With the Iowa caucuses coming up February 1, the Hawkeye State has been inundated with both candidates and reporters, and ethanol has become a topic for mainstream media to report about, often inaccurately. In this Ethanol Report, Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) president and CEO Bob Dinneen discusses the inaccurate terms being used to describe the RFS, urges the media and voters to do independent research, and gives his thoughts on the views of Republican candidate Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas.Ethanol Report on Media, Politics and the RFS
A new year has dawned and with it new opportunities for the ethanol industry. In this Ethanol Report, Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) president and CEO Bob Dinneen discusses some of the upcoming events in 2016, including the 21st National Ethanol Conference in New Orleans February 15-17, and comments on whether there may yet be a legal challenge by the industry to the EPA’s biofuels volume obligations under the Renewable Fuels Standard (RFS).Ethanol Report on 2016
2015 was another year of highs and lows for the ethanol industry. Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) president and CEO Bob Dinneen says many of the positives, such as record production and increased exports, were offset by negatives like tighter margins and trade barriers.
In this Ethanol Report, Dinneen takes a look back at some of the good news and bad news for the ethanol industry in 2015 as we prepare to enter another new year.Ethanol Report on 2015 Year in Review
According to RFA Vice President of Industry Relations Robert White, the layout of the site has been updated for easier navigation and redesigned with a modern interface for a cleaner presentation. “The all new E85prices.com website and mobile app make it easier than ever to locate E85 stations, search for the best prices for ethanol blends, and post your personal pricing experiences,” said White. “Both the website and the app are optimized for use on any device and allow easier interaction than ever before. It is our hope that these upgrades will lead to increased usage and reporting.”
During an interview at the National Association of Farm Broadcasting last week, White said they have been working on the upgrade since they acquired E85Prices.com earlier this year. “We think this will allow consumers and fleet operators a better ability to find E85 stations to use the fuel and find the best deal they can on E85,” White said, noting that 85 percent ethanol is approved for use only in Flex Fuel vehicles, of which there are now over 19 million on the road in the nation.
E85prices.com is now better integrated with Google for optimal search results that link back to the website. In addition, the E85prices.com mobile app also includes an updated interface that makes it easier for users to share the latest prices for the fuel in their areas.
In this edition of the Ethanol Report, White talks about the update, as well as the increasing number of flex fuel vehicles on the road, the growing number of stations offering E85, and other topics related to higher ethanol blends in the marketplace.
Listen to this edition of the Ethanol Report here: Ethanol Report on Updated E85Prices.com
The Renewable Fuels Association sent a letter to Secretary of State John Kerry this week urging him to highlight the role of the Renewable Fuel Standard in reducing global greenhouse gas emissions as he prepares to head to the international climate conference COP21 in Paris.
At the National Association of Farm Broadcasting, RFA Senior Vice President Geoff Cooper talked about the importance of the United States promoting biofuels as a means of reducing greenhouse gas emissions at the conference, how successful the RFS has been, the U.S. corn crop, and much more.
Listen to this edition of the Ethanol Report here: Ethanol Report on the RFS and COP21
There were some big ethanol industry announcements this week, most of them good, and I caught up with Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) president and CEO Bob Dinneen to get his comments on the latest news.
In this edition of the Ethanol Report, Dinneen comments on the DuPont cellulosic plant opening, how USDA and Protec Fuel are helping to increase higher ethanol blend pumps, attacks on the RFS by the oil industry and the new Fuels America campaign to fight back, and Dr. Ben Carson’s answer to an ethanol-related question during the GOP debate. Dinneen also talks about what he will be doing in the month ahead as the days countdown to the EPA’s scheduled release of volume obligations under the RFS.
Listen to this edition of the Ethanol Report here: Ethanol Report on current ethanol news
USDA has announced new funding for biofuels infrastructure at fueling stations and Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) president and CEO Bob Dinneen thinks EPA should pay attention to that message. In this Ethanol Report, Dinneen also comments on what Congress may or may not do the rest of this session, and how another big corn crop makes keeping the RFS on track more important than ever.
Listen to this edition of the Ethanol Report here: Ethanol Report on Growing Biofuels Infrastructure
August 8, 2015 marks the 10th anniversary of the Energy Policy Act of 2005 (EPAct) containing the original Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) being signed into law by President George W. Bush.
The signing ceremony took place at the Sandia National Laboratories in Albuquerque, New Mexico, where President Bush noted that the bill he was signing into law would “…lead to greater diversity of fuels for cars and trucks. The bill includes tax incentives for producers of ethanol and biodiesel. The bill includes a flexible, cost-effective renewable fuel standard that will double the amount of ethanol and biodiesel in our fuel supply over the next seven years. Using ethanol and biodiesel will leave our air cleaner. And every time we use home-grown fuel, particularly these, we’re going to be helping our farmers, and at the same time, be less dependent on foreign sources of energy.”
Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) president and CEO Bob Dinneen remembers that day very well, particularly the support that the new law had from the oil industry. “It would not have happened without the support of the American Petroleum Institute,” said Dinneen. “They wanted out of MTBE, they wanted to have an argument in court that would protect them from the lawsuits against MTBE, so they were supportive of a growing market for renewable fuels.”
However, Dinneen notes that the oil industry underestimated the ability of farmers and the ethanol industry to gear up and produce such significant quantities of the domestic fuel that they surpassed the original goal of 7.5 billion gallons for 2012 six years early. “The program was an immediate and overwhelming success … and it led to RFS2 being passed in 2007,” said Dinneen.
Dinneen recounts the success of the RFS over the past decade and how it has changed energy, economic, and rural policy in this edition of The Ethanol Report. Ethanol Report on RFS 10th Anniversary
The Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) will once again partner with the Buffalo Chip Campground at the 75th annual Sturgis Motorcycle Rally, which will be held Aug. 3-9 in Sturgis, South Dakota. More than 1.5 million motorcycle enthusiasts are expected to attend the event this year for the big anniversary and RFA Vice President for Industry Relations Robert White the event offers a perfect venue to dispel some of the misconceptions about the use of ethanol blended fuel in motorcycles.
“We do that around the “Free Fuel Happy Hours,” said White. “From Sunday August 2nd through Thursday August 6 from 1 to 4 pm, any motorcyclist can come up and fuel for free with 93 octane 10 percent ethanol.” This is the fourth year that RFA has sponsored the free fuel happy hours and White says it also offers them the opportunity to talk one on one with bikers and provide them with information about ethanol.
In addition, White says messages about ethanol can be found throughout the Buffalo Chip Campground during the rally. “We have everything from banners to commercials on the Jumbotron at the main stage and we sponsor the Essentials Guide that goes out to every camper this year,” said White.
The event sponsorship has become more important in the last 2-3 years as the oil industry has worked with the motorcycle association to spread misinformation about 15% ethanol, which is not approved for use in motorcycles – a fact which is stated clearly on all pumps that sell E15. But White says the information they provide goes beyond motorcycles. “If there is 1.6 million or more people there, they all own lawnmowers, cars, trucks, SUVs, boats back at home,” he added.
Listen to this edition of “The Ethanol Report” where White talks about what they will be doing in Sturgis to connect with those attending and help them come away with a better understanding of ethanol. Ethanol Report Preview of 2015 Sturgis Motorcycle Rally
Hundreds of ethanol supporters turned out for a rally and public hearing in Kansas City, Kansas last week on the EPA’s proposed volume obligations under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS). In this edition of the Ethanol Report, we hear from some of those who attended.
The report includes comments and testimony from Iowa Governor Terry Branstad, Missouri Governor Jay Nixon, Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) senior vice president Geoff Cooper, RFA chairman Randy Doyal of Al-Corn Clean Fuel in Minnesota, Jeff Oestmann of East Kansas Agri-Energy and Chris Grundler, Director of EPA’s Office of Transportation and Air Quality.
Listen to or download the Ethanol Report here: Ethanol Report from EPA RFS Hearing and Rally