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Governors' Biofuels Coalition
NEWS UPDATE February 27, 2020

Top Story

Trump to Pare Biofuel Waivers for Refineries on Court Ruling

By Jennifer A Dlouhy and Jennifer Jacobs, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted February 27, 2020

Trump administration officials have decided to pare the number of oil refineries granted waivers from biofuel mandates, according to two people familiar with the matter. The decision in response to a January court ruling represents a win for biofuel producers who have battled the exemptions and accused the Trump administration of siding with the oil industry on the issue.
[ read more … ]

U.S. renewable fuel prices climb 25% after report on small refinery waiver program

By Stephanie Kelly, Reuters  •    •  Posted February 27, 2020

U.S. renewable fuel prices rose 25% on Wednesday, traders said, after a Bloomberg report stated that the Trump administration has decided to pare exemptions for oil refineries from the nation’s biofuel blending laws. In late January the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 10th Circuit said the Environmental Protection Agency must reconsider some exemptions it previously gave to oil refineries. The administration has decided to apply that ruling nationwide, which likely would mean fewer refineries receive exemptions going forward, according to the report. [ read more … ]

Policy & Politics

Udall, Grassley introduce bill targeting subsidies for Big Oil

By Erin Voegele, Ethanol Producer Magazine  •    •  Posted February 26, 2020

Sens. Tom Udall, D-N.M, and Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, introduced legislation on Feb. 25 that aims to update the nation’s antiquated public lands royalty system and ensure that taxpayers get fair returns on leases of public lands for oil and gas production. The bill, titled, the Fair Returns for Public Lands Act of 2020, modernizes the public lands leasing system, which currently uses royalty rates that were sent in 1920. The legislation increase both the share of royalties that taxpayers receive from public lands leasing as well as rental rates. [ read more … ]

US biofuels industry welcomes new bill targeting oil and gas subsidies

By Biofuels International  •    •  Posted February 26, 2020

US Senators Chuck Grassley (Iowa) and Tom Udall (New Mexico) have introduced a new bill that is being touted as the first step towards ending subsidies for oil and gas companies. The bipartisan Fair Returns for Public Lands Act of 2020 updates the antiquated public lands royalty system in the US to ensure that taxpayers get fair returns on leases of public lands for oil and gas production. The legislation will modernise the public lands leasing system since royalty rates were set 100 years ago, in 1920. It will also increase both the share of royalties that taxpayers receive from public lands leasing as well as rental rates [ read more … ]

BP to quit main U.S. refining lobby over carbon policy

By Ron Bousso, Reuters  •    •  Posted February 26, 2020

BP will leave the main U.S. refining lobby and two other trade groups as new Chief Executive Bernard Looney spurs some of the oil sector’s most ambitious targets for curbing carbon emissions. BP said its view on carbon pricing and that of the American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers (AFPM) were “at odds and currently we have no areas of full alignment. [ read more … ]

Oil and gas industry rewards US lawmakers who oppose environmental protections – study

By Emily Holden, The Guardian  •    •  Posted February 26, 2020

The oil and gas industry substantially rewards US legislators with campaign donations when they oppose environmental protections, according to a new analysis of congressional votes and political contributions. Oil and gas companies spent $84m on congressional campaigns in 2018. Researchers found a correlation between an increase in anti-environment votes and an increase in contributions. They documented how lawmakers’ scores from the League of Conservation Voters (LCV) dipped and then were followed by campaign funding from the industry. [ read more … ]

Commentary

USDA’s 30 Year Vision – No Need to Wander Like Moses

By Douglas Durante, Biofuels Digest  •    •  Posted February 26, 2020

As the U.S. biofuels industry struggles to regain the luster it had during the golden years of phenomenal growth, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) came out recently with a puzzling claim of a “bold new vision” for agriculture and biofuels. In the face of shrinking demand, collapsing trade markets, poor margins and constant attack by the petroleum industry, USDA presented a 10 year plan for E15 and a 30 year plan for E30 that is neither bold nor visionary and clearly suggests they need to get their vision checked. [ read more … ]

EVs

U.S. auto dealers are avoiding EVs. Here’s why.

By David Ferris, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted February 26, 2020

The head of Volkswagen Group of America Inc. recently stood before his dealers and told them he would cover half the costs of getting their facilities ready for electric cars, such as building charging stations. That declaration stood out for its generosity. Most automakers, including General Motors Co. and Ford Motor Co., claim to be invested in an electric future but are leaving it to dealers to pay for upgrades that can amount to tens of thousands of dollars. [ read more … ]

Me first –global EV policies boost sales as U.S. lags behind

By KELSEY TAMBORRINO, Politico  •    •  Posted February 26, 2020

Plug-in electric vehicle sales in European Union nations grew 54 percent last year as automakers ramp up production in response to new pollution rules, according to a new report from S&P Global Platts Analytics. That’s a marked contrast to the U.S., where analysts said EV sales dropped 9 percent. [ read more … ]

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