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Governors' Biofuels Coalition
NEWS UPDATE August 14, 2019

Top Story

U.S. Farmers Stung by Tariffs Now Face a $3.5 Billion Corn Loss

By Isis Almeida, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted August 14, 2019

American farmers already stung by President Donald Trump’s trade wars now face billions of dollars in potential losses as controversial data from the U.S. government snuffs out a rally in corn. The Agriculture Department on Monday said farmers planted a bigger corn area than analysts estimated and pegged crop yields that also exceeded expectations, sparking the biggest rout in futures since 2013. That was a blow to growers who were holding back supplies, hoping a rally that started in May due to delayed sowing would extend through the fall. [ read more … ]

U.S. Corn Yield Expected to Be Lowest Since 2012

By Michael Hirtzer, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted August 14, 2019

Indigo Ag Inc. is forecasting output of U.S. corn and soybeans to fall sharply after relentless rain in the planting season was followed by dry growing conditions in the Midwestern crop belt. The Boston-based crop intelligence firm uses satellite imagery and ground intelligence gathered in part from farmers to make its predictions. It estimated end-of-season U.S. corn production at 12 billion bushels and yields at 154.7 bushels per acre. Each estimate was the lowest since 2012 and below a Bloomberg analyst survey for 13.1 billion bushels and yields of 164.9 bushels per acre. [ read more … ]

USDA’s August WASDE reduces forecast for corn use in ethanol

By Ethanol Producer Magazine  •    •  Posted August 14, 2019

The USDA reduced the volume of corn it expects to go to ethanol production by 25 million bushels in its latest World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates report, released Aug. 12. The USDA’s current 2019-’20 corn outlook is for larger supplies, reduced exports and corn used for ethanol, and greater ending stocks. [ read more … ]

Trade

U.S. to Delay Some China Tariffs Until Stores Stock Up for Holiday Shoppers

By Ana Swanson, New York Times  •    •  Posted August 14, 2019

Liu He, China’s vice premier and the country lead trade negotiator, spoke with Robert Lighthizer, the United States trade representative, and Steven Mnuchin, the Treasury secretary, on Tuesday, and the three agreed to speak again in two weeks, the state-run Xinhua News Agency reported. On Tuesday, Mr. Trump criticized China for not making large purchases of American farm goods, suggesting that the tariffs might force them into action. [ read more … ]

E15

Ethanol, Agriculture Interests Challenge Provision in E15 Final Rule

By Todd Neeley, Progressive Farmer  •    •  Posted August 14, 2019

An alliance led by the National Farmers Union and the Urban Air Initiative is concerned about a provision in the final rule that could restrict the use of blender pumps. “Specifically, the petitioners will argue that EPA misinterprets the ‘substantially similar’ provision of the Clean Air Act to artificially limit ethanol blending,” the alliance said in a news release. “Because ethanol is a fuel additive used in EPA’s vehicle certification process, petitioners maintain that it is not subject to any volume limitations under the sub-sim law.” [ read more … ]

Primary

Buttigieg promises billions to agriculture for climate fight

By Timothy Cama, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted August 14, 2019

Democratic presidential hopeful Pete Buttigieg is promising billions of dollars in federal funding to help reduce greenhouse gas emissions from agriculture and assist farmers in adapting to climate change impacts. Buttigieg, the mayor of South Bend, Ind., said he would double the Department of Agriculture’s roughly $2.5 billion annual research and development budget, with a climate focus, including on soil carbon sequestration. [ read more … ]

Buttigieg backs biofuels industry against refinery exemptions to RFS

By Josh Siegel, Washington Examiner  •    •  Posted August 14, 2019

Presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg is pledging to stop the “abuse” of small refinery exemptions to the Renewable Fuel Standard, a process that he says has been excessively used under the Trump administration to the detriment of U.S. farmers. Buttigieg, the mayor of South Bend, Indiana, said he plans to side with biofuels and “rural America” by supporting the RFS “as written.” [ read more … ]

Democrats struggling to face fact that their plans would all but end fossil fuels

By Josh Siegel, Washington Examiner  •    •  Posted August 14, 2019

Most Democratic presidential candidates running for president have rallied around a shared goal: Cutting greenhouse gas emissions to net-zero by 2050. However, few candidates appear to appreciate the ambition of that target, or explicitly say that it would necessitate almost entirely ending the use of fossil fuels such as coal, oil, and gas. Fossil fuels — petroleum, natural gas, and coal — accounted for 80% of U.S. total energy consumption in 2018, according to the Energy Information Administration. [ read more … ]

Policy & Politics

Extreme climate change has arrived in America

By Steven Mufson, Chris Mooney, Juliet Eilperin and John Muyskens, Washington Post  •    •  Posted August 14, 2019

New Jersey may seem an unlikely place to measure climate change, but it is one of the fastest-warming states in the nation. Its average temperature has climbed by close to 2 degrees Celsiussince 1895 — double the average for the Lower 48 states. Over the past two decades, the 2 degrees Celsiusnumber has emerged as a critical threshold for global warming. In the 2015 Paris accord, international leaders agreed that the world should act urgently to keep the Earth’s average temperature increases “well below” 2 degrees Celsiusby the year 2100 to avoid a host of catastrophic changes. [ read more … ]

California emissions fell faster than state mandate

By Anne C. Mulkern, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted August 14, 2019

California’s greenhouse gas pollution is falling faster than the state mandates, officials said yesterday. For the first time since the state started tracking its emissions, its grid used more electricity from renewable sources than fossil fuels. The data is from 2017, the most recent year available. [ read more … ]

Saudi Aramco Remains World’s Most Profitable Company Even as Oil Falls

By Matthew Martin, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted August 14, 2019

Saudi Aramco showed Monday it’s still the world’s most profitable company — and paid out almost all its net income in dividends — despite the dwindling price of oil. Profit slid 12% to $46.9 billion in the first six months of 2019, the state-owned energy giant said in its first-ever half-year earnings report. That easily outstripped corporate titans such as Apple Inc., Amazon.com Inc. and other big oil producers, many of which suffered larger declines in profit as output and crude prices fell. [ read more … ]

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