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Governors' Biofuels Coalition
NEWS UPDATE August 5, 2019

Top Story

China Hits Back at Trump by Weakening Yuan, Halting Crop Imports

by Malcolm Scott, Kevin Hamlin and Tian Chen, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted August 5, 2019

China responded to Donald Trump’s tariff threat with another escalation of the trade war on Monday, letting the yuan tumble to the weakest level in more than a decade and asking state-owned companies to suspend imports of U.S. agricultural products. The moves are likely to further antagonize Trump, who has criticized Beijing for managing its currency unfairly and failing to keep promises to buy more U.S. crops. [ read more … ]

President Cites Lack of Larger Ag Exports to China as Reason for New Tariffs

By Chris Clayton, Progressive Farmer  •    •  Posted August 5, 2019

The U.S. will impose an additional 10% tariff on $300 billion in Chinese goods because China has not moved to buy large amounts of agricultural goods, President Donald Trump tweeted Thursday. The president increased the stakes of his trade war with China with a tweet at 11:26 a.m. CDT that his trade representatives “have just returned from China where they had constructive talks having to do with a future trade deal.” [ read more … ]

U.S. cows and pigs gorge on bakery rolls, pet food as corn prices surge – Reuters

By Tom Polansek, Reuters  •    •  Posted August 5, 2019

U.S. farmers are feeding their livestock everything from outdated pet food and leftover bakery rolls to crops imported from South America after unprecedented spring planting delays boosted prices for locally grown corn. Corn is typically used to fatten hogs, cattle and poultry, but its high price has farmers in the $150 billion U.S. meat and dairy industry looking elsewhere to keep down costs. [ read more … ]

Policy & Politics

Car rules rollback threatens auto jobs in swing states — report

By Maxine Joselow, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted August 5, 2019

The Trump administration’s rollback of Obama-era clean car standards could prevent automakers from adding thousands of new jobs in states that backed Donald Trump in the 2016 election, according to a new report. Dialing back the car rules “would result in between 89,000 and 202,000 of tomorrow’s jobs lost or foregone,” states the report from the BlueGreen Alliance, a coalition of labor and environmental groups. [ read more … ]

South Dakota Farmers Union meets with EPA director to discuss E30

By South Dakota Farmers Union  •    •  Posted August 5, 2019

South Dakota Farmers Union, together with leaders from 13 South Dakota agriculture organizations, sat down with Gregory Sopkin, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regional administrator for District Eight to discuss challenges facing South Dakota farmers and ranchers, as well as opportunities to be found through expanded support for higher ethanol blends. The August 1, 2019 South Dakota Ag Roundtable was hosted in Sioux Falls by South Dakota Corn. “This was a valuable opportunity to provide the farmers’ story and give the EPA a chance to put a face to that story,” explains Doug Sombke, president of South Dakota Farmers Union. [ read more … ]

States sue over reduced fuel economy penalties

By Ellen M. Gilmer, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted August 5, 2019

A coalition of states is taking the Trump administration to court for cutting penalties automakers must pay when they fall short of fuel efficiency standards. California, New York and other states led by Democratic attorneys general filed suit today in the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, saying the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration broke the law when it slashed the penalty rate. [ read more … ]

EPA biofuel targets for 2020 face skepticism

By By Mark Dorenkamp, Brownfield  •    •  Posted August 5, 2019

Renewable Fuels Association CEO Geoff Cooper says on paper, the RVO targets for next year resemble a slight increase compared to 2019. “But nobody in the marketplace puts any faith or any stock in those numbers. They don’t mean anything because we know if EPA continues this practice of giving out small refinery exemptions, that 15-billion gallons of conventional biofuels like corn ethanol is not really 15-billion gallons.”
[ read more … ]

Senate biofuel advocates want a piece of transportation bill

By Elvina Nawaguna, Roll Call  •    •  Posted August 5, 2019

A provision in the Senate’s surface transportation bill that would help pay for charging and refilling stations for zero- or low-emissions vehicles should also support more stations for biofuels like ethanol, say two Midwestern senators. The bill would authorize spending on highways and bridge projects for five years. Republican Sens. Joni Ernst of Iowa and Mike Rounds of South Dakota say incentives in the bill would only benefit wealthy people in coastal states who can afford electric-, hydrogen- and natural gas-powered vehicles, while leaving out rural America. [ read more … ]

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