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Governors' Biofuels Coalition
NEWS UPDATE August 12, 2019

Top Stories


EPA Announces Biofuel and Small Refinery Exemption Priorities

By EPA Press Office  •    •  Posted August 10, 2019

EPA will announce its final decisions related to 31 small refinery exemptions and 6 application denials this afternoon on its web page, Public Data for the Renewable Fuel Standard – Small Refinery Exemptions. Under EPA’s Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) program, a small refinery may be granted a temporary exemption from its annual Renewable Volume Obligations (RVOs) if it can demonstrate that compliance with the RVOs would cause the refinery to suffer disproportionate economic hardship. EPA evaluates submissions to determine whether an exemption may be granted, based on information presented by the petitioning refinery and on the statutory and regulatory requirements for exemption.
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Trump’s EPA grants 31 small refinery waivers from biofuel laws, angering corn lobby – Reuters

By Humeyra Pamuk, Jarrett Renshaw and Stephanie Kelly, Reuters  •    •  Posted August 10, 2019

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has granted 31 small refinery biofuel waivers for 2018 on Friday, infuriating the ethanol and corn producers who blamed the Trump administration for bailing out the oil industry when U.S. farmers were suffering due to trade tariffs and low prices. The waivers from the country’s biofuel laws were fewer than previous year’s and marked an increase in the number of petitions rejected, but the EPA’s decision was still unlikely to satisfy the powerful U.S. corn lobby which wants a broad retrenchment of the biofuel waiver program it blames for undercutting ethanol demand.
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EPA Grants Exemptions

By Todd Neeley, Progressive Farmer  •    •  Posted August 11, 2019

EPA has granted 31 small-refinery exemptions for 2018 and rejected six, according to a news release from the agency released late Friday afternoon. Though the exemptions were expected, ethanol groups later expressed outrage in their own statements.
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Small fuel retailers sue Trump EPA over E15 gasoline rule – filing

By Humeyra Pamuk, Reuters  •    •  Posted August 10, 2019

A group representing the country’s small fuel retailers has filed a lawsuit this week against the Environmental Protection Agency over its rule lifting a ban on the year-round sales of higher ethanol blends of gasoline, a court filing showed on Friday. Delivering on a campaign promise, President Donald Trump has directed the EPA to lift an Obama administration ban and allow U.S. gasoline stations to sell, year-round, blends containing up to 15 percent corn-based ethanol, called E15. [ read more … ]

Policy & Politics

Ethanol Industry In Free Fall Since President Trump’s Inauguration

By Robert Rapier, Forbes  •    •  Posted August 12, 2019

Following Donald Trump’s election in 2016, ethanol producers rallied. Shares of ethanol suppliers Green Plains, REX American Resources and Pacific Ethanol all climbed by double digit in the weeks after the election. I felt like this celebration was premature.
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Iowa Ethanol Plant Approved for California’s Cellulosic Market

By Todd Neeley, Progressive Farmer  •    •  Posted August 12, 2019

Mason City, Iowa,-based ethanol producer Golden Grain Energy, LLC, will be able to sell cellulosic ethanol in the California market after the state approved its application this week.
Golden Grain operates a 120-million-gallon plant that uses technology from California-based Edeniq, Inc., a biotechnology company that has developed “Intellulose 2.0.” The technology measures the volume of cellulosic ethanol produced using corn kernel fiber in ethanol plants. Using the technology, plants often exceed 4% of total production from cellulosic ethanol. [ read more … ]

Governors call for reform on EPA’s CO2 emission regulations

By Office of Governor Kim Reynolds  •    •  Posted August 12, 2019

Governor Reynolds, Nebraska Governor Pete Ricketts, North Dakota Governor Doug Burgum, Indiana Governor Eric Holcomb and Kentucky Governor Matt Bevin are calling on the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to prioritize reform clarifying that CO2 emissions from agricultural feedstocks are not pollutants subject to regulation under the federal Clean Air Act. [ read more … ]

Largest Sources of Cancer-Causing Ethylene Oxide Go Unnoticed

By Bloomberg News  •    •  Posted August 12, 2019

Chemical plants in Louisiana and Texas release far more of the cancer-causing ethylene oxide gas than the Sterigenics medical sterilizer plant in Illinois, which snagged national headlines this year and was shut down by state regulators. The Environmental Protection Agency decided in late 2016 that the gas is much more dangerous than previously thought—an assessment that industry groups and some state regulators dispute. A separate federal report found that emissions from the Sterigenics medical sterilizer plant in Willowbrook, Ill. could be harmful to public health [ read more … ]


Farmers Don’t Need to Read the Science. We Are Living It.

By Alan Sano, New York Times  •    •  Posted August 11, 2019

Many farmers probably haven’t read the new report from the United Nations warning of threats to the global food supply from climate change and land misuse. But we don’t need to read the science — we’re living it. Here in the San Joaquin Valley, one of the world’s most productive agricultural regions, there’s not much debate anymore that the climate is changing. The drought of recent years made it hard to ignore; we had limited surface water for irrigation, and the groundwater was so depleted that land sank right under our feet. [ read more … ]


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