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Governors' Biofuels Coalition
NEWS UPDATE January 9, 2014

Branstad: I’ll fight for ethanol

Written by Jason Noble, Des Moines Register  •    •  Posted January 9, 2014

Gov. Terry Branstad on Wednesday promised a spirited fight to preserve the federal renewable fuel standard, the mandate for the inclusion of corn-based ethanol in gasoline that has driven a decade-long boom in the state’s agriculture industry. Reducing the mandate, known by the acronym RFS, could send Midwestern economies into a “tailspin,” Branstad warned, costing jobs and perhaps subjecting farmers to hardship unseen since the 1980s. “I don’t want to be alarmist about this, but I was governor during the farm crisis of the ’80s and I don’t want to revisit those bad old days,” Branstad said. [ read more … ]

U.S. exports surge as producers eye new and emerging markets

Amanda Peterka, E&E reporter  •    •  Posted January 9, 2014

U.S. producers shipped more ethanol to foreign countries in November than in any other month in the last year and a half, according to federal data kept by the Agriculture Department. Ethanol producers in the United States exported 82.4 million gallons in November, a 54 percent increase over October and the highest level since March 2012. While Canada and Brazil remained top importers of U.S. ethanol, much of the product went to new and emerging markets. [ read more … ]

Researchers find easier, lower-cost way to break down plants

Amanda Peterka, E&E reporter  •    •  Posted January 9, 2014

Researchers at North Carolina State University say they’ve discovered a new way to break down plant materials, a development that could lower production costs for advanced biofuels. Their method uses liquid salts to extract lignin — the tough parts of a plant that protect cell walls — from farm residues and grasses. Unlike in prevailing methods for breaking down plants, liquid salts can be used at lower temperatures and be almost fully recovered after the process. [ read more … ]

To boost lobbying impact, algae trade group moves to D.C., shakes up staff

Amanda Peterka, E&E reporter  •    •  Posted January 9, 2014

The algae industry’s trade organization will move to Washington, D.C., and seek out a new executive director, according to an internal email sent to members today. The Minneapolis-based Algae Biomass Organization will establish its headquarters in the nation’s capital this year “to better participate in policy-related activities and build deeper relationships with agencies,” ABO Chairwoman Margaret McCormick said in the email sent to the organization’s 300 members. [ read more … ]

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