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Governors' Biofuels Coalition
NEWS UPDATE August 9, 2020

Top Story

Pelosi Is Playing Hardball on Coronavirus Relief. She Thinks She’ll Win.

By Emily Cochrane and Nicholas Fandos, New York Times  •    •  Posted August 9, 2020

The impasse prompted Mr. Trump to take unilateral action on Saturday to provide relief on his own with a series of executive actions — though it remains unclear if he has the legal authority to do so. And it has sown uneasiness even among some rank-and-file Democrats, particularly those who represent politically competitive districts and are eager to show voters their party is capable of bipartisan compromise on pressing issues. [ read more … ]

Relief Legislation

Members of the House Biofuels Caucus Ask Leaders for Specific Language for Biofuels Relief

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

Thirty-one members of the House Biofuels Caucus are pressing congressional leaders to include specific language for biofuels relief in the next COVID-19 relief package still at an impasse in Washington. Led by Reps. Collin Peterson, D-Minnesota; Rodney Davis, R-Illinois; Dave Loebsack, D-Iowa; and Roger Marshall, R-Kansas; 31 members of the caucus on Friday said biofuels producers need direct help. “Demand for biofuels has declined more than 1.3 billion gallons since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic,” the letter said. [ read more … ]

Ethanol industry in ‘crisis’

By Lincoln Journal Star  •    •  Posted August 9, 2020

A downturn in the ethanol industry has a direct effect on farmers, and agriculture advocates in South Dakota say the fix lies in putting an end to special waivers for oil companies and improving trade relations with other countries. “The industry is in crisis mode,” said Lisa Richardson, South Dakota Corn executive director. [ read more … ]

Off Topic

Packing Plants and COVID-19

By Chris Clayton, DTN Ag Policy Editor  •    •  Posted August 9, 2020

The three-hour-plus legislative hearing was full of emotional details from workers, families, union representatives and advocates calling for the state to implement better worker protections. Nebraska’s only Latino state senator, Tony Vargas, has been pushing during the summer session for a hearing on his bill. Time is short in the Nebraska unicameral session, and Vargas is now trying to get provisions on worker protections attached to another piece of legislation as the pandemic-shortened legislative session is winding down. Packing plants are a critical part of the Nebraska economy in a state that has three times as many cattle as people. The state has multiple processing plants for cattle, pork and poultry, making it one of the most influential industries in the state. [ read more … ]

Policy & Politics

Ethanol Leaders Urge Noem, Trump toward “E30 by 2030”

By South Dakota Farmers Union  •    •  Posted August 9, 2020

In a Rapid City Journal ad, a Sioux Falls Argus Leader editorial, and a letter to Governor Kristi Noem, South Dakota ethanol leaders said that a transition to “E30 by 2030 Nationwide” would more than double the corn ethanol’s contribution to the state’s economic activity—to $8 billion per year—while saving urban Americans billions each year in health costs and premature mortalities. [ read more … ]

Legislation would require EPA to update GREET

By Ethanol Producer Magazine  •    •  Posted August 9, 2020

Current data from the GREET model indicate that corn ethanol’s carbon intensity is approximately 50 percent less than petroleum gasoline providing significantly more greenhouse gas reduction benefits than when the RFS was enacted over a decade ago. Senator Thune’s legislation is another pointed reminder that EPA must do better in its treatment of ethanol’s greenhouse gas benefits compared to gasoline. Updating EPA’s antiquated modeling would be a step in the right direction to underpin the scientific and economic opportunity for ethanol use to increase via low carbon fuel markets. [ read more … ]

Thune Introduces Bill to Recognize Environmental Benefit of Biofuels, Efficient Farming

By Office of Senator John Thune  •    •  Posted August 9, 2020

U.S. Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.) today introduced the Adopt GREET Act, legislation that would require the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to update its greenhouse gas (GHG) modeling for ethanol and biodiesel. Specifically, the bill would require EPA to adopt either the Argonne National Lab’s Greenhouse Gas and Regulated Emissions and Energy Use in Transportation (GREET) Model or the 2019 U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) methodology within 90 days of enactment. For biodiesel, EPA would be required adopt the GREET Model. EPA would then be required to update its modeling every five years or report to Congress to affirm its modeling is current or otherwise explain why no updates were made. [ read more … ]

Growth Energy encourages California to embrace more biofuels

By Ethanol Producer Magazine  •    •  Posted August 9, 2020

This week, Growth Energy submitted comments to the California Air Resources Board following a July 15th workshop on Fuels and Infrastructure for a Carbon Neutral Economy. In his written submission, Growth Energy Senior Vice President of Regulatory Affairs Chris Bliley urged CARB to expand the use of higher biofuel blends to make California’s fuel mix more environmentally sustainable. “[H]igher ethanol blends can be immediately deployed in existing vehicles to achieve immediate greenhouse gas reductions, reduce harmful air toxics, and reduce consumer costs at the pump,” wrote Bliley. [ read more … ]

Pandemic

Virus refuses to slow in heat and scientists don’t know why

By Nathanial Gronewold, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted August 9, 2020

Health professionals, virologists and meteorologists said this week that more research is needed before they can determine how future climate conditions could influence the path of future COVID-19 outbreaks. But the scientists — who gathered for an online forum that ended yesterday — said they’ve unearthed a few clues. The three-day assembly was convened by the World Meteorological Organization and the American Geophysical Union. [ read more … ]

Campaign 2020

Biden climate plan polls well

By Adam Aton, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted August 9, 2020

Broken down by state, Biden’s proposed 2035 deadline for net-zero emissions in the electricity sector registered majority support in Arizona, Maine and Iowa, and it got a 48% plurality in North Carolina. Opposition registered between 31% and 38%. Biden’s plan to invest $2 trillion in climate action over four years also polled well. After hearing a short description of Biden’s plan, as well as a Republican counterpoint about preserving fossil fuel jobs, voters in each of the battleground states gave it majority support. It registered 53% cumulative support in those states while 33% were opposed. [ read more … ]

Biden’s clean energy push resonates in Senate battlegrounds

By Ben Geman, Axios  •    •  Posted August 9, 2020

Joe Biden’s climate posture is a political winner in four states where Senate races and the presidential contest are competitive, per new polling from progressive think tank Data for Progress. Biden has tethered the spending portion of his energy and climate platform to his wider economic response to the coronavirus pandemic, which could mean a quick push for legislative action if he wins. [ read more … ]

Inside Biden’s network of climate advisers

By Adam Aton, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted August 9, 2020

Former Vice President Joe Biden had already assembled a task force of activists and liberal officials to rewrite his climate plan. But there was a problem: Organized labor hadn’t been invited to the weekly Zoom calls. Biden had tailored his presidential campaign to accommodate the unions that build and maintain natural gas projects, and unions had returned the favor by boosting Biden’s candidacy during his lowest points in the Democratic primary. [ read more … ]

EVs

A Cadillac wants to catch Tesla. Can anyone?

By David Ferris, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted August 9, 2020

While enthusiasts debate the merits of the Lyriq’s 300-plus-mile driving range, its slide-away charging portal, its abundant video screens and the smiley face front grille, a larger question looms: Can General Motors Co., or any traditional automaker, compete against the leader in EVs? Tesla was never mentioned in the presentation from GM’s Design Dome in Warren, Mich. The star was the Lyriq, an SUV with a long hood and tapered tail that is a cornerstone of GM’s electric ambitions. [ read more … ]

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