Impact of Lowering RFS on Advanced Biofuels

ethanol-report-adThe comment period is now over for the EPA proposal that would lower the volume requirements under the Renewable Fuel Standard this year, but it will be some time yet before a decision is made since the agency likely has tens of thousands of comments to read.

In this Ethanol Report, several representatives of the cellulosic ethanol and advanced biofuels industry comment on how the proposal would impact them. The report includes comments from:

Chris Standlee, Executive Vice President, Abengoa Bioenergy U.S. Institutional Affairs
Brian Foody, President and CEO, Iogen Corporation
Delayne Johnson, General Manager, Quad County Corn Processors
Brooke Coleman, Executive Director, Advanced Ethanol Council
Bob Dinneen, Renewable Fuels Association President and CEO

Listen to or download the podcast here: Ethanol Report with Advanced Biofuels Producers

Subscribe to “The Ethanol Report” with this link.

Happy New Year Ethanol Report

ethanol-report-adIt’s out with the old and in with the new year and on that occasion Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) president and CEO Bob Dinneen takes a look back at 2013 for the ethanol industry and a look ahead to what 2014 may have in store.

dinneen-capitolDespite the continued assaults on the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) in 2013, Dinneen remains as upbeat and optimistic as ever about the future of the industry. “I can’t look at 2013 and see it as a complete failure,” he said. “There’s certainly challenges but the business is doing just fine and I’m looking forward to 2014.”

Among the topics Dinneen discusses in this end of the year Ethanol Report is the EPA proposal to roll back the RFS and the importance of industry voices during the comment period which ends on January 28. “If we get enough people to shake up EPA and remind them why this program is so important, we will get that changed.” said Dinneen.

Listen to Bob Dinneen reminisce about 2013 and anticipate 2014 in this interview: Happy New Year 2014 Ethanol Report with RFA's Bob Dinneen

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AP Story Fact Checking

apA yet-to-be officially published “investigative report” by the Associated Press is causing an uproar in the ethanol industry which is responding ahead of time with fact checking on the article.

The article included interviews with several industry leaders and farmers who are disturbed by what they have read in advance copies. One of those interviewed at length by the AP reporter is Renewable Fuels Association president and CEO Bob Dinneen.

ethanol-report-adIn this “Ethanol Report,” Dinneen challenges many of the reporters’ conclusions about the environmental impact of ethanol production. Ethanol Report on AP story

RFA Counterpoint Fact Sheet on AP story

Later today there will be a conference call with Geoff Cooper, the head of research and analysis at the Renewable Fuels Association, and Leroy Perkins, an Iowa farmer who was quoted in the AP story. Perkins was interviewed numerous times by AP journalists for the ethanol story and “believes his views on oil alternatives, land use and the environment were intentionally skewed to tell an inaccurate and one-sided story.”

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Biofuel Groups Ask to Intervene in RFS Case

Three organizations that represent biofuel producers have asked to intervene in the latest legal challenge to Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS).

mess-rfsThe Renewable Fuels Association (RFA), Growth Energy, and the Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO), filed a motion Friday with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit to intervene in the challenge against the RFS by Monroe Energy, the American Petroleum Institute (API) and the American Fuel and Petrochemical Manufacturers (AFPM). The lawsuit seeks a reduction of the 2013 volume obligations for all renewable fuels.

The groups are asking the Court’s permission to intervene in this lawsuit on behalf of member companies which would be directly impacted by that action. “Moreover, a reduction in the volumetric requirement for any one type of renewable fuel under the RFS could affect the demand for other types of renewable fuels,” the groups stated in the filing.

In January, the same court upheld EPA’s authority to set advanced and cellulosic biofuel volume obligations at the maximum achievable level, in order to achieve Congress’ intent to promote production and use of renewable fuels. The trade groups will ask the Court to reaffirm this finding.

Dinneen: Lowering RFS Would be Mistake

dinneen-capitolRenewable Fuels Association (RFA) president and CEO Bob Dinneen fears “the Obama Administration is about to make a huge mistake” in lowering the volume requirements for ethanol under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS).

In an interview for “The Ethanol Report,” Dinneen says it does appear that the Environmental Protection Agency is planning on changing the Renewable Volume Obligation (RVO) for 2014. “I find that hard to believe because this administration has been so strongly supportive of the RFS, of farmers, of a growing renewable fuels industry … this would be a reversal of stunning proportions,” he said. “It guts the program.”

ethanol-report-adDinneen notes that EPA has not yet made the proposal for 2014 and once that happens there will be at least a 30 day comment period. “They’re supposed to have a final rule by November 30, but nobody in this town expects that to happen,” he said. “I do anticipate they will have the rule proposed sometime this month or early next.”

Dinneen also talks about the RFA response to AAA comments about the safety of E15 and how a recent NREL study proves it is safe in this Ethanol Report interview Ethanol Report with RFA's Bob Dinneen

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DC Update Ethanol Report

dinneen-capitolThe nation’s capitol is “so quiet you can hear a pin drop” but the American Petroleum Institute (API) is still working to beat the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS), and the government shutdown means E15 retailers are unable to get approval.

“EPA right now is not answering the phones so they are not responding to marketers that are looking to offer E15,” says Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) president and CEO Bob Dinneen in this edition of The Ethanol Report. “I would hate to think that the political snit that is occurring in Washington today is going to throw up yet another barrier to expanding E15.”

ethanol-report-adDinneen also talks about the API lawsuit filed this week over the volume requirements of the RFS and the possibility that the government shut down would dely EPA’s release of the 2014 Renewable Volume Obligation (RVO), due out next month. “But this year, EPA took far too long to get those out,” he said, noting the numbers were just released in August – nine months late without a government shut down. “You want those numbers out as early as possible so the marketplace can respond.”

Listen to Bob discuss these topics and optimism in the ethanol industry here: Ethanol Report with RFA's Bob Dinneen

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RFA’s Cooper on Corn Crop and E15

fps13-rfa-cooperThis edition of “The Ethanol Report” features an interview from Farm Progress Show with Renewable Fuels Association Vice President of Research and Development Geoff Cooper on several timely topics, including corn and ethanol production this year, cellulosic ethanol, the importance of the RFS, and sales of E15 ramping up again as summer volatility requirements end.

ethanol-report-adCooper talks about how despite a slow maturing crop and adverse weather conditions, USDA is still calling for a record corn crop of 13.8 billion bushels. He also discusses how retail sales of E15 will be going up again next week after the summer volatility requirements end on September 15.Ethanol Report with RFA's Geoff Cooper

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Ethanol Report on RFS Attacks

fps13-dinneenThe attacks on the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) by the oil industry just keep coming and Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) president and CEO Bob Dinneen was at the 2013 Farm Progress Show this week to talk about the latest – a petition for a partial waiver submitted recently to EPA by the American Petroleum Institute (API) and American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers (AFPM).

ethanol-report-adIn this “Ethanol Report” interview, Dinneen talks about RFA’s letter to EPA urging them to reject the waiver request. “API really doesn’t have standing to even file a waiver because they’re not an obligated party,” he says.

Dinneen also talks about cellulosic ethanol production, RINS, and his reaction to Congressman John Shimkus (R-IL) considering legislative changes to the RFS.

Ethanol Report interview with Bob Dinneen: Ethanol Report on Latest RFS Attacks

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Free Fuel Happy Hour at Sturgis Buffalo Chip

RFA at Sturgis Buffalo ChipThe founder and President of the Legendary Buffalo Chip Campground, Rod Woodruff, was the first motorcycle rider to fill up at the Renewable Fuels Association “Free Fuel Happy Hour” yesterday. Rod knows that a high octane E10 blend will run just fine in his motorcycle.

At yesterday’s event around 160 motorcycles made it through the line to get filled up and we’re doing it again today and tomorrow. I interviewed a number of riders and will be sharing those with you in coming days. Internet access has been very sporadic and today I’m heading to Denver for the Cattle Industry Summer Conference.

2013 Sturgis Motorcycle Rally Photo Album

Ethanol Report on ACE Project

ethanol-report-adThis edition of “The Ethanol Report” features comments from the groundbreaking of a new cellulosic project in Galva, Iowa where first and second generations of ethanol are literally ‘bolted’ together. Quad County Corn Processors biorefinery broke ground Monday on its Adding Cellulosic Ethanol (ACE) project and this report includes comments from plant general manager Delayne Johnson, Renewable Fuels Association president and CEO Bob Dinneen and Congressman Steve King (R-IA).

Listen to or download the Ethanol Report here: Ethanol Report on ACE Project

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