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Governors' Biofuels Coalition
NEWS UPDATE July 29, 2019

Top Story

U.S. ethanol industry nearing breaking point: Green Plains CEO

By Jarrett Renshaw and Stephanie Kelly, Reuters  •    •  Posted July 29, 2019

The U.S. ethanol industry is about to break under the weight of the Trump Administration’s trade war with China and the surge in the number of small refineries exempted from the nation’s biofuel laws, said Todd Becker, CEO of Green Plains. The sustained downturn in margins will finally begin taking its toll as some producers run out of money and begin a host of austerity measures to weather the storm. “Some plants will slow down, some will shut down, some will shut down forever,” Becker said late last week in an interview with Reuters.

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Trade

Trade Aid Expected to Provide a Boost for Farmers Still Hoping for Trade Deals

By Chris Clayton, DTN Reporter  •    •  Posted July 29, 2019

The latest round of Market Facilitation Program payments will inject some needed cash into the rural economy starting next month, but farmers continue to watch and wait for better trade opportunities. Kevin Paap, president of the Minnesota Farm Bureau, talked about Thursday’s announcement of MFP payments while having a quick breakfast with other area farmers and high-school classmates Friday morning at the D Bar 169 in Vernon Center. [ read more … ]

U.S. to Start Rolling Out $16 Billion in Farm Aid Next Month

By Mike Dorning and Mario Parker, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted July 29, 2019

The U.S. Department of Agriculture is preparing to roll out another $16 billion in aid to farmers hurt by the Trump administration’s trade war with China, with payments to begin next month. The second round of tariff-aid payments will give time for President Donald Trump to strike trade deals, Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue said on a conference call on Thursday that gave details of the new package. [ read more … ]

Policy & Politics

Ethanol vs. environment: Democratic hopefuls campaign on clashing agendas

By Jarrett Renshaw and Humeyra Pamuk, Reuters  •    •  Posted July 29, 2019

Democratic presidential hopeful Elizabeth Warren is a champion of the corn-based ethanol industry when she campaigns in rural towns dotting the U.S. Farm Belt. But in Washington, the U.S. senator from Massachusetts is among the co-sponsors of the Green New Deal, which calls for the end of all fuel-powered cars – and, thus, the end of the domestic ethanol industry.
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The Energy 202: Four carmakers spurn Trump over mileage rules. Will others follow?

By Dino Grandoni, Washington Post  •    •  Posted July 29, 2019

Four major automakers agreed this week to rebuff the Trump administration and apply stricter fuel-efficiency standards to their fleet of new cars and light trucks going forward. Now, the question is: How many more car manufacturers will go down that road, too? Ford, Honda, Volkswagen and BMW of North America stunned many officials at other companies as well as Trump administration officials by striking a deal with California to produce more fuel-efficient vehicles. [ read more … ]

ACE calls on EPA to rely on GREET model as it considers RFS RVOs

By American Coalition for Ethanol  •    •  Posted July 29, 2019

American Coalition for Ethanol CEO Brian Jennings highlighted the important role corn ethanol could have in further reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions if properly valued under the Renewable Fuel Standard in a letter to U.S. EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler today, informing the agency of a recently published meta-analysis showing that corn stover retention results in significant soil carbon sequestration, and if taken into account by lifecycle modeling, reduces the GHG footprint of corn ethanol far below EPA’s current estimate.  [ read more … ]

EPA posts call-in information for July 31 hearing on RFS proposal

By Ethanol Producer Magazine  •    •  Posted July 29, 2019

The U.S. EPA has posted call-in information for its July 31 hearing on the proposed rule to set 2020 renewable volume obligations (RVOs) and the 2021 RVO for biomass-based diesel under the Renewable Fuel Standard. The agency announced plans to hold the hearing earlier this month. The event is scheduled to take place at the Ann Arbor Marriot Ypsilanti at Eagle Crest in Ypsilanti, Michigan, starting at 9:00 a.m. EST. [ read more … ]

Opinion

Durbin: Right now E15 remains an empty promise

By U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin, Journal Star  •    •  Posted July 29, 2019

For Illinois, approval of E15 could boost 14 ethanol facilities and 20,000 downstate jobs. For motorists, E15 could save up to 10 cents per gallon. And for farmers, E15 could help financially when our third largest ethanol customer, China, has stopped buying our soybeans and pork in response to the President’s trade strategy. And while President Trump has claimed that he “fought very hard for ethanol,” when you pull back the curtain, what you uncover is that the President’s EPA has issued a whopping 54 secret waivers that allow oil refineries to stop blending biofuels into gasoline. This decreases demand for E15, all to help out the big oil industry that has fought against renewable fuels. [ read more … ]

Note: News clips provided do not necessarily reflect the views of coalition or its member governors.