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Governors' Biofuels Coalition
NEWS UPDATE March 11, 2021

Top Story

Air Pollution Kills Far More People Than Covid Ever Will

By Tyler Cowen, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted March 11, 2021

More than 10 million people die each year from air pollution, according to a new study — far more than the estimated 2.6 million people who have died from Covid-19 since it was detected more than a year ago. And while Covid is headline news, ordinary air pollution remains a side issue for policy wonks and technocrats. You might wonder whether the estimate of 10.2 million excess deaths from pollution is accurate. The study, which specifically examines global mortality from particulate matter generated by the combustion of fossil fuels, does deploy some complex measurement techniques. [ read more … ]

RFS

EPA considers combining 2021, 2022 U.S. biofuel blending proposals – sources

By Stephanie Kelly, Reuters  •    •  Posted March 11, 2021

The Environmental Protection Agency is considering issuing proposals for U.S. biofuel blending obligations for both 2021 and 2022 at the same time, two sources familiar with the matter said, after the coronavirus pandemic delayed rulemaking. The proposals are a crucial signal to the corn and oil industries because they outline precisely how many gallons of biofuels like ethanol the refining industry must blend into their transportation fuel under the U.S. Renewable Fuel Standard.
[ read more … ]

Biden Administration

Senate confirms Michael Regan to lead EPA

By Dino Grandonim, Washington Post  •    •  Posted March 11, 2021

The Senate confirmed Michael Regan on Wednesday as the next Environmental Protection Agency administrator, a role that lies at the heart of President Biden’s promises to cut the nation’s greenhouse gas emissions and help poor and minority communities that have long borne the brunt of pollution. “He is immensely qualified for this position, not only in qualifications, but in his demeanor,” Sen. Richard Burr (R-N.C.) said on the Senate floor before voting for Regan. “Too often we overlook whether a nominee has the right character to lead an organization. In this case, there’s no question that Michael Regan has that character.”

[ read more … ]

Senate Confirms Michael Regan to EPA

By Todd Neeley, DTN Staff Reporter  •    •  Posted March 11, 2021

Michael Regan is the new administrator of the EPA after the full U.S. Senate confirmed his nomination in a 66-34 vote on Wednesday. Regan, the former secretary of the North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality, faces big questions about the future of regulation in agriculture as he takes the helm of the agency. The Biden administration has undertaken a review of numerous Trump administration efforts to deregulate agriculture. [ read more … ]

Lawmakers debate agency’s future as new leader takes over

By Kevin Bogardus and E.A. Crunden, E&E News reporters  •    •  Posted March 11, 2021

“Why do you think that the morale has dropped so low?” Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D-Ill.) asked about EPA’s employees at yesterday’s hearing. Christine Todd Whitman, who led EPA from 2001 to 2003, credited the Trump administration for the workforce feeling frustrated at the agency. “I think a lot of it has been due to the attitude of the previous administration toward the environment in general and to science specifically,” Whitman said. She noted how the Trump EPA restricted science, removing climate change from websites or not allowing staff to go to conferences to discuss it. [ read more … ]

State Initiatives

Clean fuel proposal gets green light from New Mexico Senate panel

By Susan Montoya Bryan, Associated Press  •    •  Posted March 11, 2021

A New Mexico legislative panel yesterday advanced a measure that would set the stage for the creation of a clean fuel standard that environmentalists and Democratic Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham say would move the state closer to reaching its carbon reduction goals. Cars, trucks and commercial vehicles traveling throughout the expansive state amount to the second-largest source of greenhouse gas emissions in New Mexico. State environment officials say targeting the types of fuel that are offered and creating a voluntary credit program that monetizes emission reductions would put a dent in methane and other pollutants. [ read more … ]

Marhets

Why $4-a-Gallon Gas May Be Coming Your Way This Summer

By Clifford Krauss, New York Times  •    •  Posted March 11, 2021

Even as oil and gasoline prices rise, industry executives are resisting their usual impulse to pump more oil out of the ground, which could keep energy prices moving up as the economy recovers. The oil industry is predictably cyclical: When oil prices climb, producers race to drill — until the world is swimming in petroleum and prices fall. Then, energy companies that overextended themselves tumble into bankruptcy. [ read more … ]

EVs

Electric Cars Are Coming. How Long Until They Rule the Road?

By Brad Plumer, Nadja Popovich and Blacki Migliozzi, New York Times  •    •  Posted March 11, 2021

Around the world, governments and automakers are focused on selling newer, cleaner electric vehicles as a key solution to climate change. Yet it could take years, if not decades, before the technology has a drastic effect on greenhouse gas emissions. One reason for that? It will take a long time for all the existing gasoline-powered vehicles on the road to reach the end of their life spans. [ read more … ]

First U.S. gas station ban sparks battle

By David Iaconangelo, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted March 11, 2021

The nation’s first permanent ban on new gas stations was approved last week in California’s San Francisco Bay Area, opening another battlefront over fossil fuel infrastructure and spawning fresh questions about the transition to electric cars. Passed unanimously through a City Council resolution in Petaluma, the ban freezes the development of additional gas stations and prohibits expansion of existing ones. It also clarifies zoning rules around the installation of electric vehicle chargers and hydrogen fueling — a move that council members say will encourage gas station owners to build out the future of the town’s fuel sites. [ read more … ]

Researcher warns of ‘big market delusion’ in EVs

By Justina Lee, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted March 11, 2021

The electric-vehicle craze is a classic sign of a “big market delusion” that has entrapped investors throughout history, according to quant pioneer Rob Arnott. The 600% rally in a year that sent the combined value of eight manufacturers to $1 trillion is pricing every firm as a major winner in the clean-energy boom. Yet just as the once-highly valued PalmPilot lost in the smartphone revolution, not all of them will succeed in the EV age, the Research Affiliates chairman co-wrote in a new paper. [ read more … ]

Are electric vehicles poised to kill the gasoline engine car? Welcome to the ‘golden age’ of EVs

By Nathan Bomey, USAToday  •    •  Posted March 11, 2021

After years of sluggish adoption, electric vehicles are poised for a sharp increase in sales, new products and investments that could eventually make the gasoline engine a thing of the past.
Look no further than Wall Street, where investors are positively giddy about the prospect of established automakers offeringfull lineups of electric vehicles, like General Motors, and about the chances of startups like Lucid Motors and Rivian that are promising groundbreaking EVs to come. [ read more … ]

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