News

Obama ethanol pump program runs dry

Source: Marc Heller, E&E News reporter • Posted: Tuesday, January 16th, 2018

Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue’s office didn’t return a message seeking comment on the program. Perdue has said he supports ethanol, including mandates for mixing biofuel into the nation’s fuel supply. Without the incentive program, the administration’s commitment to E15 isn’t clear. U.S. EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt has spoken positively of allowing gas stations to expand offerings but suggested the responsibility may be up to Congress through legislation.

Electric Vehicle Tax Credit Survives, but G.M. and Tesla Aren’t Cheering

Source: By JAMES B. STEWART, New York Times • Posted: Friday, January 12th, 2018

Hardly anyone expected renewable energy subsidies to survive Republican tax reform. In the legislation the House of Representatives passed in November, Republicans drastically curtailed solar and wind power subsidies and put a stake in the heart of the tax credit for buyers of electric vehicles — all while preserving billions in subsidies for fossil fuels. Yet in the final tax bill Mr. Trump signed in December, there they are: the full panoply of tax incentives for renewable energy, as well as the $7,500 electric vehicle tax credit.

Carmakers Miss U.S. Tailpipe Goals While Seeking Trump Relief

Source: By Ryan Beene, Bloomberg • Posted: Friday, January 12th, 2018

Model year 2016 cars and light trucks sold in the U.S. failed to achieve the Environmental Protection Agency’s greenhouse gas emissions standards for the first time, despite a small efficiency improvement from the prior year. The vehicles averaged emissions of 272 grams of carbon dioxide per mile, 9 grams per mile worse than the regulatory standard set for the 2016 model year, according to a report released Thursday by the agency. The industry overall had outperformed the carbon emission targets in each year since 2012, when the efficiency targets took effect.

EIA predicts increased ethanol consumption in 2018, 2019

Source: By Erin Voegele, Ethanol Producer Magazine • Posted: Friday, January 12th, 2018

The U.S. Energy Information Administration has released the January edition of its Short-Term Energy Outlook, predicting that ethanol production in 2018 and 2019 will be maintained at the 2017 level. Ethanol production averaged 1.03 million barrels per day in 2017. The EIA currently predicts that production level will remain steady at 1.03 million barrels per day this year and next year. In its December STEO, the EIA predicted that ethanol production would increase to 1.04 million barrels per day in 2018.

Grain glut leaves U.S. farmers facing losses from specialty corn

Source: By Michael Hirtzer, Reuters • Posted: Friday, January 12th, 2018

U.S. farmers who sought to boost revenues by planting corn used to make tortillas may be forced to sell their crops at a loss to makers of ethanol or animal feed because of a glut of what typically is a human food-grade product.

Congress May Fix Tax Tweak That Gives Farm Co-Ops an Edge

Source: By Mario Parker, Bloomberg • Posted: Friday, January 12th, 2018

A provision in last month’s U.S. tax overhaul that gives farmers the opportunity to significantly minimize their taxable income is drawing fire from some companies who could lose out as a result, while two Senators behind the change pledged to fix the problem. The measure in question gives farmers a bigger deduction if they sell crops to agricultural co-operatives. That appears to be a win for farmer-owned agribusinesses such as CHS Inc. at the expense of other major crop buyers like Archer Daniels Midland Co., Bunge Ltd. and Cargill Inc.

Sen. Grassley: Biofuel policy situation in hands of oil/biofuel industry

Source: By DTN's Washington Insider • Posted: Friday, January 12th, 2018

“The industry tells us that such a cap on RINs would be just catastrophic to ethanol, and I can’t go beyond that,” Grassley said. “There’s a pretty unanimous feeling among ethanol industry that that would be just a no-go. Sen. Ernst and I expressed that to Cruz.” Caught in the middle of the situation is the nomination of Bill Northey of Iowa to be a key USDA undersecretary.

Dinneen: Oil, Ethanol Meetings Not Scheduled Yet, Likely Not Constructive

Source: By Todd Neeley, DTN/Progessive Farmer • Posted: Friday, January 12th, 2018

President Donald Trump’s administration and some members of Congress want oil and ethanol interests to just get along and work out their differences on the Renewable Fuel Standard. But the leader of the nation’s largest ethanol industry interest group told DTN in an exclusive interview on Thursday that, so far, no such meetings between the two sides have been scheduled and may not be scheduled.

Rep. Welch continues campaign to remove ethanol from gas

Source: By The Associated Press • Posted: Thursday, January 11th, 2018

Rep. Peter Welch, D-Vt., continues to push for the removal of ethanol from gasoline. The Times Argus reports the Democrat embarked on a 30-mile snowmobile trip around Barre and Berlin with the Vermont association of Snow Travelers on Monday to demonstrate the impacts of ethanol-infused gasoline. Welch says ethanol damages small engines on vehicles like snow machines.

Farm bill passage planned by spring

Source: Marc Heller, E&E News reporter • Posted: Thursday, January 11th, 2018

House Agriculture Chairman Mike Conaway said yesterday his panel aims to pass a farm bill in the first three months of this year. With that timeline, the Texas Republican said, legislation should be ready for release in the committee in the coming weeks.