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Governors' Biofuels Coalition
NEWS UPDATE April 23, 2020

Top Story

U.N. chief says there’s a bigger threat than coronavirus

By RYAN HEATH, Politico  •    •  Posted April 22, 2020

The U.S. is the world’s second-biggest fossil fuel subsidizer, according to a 2019 International Monetary Fund report. Guterres is expected to say: “Fossil fuel subsidies must end, and polluters must start paying for their pollution.” With many health systems and medical supply chains at breaking point, Guterres will say that while “the impact of the coronavirus is both immediate and dreadful,” there’s an “even deeper emergency — the planet’s unfolding environmental crisis.”
[ read more … ]

Relief Aid

McConnell slams brakes on next round of coronavirus aid

By BURGESS EVERETT, Politico  •    •  Posted April 22, 2020

In a telephone interview Tuesday after passage of a $484 billion coronavirus relief bill, the Senate majority leader made clear that the full Senate must be in session before Congress begins its fifth installment of responding to the pandemic. And he signaled he is growing weary of quickly shoveling billions of dollars out the door even as the economy continues to crater. [ read more … ]

Markets

Nearly 30% of ethanol plants idled, including four in Minnesota

By Mike Hughlett, Star Tribune  •    •  Posted April 22, 2020

Four Minnesota ethanol plants are idled and many more have throttled back production as COVID-19 has sapped gasoline demand, crushing the biofuel industry. U.S. ethanol production has hit an all-time low. Nearly 30% of the nation’s 204 biofuel plants have been idled since March 1, while many others have slashed production. “The fuel market is just telling us to shut down and not operate,” said Randall Doyal, CEO of Al-Corn Clean Fuel in the southern Minnesota town of Claremont. “Economically, its abysmal.” [ read more … ]

‘I’m Just Living a Nightmare’: Oil Industry Braces for Devastation

By Clifford Krauss, New York Times  •    •  Posted April 22, 2020

Workers at Marathon Petroleum’s refinery in Gallup, N.M., are turning off the valves. Oil companies in West Texas are paying early termination fees to contract employees rather than drill new wells. And in Montana, producers are shutting down wells and slashing salaries and benefits. The oil industry has lived through many booms and busts, but never before have prices collapsed as they have this week.
[ read more … ]

NCGA Analysis Shows $50 Per Acre Revenue Declines for Corn Due to COVID-19

By NCGA  •    •  Posted April 22, 2020

Analysis released by the National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) today showed cash corn prices have declined by 16 percent on average, with several regions experiencing declines of more than 20 percent, since March 1 as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. The analysis projects a $50 per acre revenue decline for the 2019 corn crop. [ read more … ]

Air Pollution

California cities top air pollution list — again

By David Oliver, Utility Dive  •    •  Posted April 22, 2020

About five in 10 people, or 45.8% of the U.S. population, live in an area with unhealthy ozone or particle pollution, according to the American Lung Association’s 2020 “State of the Air” report. Los Angeles once again ranked as the city with the worst ozone pollution, a ranking it has maintained for the past 20 years of the report’s 21 year-history. Fellow California cities Visalia, Bakersfield, Fresno, Sacramento and San Diego followed in rank — the same cities to top the list in 2019. [ read more … ]

This year is on track to be Earth’s warmest on record, beating 2016, NOAA says

By Andrew Freedman, Washington Post  •    •  Posted April 22, 2020

There is a 75 percent chance 2020 will set a record for the warmest year since instrument records began in 1880, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration is projecting, beating out 2016 for the distinction. This is somewhat unexpected, since there is no declared El Niño event in the tropical Pacific Ocean, which tends to provide a natural boost to global temperatures that are already elevated due to the human-caused buildup of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. [ read more … ]

RFS

API: Let’s get a redo of those biofuels volumes

BY KELSEY TAMBORRINO, Politico  •    •  Posted April 22, 2020

The American Petroleum Institute is asking EPA to revise its 2020 blending requirements, the oil producers group told ME. API believes that now that the 10th Circuit has effectively killed the small refiner exemption, the agency should remove the reallocation requirements built into the 2020 rule, a spokesman said. [ read more … ]

Economist expects “battle royal” over RFS in Washington

By Larry Lee, Brownfields  •    •  Posted April 22, 2020

Irwin tells Brownfield the crude oil refining industry has been shaken to its core with what’s going on, and in parallel, ag and the ethanol sector have been shaken to its core as well. “(What) we now have, the gauntlet has been laid down by the crude oil states or the big oils states if you like, putting forth a formal request to waive a part of the RFS mandates for 2020.” [ read more … ]

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