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Governors' Biofuels Coalition
NEWS UPDATE February 14, 2022

Top Story

U.S. corn-based ethanol worse for the climate than gasoline, study finds

By Leah Douglas, Reuters  •    •  Posted February 14, 2022

Corn-based ethanol, which for years has been mixed in huge quantities into gasoline sold at U.S. pumps, is likely a much bigger contributor to global warming than straight gasoline, according to a study published Monday. The study, published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, contradicts previous research commissioned by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) showing ethanol and other biofuels to be relatively green. The Renewable Fuels Association called the study “completely fictional and erroneous,” arguing the authors used “worst-case assumptions [and] cherry-picked data.” [ read more … ]

RFS

In committee

BY MATTHEW CHOI, Politico  •    •  Posted February 14, 2022

The Senate Environment and Public Works Committee will meet on Wednesday to dig into the biofuels program under the Renewable Fuel Standard, which has been the center of whirlwind debates after EPA unveiled its blending targets for 2020, 2021 and 2022. [ read more … ]

Oil sector splits on EPA proposal to deny small refinery RFS waivers

By Stuart Parker, Inside EPA  •    •  Posted February 14, 2022

Oil sector groups are divided over EPA’s proposal to deny all remaining requests from small refiners for compliance waivers from the renewable fuel standard (RFS), with smaller refiners arguing the plan is illogical and unlawful, while bigger firms say large-scale exemptions are unwarranted. The divisions mark a rare alignment among bio- and some fossil-fuel groups when it comes to the RFS and likely bolsters the agency’s planned denial of dozens of small refinery exemptions (SREs) from the program’s biofuel blending requirements. [ read more … ]

Markets

China fell far short of promises it made to purchase American goods.

By Ana Swanson, New York Times  •    •  Posted February 14, 2022

China fell far short of the commitments it made in a 2020 trade deal with the United States, failing to purchase the promised volume of American airplanes, soybeans, energy, services and other products before the end of last year, data released Tuesday morning showed. In a trade agreement signed with former President Donald J. Trump in January 2020, Chinese leaders committed to buying an additional $200 billion worth of American goods and services over 2017 levels by the end of 2021, in addition to other trade commitments. Those targets were viewed as ambitious at the time and would have amounted to a record level of purchases by China. [ read more … ]

States

Fight over Wheeler nomination broadens in Virginia

By Associated Press  •    •  Posted February 14, 2022

A simmering fight over Virginia Democrats’ rejection of one of GOP Gov. Glenn Youngkin’s Cabinet picks escalated Friday after Republicans initially appeared ready to leave in limbo hundreds of gubernatorial appointees made by the previous Democratic administration. Kilgore and Democratic Sen. Adam Ebbin told the AP no agreement had been made for the Senate to take another vote on Wheeler. [ read more … ]

Climate

The Great Climate Backslide: How Governments Are Regressing Worldwide

By Bloomberg News  •    •  Posted February 14, 2022

At the conclusion of COP26 in November, summit chairman Alok Sharma praised the “heroic efforts” by nations showing they can rise above their differences and unite to tackle climate change, an outcome he said “the world had come to doubt.”  Turns out the world was right to be skeptical.  Three months on, a toxic combination of political intransigence, an energy crisis and pandemic-driven economic realities has cast doubt on the progress made in Scotland. If 2021 was marked by optimism that the biggest polluters were finally willing to set ambitious net-zero targets, 2022 already threatens to be the year of global backsliding.  [ read more … ]

EVs

Who wants Biden’s EV-charging money? Everybody

By David Ferris, E&E News  •    •  Posted February 14, 2022

Last week, the Biden administration kicked off the process of spending a historic $7.5 billion on electric vehicle charging. The goal is nothing less than “building the necessary infrastructure for drivers across America,” Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm said in a statement. Americans, it turns out, are chock-full of ideas for how to spend that money, with demands so large and diverse that $7.5 billion starts to look like the thinnest of down payments.
[ read more … ]

Sticking With Gas-Guzzlers Over EVs Could Delay Postal Upgrade

BY Jennifer A Dlouhy, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted February 14, 2022

The U.S. Postal Service is expected in coming days to reaffirm its plan to pay Oshkosh Corp. as much as $6 billion over 10 years to replace an aging fleet of red-white-and blue delivery vans with mostly gasoline-powered models instead of climate-friendly electric vehicles.  The service insists it’s the cheapest alternative. But its analysis is based on assumptions that critics and even other government agencies say are unrealistic, such as gasoline at $2.19 a gallon and charging stations that cost roughly $20,000 per facility. And those assumptions will form the bullseye of expected legal challenges that could stop Oshkosh’s assembly lines before they even start. [ read more … ]

U.S. Electric Mail Truck Push Stalls Without More Funding

By Devin Leonard, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted February 14, 2022

We all know the tribulations of the U.S. Postal Service. It’s losing billions of dollars a year, even as it’s delivering record numbers of packages, to say nothing of mail-in ballots, while struggling with Covid-related absences. Ben Franklin would be awed. Then there’s something else that’s hardly classified information: the woeful state of the agency’s delivery vehicles. The USPS operates a fleet of 228,000 trucks and vans, one of the world’s largest. Many of them have been on the road for more than a quarter of a century and lack basic safety functions such as automatic brakes and driver air bags. And their fuel efficiency is at a level that keeps climate activists awake at night. They get about 10 miles per gallon of gas — worse than a Humvee. [ read more … ]

Hydrogen Cars and Buses Seize the Spotlight at Beijing’s Winter Olympic Games

By Bloomberg News  •    •  Posted February 14, 2022

When Beijing hosted the 2008 Summer Olympic Games, it used the global spotlight to showcase the then-emerging technology of electric vehicles. Since then, EVs have moved from the fringe to the mainstream. China is the world’s biggest EV market, accounting for just over half of global sales in 2021. Worldwide, sales are forecast to top 10 million this year, and EV leader Tesla is the world’s most valuable automaker. So what does it say that China is now using the Winter Olympics to promote advances made in hydrogen-powered vehicles? [ read more … ]

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