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Governors' Biofuels Coalition
NEWS UPDATE December 4, 2022

Top Story

Biodiesel Industry Frustrated at EPA’s Latest RFS Proposal, Other Reaction

By Todd Neeley, Progressive Farmer  •    •  Posted December 4, 2022

While the U.S. ethanol industry was lockstep enthusiastic about EPA’s first foray into setting multi-year Renewable Fuel Standard volumes in a proposal made public on Thursday, folks in the biodiesel industry had quite the opposition reaction. In short, EPA is calling for overall biofuels growth by about 2 billion gallons from 2023 to 2025, including modest growth even in corn-based ethanol. On the advanced biofuels side, which includes biodiesel, EPA proposed modest increases in volumes although the industry already has shown its ability to produce volumes above and beyond what the agency sets in the RFS. [ read more … ]

RFS

Biden Proposes Overhaul of US Biofuel Law to Boost EV Makers Like Tesla

By Kim Chipman, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted December 4, 2022

The Biden administration is opening the door to a sweeping rewrite of the 17-year-old US biofuel mandate, including a plan to encourage use of renewable natural gas to power electric vehicles, which could benefit Tesla Inc. and other automakers.  An Environmental Protection Agency proposal released Thursday invites public feedback on an array of changes to the Renewable Fuel Standard, initially designed in 2005 to push more ethanol, biodiesel and other plant-based alternatives into vehicles. The plan may spur an overhaul that could shift the program from one narrowly focused on gasoline, diesel and other liquid fuels to an initiative broadly aimed at decarbonizing transportation. 
[ read more … ]

Factbox: How a revamped U.S. biofuel program could help electric vehicle makers

By Stephanie Kelly and Jarrett Renshaw, Reuters  •    •  Posted December 4, 2022

The Biden administration on Thursday proposed an overhaul of the nation’s biofuel policy that would for the first time allow electric vehicle manufacturers to tap into a lucrative market for tradable renewable fuels credits. The proposal, unveiled by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, reflects President Joe Biden’s broader agenda to decarbonize the economy to fight climate change, and could provide a big new revenue stream for green cars and trucks. Here are some key details. [ read more … ]

Biden Set to Raise Refiners’ Biofuels Quotas in Green Push

ByJennifer A Dlouhy and Kim Chipman, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted December 4, 2022

The Biden administration is seeking to boost the amount of renewable fuels that oil refiners and importers must blend into their products over the next three years, according to people familiar with the matter.  The Environmental Protection Agency will ask companies to blend 20.82 billion gallons of renewable fuel into their diesel and gasoline next year — with as many as 15 billion gallons potentially coming from conventional, corn-based ethanol — said the people, who asked not to be identified because the proposal isn’t public.  [ read more … ]

EPA Creates Path for Canola-Based Fuels

By Todd Neeley, Progressive Farmer  •    •  Posted December 4, 2022

Certain fuels made with canola and rapeseed oil now qualify as advanced biofuels in the Renewable Fuel Standard, after EPA finalized a rule Thursday. In particular, the agency determined renewable diesel, jet fuel, heating oil, naphtha and liquefied petroleum gas produced from canola and rapeseed all reduce greenhouse gas emissions by at least 50% compared to petroleum-based fuels. The 50% figure is what is required by the RFS for advanced biofuels and biomass-based diesel.
[ read more … ]

EPA advances biomass for EVs, pushes increase in biofuels

By Marc Heller, E&E News  •    •  Posted December 4, 2022

This year’s annual announcement marks the first time EPA has proposed biofuel volumes without a specific mandate from Congress under the renewable fuel standard. While the RFS remains in place, the volumes dictated by Congress run out next year, leaving the environmental agency free to set the levels based on its own conclusions about markets, adhering to the spirit of the law to make renewables a significant part of the supply. The proposal also includes a long-anticipated provision allowing for electricity generated through biomass to qualify for renewable fuel credits — called eRINs — if it’s used to power electric vehicles. That provision would become effective on Jan. 1, 2024, allowing time for regulated parties to register, EPA said. [ read more … ]

Higher Blends

CFDC Calls Wayne Pump Approval to E40 a Major Step Forward

By Clean Fuels Development Coalition  •    •  Posted December 4, 2022

The Clean Fuels Development Coalition today praised the announcement by Wayne Fuel Dispensers that their North American fuel pumps will all be able to handle up to 40% ethanol blends. CFDC Executive Director Doug Durante said while the new volume requirements proposed under the Renewable Fuel Standard for the next three years are generally positive, ethanol is competing in a smaller gasoline pool and facing competition from other biofuels and now Electric vehicles.  “Moving to high octane blends of 20, 25, and 30% is critical if ethanol is to maintain market share”, he said. “This ability to distribute these blends as validated by Wayne is an important step forward and would allow us to move beyond just what the RFS prescribes.” [ read more … ]

Pollution

The Texas Group Waging a National Crusade Against Climate Action

By David Gelles, New York Times  •    •  Posted December 4, 2022

“Just as the tobacco industry had front groups and the opioid industry had front groups, this is part of the fossil fuel disinformation playbook,” said David Michaels, an epidemiologist at the George Washington School of Public Health who has studied corporate influence campaigns. “The role of these so called policy organizations is not to provide useful information to the public, but to promote the interests of their sponsors, which are often antithetical to public health.” [ read more … ]

How EPA beat the White House on estimating climate damage

By Jean Chemnick, E&E News  •    •  Posted December 4, 2022

EPA’s surprise move last month to propose its own estimates for the societal cost of carbon and other greenhouse gases is a potential end-run around the delays and litigation that have plagued a parallel White House process for almost two years. The agency quietly released its so-called social cost of greenhouse gas estimates Nov. 11, alongside a long-awaited draft rule for oil and gas methane emissions. It took climate economists off guard because EPA was never expected to take the lead on establishing the metric, which is used in federal rules to estimate the damage of every additional ton of climate pollution that’s released into the atmosphere. [ read more … ]

EVs

Biden’s Climate Bill Is a Put Option on Automakers’ Big EV Bets

By David Welch, E&E News  •    •  Posted December 4, 2022

Investors often use a term to describe the role the Federal Reserve plays as a backstop when markets crash: The “Fed put” refers to the central bank being willing to intervene and offer a form of insurance that downside risk is covered. Considering what General Motors is saying about its electric vehicles, the company seems to view the Inflation Reduction Act that President Joe Biden signed into law in August as a sort of put that protects the big investments it’s making in battery and EV production. Well before the IRA passed, GM vowed to have the capacity in place to build 1 million EVs in North America by mid-decade.
[ read more … ]

Biden won’t ask Congress to tweak climate law

By Robin Bravender, E&E News  •    •  Posted December 4, 2022

The rollout of the climate law — whose passage marked a major victory for the Biden administration — was a major discussion topic during French President Emmanuel Macron’s state visit this week. During a joint press conference with Macron on Thursday, Biden said there are “obviously going to be glitches” and a “need to reconcile changes” in a law of that magnitude. Biden said there are “tweaks that we can make,” and Macron said France and the United States would work to “re-synchronize” their policy goals moving forward. [ read more … ]

Biden expects climate law ‘tweaks’ to appease allies

By Robin Bravender, E&E News  •    •  Posted December 4, 2022

President Joe Biden suggested there will be changes to how a massive new climate and clean energy law is implemented following criticisms from European allies. During a joint press conference Thursday with French President Emmanuel Macron, Biden said there are “obviously going to be glitches” and a “need to reconcile changes” in a law of that magnitude. The law, known as the Inflation Reduction Act, includes nearly $370 billion for climate and clean energy programs over the next decade. “There’s tweaks that we can make,” Biden said. “It was never intended, when I wrote the legislation, it never intended to exclude folks who were cooperating with us.” [ read more … ]

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