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Governors' Biofuels Coalition
NEWS UPDATE September 12, 2019

Top Story

White House Biofuel Plan

White House Presses Biofuel, Oil Executives for Compromise

By Mario Parker and Jennifer A Dlouhy, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted September 12, 2019

Trump administration officials are squeezing biofuel and oil refining executives to agree to a plan to bolster corn-based ethanol and soy-based biodiesel. In a meeting at the White House on Wednesday, President Donald Trump’s economic advisers gave biofuel producers a Friday deadline for providing ideas on a possible compromise. Renewable fuel advocates pushed back on a draft administration plan, arguing it would do too little too late to help the industry and offset exemptions allowing oil refineries to dodge annual biofuel-blending quotas, said people familiar with the matter who asked not to be named describing the private deliberations. [ read more … ]

White House pushes biofuel deal to biofuel producers, oil refiners: sources – Reuters

By Stephanie Kelly and Jarrett Renshaw, Reuters  •    •  Posted September 12, 2019

White House officials on Wednesday urged U.S. biofuel producers and oil refiners to accept a deal to lift biofuel blending mandates in 2020, saying overlong negotiations could make it hard to enact the change in time for next year, sources familiar with the discussions said. The White House is trying to soothe farmers infuriated by the Trump administration’s decision in August to exempt 31 oil refineries from their requirement to blend biofuels under the U.S. Renewable Fuel Standard, which the agriculture industry says is undermining the market for corn-based ethanol as farmers are losing export sales from the U.S. trade war with China. [ read more … ]

Ethanol, Ag Interests Not in White House RFS Meeting

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

The White House reportedly is giving biofuels interests until Friday to accept a deal from President Donald Trump that would give a boost to biofuels in the current volumes proposal, Reuters reported on Wednesday, citing regulatory purposes as the reason for the deadline. Biofuels and agriculture companies met at the White House to discuss a Renewable Fuel Standard deal, but two sources told DTN the meeting did not include farm interest groups or farmer-owned ethanol plants. [ read more … ]

Industry nabs White House sit-down to push blending policy

By Marc Heller, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted September 12, 2019

In a joint statement, the RFA and other biofuel groups said they “urged the administration to uphold the president’s commitment to the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) and address the economic crisis” created by the RFS exemptions granted to small refineries. “We remain hopeful that President Trump will move swiftly to protect farmers and biofuel workers, but efforts to reverse the damage will be meaningless unless the agency acts now to stop the bleeding and accurately account for lost gallons from this point forward, beginning in the 2020 biofuel targets,” they said. “Rural communities across America are counting on this administration to uphold the president’s commitment to biofuels and restore integrity to the RFS.” [ read more … ]

Ernst to Trump: Stay home until we have deal

By Marc Heller, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted September 12, 2019

Sen. Joni Ernst has a message for President Trump if he’s planning to come to Iowa to announce changes to biofuels mandates: Think again. “I’ve advised the president that until we have a deal that satisfies our ethanol producers and our corn growers that he probably shouldn’t take that trip,” the Iowa Republican told E&E News yesterday, following up on rumors in the biofuels industry that Trump may be mulling a trip to the state — the nation’s leader in ethanol production — to announce a new policy. [ read more … ]

Car Rule

Wheeler: No final decision on splitting rollback

By Maxine Joselow, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted September 11, 2019

The Trump administration has not yet made a final decision on whether to divide up its rollback of Obama-era clean car standards, EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler said yesterday. E&E News and other outlets reported last week that the administration was considering splitting the rollback into two main components. [ read more … ]

Policy & Politics

Tornado, high winds slam South Dakota’s largest city

By Associated Press  •    •  Posted September 11, 2019

Severe weather, including a tornado, struck South Dakota’s largest city, leaving a trail of damaged buildings, downed power lines, fallen trees and some reports of injuries, officials said today. Fire Chief Brad Goodroad said at an early morning news conference that at least 37 structures collapsed in Sioux Falls or have structural issues after the storm rolled through the city in the eastern part of the state just before midnight. There were no reports of deaths or serious injuries. [ read more … ]

Issues That Farmers Face Are Testing Trump’s Rural Support– Audio

By Clay Masters, Iowa Public Radio  •    •  Posted September 11, 2019

Farmers in the rural Midwest say they’re struggling. They blame President Trump’s ongoing trade war and a recent decision on renewable fuels made from corn and soybeans that helps the oil industry. Here’s Iowa Public Radio’s Clay Masters. [ read more … ]

Trade tensions, oversupply, and SREs drive biofuel plant shutdowns

By Ben Nuelle, Agri-News  •    •  Posted September 11, 2019

Trade tensions, the Trump administration’s decisions on biofuel policy, and an oversupply of ethanol are placing ethanol plants in a tight spot financially, forcing some to either shut down or press pause on production until conditions improve, industry officials say. Some 17 of the more than 200 ethanol plants across the country have idled production or closed permanently over the past 12 months, according to the Renewable Fuels Association. [ read more … ]

Free-market group sues Trump admin for RFS records

By Marc Heller, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted September 11, 2019

Foes of federal biofuel mandates are suing the Department of Agriculture to obtain records that could shed light on the department’s backroom role promoting those policies. The Institute for Energy Research filed an open records lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, trying to force USDA to quickly comply with a months-old request for documents under the Freedom of Information Act. [ read more … ]

How Big Oil Blocked the Nation’s Greenest Governor on Climate Change

By Marianne Lavelle, Inside Climate News  •    •  Posted September 11, 2019

Inslee’s fight for climate action in Washington state is a case study of the monumental political challenge that the drive for climate policies faces, even with Democrats in control of both houses of the legislature, a chief executive who has made climate a priority, and a major player in the fossil fuel industry pledging to be a part of the solution. It is also a cautionary tale and preview of the battle ahead for climate action on a national level, where BP and other big oil companies are staking out a position similar to the one they adopted in Washington state—portraying themselves as partners, not adversaries, in addressing global warming. Based on the record so far, some who have watched the process closely question whether the oil industry can be a trusted ally in enacting a policy that is ambitious enough to effect the rapid, deep economy-wide cuts in carbon emissions that the science demands. [ read more … ]

Climate change reshapes Frankfurt car show

By David McHugh, Associated Press  •    •  Posted September 11, 2019

It remains very much open whether consumers will want to buy electric cars, given concerns about range, lack of places to charge away from home and higher purchase prices. Battery vehicles were only 1.8% of the European market through the first six months of the year, according to figures from industry analysts at JATO Dynamics Ltd. The cars have sold better in the high end of the market, as exemplified by Tesla’s Model S and Model X. [ read more … ]

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