RFA Comments on Brazil RenovaBio Program

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Since Brazil’s new RenovaBio program will likely cause significant growth in the country’s biofuels consumption, the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) wants to make sure their methodology for estimating carbon intensity correctly reflects the emissions impacts of corn ethanol.

Under RenovaBio, which was approved in late December 2017, the average carbon intensity (CI) of gasoline must be reduced by 10.1% by 2028. In comments to Brazil’s Ministry of Mines and Energy, RFA focused on the draft CI calculation tool (known as “RenovaCalc”) that will be used to determine CI values for various biofuel pathways.

“Given that many of our member companies produce ethanol that is exported to Brazil, the pathway for imported corn ethanol is of particular interest to RFA….[I]t is imperative that the CI scoring of biofuel pathways under RenovaBio is conducted in an accurate, transparent, and science-based manner,” RFA explained in its comments.

RFA is seeking clarity on the wide discrepancy between CI scores for imported corn ethanol and Brazil-produced corn ethanol. Under preliminary RenovaCalc estimates, imported corn ethanol is found to reduce GHG emissions by more than 50% compared to Brazilian gasoline. Meanwhile, Brazil-produced corn ethanol is found to reduce GHG emissions by 70%.

With certain further refinements, RFA said it believes the calculator can provide both regulators and regulated entities with reliable estimates of the CI associated with various fuel pathways.

Brazil, corn, Ethanol, Ethanol News, RFA

2018 Biodiesel Seminar Tour Announced

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Biodiesel is going on tour this summer for a series of regional, one-day seminars designed to educate fuel wholesalers, distributors, retailers, marketers, fleets, municipalities, and other end users on the benefits and opportunities surrounding America’s first advanced biofuel.

The Exploring Biodiesel (XBX) seminars, organized by the National Biodiesel Board and several industry sponsors, will be held in five major cities from coast to coast.

The free events will offer information about biodiesel’s place in today’s liquid fuels supply chain and how the fuel can be leveraged as a means to increase market share and enhance an organization’s brand. The seminars are meant for anyone who consumes, markets, trades or distributes diesel fuel.

The XBX series will stop in five cities over the summer.

Boston, MA | June 12 | 10:00 – 2:00 pm | Boston Marriott Quincy
Philadelphia, PA | July 18 | 10:00 – 2:00 pm | Sheraton Valley Forge Hotel
Los Angeles, CA | August 7 | 10:00 – 2:00 pm | Long Beach Marriott
Portland, OR | August 9 | 10:00 – 2:00 pm | Billy Frank, Jr. Conference Center
Cleveland, OH | September 18 | 10:00 – 2:00 pm | DoubleTree by Hilton Downtown – Lakeside

Learn more at ExploringBiodiesel.com.

Biodiesel, NBB

Asia Pacific Ethanol Summit Meeting in Minneapolis

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Industry and government officials from the United States and 17 countries in Asia and Oceania are meeting in Minneapolis this week at the Ethanol Summit of the Asia Pacific, focused on current and future prospects for expanded ethanol use throughout the region.

The event, sponsored by the U.S. Grains Council (USGC), Growth Energy and the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA), is hosting high-level officials from agriculture, environmental and energy ministries throughout the region who will discuss environmental, human health and economic benefits of ethanol use and foster collaboration and trade across the region. Participating countries include from Australia, Bangladesh, China, India, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Myanmar, New Zealand, Pakistan, Philippines, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Taiwan, Thailand, Vietnam and the United States.

Building on the success and momentum of last fall’s Ethanol Summit of the Americas event, this summit is highlighting the use of ethanol in transportation fuels to help improve air quality, enhance the current fuel supply and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

The two-day conference also includes views and analysis on ethanol-related policies, infrastructure and use across Asia Pacific countries. This work includes the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) ethanol roadmap, which includes best practices for developing an ethanol industry, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s perspective on ethanol policy, trade and collaboration, ethanol case studies from Vietnam and the Philippines, ethanol research in Japan and the development of ethanol policy and use in China.

Ethanol, Ethanol News, Exports, Grains, Growth Energy, RFA, Trade, USGC

USDA’s Northey Kicks Off Alltech ONE18

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After the opening entertainment, USDA Under Secretary Bill Northey was first to take the stage Monday morning at ONE: The Alltech Ideas Conference 2018 in Lexington, Kentucky. He was just discussing the issue of agricultural trade with China when President Trump tweeted “China has agreed to buy massive amounts of ADDITIONAL Farm/Agricultural Products – would be one of the best things to happen to our farmers in many years!”

“The opportunities to be able to grow in that market are important,” said Northey in an interview after his address. “It was also important for us to challenge where they were not following through on some of the promises that they made and the rules that they had agreed to.”

After meetings between U.S. and Chinese officials last week, the White House released a statement saying that, “China will significantly increase purchases of United States goods and services….Both sides agreed on meaningful increases in United States agriculture and energy exports. The United States will send a team to China to work out the details.”

In addition to trade, Northey hit on a number of other topics during his address to the annual Alltech conference, including agricultural innovation, conservation, the farm bill, and renewable fuels.

Northey comments on all of that and more in this interview. Interview with USDA Under Secretary Bill Northey, ONE18

ONE: Alltech Ideas Conference Photo Album

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RFA Plans 2nd Ethanol Summer Contest

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Beginning Memorial Day, the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) is re-launching the “Ethanol Days of Summer” contest, allowing both fuel retailers and consumers to report prices posted for E85 and other higher ethanol blends for the chance to win $50 in free fuel per day.

“This contest was a huge success last year and we expect this year to be even bigger with hundreds of new stations offering higher ethanol blends,” said RFA Vice President of Industry Relations Robert White. “This contest will not only drive traffic to these stations, but it will help RFA maintain the best ethanol station locator website, along with pricing information for those stations.”

To enter, consumers must have a registered account on www.E85prices.com, where they can submit pricing for a chance to win, or post on the mobile app. The RFA website is crowdsourced and offers updated prices for E85, E15, and other ethanol blends from thousands of stations across the country.

There are more than 4,200 stations selling E85 across 2,412 cities in the country, and 1,300 stations in 29 states that offer E15. Among other information, E85prices.com contains a nationwide map of all E85 and E15 stations, historical pricing, a public forum to allow consumers to pose questions and discuss various issues, and an ethanol savings calculator, allowing users to see how much money they can save by using various ethanol blends.

In 2017, more than 4,000 new users registered at E85prices.com, with 97 different contest winners. No purchase necessary to participate and users can submit prices for multiple stations each day. Daily winners will be drawn through Labor Day, and winners will be announced every two weeks.

E85, Ethanol, Ethanol News, RFA

Farm Bill Defeated in the House

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House Agriculture Committee Chair Rep. Mike Conaway (R-TX) delivered on his promise to get a farm bill written in a timely manner, but his colleagues in the House voted 198-213 Friday to reject his effort.

Prior to the vote, Rep. Conaway expressed his frustration as a last minute amendment was introduced to recommit the bill with instructions to the Committee on Agriculture. “You can love the farm bill or you can hate the farm bill but it delivers the most effective, affordable and safest food and fiber supply of any developed nation in the world,” said Conaway.

Democrats voted against the bill mainly for changes to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) aimed at getting able-bodied adults under 60 without dependents or disabilities back to work, but it was 30 conservative Republicans wanting a vote on immigration that killed the bill.

Listen to Rep. Conaway’s remarks here: House Ag Chair Rep. Conaway

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Ruling in DSM vs Lallemand Patent Case

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A Federal Court in Wisconsin this week ruled that that all glycerol-reducing ethanol yeast products sold by Lallemand infringe on US Patent 8,795,998 held by Royal DSM.

“We are happy with the outcome of the case. Our focus is to bring customers the latest in yeast technology allowing them to deliver the best fermentation results,” says Atul Thakrar, President of DSM Bio-based Products & Services.

Lallemand issued a statement on the ruling saying that the company “respects the legal process” but was “surprised by this outcome and will vigorously contest it in further court proceedings.”

The jury in Wisconsin heard evidence of Lallemand’s position that it is practicing its own patented technology. As a result, the jury returned a verdict that Lallemand did not willfully infringe on the DSM patent, concluding that Lallemand reasonably believed that it used its own intellectual property.

DSM filed suit against Lallemand for infringement of its patent alleging that Lallemand’s glycerol reducing yeast products including Transferm Yield+ and YP3 used in the production of ethanol, infringes DSM’s US patent.

enzymes, Ethanol, Ethanol News

ACE CEO Keynotes Indiana Ethanol Forum

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American Coalition for Ethanol (ACE) CEO Brian Jennings keynoted the 2018 Indiana Ethanol Forum this week in Indianapolis, providing a state of the industry update to those in attendance and sharing what ACE and its allies are doing to expand market access for ethanol. The forum, organized by the Indiana Corn Growers Association, brought together ethanol plants, fuel retailers, ag and ethanol industry leaders, as well as state government representatives and congressional staff.

“It’s my pleasure to address the leaders of Indiana who have played an integral part of ethanol’s success story,” Jennings said. “Part and parcel to the industry’s achievements is the Renewable Fuel Standard, introduced by visionary leaders such as Indiana’s own Senator Lugar to tackle America’s dependency on foreign oil by increasing the use of ethanol and biodiesel here at home. In the 10 years since the RFS was enacted into law, our dependence on foreign oil and greenhouse gas emissions from motor fuel have steadily declined.”

“While the RFS helped spur an incredible economic resurgence in rural America, farmers are once again reeling from oversupplies and low corn prices,” Jennings added. “Plenty of work lies ahead as we work to convince elected leaders to provide greater market access to higher blends of ethanol, but I firmly believe the ethanol industry’s best days lie ahead.”

Several fuel retailers joining the Indiana Corn Marketing Council’s Clean Fuel Partners were recognized at the event for their efforts to bring fuel choice to the state’s consumers.

ACE, corn, Ethanol, Ethanol News

ONE: The Alltech Ideas Conference 2018

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The transformative power of ideas is the focus of ONE: The Alltech Ideas Conference 2018, May 20–22, in Lexington, Kentucky

An idea, even in its root meaning, is “to see.” Da Vinci, Einstein, Edison, the Wright brothers, Tesla, Bell, Borlaug and Fleming — they had the ability to see what others could not. Because they opened their eyes to possibilities and thrived in pursuit of them, we have light. We have abundant food. We can even fly. Ideas change everything.

The annual Alltech symposium, which draws thousands of international visitors to Lexington each May, is the brain child of Irish entrepreneur and scientist Dr. Pearse Lyons, founder of Alltech, who passed away earlier this year. “This meeting is synonymous with Pearse Lyons,” says his son Dr. Mark Lyons, who is now president and chairman of Alltech. “All the way through, this program will be remembering him.”

The program includes former vice chair of General Electric Beth Comstock, USDA Under Secretary Bill Northey and groundbreaking neurologist Dr. Majid Fotuhi. Four thousand attendees from more than 70 countries are expected to attend this year’s 34th annual conference.

Learn more about ONE and this year’s program in this preview interview: Dr. Mark Lyons previews Alltech ONE 18

ONE: Alltech Ideas Conference Photo Album

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POET Ethanol Plant Plans Monarch Project

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POET Biorefining is establishing a Monarch Fueling Station at its plant near Coon Rapids, Iowa. The Monarch Fueling Station Project was established by Iowa Renewable Fuels Association (IRFA) in partnership with the Iowa Monarch Conservation Consortium in December 2017.

The monarch habitat will span half an acre and seeding is expected to take place within the next month. The plant intends to involve local FFA and STEM students at every step of the process.

“This project is a great opportunity to give back to the environment and the community,” said Ryan Filloon, plant manager of POET Coon Rapids. “We are excited to work with the students on planting and maintaining the monarch habitat and to play our part in this state-wide effort to boost the population of these important pollinators.”

IRFA developed the program to help Iowa’s ethanol and biodiesel plants establish patches of monarch habitat on plant grounds.

Ethanol, Iowa RFA