Growth Energy and New Holland at #FEW15

few15-buisGrowth Energy is attracting attention at the 2015 Fuel Ethanol Workshop with a beautiful blue New Holland Boomer as a centerpiece.

FEW attendees have had the opportunity to register for a chance to win the New Holland Boomer 47 tractor equipped with a 4 cylinder diesel engine and American Ethanol Racing decals, courtesy of New Holland. Growth Energy CEO Tom Buis says New Holland is a big supporter of the ethanol industry. “New Holland really understands what drives the rural economy and they’ve been a valuable partner,” said Buis. “People are going to buy farm equipment if they make a profit from the marketplace.” New Holland has also been a strong supporter of the American Ethanol NASCAR program.

In this interview with Tom, he also talks about the EPA proposed RVO and the importance of the ethanol industry to stand up and make its voice heard during the comment period. Interview with Growth Energy CEO Tom Buis at FEW

2015 Fuel Ethanol Workshop Photo Album

Coverage of the Fuel Ethanol Conference is sponsored by
Coverage of the Fuel Ethanol Conference is sponsored by Novozymes

#FEW15 Ethanol Producer Panel Focuses on RVOs

few15-panelA diverse group of ethanol producer company representatives took the stage Tuesday at the 2015 Fuel Ethanol Workshop and much of the conversation centered around reaction to the EPA’s new proposed volume obligations for biofuels under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS). Panelists also discussed the industry’s continuing efforts to expand the marketplace for ethanol with higher blends, progress with cellulosic ethanol production facilities, and more.

BBI International president Tom Bryan moderated the panel, which featured:

Paul Koehler, Vice President, Pacific Ethanol
Mike Jerke, CEO, Guardian Energy Management
Jan Koninckx, Global Business Director for Advanced Biofuels, DuPont Industrial Biosciences
Chris Standlee, Executive Vice President, Abengoa Bioenergy
Dan Cummings, President, POET-DSM Advanced Biofuels
Ray Defenbaugh, President, CEO & Chairman, Big River Resources

This is a conversation worth listening to as each of these industry pioneers had insightful comments and a positive attitude about the ethanol business in the United States going forward.

FEW 2015 Producer Panel

2015 Fuel Ethanol Workshop Photo Album

Coverage of the Fuel Ethanol Conference is sponsored by
Coverage of the Fuel Ethanol Conference is sponsored by Novozymes

EPA Proposal Threatens Advanced Ethanol #FEW15

few15-colemanThe executive director of the Advanced Ethanol Council believes the proposed volume obligations under the RFS would have significant ramifications for the industry if not changed before being finalized.

“What’s at stake is whether ethanol gets out of its E10 cage,” said Brooke Coleman during the general session of the Fuel Ethanol Workshop on Tuesday, challenging President Obama to make good on his promises to move renewable energy forward in this country. “President Bush signed the most progressive advanced biofuel policy in the world and President Obama, at least to this point, has been too weak-kneed to implement it,” said Coleman to applause.

Coleman says there is reason to be optimistic in the face of the bad RVO proposal since the industry still has a chance to change the final rule. “We cannot be disappointed. We can be angry and we should be engaged with the Obama administration.”

Listen to Coleman’s remarks here: AEC's Brooke Coleman remarks at FEW

2015 Fuel Ethanol Workshop Photo Album

Coverage of the Fuel Ethanol Conference is sponsored by
Coverage of the Fuel Ethanol Conference is sponsored by Novozymes

RFA CEO Outlines Wrong Moves by EPA at #FEW15

few15-dinneenFor Renewable Fuels Association president and CEO Bob Dinneen, the newest proposal for volume obligations under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) is just the latest in a series of wrong moves by the Environmental Protection Agency.

“There’s something desperately wrong with the EPA,” said Dinneen after outlining more than a dozen ways the agency has worked to undermine the ethanol industry and the RFS, from the use of Indirect Land Use Change (ILUC) to judge the carbon footprint of biofuels, to not allowing E15 to be sold in the summer months.

Dinneen says there is a lot of talk in Washington about EPA’s “war on coal” but after the agency released both a final rule on the Waters of the United States last week and the lower volume obligations under the RFS, “they now seem to have a war on farmers.”

Listen to Dinneen’s speech here: RFA CEO Bob Dinneen comments at FEW


2015 Fuel Ethanol Workshop Photo Album

Coverage of the Fuel Ethanol Conference is sponsored by
Coverage of the Fuel Ethanol Conference is sponsored by Novozymes

Novozymes Partnering for Profitability at #FEW15

few15-novozymes-kimAs the global market leader in enzyme production and a pioneer in the bioenergy business, Novozymes is uniquely positioned to partner with ethanol producers for increased profitability.

“What we really try to do is understand what are the goals of our customers,” says Kim Bertz, Senior Regional Marketing Manager for Biofuel with Novozymes. “We want to help them achieve both their short term and long term goals.”

Novozymes offers an assortment of products that first help break corn down into ethanol. “Whether they’re going for yield, or throughput, maximizing output – whatever that may look like, those are the things we really try to deliver,” said Bertz.

The Novozymes technical service group has other solutions from analyzing data, training, process optimization – all designed to help plants hit that next highest benchmark.

In this interview, Bertz also talks about the commitment Novozymes has to the biofuels industry and why they are big supporters of the FEW. Interview with Kim Bertz, Novozymes

2015 Fuel Ethanol Workshop Photo Album

Coverage of the Fuel Ethanol Conference is sponsored by
Coverage of the Fuel Ethanol Conference is sponsored by Novozymes

Ethanol Report on Reaction to EPA RFS Proposal

ethanol-report-adThe Environmental Protection Agency has released its proposed Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) renewable volume obligations (RVOs) for 2014, 2015 and 2016 and Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) president and CEO Bob Dinneen is disappointed.

In this Ethanol Report, Dinneen talks about why he believes the proposal is a step backward for the RFS and how it places the potential growth in renewable fuels in the hands of the oil companies. Ethanol Report on EPA RFS volume proposal

EPA Announces Volume Obligations Under RFS

epa-150Beating the announced deadline of June 1, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) today proposed the volume requirements under the RFS program for 2014, 2015, and 2016 for cellulosic biofuel, biomass-based diesel, advanced biofuel, and total renewable fuel. EPA is also proposing the volume requirement for biomass-based diesel for 2017.

EPA is proposing to set the renewable fuel standards for 2014 at the levels that were actually produced and used as transportation fuel, heating oil or jet fuel in the contiguous U.S. and Hawaii. For 2015 and 2016, EPA is proposing ambitious increases in both advanced biofuel and total renewable fuel in comparison to 2014 levels. This proposed rulemaking also provides an evaluation of the expected volumes of cellulosic biofuel for 2015 and 2016, and proposes annual increases in the required volume of biomass-based diesel for 2015, 2016, and 2017.

Announcing the proposal today was Janet McCabe, EPA Acting Assistant Administrator for the Office of Air and Radiation. EPA Announces RFS RVO proposal

McCabe took a number of questions from the media on the proposal. EPA RVO proposal media question and answer

Ethanol Report as Summer Begins

ethanol-report-adThe kickoff of summer this Memorial Day weekend finds beaches in Santa Barbara California closed as oil spreads off shore and workers try to clear up the mess left by the spill. Elsewhere, the oil industry continues to spread misinformation about ethanol, keeping RFA busy working to clear up misconceptions as fast as they happen.

In this Ethanol Report, Renewable Fuels Association president and CEO Bob Dinneen talks about a new report showing RIN credits have no impact on the price of gas, how E10 is safe for boaters, and when he expects to see the long overdue EPA proposal for volume obligations under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS). Ethanol Report as Summer Begins

Novozymes Part of Global Bioenergy Initiative

sustainableA new UN Sustainable Energy for All initiative was announced this week with the goal of “doubling the global use of renewable energy and ensuring universal energy access by 2030.”

Co-chaired by the UN Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) and the Roundtable on Sustainable Biomaterials, the initiative includes Novozymes, a global technology provider for the biofuels industry, as a partner in the project to scale up the development and deployment of sustainable bioenergy solutions.

novozymes“With this initiative, we help bring together a diverse range of global frontrunners to advance the development and use of sustainable bioenergy in countries where the environmental and socio-economic benefits are greatest,” said Thomas Videbæk, Executive Vice President for Business Development with Novozymes. “It is a unique chance to involve governments, industry, financial institutions, academia, and civil society to identify opportunities where action on sustainable bioenergy can be accelerated.”

Accounting for nearly half of the global enzyme market, Novozymes has been a major player in the commercial development of cellulosic ethanol. “We produce the enzymes that help break down starch and make sugar available for first generation ethanol and we are working on a number of projects to help breakdown cellulosic material,” said Videbæk in an interview today with DomesticFuel.

Videbæk says next generation biofuels are considered “sustainable bioenergy” under the initiative’s High Impact Opportunity (HIO) goals. “I look at the biofuel area, be it first or second generation, as very sustainable forms of energy,” said Videbæk. “We certainly hope to see that continues going forward.”

Which is one of the reasons Novozymes wanted to be part of this initiative that they hope will help get some regulatory clarity regarding sustainable bioenergy around the world, including the United States. “And we can get politicians to commit to mandates and targets for this type of energy, because we believe that is for the best of the planet’s future,” Videbæk said.

In this interview, Videbæk explains much more about the new initiative and Novozymes’ role in it. Interview with Thomas Videbæk, Novozymes

Study Shows No RINS Impact on Gas Prices

fuelsA new statistical analysis prepared for the Renewable Fuels Association shows that retail gas prices remain unaffected by the “RIN credit” system under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS).

According to the analysis, conducted by Informa Economics, Inc., prices for “RIN credits” (Renewable Identification Numbers) used to demonstrate compliance with the RFS had no impact on retail gasoline prices from 2013 through the first quarter of 2015.

Instead, the analysis shows that “…a majority of gasoline price movements can be explained by crude oil prices.” In fact, the study found that gas prices in recent years have been driven almost entirely by crude oil prices and vehicle miles traveled.

RFA President and CEO Bob Dinneen says the study “disproves the faulty assertion by oil industry trade groups that RINs somehow negatively influence consumer gas prices.”

“The bottom line is that RINs are free for refiners who purchase and blend required volumes of ethanol with gasoline,” said Dinneen. “Only those refiners who stubbornly refuse to blend required ethanol volumes have a need to buy separated RINs on the open market; and in the highly competitive gasoline marketplace, there is no way they can pass those costs on to consumers and remain competitive with refiners and blenders who are blending more ethanol than required.”

The new Informa analysis also supports the findings of an April study by former White House economic advisor James Stock, who concluded that “…there is negligible estimated effect of RIN prices on pump E10 prices.” Dinneen notes that Stock is a former Office of Management and Budget official who was involved with the approval of EPA’s proposal in November 2013 that called for scaling back the RFS. “I wish he had that revelation when he was at OMB,” said Dinneen.

Dinneen comments on the new analysis in this interview: RFA CEO on RINs/Gas Price Analysis