News

EXCLUSIVE Britain, Germany push G7 for halt to biofuel mandates to tame food prices

Source: By Sarah McFarlane, Reuters • Posted: Sunday, June 26th, 2022

Officials from some G7 countries, including Germany and Britain, will push for temporary waivers on biofuels mandates to combat soaring food prices when leaders from the group of wealthy nations meet on Sunday, three people familiar with the matter told Reuters. The food crisis caused by the war in Ukraine has sparked a food versus biofuel debate, with some policymakers calling for an easing of mandates for blending biofuels into petrol and diesel to increase the supply of global grain and vegetable oil.

Clean Air Panel Takes ‘Unprecedented’ Pause for Science Review

Source: By Jennifer Hijazi, Bloomberg Law • Posted: Sunday, June 26th, 2022

The Clean Air Scientific Advisory Committee, or CASAC, in May took a rare step back from reviewing policy plans for ozone standards laid out by the Environmental Protection Agency, and told Administrator Michael Regan on June 15 they’ll be scrutinizing ozone research on public health impacts with a closer eye before making any recommendations to the agency regarding new levels. At a June 8 public meeting announcing the decision, committee chair Lianne Sheppard said the panel had waded into “uncharted territory” and would need to “take into account the most current science” in order to “do a responsible job.”

DOE touts oil industry dialogue without deal on energy prices

Source: By Carlos Anchondo, Mike Lee, E&E News • Posted: Sunday, June 26th, 2022

No clear solutions emerged from a closely watched meeting between Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm and top oil and gas executives, who gathered to discuss high gasoline prices and domestic refining capacity. Although several companies and the Department of Energy described the meeting as productive, DOE’s readout from the meeting offered few details beyond expressing a desire for “ongoing dialogue” and the pursuit of solutions to “alleviate the current supply and price challenges.”

Sorry Elon Musk. Hyundai Is Quietly Dominating the EV Race

Source: By Kyle Stock, Bloomberg • Posted: Sunday, June 26th, 2022

Pipe down for a second Elon, the hottest things in the auto industry — the most electric electrics — now come from Hyundai Motor Co. and Kia Corp. Earlier this year, the South Korean carmakers rolled out two new battery-powered cars — the Hyundai Ioniq 5 and its sibling, the Kia EV6 — which promptly tore up the sales charts, passing the Nissan Leaf, Chevrolet Bolt and every other electric vehicle on the market not made by Tesla. In the US this year through May, Hyundai and Kia sold 21,467 of these two machines, besting even the white-hot Ford Mustang Mach-E, which was snapped up by 15,718 drivers.

Ethanol Keeps Climbing as Gasoline Prices Stay High

Source: By Hardika Singh, Wall Street Journal • Posted: Sunday, June 26th, 2022

Ethanol prices have risen steadily this year, boosted by a Biden administration mandate to blend more of the biofuel into gasoline and some of the highest U.S. consumer inflation in decades. The price of ethanol, the corn-based fuel that is a common gasoline additive, has risen 14% so far this quarter, outpacing crude oil. The thinly traded Chicago Ethanol Platts futures contract, the industry benchmark, settled Wednesday at $2.82 a gallon. In late November, it reached a record of $3.45. 

Ag: SEC Rule Threat to Rural America

Source: By Todd Neeley, DTN Staff Reporter • Posted: Thursday, June 23rd, 2022

Agriculture interest groups and food companies told the U.S. Securities Exchange Commission the proposed climate-reporting rule could ultimately threaten the future of rural communities by requiring farmers and ranchers to spend more time and money to comply at a time when margins are tight. The SEC closed a public-comment period on June 17 for the “Enhancement and Standardization of Climate Related Disclosures for Investors” proposed rule that would require publicly traded companies to report data about their entire supply chain. The rule would affect farmers and ranchers who do business with those companies.

Clean energy investment lags as oil and gas prices soar.

Source: By Patricia Cohen, New York Times • Posted: Thursday, June 23rd, 2022

Oil and gas prices are likely to remain inflated for years given the uneven transition to cleaner energy sources, the head of the International Energy Agency said Wednesday. The push to end dependence on Russian oil and gas, coupled with efforts to battle climate change, has bumped up the pace of investments in green technology. But the increases “are not enough to replace fossil fuels,” said Fatih Birol, the agency’s executive director, which “may mean we will still see high and volatile energy prices for some time to come.”

API wants to show Biden the world

Source: By BY MATTHEW CHOI AND BEN LEFEBVRE, Politico • Posted: Thursday, June 23rd, 2022

Refining shimmering splendor! The American Petroleum Institute and several other oil and gas interest groups are inviting Biden to tour some of the country’s key industry sites, from the Marcellus Shale to Gulf Coast refineries, ahead of his visit to Saudi Arabia next month. The trade groups offered the invitation in a letter today, where, though supporting the trip to Saudi Arabia as addressing important priorities, they urged Biden to “reconsider the immense potential of U.S. oil and natural gas resources” and focus on domestic energy production.

Top Democrats won’t commit to vote on Biden gas tax holiday

Source: By George Cahlink, Jeremy Dillon, E&E News • Posted: Thursday, June 23rd, 2022

Democratic leaders in Congress wouldn’t commit yesterday to a vote on President Joe Biden’s plan to suspend the federal gas tax. They instead suggested that the best way forward was to go after the profits of big energy companies. Biden proposed a 90-day suspension yesterday of the 18.4-cent-per-gallon federal tax on gas and the 24-cent-per-gallon tax on diesel to provide “immediate relief.” He suggested if the federal breaks were coupled with state gas tax cuts and increased refining by energy producers it could cut record-high gas prices by $1 per gallon (E&E News PM, June 22).

Deadly heat wave’s lesson: ‘This is the future we all face’

Source: By Ariel Wittenberg, E&E News • Posted: Thursday, June 23rd, 2022

The city of Portland was baking last June and Bureau of Emergency Management Director Jonna Papaefthimiou was in crisis mode. Sweltering in temperatures 40 degrees Fahrenheit higher than normal in a city where air conditioning isn’t common, Papaefthimiou tried every possible last-ditch effort to help keep residents cool and healthy.