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Governors' Biofuels Coalition
NEWS UPDATE February 11, 2021

Top Story

Aid Package Details for Agriculture

By Chris Clayton, DTN Ag Policy Editor  •    •  Posted February 10, 2021

The $1.9 trillion relief plan moving through the House of Representatives has roughly $16.1 billion in specific provisions for USDA — mainly for nutrition programs — but boosts in agricultural aid steered toward buying commodities or supporting minority or socially-disadvantaged farmers and ranchers. A key part of the bill would boost food-aid benefits, which take up roughly $12 billion in the projected costs of the agricultural provisions. That includes a 15% boost in weekly benefits under USDA’s Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) for lower-income people and those out of work. The higher benefits would run at least through the end of September. [ read more … ]

RFS

RFA Opposes Extending RFS Compliance Deadlines

By Ken Colombini, RFA  •    •  Posted February 10, 2021

In a virtual public hearing held today by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the Renewable Fuels Association opposed the agency’s proposed extension of the 2019 and 2020 Renewable Fuel Standard compliance deadlines. Former EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler released the proposal just days before the swearing-in of President Joe Biden. [ read more … ]

Biden Administration

Panel gives Michael Regan bipartisan approval for EPA post

By Kevin Bogardus, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted February 10, 2021

Michael Regan is a step closer to being confirmed as the next EPA administrator. The Senate Environment and Public Works Committee approved Regan’s nomination on a 14-6 vote. All Democrats on the committee voted in support of the nominee, as did four Republicans — Sens. Kevin Cramer of North Dakota, Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, Dan Sullivan of Alaska and Roger Wicker of Mississippi. Chairman Tom Carper (D-Del.) said Regan, who is secretary of the North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality, is the right person to lead EPA at this time. [ read more … ]

Biden Climate Change Strategy Draws Farm Belt Support, Concern

By Heather Haddon, Wall Street Journal  •    •  Posted February 10, 2021

Some farmers have said they worried that Mr. Biden would tighten environmental regulations in ways that would restrict their operations, undoing the Trump administration’s easing of rules governing water quality, meatpacking-plant operations and greenhouse-gas emissions. Farmers said they want the Biden administration to maintain federal support for ethanol, the corn-based fuel additive. “Ethanol should still be part of the mix,” said Larry Hasheider, a grain and livestock farmer from Okawville, Ill. A higher proportion of biological-based additives in fuels could offer further opportunities to farmers, he said. [ read more … ]

States

Reynolds moves to establish Iowa biofuels standard and increase availability

By Iowa Agribusiness Radio Network  •    •  Posted February 10, 2021

Governor Kim Reynolds introduced a bill into the Iowa Legislature to establish biofuel standards for fuel sold across Iowa and to provide Iowa retailers with increased funding to upgrade infrastructure to offer higher blends of ethanol and biodiesel. The Iowa Biofuel Standards bill, HSB185, sets a 10 percent minimum ethanol standard for gasoline fuel and an 11 percent minimum biodiesel standard for diesel fuel. Both standards have limited exceptions. The biodiesel standard would step up to 20 percent biodiesel blends during the summers in 2024. The governor would have the discretion to increase the ethanol standard to 15 percent blends beginning in 2025. [ read more … ]

Markets

Soon-to-Be-Obsolete Corn Finds New Home as ‘Green’ Cattle Feed

By Justina Vasquez, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted February 10, 2021

A type of corn on its way to becoming obsolete is getting a lifeline: It could be a key to making the beef industry greener. Swiss-based Syngenta Group’s Enogen seeds is a brand of corn used for ethanol production that seemed to be on its way out as biofuels demand took a dive during the pandemic. But a recent study discovered that when fed to cattle, the corn improved efficiency in beef output by 5%. [ read more … ]

USDA maintains outlook for 2020-’21 corn use in ethanol

By Erin Voegele, Ethanol Producer Magazine  •    •  Posted February 10, 2021

The USDA maintained its forecast for 2020-’21 corn use in ethanol in its latest World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates report, released Feb. 9.  The outlook for corn exports was increased, while the forecast for ending stocks was reduced. The USDA increased its forecast for U.S. corn exports by 50 million bushels, reflecting historically large corn purchases by China. With no other changes, U.S. corn ending stocks are lowered 50 million bushels from last month. The season-average corn price received by producers is raised 10 cents to $4.30 per bushel. [ read more … ]

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