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Governors' Biofuels Coalition
NEWS UPDATE September 18, 2020

Top Story

More Aid for Ag, But Also for Oil

By  Chris Clayton , DTN Ag Policy Editor  •    •  Posted September 18, 2020

President Donald Trump is preparing to roll out a reported $13 billion in new coronavirus aid payments to ag producers, but his administration also is coming under withering criticism over a report that USDA funds will be used to subsidize oil refineries. President Donald Trump is expected to announce at a rally in Wisconsin on Thursday evening that USDA will provide a new round of aid for farmers using funds added to the Commodity Credit Corp. from the CARES Act last spring. USDA’s proposed rule for the second round of aid under the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP) was sent back to USDA from the White House Office of Management and Budget, setting up for USDA to announce a new aid package. Sign-up for the first round of aid under CFAP ended last week. [ read more … ]

Trump plan to bail out refiners triggers outcry from lawmakers

By Stephanie Kelly, Reuters  •    •  Posted September 18, 2020

U.S. lawmakers from both sides of the aisle spoke out on Thursday against the potential use of Department of Agriculture funds to bail out refiners that are denied exemptions from the nation’s biofuel blending laws. Reuters reported on Wednesday that the Trump administration is considering at least $300 million in financial relief to refiners denied waivers from the U.S. Renewable Fuel Standard, requiring them to blend biofuels like ethanol into their fuel or purchase credits, for the 2019 compliance year. The money could come from funds within the USDA, five sources familiar with the matter told Reuters [ read more … ]

Trump Announces $13 Billion in New Farm Aid at Wisconsin Rally

By Mike Dorning, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted September 18, 2020

President Donald Trump announced $13 billion in new aid to farmers at a campaign rally Thursday night in Wisconsin, a critical electoral battleground where he is trailing in recent polls.
Congress had authorized additional borrowing authority for the U.S. Department of Agriculture in coronavirus-relief legislation passed earlier this year, and the second round has been widely anticipated. [ read more … ]

Trump administration eyes at least $300 million aid to refiners denied biofuel waivers: sources

By Stephanie Kelly and Jarrett Renshaw, Reuters  •    •  Posted September 17, 2020

The Trump administration is considering at least $300 million in cash aid to U.S. oil refiners that are denied exemptions to U.S. biofuel blending laws for the 2019 compliance year, two sources familiar with the matter said.Although the administration has yet to rule on the 2019 waivers, it has made an estimate for the amount of money it would provide in aid based on the number of facilities that applied for the exemptions but may now be considered ineligible because of a recent court ruling. The move would be intended to help small refineries handle the cost of complying with the U.S. Renewable Fuel Standard, a law requiring they blend biofuels into their fuel mix or buy credits from those that do. [ read more … ]

SREs

EPA likely to apply 10th Circuit Court ruling on SREs broadly: Argyropoulos

By S&P Global  •    •  Posted September 17, 2020

EPA will likely have to apply nationwide a January ruling by the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on small refinery exemptions (SREs) from complying with the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS), a former 30-year veteran of the agency said Wednesday. Speaking on the third day of OPIS’ 12th Annual RFS, RINs & Biofuels Forum, Paul Argyropoulos indicated that it will be hard for EPA to stray from the ruling. Asked if he sees a scenario under which EPA cannot apply the ruling nationally. [ read more … ]

Markets

US DATA: EIA says US ethanol production and inventories fall

By S&P Global  •    •  Posted September 17, 2020

US ethanol production averaged 926,000 b/d for the week ended Sept. 11, a decrease of 15,000 b/d on the week and down 77,000 b/d year on year, data from the Energy Information Administration showed Sept. 16. Production was on the low end of market expectations. Seasonal maintenance at ethanol plants around the country has started, with most plants going offline for about five days to finish routine maintenance. [ read more … ]

FEW

Skor focuses on the road ahead in FEW keynote

By Ethanol Producer Magazine  •    •  Posted September 17, 2020

The FEW general session also featured presentation of the Award of Excellence and High Octane Award, historical accolades announced each year at the event. This year’s High-Octane Award winner is Clean Fuels Development Coalition founder and Executive Director Doug Durante. In addition to producing the Ethanol Across America campaign, The Ethanol Fact Book, The Ethanol Minute radio program and more, he has been involved in almost every federal ethanol policy development over the past 40 years, from the trailblazing work of the National Alcohol Fuels Commission in the early 1980s, to the 1990 Clean Air Act and the Renewable Fuel Standard—in both 2005 and 2007. [ read more … ]

Campaign 2020

Trump’s climate views are extreme, even for deniers

By Chelsea Harvey, E&E News  •    •  Posted September 17, 2020

Faced with one of the most dramatic symbols of global warming in the United States — wildfires engulfing the West — President Trump not only questioned the science of climate change, but suggested warming trends may actually reverse themselves. “It’ll start getting cooler,” he said Monday in a conversation with Wade Crowfoot, head of California’s Natural Resources Agency. [ read more … ]

Commentary

Trump’s ethanol waiver reversal won’t save Iowa’s troubled industry

By Editorial Board, The Gazette  •    •  Posted September 17, 2020

Submitting to bipartisan pressure from Midwesterners, President Donald Trump is finally making good on one of his commitments to the U.S. agriculture community. The Renewable Fuel Standard — a Bush-era policy that requires transportation fuel to contain minimum levels of biofuels, such as ethanol produced with Iowa corn — has been a top concern for business and political leaders in farming states over the past three years. The Trump administration drastically increased the number of refinery waivers, allowing oil producers to forego biofuel blending, thereby hampering demand for ethanol. [ read more … ]

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