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Governors' Biofuels Coalition
NEWS UPDATE January 29, 2020

Top Story

Court decision casts doubt on dozens of U.S. refinery biofuel waivers

By Richard Valdmanis, Reuters  •    •  Posted January 28, 2020

A U.S. court decision last week striking down three biofuel waivers that the Environmental Protection Agency gave oil refineries in 2017 has cast doubt on the legitimacy of dozens of other EPA exemptions granted under similar circumstances, according to industry experts and agency data. That spells uncertainty for a handful of independent refiners that secured lucrative waivers from the Trump administration, and could fire up prices for the biofuel blending credits those facilities need to comply with the nation’s biofuel law. [ read more … ]


Court Decision May Bring Some Relief To Ethanol Industry

By Amy Mayer, Iowa Public Radio  •    •  Posted January 28, 2020

A recent federal court decision may reduce the number of small refinery waivers the Environmental Protection Agency issues in the future. The ethanol industry is celebrating the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals decision, but the impact may not be the full course-correction renewable fuels need to recover from some difficult years. After the Trump administration granted dozens of small refinery waivers, meaning less ethanol would be needed in the nation’s fuel supply, a coalition of renewable fuels groups sued the EPA saying the exemptions amounted to a violation of the Renewable Fuel Standard, the law that governs how much ethanol must be blended into gasoline. [ read more … ]

Grassley: 10th Circuit Ruling on RFS Exemptions Sets Precedent

By Todd Neeley , DTN Staff Reporter  •    •  Posted January 29, 2020

Sen. Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, said on Tuesday that he’s hopeful the EPA will abide by the latest ruling from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 10th Circuit in Denver when it comes to small-refinery exemptions, holding it in as high regard as the agency has a 2017 10th Circuit opinion on exemptions. The court ruled last Friday that EPA didn’t have the authority to issue small-refinery exemption extensions to three companies that were not granted waivers originally.
[ read more … ]

NDFU applauds court decision on ethanol production waivers

By Jamestown Sun  •    •  Posted January 28, 2020

The Tenth Circuit found that the Environmental Protection Agency’s granting of small refinery exemptions to three companies owned by CVR Energy and HollyFrontier was unlawful and exempted them from meeting required levels of biofuel production under the nation’s Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS). “I hope the court’s decision signals an end to EPA’s abuse of the small refinery waiver process,” Watne said. “These waivers reduced ethanol production by about 4 billion gallons in three years, destroying demand for corn in the process. This has hurt farm income, the environment, and rural communities.”
[ read more … ]


Purdue Researchers Find US Biofuels Responsible for Fraction of Deforestation

By Todd Neeley, Progressive farmer  •    •  Posted January 28, 2020

Though environmental groups and others continue to allege biofuels production in the United States is to blame for expanded deforestation in Malaysia and Indonesia, a new study from Purdue University economists finds although U.S. biofuels production ramped up dramatically since 1990 along with increased production of palm oil, U.S. production is to blame for only a fraction of deforestation. [ read more … ]

Policy & Politics

In Crucial Pennsylvania, Democrats Worry a Fracking Ban Could Sink Them

By Lisa Friedman and Shane Goldmacher, New York Times  •    •  Posted January 28, 2020

hough they are both Democrats, John Fetterman, Pennsylvania’s lieutenant governor, and Bill Peduto, this city’s mayor, have their differences on the environment. Mr. Fetterman, who toppled an incumbent Democrat in 2018 from the left, nevertheless calls Pennsylvania “the Saudi Arabia of natural gas” and sees extracting and taxing gas as critical to the state’s economy and the “union way of life.” Mr. Peduto lobbied unsuccessfully against a local petrochemical plant and is steering his once-struggling steel town to be independent of fossil fuels within 15 years. [ read more … ]

Soaring demand seen driving French ethanol sales to new record this year

By Sybille de La Hamaide, Reuters  •    •  Posted January 28, 2020

Ethanol sales in France should continue to rise sharply this year after reaching a new record in 2019, mostly boosted by tax breaks and a wider availability in petrol stations, French ethanol producer group SNPAA said on Tuesday. A decline in diesel demand and the growing use of so-called “flex-fuel” kits that allow cars to run on high-ethanol fuel have also contributed to an increase in its use, SNPAA Secretary General Sylvain Demoures told a news conference. [ read more … ]

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