Senator Blasts Ethanol from the Floor

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As over 200 corn growers were meeting in the nation’s capitol this week, Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-OK) blasted corn ethanol in an attempt to kill legislation that would allow 15% ethanol blends to be sold year round, instead of being restricted in some areas during the summer months.

Inhofe began his speech by complaining that “the fossil fuel industry has long been under assault” from people who want to put it out of business but thanks to the election of President Trump “help has arrived.”

The National Corn Growers Association refuted Inhofe’s remarks that, “Land is increasingly set aside for the production of corn to feed the mandate, and the more corn that is diverted to ethanol production, the less there is for our food consumption and for ranchers who need corn to feed their livestock, making the cost of our food rise,” and “Fuels with corn-ethanol are less efficient than gasoline or diesel—by 27 percent.”

The nation’s corn farmers would like to assure Senator Inhofe that, despite his claims to the contrary, corn productivity has increased significantly over the past 10 years, going from an average of 150 bushels per acre in 2007 to 174.6 bushels per acre in 2016. Today’s efficient farmers produce more than enough corn to meet feed, food, and fuel needs, in an increasingly sustainable manner. Corn farmers are also proud that, based on actual corn and ethanol production experience over the past 10 years, ethanol currently results in 43 percent lower greenhouse gas emissions than gasoline.

Energy Information Administration (EIA) data dispute other claims by the Oklahoma Republican. Inhofe said that “with the shale revolution our dependency on foreign energy has stopped” so the Renewable Fuel Standard is no longer needed. According to EIA, the United States imported just over 10 million barrels per day of petroleum, or about 25 percent of our consumption, with over half coming from OPEC and Persian Gulf nations.

Inhofe also stated that to comply with the RFS, the U.S. has “become reliant on foreign imports of soybeans and ethanol from South America to count towards the RFS.” But, again according to EIA, foreign imports of ethanol have dropped from a high of 11.7 million barrels in 2012 to only 862 thousand last year.

Listen to Inhofe’s remarks here: Sen. Inhofe floor speech

AgWired Energy, Audio, corn, Ethanol, Government, NCGA

15 Year Celebration for Glacial Lakes Energy

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Glacial Lakes Energy CEO Jim Seurer – from @ACEethanol

Glacial Lakes Energy (GLE) this week celebrated its 15th anniversary and a recently completed unit train shipping facility at its 100-million gallon per year ethanol plant in Watertown, SD plant.

“For the past 15 years, we are proud to have made a significant contribution to our local economy, the value-added agriculture industry, our national energy security and ultimately to consumers,” said GLE CEO Jim Seurer. “Our new state-of-the-art unit train shipping facility is a perfect fit for our future and well positions the company for the next 15 years.”

Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) President and CEO Bob Dinneen says Glacial Lakes has been a leader in the industry for higher ethanol blends. “Consumers win when there’s a choice at the pump and they benefit even more when they have access to higher ethanol blends such as E30 (30% ethanol), adding high performance octane while lowering prices at the pump. Glacial Lakes Energy has led this effort, and the company’s commitment and leadership is appreciated by the entire industry,” said Dinneen.

Glacial Lakes recently held an E30 Challenge donating 30 cents for every gallon of the fuel sold to the Watertown Boys and Girls Club.

Ethanol, Ethanol News

New Propane Irrigation Engines Available

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The Propane Education & Research Council (PERC) has partnered with Origin Engines to develop new 5.7- and 6.2- liter engines, EPA-certified and optimized for industrial applications like irrigation and power generation.

Pete Stout, Origin Engines

PERC invested in the research and development of Origin’s new engines, providing industry expertise and financial support through the research, development, and testing process for the new technology.

“We are excited to introduce these highly efficient, innovative engines to the market,” said Pete Stout, product manager for Origin Engines. “We built our product line based on feedback from the end users because their satisfaction is what is most important to us. We are confident they will be very pleased with these new products.”

The new engines complement Origin’s larger 8.0-, 9.1-, and 10.3-liter engines, which were introduced in 2015, and are now available from distributors Industrial Irrigation, KEM Equipment, and Flint Power and Western Power Products. In addition, a new Propane Farm Incentive Program is offering $300 per liter of fuel displacement for propane-powered irrigation engines (up to $5,000 total), according to Cinch Munson, director of agriculture business development at PERC.

Munson and Stout talked about propane engines for irrigation at the 2014 World LP Gas Forum in Miami when the larger propane engines were first announced. Here is a segment of their remarks about the development and benefits of propane irrigation engines in general. PERC’s Cinch Munson and Origin’s Pete Stout

AgWired Energy, AgWired Precision, Audio, Irrigation, Propane

New E15 Ad Runs in Roll Call

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As Congress continues to struggle with getting any real work done this year, the Renewable Fuels Association is remaining ever hopeful that lawmakers will pass a fix to allow 15% ethanol to be sold year round.

An ad in the Capitol Hill publication Roll Call today calls on Congress to pass the Consumer and Fuel Retailer Choice Act, sponsored by Senators Deb Fischer (R-Neb.), Joe Donnelly (D-Ind.), and Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa). The ad shows an E15 pump with red tape across it proclaiming “EPA Red Tape is restraining consumer choice at the gas pump.” The bill would fix outdated EPA regulations and extend the Reid vapor pressure (RVP) waiver to ethanol blends above 10 percent, allowing retailers across the country to sell E15 and other higher-ethanol/gasoline fuel blends year-round, increasing regulatory certainty and eliminating confusion at the pump.

E15, Ethanol, Ethanol News, RFA

American Ethanol Powerboat Wins Again

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The American Ethanol Mystic Powerboat took home “Top Gun” honors Sunday at the Grand Lake of the Cherokees (GLOC) Shootout with a 200-mph run.

The American Ethanol Mystic Powerboat boat, which usually finishes in the top of its field in competition, is owned by Don Onken and runs on an E90 ethanol blend.

“We have had an excellent run of success out on the water lately, and we’re looking forward to what we can do next month at the Lake of the Ozarks Shootout, said Orken. “I have been involved in the agriculture and recycling business for decades, so I know how important ethanol is to the farming community, and how important it is to all Americans.”

The boat broke its own record at the Lake of the Ozarks Shootout last year with a speed of 217 mph.

American Ethanol, Boats, Ethanol

Blue Ridge Biofuels Proud to Supply Local

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Blue Ridge Biofuels (BRB) started as a way for one business to make its own sustainable diesel fuel – now they provide clean burning biodiesel for customers all over Western North Carolina.

The Asheville, N.C.-based company collects over 700,000 gallons of used cooking oil annually from nearly 1,500 restaurants in North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Virginia to produce renewable biodiesel according to General Manager Woody Eaton.

“We do bioheat, transportation fuel, we can make biodiesel blends in any ratio from B100,” said Eaton. “Right now our biodiesel blends are the cheapest diesel in our area, so we’re also saving consumers money at the pump,” said Eaton.

BRB is a proud member of the National Biodiesel Board, which Eaton says has helped his small company grow. Learn more in this interview. Interview with Woody Eaton, Blue Ridge Biofuels

AgWired Energy, Audio, Biodiesel, biofuels, Soybean

Censky Nominated as Deputy Ag Secretary

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Over two months since he took office, Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue is finally getting some nominations to fill USDA positions.

Late Thursday, Perdue announced that President Trump has nominated American Soybean Association CEO Stephen Censky to be Deputy Secretary of Agriculture.

“Our work has only just begun in delivering results for the people of American agriculture, and the experience and leadership skills of Stephen Censky will only enhance our efforts. He will bring enthusiasm and a dedication to this country which will be great assets to USDA’s customers. I am extremely pleased with the nomination for this key position and am hopeful that the Senate will take it up in short order.”

Censky has been CEO of the American Soybean Association since 1996 and the association strongly backs his nomination.

“Steve has guided our organization for 21 years and in that time he has proven himself as an effective, dedicated and visionary voice on behalf of soybean farmers nationwide. Nobody in agriculture is better equipped to assist Secretary Perdue in meeting the needs of farmers with practical solutions than Steve. He is a perfect fit for this role and we give him our strongest endorsement,” said Ron Moore, ASA president from Roseville, Ill.

The National Biodiesel Board (NBB) also proudly supports Censky’s nomination. “President Trump’s pick of Steve Censky to be Deputy Secretary of Agriculture is an outstanding step forward for agriculture and the countless related markets, like biodiesel, that play a key role in supporting our economy,” said NBB CEO Donnell Rehagen.

The nomination must be approved by the U.S. Senate, which already has a backlog of about 150 presidential nominations not yet approved.

AgWired Animal, AgWired Energy, AgWired Precision, ASA, Biodiesel, Government, Soybean, USDA

Industry Preparing for August 1 EPA Hearing

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The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will hold a public hearing in Washington, DC on Tuesday, August 1 for the recently released proposed rule for volume levels of ethanol and biodiesel under the Renewable Fuel Standard for 2018 and 2019.

As with previous RFS hearings, all of the major stakeholders are planning to attend and let EPA know what they like and don’t like in the proposed volume obligations. During an appearance on E&E’s OnPoint Thursday, Renewable Fuels Association president and CEO Bob Dinneen said they are pleased that the proposal maintains the 15 billion gallons for the corn ethanol biofuels category, but they do believe the industry is capable of producing more advanced biofuels than the reduced amount EPA is proposing.

“This reduces the number from 311 million gallons for cellulosic last year to 238 million gallons, but only 17 million gallons is assumed to be cellulosic ethanol,” said Dinneen. This assumes no growth at all in cellulosic ethanol from existing facilities with corn fiber technology, but Dinneen says more plants are planning expansions based on that new technology.

“I think we’ve got to better understand where EPA is coming from and better educate them as to the potential for growth….and I think that there’s still some room before a final rule to educate them as to what the potential truly is,” said Dinneen.

advance biofuels, Cellulosic, EPA, Ethanol, Ethanol News, RFA, RFS

Imports of U.S. Ethanol to Brazil Soar

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As Brazil continues to consider tariffs on imported ethanol from the United States, the country just keeps importing more, remaining by far the top destination in the world for U.S. ethanol.

According to government data analyzed by the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA), Brazil imported 64.3 million gallons (mg) of U.S. ethanol in May, bringing the total for the first five months of this year to 255 mg of U.S. ethanol, compared to 279 mg for the entire 2016 calendar year. Second place Canada imported less than half the amount Brazil did in May at 31.3 mg of U.S. ethanol.

U.S. ethanol exports totaled 119.2 million gallons (mg) in May, up 37% from April shipments. Year-to-date U.S. ethanol exports stood at 594 mg through May, indicating an annualized export total of 1.43 billion gallons.

Meanwhile, the U.S. brought in 9.6 mg of fuel ethanol in May from Brazil—the first time since August 2016 that any meaningful import volumes have been recorded.

Ethanol, Ethanol News, Exports

Bayer Showcases InVigor® Canola Hybrids

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The canola was in full bloom for the Bayer Showcase Plot Tour this week in North Dakota, soaking up the spotlight on the latest InVigor® canola hybrids.

U.S. InVigor Sales Lead Kristie Sundeen says the Liberty Link trait canola hybrid just celebrated 20 years on the market and the most recent hybrids with pod shatter reduction technology are gaining in popularity. “It keeps the canola from shattering as we get closer to harvest, so it allows for straight cutting canola,” said Sundeen. “Probably 50 percent of our market has switched from swathing to straight cut.”

Sundeen says this year they have been working on trials to evaluate the agronomics of the InVigor hybrids. “We have two locations looking into everything from the seed size to seeding depth, to hybrid evaluation, seeding rates, a little bit of everything.”

Learn more about Bayer InVigor® canola hybrids in this interview: Interview with Kristie Sundeen, Bayer, InVigor Canola

Bayer Showcase Plot Tour – North Dakota Photo Album

AgWired Energy, AgWired Precision, Audio, Bayer, canola