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Governors' Biofuels Coalition
NEWS UPDATE May 4, 2015

U.S. Sets New Rules for Oil Shipments by Rail

By JAD MOUAWAD, New York Times  •    •  Posted May 4, 2015

Ending months of uncertainty and delays, federal regulators on Friday unveiled new rules for transporting crude oil by trains, saying the measures would improve rail safety and reduce the risks of a catastrophic event. But the rules quickly came under criticism from many sides. Lawmakers and safety advocates said the regulations did not go far enough in protecting the public, while industry representatives said some provisions would be costly and yield few safety benefits. [ read more … ]

Obama cracks down on oil trains

By Timothy Cama, The Hill  •    •  Posted May 4, 2015

All railcars currently carrying ethanol and crude oil will have to be phased out within seven years or retrofitted, and the new standards will start later this year for newly constructed railcars. The new standards include thicker steel shells, enhanced braking systems and guards to protect the ends of tank cars and their valves. The DOT is also mandating new standards for routing oil trains, speed limits and efforts to better prepare emergency responders and communities where oil trains travel. [ read more … ]

Hawaii Ethanol mandate to be repealed

By Rick Daysog, Hawaii News Now  •    •  Posted May 4, 2015

Hawaii’s ethanol mandate is about to become nothing more than fumes. Since 2006, the state has required most of the gasoline sold here to contain 10 percent ethanol. But now lawmakers are set to repeal the requirement. The law was intended to boost a fledging biofuels market, which some estimated would grow into a $100 million-a-year industry employing more than 200 people. But that never happened. [ read more … ]

Scott Walker’s stance on ethanol prompts concerns

By Jason Stein, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel  •    •  Posted May 4, 2015

As likely presidential candidate Scott Walker has shifted his position on a federal ethanol mandate, some of the fuel’s skeptics at home in Wisconsin are wary. At an Iowa roundup for White House hopefuls in March, the Wisconsin governor pledged to support the federal Renewable Fuel Standard for the time being, adopting a stance well-suited to a state that’s covered in cornfields. [ read more … ]

RFS Roundup: Polling Finds Majority Support Renewable Fuels, Against Oil Subsidies

By Jessie Stolark, EESI  •    •  Posted May 4, 2015

Polling conducted by Morning Consult, and paid for by the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA), of 2,047 registered voters in the United States found that 62 percent of those surveyed either strongly support or somewhat support the renewable fuel standard (RFS). At the same time, 51 percent of those polled opposed federal tax incentives provided to oil companies. According to Morning Consult, the poll finds that voters support using federal tax incentives to grow the cellulosic ethanol sector versus supporting the oil industry by a 30-point margin. [ read more … ]

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