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Governors' Biofuels Coalition
NEWS UPDATE August 28, 2022

Top Story

What does California’s ban on gas-powered vehicles mean for ethanol?

By Jacqui Fatka, Farm Progress  •    •  Posted August 28, 2022

The California Air Resources Board approved California’s Advanced Clean Cars 2 regulation, which establishes an escalating ban on the sale of gasoline and diesel-fueled cars and trucks, culminating with a 100% ban by 2035. Ethanol supporters say the action misses out on other solutions, including ethanol, for reducing carbon emissions beyond just the use of electric vehicles. [ read more … ]

Markets

Dried-Out Farms From China to Iowa Will Pressure Food Prices

By Tarso Veloso Ribeiro, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted August 28, 2022

In the US, Nebraska farmer Randy Huls, a participant in the crop tour, is staring down a smaller corn harvest this year due to lack of rain. In the longer term, he’s concerned how changing weather patterns might impact the farm he leaves behind.  “They are predicting the Corn Belt to move north,” said Huls, 71, who raises corn, soybeans, wheat and hogs in southern Nebraska. “We could be a lot drier yet and that’s this climate change thing they are talking about.  “I doubt in my lifetime I’ll see that, but I always wonder about my son and especially my grandsons,” he added. “What are they going to see?” [ read more … ]

Smallest US Corn Crop Since 2019 Signals Higher Food Costs Ahead

By Tarso Veloso Ribeiro. Bloomberg  •    •  Posted August 28, 2022

The US is set to harvest its smallest corn crop in three years, dashing hopes that one of the world’s largest agricultural exporters would give some relief to a global grain supply crunch and a break on higher food prices. The corn harvest in the world’s biggest producer will total 13.759 billion bushels, according to estimates Friday from Farm Journal Inc.’s agricultural marketing arm, Pro Farmer. That’s down 4.2% from the US Department of Agriculture’s estimate of two weeks ago and, if realized, would be the smallest bounty since 2019. [ read more … ]

Underwhelming Iowa Corn Crop Sets Stage for More Food Inflation

By Kim Chipman, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted August 28, 2022

After drought shriveled US corn plants in the western crop belt, all eyes have been turning to Iowa to help save the national harvest. Instead, the fields in that state have been “underwhelming,” “disappointing,” and just “not great.”  That’s what scouts found on Thursday as they toured the heart of Iowa, the biggest national corn grower. While there were some bright spots in the northeast corner of the state, heat and dryness dragged down crops in other regions. Most of those fields were in worse shape than they were last summer, and some were even trailing historical averages. [ read more … ]

USDA: Corn use for fuel ethanol at 442 million bushels in June

By Erin Voegele, Ethanol Producer Magazine  •    •  Posted August 28, 2022

The USDA recently released its Grain Crushings and Co-Products Production report for August, reporting that corn use for fuel ethanol production in June was down when compared to the previous month, but up when compared to June 2021. Total corn consumed for alcohol and other uses was 492 million bushels in June, down 2 percent from May, but up slightly when compared to June 2021. Usage included 91.6 percent for alcohol and 8.4 percent for other purposes. [ read more … ]

Ethanol group says gasoline prices drove Minnesota surge in E15, E85 sales

By OPIS  •    •  Posted August 28, 2022

E85 volume in Minnesota rose by 54% from June 2021, as the average price for the blend fell by 91cts/gal to put it 19% below regular gasoline. June was the fourth-highest monthly volume of E85 sales since the Minnesota Department of Commerce began recording the data more than a decade ago, the ethanol industry group said. E15 volume in the state rose to an estimated 16.5 million gallons in June, 40% more than was used in June 2021. The state commerce department reported Minnesota consumers saved an average of 16cts/gal on E15.  [ read more … ]

Climate

FDR built a ‘Great Wall of Trees.’ Could Biden do the same?

By Daniel Cusick, E&ER News  •    •  Posted August 28, 2022

Three years into his presidency and five years into the Great Depression, Franklin Roosevelt asked destitute Great Plains farmers to stop growing wheat and start growing trees. The idea seemed crazy. Unemployment was rampant in the mid-1930s, and families across the country needed grains for food. But Roosevelt said the federal government would pay farmers to grow trees in soils stripped bare by the Dust Bowl. Not just a few trees, but 220 million trees. [ read more … ]

Commentary

We Can’t Just Throw Bigger Batteries at Electric Vehicles

By Edward Niedermeyer, New York Times  •    •  Posted August 28, 2022

As much as these psychological challenges are born of American geography, history and mythology, they are also born of the unique attributes of gasoline. Rather than holding E.V. adoption hostage to our ability to make batteries match internal combustion in every way, government policy should focus on the cases where E.V.s have advantages that internal combustion will never match: waking up every morning with a full “tank” sufficient for daily commuting and errands. [ read more … ]

EVs

Washington state to ban sales of new gas cars by 2035, following California

By The Guardian  •    •  Posted August 28, 2022

Washington state will follow California and prohibit the sale of new gas-powered vehicles by 2035, Jay Inslee, the state governor, said. California regulators on Thursday moved forward with a landmark plan to phase out the sale of gas cars over the next 13 years in the US’s largest auto market. The new policy requires 100% of new sales of passenger cars, trucks and SUVs in the state to be powered by electricity or hydrogen by 2035, with one-fifth allowed to be plug-in hybrids. [ read more … ]

Calif. to Mandate EVs, Hybrid Vehicles

By Todd Neeley, Progressive Farmer  •    •  Posted August 28, 2022

CARB approved the “Advanced Clean Cars II” rule that requires all new cars and light trucks sold in the state to be zero-emissions vehicles, including plug-in hybrid electric vehicles. The action comes at a time when E85 ethanol sales have been growing in California, sparked by the state’s low-carbon fuel standard. Fuel retailers in the state including Pearson Fuels have been expanding the number of E85 pumps at their locations. [ read more … ]

The Only Electric Car Worth Buying Right Now Is Used

By Kyle Stock, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted August 28, 2022

To the brave, prudent shoppers trying to cash in on new US incentives to buy an electric vehicle: Good luck.  The $12 billion in EV support written into the Inflation Reduction Act — including rebates of up to $7,500 at the point of purchase — is expected to shift electric-car buying into high gear. But most of the battery-powered whips on the marketare likely too expensive, too foreign or too scarce for a purchase to pan out anytime soon. As BloombergNEF analyst Ethan Zindler puts it: “There aren’t many cars available and there aren’t many credits available in 2022.”  [ read more … ]

California E.V. Mandate Finds a Receptive Auto Industry

By Neal E. Boudette, New York Times  •    •  Posted August 28, 2022

For years, as California has moved ahead with ambitious clean-air regulations, the state has had to prod the auto industry to go along. Now, in the push to electrify the nation’s car fleet, it is California that is keeping up with automakers. Even before state regulators acted Thursday to ban sales of new internal-combustion vehicles by 2035, Detroit’s Big 3 and their international rivals were setting increasingly aggressive targets for exclusively electric product lines. But while the goals of automakers and regulators are aligned, mass production of affordable electric cars — which requires reconceiving the supply chains and engineering developed for internal-combustion vehicles — will not be easy. [ read more … ]

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