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Governors' Biofuels Coalition
NEWS UPDATE December 18, 2019

Top Story

Lawmakers Reach Late and Narrow Tax-Break Deal

By Richard Rubin, Wall Street Journal  •    •  Posted December 18, 2019

Congressional leaders struck a tax-policy deal late Monday, capping a long weekend of negotiations with an agreement that will extend lapsed and expiring tax breaks but won’t be as expansive as many lawmakers had hoped. Some of the longest extensions went to biodiesel producers and short-line railroads. Both had breaks that expired at the end of 2017, which would get revived and last through 2022. A more generous medical-expense deduction for individuals would be revived for this year and extended through 2020. And breaks for brewers and distillers set to lapse in a few weeks would continue through 2020. [ read more … ]


Prices Will Dictate China’s Agriculture Buys, U.S. Adviser Says

By Marvin G Perez, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted December 17, 2019

At the end of the day, the competitiveness of American farm products will determine whether China buys them, according to a U.S. trade adviser. While the Asian nation has pledged to buy $80 billion in U.S. agricultural products in the next two years as part of an initial trade accord, purchases probably will be attuned to market conditions, said Tom Kehoe, an adviser to the U.S. Department of Agriculture and and U.S. Trade Representative. “These are business people,” Kehoe said Tuesday in an interview at Bloomberg headquarters in New York. “They are going to have to be in a competitive situation. Otherwise, they are not going to buy it.” [ read more … ]

Proposed RVO and Supplemental Rules

Reynolds, Perdue confident Trump administration will upheld RFS levels promise

By Ryan Matheny, KMA  •    •  Posted December 17, 2019

“I’ve had the opportunity to visit with (EPA) Administrator (Andrew) Wheeler, (Agriculture) Secretary (Sonny) Perdue, I’ve met with President Trump and with other senators to really talk about the impact this has in rural Iowa,” said Reynolds. “Our main message was that 15 billion gallons means 15 billion gallons. That’s what the statute calls for, so whatever small refinery waivers are issued, let’s make sure we net out 15 billion gallons. That’s what the message has consistently been in visiting with both the cabinet and president.”
[ read more … ]


Divided EPA science panel declares soot standard is adequate

By Sean Reilly, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted December 18, 2019

In accompanying comments, Dr. Mark Frampton, the one remaining dissenter, wrote that studies published in recent years “further strengthen the evidence” linking exposure to “adverse health effects.” Frampton, a retired pulmonologist and professor of medicine at the University of Rochester, reiterated concerns over knowledge gaps both on the committee and in a pool of specially appointed consultants who are supposed to provide added know-how. None of the committee members is an expert in air pollution epidemiology, he wrote, while the consultant pool also lacks “sufficient expertise and experience” in that research field. [ read more … ]

Eastern States Introduce a Plan to Cap Tailpipe Pollution

By Hiroko Tabuchi, New York Times  •    •  Posted December 18, 2019

A coalition of twelve mid-Atlantic and Northeastern states and the District of Columbia on Tuesday released a draft plan for an ambitious cap-and-trade program to curb tailpipe emissions from cars, trucks and other forms of transportation, tackling what has fast become the largest source of planet-warming gases. More than a fifth of the United States population would be affected by the plan, which sets a cap, to be lowered over time, on the total amount of carbon dioxide that can be released from vehicles that use transportation fuels, like gasoline and diesel fuel. Under the program, which could start as early as 2022, fuel companies would buy allowances from the states, either directly or on a secondary market, for every ton of carbon dioxide their fuel will produce. The states then put the proceeds toward efforts to reduce carbon emissions from transportation, including investment in trains, buses, and electric-vehicle charging infrastructure.
[ read more … ]


Ethanol leaders urge Noem to continue voicing support for E30

By Erin Voegele , Ethanol Producer Magazine  •    •  Posted December 17, 2019

A group of five ethanol, agriculture and clean air supporters sent a letter to South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem on Dec. 10 commending her for remarks she made in support of E30 during Glacial Lakes Energy LLC’s recent annual meeting. The letter, signed by Jim Seurer, CEO of Glacial Lakes Energy; Ron Alverson, board member of Dakota Ethanol LLC; Doug Sombke, president of South Dakota Farmers Union; Pam Miller, board chair and director of industry and investor relations at Siouxland Ethanol LLC; and David VanderGriend, CEO of ICM Inc., thanks Noem for her leadership role in calling for E30 to be used in legacy vehicles, including the South Dakota state fleet. [ read more … ]


We Need a Massive Climate War Effort—Now

By KEVIN DRUM, Mother Earth  •    •  Posted December 17, 2019

Let’s start with the good news. About three-quarters of carbon emissions come from burning fossil fuels for power, and we already have the technology to make a big dent in that. Solar power is now price-competitive with the most efficient natural gas plants and is likely to get even cheaper in the near future. In 2019, Los Angeles signed a deal to provide 400 megawatts of solar power at a price under 4 cents per kilowatt-hour—including battery storage to keep that power available day and night. That’s just a start—it will provide only about 7 percent of electricity needed in Los Angeles—but for the first time it’s fully competitive with the current wholesale price of fossil fuel electricity in Southern California. [ read more … ]


Cybertruck ‘stunt’ stirs debate about Tesla’s EV strategy

By David Iaconangelo, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted December 17, 2019

Tesla Inc. said last week that its first electric pickup truck would likely be heavier than many anticipated, raising questions about the product’s commercial viability and the company’s electric vehicle strategy. The revelation came after a Twitter post from Tesla CEO Elon Musk in late November depicting a Cybertruck and a smaller Ford F-150 chained together from the rear and facing in opposite directions, then accelerating at the same time. Many assumed that meant the two cars were of similar weight, with the Tesla being a stronger model. And details released by Tesla suggested that the Cybertruck would be able to haul more weight in its bed and cabin — or towed in a trailer behind it — than most versions of the F-150. [ read more … ]


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