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Governors' Biofuels Coalition
NEWS UPDATE January 17, 2020

Top Story

Toxic refinery leaks imperiled Philadelphia residents

By Corbin Hiar, E&E News reporter, and Lisa Riordan Seville, NBC News reporter  •    •  Posted January 16, 2020

PES is one of just a dozen of the more than 130 refineries operating across the country that have consistently exceeded EPA’s “action level” for benzene of 9 micrograms per cubic meter of air, according to data compiled and analyzed by the Environmental Integrity Project, a watchdog group that advocated for the fence line monitoring program now required at all refineries. High benzene readings registered by the network of monitors around a refinery don’t necessarily translate to dangerous levels in the community, according to the city and EPA. But former EPA officials who examined the hard-to-access data compared ongoing high benzene concentrations around the Philadelphia refinery and near other top emitters to levels more often seen in China and India. And they criticized local and federal officials for failing to address the problem or adequately warn the public. [ read more … ]

Trade

Trade deal will not affect China’s other agriculture suppliers: vice premier

By Hallie Gu and Shivani Singh, Reuters  •    •  Posted January 16, 2020

China’s other suppliers of agricultural commodities will not be impacted by the Sino-U.S. trade deal since buying will be based on market principles, Vice Premier Liu He said, according to a report from state-owned CCTV on Thursday. Liu was speaking on Wednesday at a press briefing after signing the Phase 1 trade deal with U.S. President Donald Trump. The agreement includes a pledge by China to buy an additional at least $12.5 billion worth of agricultural goods in 2020, and at least $19.5 billion more than the 2017 level of $24 billion in 2021. [ read more … ]

Ethanol Groups Optimistic as China Trade Deal is Signed

By CINDY ZIMMERMAN, Ag Wired  •    •  Posted January 16, 2020

Ethanol organizations expressed optimism about the signing of the historic Phase One Trade Agreement with China Wednesday, despite China’s announced suspension of its E10 ethanol mandate last week. “We are very optimistic about the potential of this agreement for American agriculture and the renewable fuels industry—with the inclusion of ethanol and key co-products like distillers grains—and are looking forward to more specific details on the agreement,” said Renewable Fuels Association President and CEO Geoff Cooper. [ read more … ]

Climate

Climate impacts of China trade deal uncertain

By Scott Waldman, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted January 16, 2020

As part of the deal, China has agreed to spend billions of dollars more on energy, including liquefied natural gas, crude oil and coal. And while an increase in fossil fuels might at first blush seem like a net negative, the deal has the potential to shift China’s appetite away from coal-fired power and push it toward cleaner natural gas, while also giving U.S. producers an incentive to reduce flaring, she noted. [ read more … ]

Policy & Politics

U.S. farmers increased support for Trump ahead of ‘Phase 1’ signing – Reuters/Ipsos poll

By Tom Polansek, Reuters  •    •  Posted January 17, 2020

U.S. President Donald Trump gained support among American farm families at the end of last year, Reuters/Ipsos poll data showed, as Trump touted a Phase 1 trade deal with key agricultural buyer China. The results show American farmers increasingly backed the Republican president as he sought to pause a drawn out trade war with Beijing that cut deeply into U.S. agricultural sales. The trade deal, announced Dec. 13 and signed on Wednesday, paves the way for increased farm exports to China, though critics have said it failed to address structural economic differences. [ read more … ]

US Ethanol Production Rises to Near-Record High for Week Ended Jan. 10

By DTN Staff  •    •  Posted January 16, 2020

Domestic ethanol inventory held higher in the week ended Jan. 10 as plant production jumped over 3% to near the all-time-record high reached a little more than two years ago, according to data released Wednesday, Jan. 15, by the Energy Information Administration. Data show U.S. ethanol supply increased for a second consecutive week, up 544,000 barrels (bbl) in the week ended Jan. 10 to 23.006 million bbl, a 15-week high while about 2% below the same week last year. [ read more … ]

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