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Governors' Biofuels Coalition
NEWS UPDATE May 19, 2020

Top Story

Senate in no rush after House passes more pandemic relief

By Geof Koss, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted May 18, 2020

Congressional Democrats are calling for talks on additional pandemic stimulus after the House passed $3 trillion more Friday, but Republicans continue to resist a rush to legislate more COVID-19 relief. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) yesterday rejected the GOP’s push to assess the effectiveness of the more than $3 trillion already enacted to stem the pandemic’s health and economic fallout before launching new negotiations. The Senate is expected to adjourn for the Memorial Day recess this week without unveiling a counteroffer to the “HEROES Act. [ read more … ]

Markets

Chinese Oil Demand Is Almost Back to Pre-Virus Crisis Levels

By Bloomberg News  •    •  Posted May 18, 2020

Chinese oil demand is all but back to levels last seen before Beijing imposed a national lockdown to fight the coronavirus outbreak, according to people with inside knowledge of the country’s energy industry. China is the world’s second largest oil consumer, behind only the U.S., and the country’s quick turnaround has helped tighten the petroleum market sooner-than-expected. West Texas Intermediate crude, which a month ago plunged into negative prices, surged on Monday above $30 a barrel. [ read more … ]

Covid-19 Panel

COVID-19 Panel Asked to Review Connection between Fuel Quality and Air Quality

By Kim Trinchet, Urban Air Initiative  •    •  Posted May 18, 2020

The Urban Air Initiative (UAI) sent a letter to the COVID-19 Review Panel within the EPA’s Science Advisory Board asking them to look at the research that shows the impact gasoline additives have on tailpipe emissions and air pollution. The review panel asked the question, does long term exposure to pollution increase the susceptibility of respiratory viruses like COVID-19? Studies show that 40% of particulate emissions in urban areas come from gasoline vehicles. Most of these particulate emissions come from hydrocarbon based additives called aromatics, added to gasoline to boost octane. Ethanol has the ability to reduce the amount of aromatics in fuel, reducing tailpipe emissions. [ read more … ]

Growth Energy Urges EPA COVID-19 Panel to Examine Air Toxics

By Growth Energy  •    •  Posted May 18, 2020

“Now more than ever, it’s critical that the EPA explore the full impact of petroleum-based aromatics on air quality,” added Bliley, who recommended the agency examine data linking particulate matter and negative health impacts, including groundbreaking research by Dr. Steffen Mueller at the University of Illinois Chicago’s Energy Resource Center. [ read more … ]

RFS

Justices reject renewable fuel standard, NEPA disputes

By Pamela King, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted May 18, 2020

The Supreme Court Monday said it would not weigh in on legal battles over EPA’s implementation of its renewable fuel standard. Attorneys for the federal government last month urged the nation’s highest bench to reject Valero Energy Corp. v. EPA, a petition filed by refiners who argued the agency has fallen short of its duty to reconsider the application of its renewable fuel standard. Under EPA’s 2010 “point of obligation” rule, refiners and importers — but not biofuel blenders — must adhere to the standard. [ read more … ]

EPA sends blending requirements to White House for review

By Marc Heller, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted May 18, 2020

EPA’s proposed biofuel volumes for next year are now in the hands of the White House, as the industry grapples with sinking production tied to the coronavirus pandemic. The environmental agency last week submitted the annual proposal to the Office of Management and Budget, beginning a monthslong process that usually generates a final rule late in the year. Once OMB signs off on the plan, EPA publishes it and opens a period of public comment. [ read more … ]

EPA sends biofuels rule to the White House

BY KELSEY TAMBORRINO, Politico  •    •  Posted May 18, 2020

EPA has not indicated whether it would reexamine this year’s rule, or whether to apply a January court ruling that voided three companies’ small refinery exemptions from the RFS mandates to all fuel makers nationally. “If they were going to open [the 2020 rule] up, God knows what would happen.” [ read more … ]

EVs

Exclusive: Tesla’s secret batteries aim to rework the math for electric cars and the grid

By Norihiko Shirouzu in Beijing and Paul Lienert in Detroit, Reuters  •    •  Posted May 18, 2020

Electric car maker Tesla Inc (TSLA.O) plans to introduce a new low-cost, long-life battery in its Model 3 sedan in China later this year or early next that it expects will bring the cost of electric vehicles in line with gasoline models, and allow EV batteries to have second and third lives in the electric power grid. For months, Tesla Chief Executive Elon Musk has been teasing investors, and rivals, with promises to reveal significant advances in battery technology during a “Battery Day” in late May. [ read more … ]

 

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