News

GRAINS-Corn hits 8-year high as dry weather in Brazil raises supply concerns

Source: By Naveen Thukral, Reuters • Posted: Tuesday, May 4th, 2021

Chicago corn futures rose for a third consecutive session on Monday to hit their highest since March 2013 as dry weather in Brazil raised concerns about global supplies. Wheat extended gains, while soybeans rose for a second straight session.

Ethanol-Maker’s Sales Slump Shows Why It Wants to Ditch Biofuel

Source: By Kim Chipman, Bloomberg • Posted: Tuesday, May 4th, 2021

Revenue fell 13% from a year earlier to $553.6 million, compared with the $625.3 million average of estimates compiled by Bloomberg. Ethanol sales volumes slid 26% from the year-earlier period, in part due to winter weather woes that slowed output throughout the industry. The slump comes after U.S. ethanol producers struggled with lower demand as the virus pandemic limited car travel and fuel use. While corn-based ethanol consumption is rebounding with economies reopening and gasoline demand nationwide on the rise, Green Plains Chief Executive Officer Todd Becker has already decided to reduce the company’s reliance on corn-based biofuel as its main product.

Feenstra: Here’s how EPA Administrator Regan can help bolster biofuels

Source: By Randy Feenstra, Ames Tribune • Posted: Tuesday, May 4th, 2021

Supporting biofuels, including ethanol, biodiesel, and biogas, would be a great place to start. There are many steps Administrator Regan can take immediately to support the biofuels industry — beginning with ensuring biofuels are included in any infrastructure and climate discussions. Right now, the Biden administration’s $2 trillion proposal would spend $174 billion to subsidize electric vehicles while hardly even mentioning the biofuel industry.

EPA Asks Court to Vacate RFS Exemptions

Source: By Todd Neeley, DTN Staff Reporter • Posted: Tuesday, May 4th, 2021

EPA asked a federal court Friday to vacate three small-refinery exemptions (SRE) the outgoing Trump administration granted on Jan. 19, just days before the Biden administration was to take office. In a motion filed in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 10th Circuit in Denver, the agency said it did not follow proper procedure when on Jan. 19 it granted the exemptions to Sinclair Wyoming Refining Company and Sinclair Casper Refining Company from their 2018 and 2019 obligations in the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS).

U.S. EPA files motion to vacate three biofuel exemptions given to Sinclair

Source: By Stephanie Kelly, Reuters • Posted: Tuesday, May 4th, 2021

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency filed a motion on Friday to vacate three waivers given by the previous administration to Sinclair Oil Corporation refineries that exempt them from biofuel blending mandates. In the motion, the EPA said that the agency under the Trump administration did not analyze whether Sinclair’s refineries would have qualified to receive the exemptions according to a court ruling from January 2020.

Midwest farmers look to plow through Biden’s electric-vehicle push

Source: By RYAN MCCRIMMON and KELSEY TAMBORRINO, Politico • Posted: Tuesday, May 4th, 2021

Corn growers and producers of ethanol — the corn-based renewable fuel that has long enjoyed special status as a government-mandated ingredient in gasoline — would get only a tiny slice of the funds proposed in the infrastructure package, despite Biden’s assurances that he views them as key to reducing dependence on fossil fuels. So now they’re turning to their traditional allies in Congress to get themselves written in. “To not see [biofuels] listed as part of an infrastructure piece, I’m hoping is just an oversight and a misunderstanding — because I know that there’s support for it,” said Rep. Cindy Axne, the only Democrat in Iowa’s congressional delegation.

Renewable Fuels Month spotlights benefits of homegrown fuel options

Source: By Jessica Sodeke, Nebraska Ethanol Board • Posted: Tuesday, May 4th, 2021

As temperatures begin to rise and schools dismiss for the school year, families may soon be hitting the road to enjoy summer vacations. The month of May typically kicks off the summer driving season, and it’s also a time to celebrate Nebraska’s biofuel industries through Renewable Fuels Month. Since 2006, the acting Nebraska governor has dedicated one month out of each year to recognize the importance of renewable biofuels, such as ethanol and biodiesel.

GRAINS-Corn tops $7 a bushel for first time since 2013 in most-active contract

Source: By Tom Polansek, reuters • Posted: Tuesday, May 4th, 2021

U.S. corn futures on Tuesday topped $7 a bushel in the most-active contract for the first time since 2013 as unfavorably dry crop weather in Brazil kept attention on tightening global supplies.
Surging prices have done little to curb robust demand for corn used to feed livestock and produce ethanol, opening the door for the market to extend gains, U.S. analysts said. There has been “no demand destruction” for crops amid strong profitability for meat production, said Greg Heckman, chief executive officer for global grains trader Bunge Ltd

Biden faces pressure to drive gasoline and diesel cars out of the US

Source: By Oliver Milman, The Guardian • Posted: Monday, May 3rd, 2021

“I would love to see President Biden set a goal of 60% of sales to be electric cars by 2030, before all electric sales in 2035,” said Margo Oge, a former director of transportation air quality at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). “We can’t wait any longer, we have run out of time with climate change and we need car companies to start making that transformation now.” Oge said the phase-outs by California and Washington state are “very powerful” but that a national mandate was crucial if the US is to meet its emissions goals and help stave off disastrous climate change. Transportation is the largest source of emissions in the US and the increasing longevity of modern vehicles means it would take at least 15 years to phase out polluting cars once sales of them are halted.

Justices and litigants spar over whether renewable-fuel law creates a “funnel” or a “safety valve”

Source: By Emily Hammond, SCOTUSblog • Posted: Monday, May 3rd, 2021

The outcome of the case will most likely hinge on the justices’ views of what matters most for statutory interpretation. Referencing the safety valve-versus-funnel debate, Kagan summed up the parties’ two competing views of congressional purpose and posed the question: “How do we choose?” By the end of Tuesday’s arguments, the justices had revealed no clear answer to Kagan’s question. They have two months before the end of the term to try to find one.