the letter which was also sent to Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue and EPA administrator Scott Pruitt.

    The letter notes that while some refiners, including the one that filed bankruptcy, say Renewable Identification Number's (RINs) cause financial hardship, last year the EPA investigated the issue and found they were "not causing economic harm to refiners." (Source: NCGA, AGPRO, 26 Feb., 2018) Contact: NCGA, (202) 326-0644, www.ncga.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News RFS,  Trump,  National Corn Growers Association,  RINS,  

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