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Governors' Biofuels Coalition
NEWS UPDATE August 17, 2020

Top Story

Trump Visiting “Ethanol Country” in Minnesota

By Chris Clayton, DTN Ag Policy Editor  •    •  Posted August 17, 2020

Looking to catch the attention of those around President Donald Trump, the Renewable Fuels Association wanted to make it clear as the president visits Mankato, Minn., on Monday afternoon that was officially in “ethanol country.” RFA bought a full-page ad in the Mankato Free Press and also took to social media welcoming President Trump but making it clear that the renewable fuels industry needs his support. The newspaper ad states, “Ethanol helps keep prices down at the pump and reduces America’s dependence on foreign oil. [ read more … ]

SREs & RFS

Wake me up when November ends

BY KELSEY TAMBORRINO, Politico  •    •  Posted August 17, 2020

The Trump administration is expected to punt on tough ethanol decisions until after the November election to avoid triggering a backlash from either farmers or the petroleum sector, according to several people in the ethanol and oil industries who have been in contact with EPA and the White House. EPA faces a late-November deadline to decide the volume of biofuels the oil refining industry must blend into the nation’s gasoline and diesel supply, but the agency has yet to even issue its proposal, which is itself months overdue, [ read more … ]

Trump set to duck tough ethanol decision till after election

By Eric Wolff, Politico  •    •  Posted August 17, 2020

The Trump administration appears set to punt on tough ethanol decisions until after the November election to avoid triggering a backlash from farmers or the petroleum sector, according to several people in the ethanol and oil industries who have been in contact with the White House and EPA. EPA faces a late-November deadline to decide the volume of ethanol the oil refining industry must blend into the nation’s gasoline and diesel supply, but EPA has yet to even issue its proposal, which is itself months overdue. [ read more … ]

Extreme Weather

Death Valley soars to 130 degrees, potentially Earth’s highest temperature since at least 1931

By Jason Samenow, Washington Post  •    •  Posted August 17, 2020

In the midst of a historic heat wave in the West, the mercury in Death Valley, Calif., surged to a searing 130 degrees on Sunday afternoon, possibly setting a world record for the highest temperature ever observed during the month of August. If the temperature is valid, it would also rank among the top-three highest temperatures ever measured on the planet at any time and may, in fact, be the highest. [ read more … ]

Air Pollution

Improving Air Quality Can Help Reduce Fatalities

By Leticia Phillips, UNICA  •    •  Posted August 17, 2020

The novel coronavirus has forced us to adapt to practices that would have been unthinkable just a few months ago. The handshake is out, masks are in and social distancing is here to stay. While inconvenient, these new habits will soon become second nature to protect ourselves from a ruthless virus. These simple steps can help, but what if the air we breathe is conspiring with the coronavirus? A recent Harvard University study concludes that air pollution is linked to significantly higher rates of death in those with disease caused by the coronavirus. The researchers contend that even slightly cleaner air in New York City could have saved hundreds of lives at the height of the pandemic. [ read more … ]

Groups Say Proposed Rule Would Penalize Ethanol Blends

By Cindy Zimmerman, AgWired  •    •  Posted August 17, 2020

The Urban Air Initiative (UAI), a coalition of state corn grower organizations, and the American Coalition for Ethanol, and the Clean Fuels Development Coalition filed comments last week opposing a proposed EPA rule they say would penalize ethanol for its lower carbon profile. UAI and others have been asking the EPA for years to recognize that test fuels need to represent what is actually being used in the market, and that fuels and vehicle must be viewed as an integrated system. [ read more … ]

Car Efficiency Rule

State policy outpaces feds on car emissions cuts — analysis

By Maxine Joselow, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted August 17, 2020

The five automakers — Ford Motor Co., Honda Motor Co. Ltd., Volkswagen AG, BMW of North America LLC and Volvo — agreed to follow more stringent tailpipe emissions standards than those proposed by the Trump administration in its Safer Affordable Fuel-Efficient (SAFE) Vehicles Rule. The five automakers — Ford Motor Co., Honda Motor Co. Ltd., Volkswagen AG, BMW of North America LLC and Volvo — agreed to follow more stringent tailpipe emissions standards than those proposed by the Trump administration in its Safer Affordable Fuel-Efficient (SAFE) Vehicles Rule. [ read more … ]

Commentary

Stronger Together

By Karla Hofhenke, SDFU Executive Director  •    •  Posted August 17, 2020

Although the wheels of change are in motion, now is not the time to sit back and watch from the sidelines. Sombke says now is a time for unity. “We need to stop focusing on what divides us and come together and speak with a unified voice,” he explains. Sen. Mike Rounds shares a similar message. “The vast majority of good legislation that is passed, is passed with broad support from people on both sides of the aisle.” [ read more … ]

The Folly and Cynicism of Gap-Year Waivers

By Geoff Cooper, RFA  •    •  Posted August 17, 2020

When in mid-June the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency revealed it was considering 52 new small refinery exemption requests from oil refiners, going as far back as the 2011 compliance year, many of us reacted with anger, but not necessarily with surprise. And few of us would be shocked if the EPA actually tried to grant some of these new petitions, as our faith in the agency’s ability to properly implement the Renewable Fuel Standard is highly diminished. But we cannot give up. We have to keep fighting to protect the RFS and holding EPA’s feet to the fire, using whatever means necessary to ensure the agency follows the law. [ read more … ]

 

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