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Governors' Biofuels Coalition
NEWS UPDATE June 29, 2020

Top Story

Governors Ask EPA to Reject Retroactive Refinery Exemptions

By Governors’ Biofuels Coalition  •    •  Posted June 29, 2020

Today, South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem and Minnesota Governor Tim Walz sent a letter to EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler asking that he reject 52 applications for retroactive small refinery exemptions (SREs) from the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) for past compliance years. Governor Noem and Governor Walz are the chair and vice chair of the Governors’ Biofuels Coalition. Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds and Nebraska Governor Pete Ricketts, former Coalition chairs, also joined the letter. [ read more … ]


Pandemic’s Cleaner Air Could Reshape What We Know About the Atmosphere

By Coral Davenport, New York Times  •    •  Posted June 28, 2020

“Our goal is not just to celebrate the silver lining but to seize upon that lining and institutionalize it,” said Benjamin H. Grumbles, the head of Maryland’s environmental agency. Policy experts say the new data could even bolster legal fights against the Trump administration’s efforts to roll back major air pollution regulations. Early studies appear to show that even as the coronavirus took more than 100,000 American lives, deaths related to more typical respiratory illnesses like asthma and lung disease fell in the clean air, boosting the case that Mr. Trump’s environmental rollbacks will contribute to thousands of deaths. [ read more … ]

Retroactive SRE Applications

Republican blocks Trump’s pick for deputy administrator

By Kevin Bogardus, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted June 28, 2020

A farm-state Republican senator plans to vote against a top EPA nominee over biofuel waivers, essentially blocking his confirmation. Sen. Joni Ernst (R-Iowa) announced today that Doug Benevento, President Trump’s nominee for deputy EPA administrator, does not have her support. [ read more … ]

Senators urge EPA to reject 52 ‘gap year’ SRE petitions

By Erin Voegele, Biomass Magazine  •    •  Posted June 28, 2020

A bipartisan group of 16 senators sent a letter to U.S. EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler on June 25 urging him to reject the 52 gap year small refinery exemption (SRE) petitions recently filed by small refineries in an effort to circumvent the Tenth Circuit Court’s January ruling that determined the EPA cannot extend exemptions under the Renewable Fuel Standard to any small refinery whose earlier, temporary exemptions had lapsed.
[ read more … ]

Senators Call on EPA to Reject Gap-Year Refinery Waivers ‘Outright’

By Ken Colombini, RFA  •    •  Posted June 28, 2020

Echoing the grave concern expressed by the Renewable Fuels Association and others, a bipartisan group of 16 Senators today called on U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Andrew Wheeler to outright reject the 52 retroactive “gap-year” RFS waivers newly requested by oil refiners. Leading the effort were Sens. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), Joni Ernst (R-IA), Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) and Chuck Grassley (R-IA). [ read more … ]

Sen. Joni Ernst tells EPA director to ‘trash’ small refinery waivers

By James Q. Lynch, The Gazette  •    •  Posted June 28, 2020

U.S. Sen. Joni Ernst has told the EPA administrator to “just trash” 52 small refinery waivers under consideration by the agency because they could have a devastating impact on Iowa’s renewable fuels industry. Although Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Andrew Wheeler is upholding the letter of the law, Ernst said allowing petroleum refiners to be exempted from the Renewable Fuel Standard would not be in the spirit of the law. [ read more … ]

Policy & Politics

Biofuel groups urge Congress to extend tax biofuel credits

By Erin Voegele, Ethanol Producer Magazine  •    •  Posted June 28, 2020

The Advanced Biofuels Business Council, Algae Biomass Organization, Biotechnology Innovation Organization, Growth Energy, National Biodiesel Board and Renewable Fuels Association sent a letter to the House Ways and Means Committee on June 19 expressing support for the proposed extension of tax incentives for advanced biofuels. “As the Ways and Means Committee contemplates moving a package of clean energy tax provisions included in the GREEN Act, we would like to thank you for your vision and express our strong support for your proposed extension of the suite of advanced biofuels tax incentives,” they wrote. [ read more … ]

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