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Governors' Biofuels Coalition
NEWS UPDATE October 17, 2019

Top Story

‘Outrage’ in Iowa biofuels industry over proposed EPA blending rules

By O. Kay Henderson, Radio Iowa  •    •  Posted October 16, 2019

Iowa’s ethanol and biodiesel industry reacted in disbelief and anger today after the Environmental Protection Agency issued a draft policy on future biofuels production targets. The president of the Iowa Corn Growers Association was first to react, saying he was outraged the EPA failed to implement the details of a plan President Trump announced 11 days ago. Trump’s outline suggested oil refineries would be forced to blend more ethanol in gasoline next year, to make up for the ethanol blending waivers granted this year. The Iowa Corn Growers’ leader said the EPA’s document fell “well short” of that mark. [ read more … ]

White House Biofuel Plan

Iowa farm leaders warn Trump could lose rural voters unless he makes good on ethanol deal

By Donnelle Eller, Des Moines Register  •    •  Posted October 17, 2019

Angry over proposed ethanol changes, Iowa agriculture leaders warned Wednesday that President Donald Trump will lose rural voters next year unless he makes good on a deal to restore millions of gallons of lost renewable fuel demand. “No more Iowa nice. Now, it’s Iowa pissed,” said Craig Floss, CEO of the Iowa Corn Growers Association, repeating the reaction he got from an Iowa farmer after the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency proposed changes Tuesday to the federal mandate, called the Renewable Fuel Standard.
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Trump Expected to Stand Behind RFS Deal

By Todd Neeley, Progressive Farmer  •    •  Posted October 17, 2019

Trump administration officials assured dozens of representatives from agriculture and biofuels groups on an Oct. 3 phone briefing the EPA would use a three-year rolling average of small-refinery exemption volumes from 2016 to 2018 to account for future waivers. It was the reason biofuels groups endorsed the agreement. The next day the administration announced details of the deal outlined in the phone call — EPA would take the average of about 4 billion gallons waived since 2016, or about 1.35 billion gallons per year, and plug that into future Renewable Fuel Standard volume proposals.
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Iowa Farmers Blast Trump’s Dealmaking After EPA Biofuel Plan

By Michael Hirtzer and Jennifer A Dlouhy, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted October 17, 2019

Iowa farmers slammed the Trump administration’s plan to alter biofuel-blending quotas, saying it would undermine demand for corn-based ethanol and soybean-based biodiesel. Farmers speaking on a conference call said the Environmental Protection Agency’s plan unveiled Tuesday falls short in the way it changes targets for blending biofuel into petroleum-based fuels under the Renewable Fuel Standard. [ read more … ]

Corn, oil decry RFS proposl

BY KELSEY TAMBORRINO, Politico  •    •  Posted October 16, 2019

EPA’s proposed supplemental blending rule for the Renewable Fuel Standard released Tuesday would increase the burden on large refiners without raising the overall mandate to add biofuels to the nation’s fuel supply, Pro’s Eric Wolff reports. The proposal sparked an outcry from biofuels groups that worry that EPA’s approach is not enough to live up to Trump’s promises, as well as an oil industry that sees the proposal as fundamentally unfair. [ read more … ]

EPA’s SRE deal falls short of industry expectations

By Erin Voegele, Ethanol Producer Magazine  •    •  Posted October 16, 2019

The U.S. EPA issued a supplemental notice of proposed rulemaking Oct. 15 seeking comments on how it should project the volume of small refinery exemptions (SREs) in annual Renewable Fuel Standard rulemakings to set annual renewable volume obligations (RVOs). The rulemaking, which fell far short of biofuel industry expectations, also demonstrated EPA’s failure to follow U.S. Department of Energy recommendations regarding the approval of past SREs. [ read more … ]

Trump’s latest plan to boost ethanol miffs both corn groups and the fossil fuel industry

By Rebecca Beitsch, The Hill  •    •  Posted October 16, 2019

Ethanol producers worry there will be a major disconnect between the actual number of gallons of ethanol that are not blended into the fuel supply after the EPA doles out waivers and the number of gallons the government projects will be exempted.  “We are outraged the Environmental Protection Agency did not implement the details that were presented and outlined by the president only eleven days ago,” the Iowa Corn Growers Association said in a statement. “Any proposal that does not account for actual waived gallons under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) fails to restore the integrity of the law.” [ read more … ]

Trade

China says it hopes to reach phased trade pact with U.S. as early as possible

By Gabriel Crossley, Reuters  •    •  Posted October 17, 2019

China’s commerce ministry said on Thursday that China hoped to reach a phased agreement with the United States over trade as early as possible, and make progress on canceling tariffs on each others’ goods. A phased agreement would help restore market confidence and reduce uncertainty, Gao Feng, spokesman at the ministry, told reporters, adding that both sides were maintaining close communication. [ read more … ]

U.S. diplomats, Congress take aim at China; Trump expects trade deal signing

By David Brunnstrom and Doina Chiacu, Reuters  •    •  Posted October 17, 2019

Trump said on Friday China and the United States had reached the first phase of a trade deal that covered agriculture, currency and some aspects of intellectual property protections, and would ease reciprocal trade restrictions that the world’s two largest economies have been imposing for 15 months. Officials on both sides said last week much more work needed to be done before an accord could be agreed. But Trump said on Wednesday he would “probably” sign it with Xi at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Forum in Santiago from Nov. 11 to 17. [ read more … ]

Car Rule

Trump DOJ asks court to toss suit over Calif. dispute

By Maxine Joselow, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted October 16, 2019

The Trump administration’s Department of Justice is asking a court to toss a lawsuit over its proposed preemption of California’s clean cars program. In a motion filed today, DOJ lawyers asked the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia to dismiss the suit brought by California and environmental groups. [ read more … ]

Policy & Politics

Tanks of ethanol burn at energy facility in the Bay Area, prompting road closures

By JACLYN COSGROVE, Los Angeles Times  •    •  Posted October 16, 2019

At least two large tanks of ethanol burned Tuesday at a NuStar Energy facility in Crockett, Calif., prompting road closures and a shelter-in-place order for residents that lasted late into the evening. Residents in Rodeo, Crockett and Hercules were finally advised that they could reopen windows and doors about 9:30 p.m. Interstate 80 reopened in both directions after being closed in the area near the NuStar facility for about six hours.
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Note: News clips provided do not necessarily reflect the views of coalition or its member governors.