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Governors' Biofuels Coalition
NEWS UPDATE May 8, 2020

Top Story

Governors Ask EPA to Reject Request to Waive RFS

By Governors’ Biofuels Coalition  •    •  Posted May 8, 2020

“Undermining the RFS when rural America is struggling economically, farmers are fighting to stay in business, and the biofuels plants are closing is unconscionable,” said South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem and Minnesota Governor Tim Walz to Administrator Wheeler today, asking that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency reject a recent request from five oil state governors to waive the Renewable Volume Obligation under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) due to severe economic hardship.   [ read more … ]

Senators Ask Trump to Stand by RFS

By Todd Neeley , DTN Staff Reporter  •    •  Posted May 8, 2020

A bipartisan group of 24 senators asked President Donald Trump to reject a recent request by five governors to waive Renewable Fuel Standard volumes in light of the economic standstill during the COVID-19 pandemic shutdown. In an April 15 letter to the EPA, Govs. Greg Abbott of Texas, Gary Herbert of Utah, Kevin Stitt of Oklahoma, Mark Gordon of Wyoming and John Bel Edwards of Louisiana said refiners in their states face a financial burden as a result of oil market disruptions caused by economic shutdowns around the world. [ read more … ]

EPA

The Trump Administration Is Reversing Nearly 100 Environmental Rules. Here’s the Full List.

By NADJA POPOVICH, LIVIA ALBECK-RIPKA and KENDRA PIERRE-LOUIS, New York Times  •    •  Posted May 8, 2020

After three years in office, the Trump administration has dismantled most of the major climate and environmental policies the president promised to undo. Calling the rules unnecessary and burdensome to the fossil fuel industry and other businesses, his administration has weakened Obama-era limits on planet-warming carbon dioxide emissions from power plants and from cars and trucks, and rolled back many more rules governing clean air, water and toxic chemicals. Several major reversals have been finalized in recent weeks as the country has struggled to contain the spread of the new coronavirus. [ read more … ]

Pandemic

A Harvard study tying coronavirus death rates to pollution is causing an uproar in Washington

By Dino Grandoni and Paulina Firozi, Washington Post  •    •  Posted May 7, 2020

An early study from Harvard University linking dirty air to the worst coronavirus outcomes has quickly become a political football in Washington. Presidential candidates, agency regulators, oil lobbyists and members of Congress from both parties are using the preliminary research to advance their own political priorities — well before it has a chance to be peer-reviewed.
[ read more … ]

Pence calls Iowa ‘success story’ as virus-related deaths, hospitalizations climb

By ERIN MURPHY, Quad City Times  •    •  Posted May 7, 2020

Vice President Mike Pence on Wednesday called Iowa a success story while the number of COVID-19-related deaths and hospitalizations in the state continue to climb to new highs.
Pence offered his assessment Wednesday during a meeting with Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds at the White House. [ read more … ]

Relief

What to expect when you’re expecting another coronavirus package

BY KELSEY TAMBORRINO, Politico  •    •  Posted May 7, 2020

And by week’s end, House Democrats are expected to unveil their sweeping package of priorities, providing a glimpse into the fights ahead on coronavirus funding.  Democrats aim to increase the pressure on GOP leaders who have rejected Democratic priorities in previous aid bills. Speaker Nancy Pelosi called on her committee chairs to finalize their portions by close of business Monday with hopes of releasing a package by the end of the week. [ read more … ]

Markets

Arc of peak oil: From empty wells to demand destruction

By Benjamin Storrow, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted May 7, 2020

The world once debated whether oil wells would run dry. Now, with crude flooding the market, the debate has turned to whether oil companies can sell enough of it. If peak oil is a relic, the question now is if we’ve hit peak oil demand. The debate, like nearly everything these days, is stoked by the novel coronavirus. Demand has plummeted with much of the world on lockdown. Roughly a third of global oil consumption evaporated in April.
[ read more … ]

The Andersons restarts 2 ethanol plants

By Erin Voegele, Ethanol Producer Magazine  •    •  Posted May 7, 2020

The Andersons has resumed ethanol production at its ethanol plants in Albion, Michigan, and Denison, Iowa, after idling all five of its ethanol facilities in March due to falling liquid fuel demand caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
[ read more … ]

U.S. company looks past pandemic, makes deal to build corn ethanol plant in Brazil

By Marcelo Teixeira, Reuters  •    •  Posted May 7, 2020

U.S. corn ethanol machinery maker Lucas E3 on Wednesday announced an agreement with Brazilian company Maracaja Bioenergia to build a corn-based ethanol plant in the Mato Grosso state, optimistic that fuel demand will improve by the time construction is finished. Lucas E3 said the Brazilian company will invest 500 million reais ($87.53 million) to build the plant in the roadside of BR-163 highway, the main export corridor for soybeans and corn produced in Mato Grosso going north to river ports in Para state.
[ read more … ]

Climate

Exxon Says Boulder Climate Case Aims to Reshape Energy Policy

By Ellen M. Gilmer, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted May 7, 2020

Federal judges are weighing the fate of a high-stakes climate lawsuit in Colorado, one of many cases taking aim at fossil fuel companies for their role in global temperature rise. During oral arguments Wednesday before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit, Exxon Mobil Corp. argued that litigation from Boulder, Colo., and other local governments shouldn’t proceed in state court. [ read more … ]

Commentary

Viewpoint: Renewable Fuel Standard benefits farmers, economy

By Jamie Beyer, Mankato Free Press  •    •  Posted May 7, 2020

Recently, the governors of a handful of states asked the Environmental Protection Agency to waive the Renewable Fuel Standard for this year. An RFS waiver would be a political boon to their states’ oil refineries. However, waiving the RFS would create unnecessary economic damage here in Minnesota. [ read more … ]

Big oil overreaches on COVID-19 bailout

By Jim Talent, The Gazette  •    •  Posted May 7, 2020

Like everyone, U.S. oil companies have been hit hard by the pandemic, and they are looking for relief. . Oil companies have requested special access to a $600 billion lending facility at the Federal Reserve, and the administration seems keen to deliver. The president just announced that the Secretary of Energy and Secretary of the Treasury would make funds available, and the Department of Energy is also floating a $7 billion plan to pay drillers to leave oil in the ground. [ read more … ]

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