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Governors' Biofuels Coalition
NEWS UPDATE April 28, 2020

Top Story

Senator Sees Prospect for Next USDA Funding Boost

By Chris Clayton, Senior Editor  •    •  Posted April 28, 2020

The chairman of agricultural appropriations in the U.S. Senate sees growing support for another round of agricultural aid in the next stimulus bill passed by Congress. Sen. John Hoeven, R-N.D., spoke to members of the North American Agricultural Journalists on Monday through a Zoom call. Hoeven said he sees synergy building around a push to boost USDA’s Commodity Credit Corp., funding program to $50 billion, at least to get through the coronavirus. “I certainly would like to see that go to $50 (billion),” Hoeven said. “I think that is one of the good ways to move forward here.” [ read more … ]

Markets

Ethanol Board Administrator Says Biofuels Industry Needs Economic Aid

By WNAX  •    •  Posted April 27, 2020

Ethanol producer Archer Daniels Midland has idled its production at its corn ethanol plants in Columbus, Nebraska and Cedar Rapids, Iowa. 90 employees are being furloughed in each facility for at least four months. Nebraska Ethanol Board Administrator Roger Berry says with those two plants going off line, that’s a big loss of ethanol at 600 million gallons. He says while there’s a lot of talk about the economic woes petroleum refineries are undergoing, ethanol is also being hit very hard. [ read more … ]

Corn Growers and Livestock Groups Hit Hard by Reduced Production of Ethanol

By Maria Lisignoli, WHO  •    •  Posted April 27, 2020

The ADM corn dry mill plant in Cedar Rapids announced Friday it is reducing production of ethanol, citing a “challenging operating environment” during the COVID-19 pandemic. It also announced plans to furlough about 90 employees for the next four months. That impacts the Iowa Corn Growers Association, which said four months is too long.
[ read more … ]

Behind Oil-Market Gyrations: Few Places Left to Store Unwanted Crude

  •    •  Posted April 27, 2020

The world may have to get used to oil turning up in unusual places. An enormous glut of crude sparked by the coronavirus pandemic and the resulting collapse in demand has overwhelmed the global distribution system. Oil markets broke down this week as buyers vanished for lack of storage space. At one point, the squeeze was so intense, sellers with oil at a key U.S. delivery point in Cushing, Okla., were paying buyers to take the stuff off their hands. [ read more … ]

The great Texas oil shutdown has begun

By James Osborne, Houston Chroncile  •    •  Posted April 27, 2020

A couple hours after sunup Wednesday, Kyle McGraw climbed into his hail-beaten Chevy Suburban to make the two-hour drive from Midland to a small oil field he and his sons bought just seven weeks ago. As he drove across the broad expanse of West Texas with his two sons, McGraw, 60, said he couldn’t help but feel nostalgic, recalling how his own father had drilled his first well not far from where they were headed. But this trip was not meant for drilling wells; McGraw would begin shutting them down.
[ read more … ]

Emissions

Ethanol Blends Saving Lives through Reduced Vehicle Emissions

By Urban Air Initiative  •    •  Posted April 27, 2020

That is the conclusion of a new peer reviewed technical paper published in the Journal of Air & Waste Management, validating previous research efforts by the Urban Air Initiative that find when ethanol is added to gasoline, it significantly reduces toxic emission tied to air pollution. The research team leading this effort included notable refinery and fuel emission experts who looked at hundreds of earlier studies on emissions and ethanol. A glaring error, according to the authors, is that these studies assume a standard fuel is created for testing emissions. However, the research found that test fuels rarely resemble real-world fuels, similar to what consumers purchase.
[ read more … ]

As EPA backs off enforcement, states and cities have little capacity to fill gap

By Kari Lydersen, Energy News Network  •    •  Posted April 27, 2020

Since the Trump administration announced the suspension of much environmental enforcement during the coronavirus pandemic, advocates are calling on state and local regulators, as well as watchdog groups, to step up their efforts to fill the gap. But that won’t be easy, whether in a Democratic-controlled state like Illinois or a Republican one like Indiana, given the impacts of the pandemic and past staffing and budget cuts that have curbed the ability of states to carry out enforcement. [ read more … ]

Commentary

COVID-19 Impact Underscores Need for Biofuels

By David Hallberg. Morning Consult  •    •  Posted April 27, 2020

Fine particulate air pollution — specifically tiny particles called “particulate matter” that are generated in part by fuel combustion from cars — continues to be a significant health threat. In fact, the American Lung Association just released The State of the Air 2020, and one of the key findings is “that too many cities across the nation increased the number of days when particle pollution soared to often record-breaking levels.”  While there have been reports it has temporarily improved as a result of our “new normal,” we owe it to ourselves to ensure we get on path to keep it that way. This is even more critical now — since recent research found a link between high exposure to fine particulate air pollution and pre-existing conditions that contribute to more severe outcomes from COVID-19.  [ read more … ]

2020

Biden wants a new stimulus ‘a hell of a lot bigger’ than $2 trillion

By MICHAEL GRUNWALD, Politico  •    •  Posted April 27, 2020

The CARES Act and three smaller coronavirus relief bills have all passed Congress with overwhelming bipartisan support, and Biden was careful to avoid criticizing Pelosi and Schumer even as he criticized the results of the compromises they negotiated. He said he’s “in constant conversation” with both Democratic leaders, letting them know his priorities without interfering with their negotiations; he credited them with securing major increases in unemployment benefits and other improvements to Republican proposals that were initially skewed even further towards big business. [ read more … ]

 

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