RFA CEO Revs Up Ethanol Producers at #FEW17

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The Fuel Ethanol Workshop has been one of Renewable Fuel Association president and CEO Bob Dinneen’s favorite meetings to attend for the past three decades.

“Because the people in this room have passion for what you do,” said Dinneen during his keynote address at #FEW17 on Tuesday. “You make the juice – and that is something extraordinarily special.”

In his address, Dinneen talked about the continuing importance of the Renewable Fuel Standard for the ethanol industry. “The RFS continues to be the most successful energy policy this country has seen,” he said.

Dinneen also commented on increasing markets for ethanol exports and more. Listen to his remarks here: RFA CEO Bob Dinneen keynote at #FEW17

2017 Fuel Ethanol Workshop Photos

Coverage of the Fuel Ethanol Conference is sponsored by

Coverage of the Fuel Ethanol Conference is sponsored by Syngenta Enogen

Audio, Ethanol, Ethanol News, FEW, RFA, RFS

RFA’s Cooper Gets High Octane Award

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RFA’s Geoff Cooper receives High Octane Award from BBI’s Tom Bryan

Renewable Fuels Association Senior Vice President Geoff Cooper was recognized with the ethanol industry’s “High Octane Award” during the 2017 Fuel Ethanol Workshop in Minneapolis Tuesday.

The award, established in 2000 by BBI International, recognizes a person “who has helped the ethanol industry mature and progress over the years” and “whose passion and unstoppable pursuits have significantly benefited the ethanol industry.”

“In receiving the High Octane Award, Geoff joins a prestigious list of passionate and committed industry champions,” said BBI President Tom Bryan. “Since the inception of the FEW awards 18 years ago, only two other trade association staff members have received this accolade. That says a lot about who Geoff is, and how much he’s done to help grow our industry.”

“I am deeply humbled and honored to receive this year’s High Octane Award. There is no greater compliment than knowing the leaders of this industry consider my contributions worthy of such special recognition,” Cooper said. “I have been extremely fortunate to serve an industry and organization whose values align so well with my own. I sincerely admire this industry and everything it stands for. It has been both a pleasure and a privilege to work alongside the RFA Board of Directors and staff for the past nine years; their devotion to improving our nation’s economic security and environmental health has been truly inspiring. In reality, this award is a tribute to the many achievements of the RFA, its member companies, and its dedicated staff,” he added.

Geoff talks about how growing up on a farm and serving in the military led to his career in the ethanol industry. Interview with Geoff Cooper, RFA

2017 Fuel Ethanol Workshop Photos

Coverage of the Fuel Ethanol Conference is sponsored by

Coverage of the Fuel Ethanol Conference is sponsored by Syngenta Enogen

Audio, Ethanol, Ethanol News, FEW, RFN

Mexico’s Adoption of E10 Applauded

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It looks like Mexico is jumping deeper into ethanol as a renewable fuel. Pretty big announcement out today.

The Mexican Energy Regulatory Commission (CRE) announced recently a change that will increase the maximum amount of ethanol that can be blended in Mexican gas supplies from 5.8 percent to 10 percent, except in the cities of Monterrey, Guadalajara and Mexico City.

The announcement modifies the Mexican Official Standard NOM 016-CRE-2016 regarding the quality specifications for fuels by increasing the maximum volume content of anhydrous ethanol as an oxygenate in regular and premium gasolines in Mexico.

This change comes as part of ongoing energy reforms in Mexico and follows input from stakeholders in the government, private sector, research scientists and social interest groups.

Mexico’s regulators moved in August 2016 to allow ethanol in local fuel supplies, except in its three largest metropolitan areas. In its decision, the CRE recognized the benefits of E10, which will help demonstrate that a 10 percent ethanol blend can positively contribute to air quality improvement and reduced cancer risk throughout the country. The Mexican Institute of Petroleum is also studying the merits of E10 blends.

The decision moves Mexico toward global standards in the use of renewable and sustainable energy resources like ethanol that offer environmental, economic, social and public health advantages over other additives and oxygenates for gasoline.

“We are pleased to see this decision, which is the culmination of significant work by Mexican authorities and industry as they continue to diversify and improve their fuel supplies,” said Tom Sleight, U.S. Grains Council (USGC) President and CEO. “We appreciate the opportunity to work with Mexican leaders as they seek to build their own biofuels industry and offer cleaner fuels for the Mexican people.”

“We’re strongly encouraged by this announcement, which clears the way for further adoption of ethanol into the Mexican fuel supply,” said Growth Energy CEO Emily Skor. “By doing so, Mexican consumers will see how embracing ethanol will reduce harmful emissions, help contribute to a cleaner environment, and will create a stronger rural sector.”

“We are greatly encouraged by Mexico’s recent decision to allow the sale and use of 10 percent ethanol (E10) as part of its fuel market reform efforts,” said Renewable Fuels Association President and CEO Bob Dinneen. “By permitting the use of E10 in its fuel market, Mexico will have blend levels consistent with fuel sold and used throughout the United States and Canada. Not only will Mexico be able to achieve greater octane and oxygenate benefits from using E10, it will help to drive trade and investment in its ethanol fuel sector. We hope the Mexican Institute of Petroleum will soon conclude its study, and are confident the study will affirm the air quality benefits of the use of E10 in the country’s most populous cities, thereby allowing it to be used in all regions of the country.”

AgWired Energy, biofuels, Energy, Ethanol, International

Al-Corn Expansion Update

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The expansion project for Al-Corn Clean Fuel in Claremont, Minnesota is moving along nicely, according to CEO Randy Doyal.

“There’s a lot of steel going up now, we’ve poured a lot of concrete,” says Doyal, recent past chairman of the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA).

The project that will increase the plant’s capacity from 50 million gallons a year, up to 120 million gallons per year, and Doyal says they are improving the value of the plant for shareholders and the local economy at the same time.

“We’ve been very innovative and creative over the years to get tremendous efficiencies,” said Doyal. “We’re trying to make more money for our members.”

Learn more in this interview with Doyal conducted by Dave Ladd. Interview with Al-Corn Energy CEO Randy Doyal

Audio, Ethanol, Ethanol News, RFA

Husker Ag Recognized for Ethanol Direct Marketing

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The Nebraska Ethanol Board (NEB) recently recognized Seth Harder for his leadership at Husker Ag and the company’s success with fuel retailers.

Since 2012, Husker Ag in Plainview, Nebraska has contributed more than $250,000 to Nebraska’s fuel infrastructure by funding higher-blend ethanol pumps at stations across the state.

“The goal is not just to produce ethanol, but to give every Nebraskan the opportunity to use it,” said Seth Harder, Husker Ag general manager. “We truly believe that ethanol is the best option for our state, farmers, consumers and our nation going forward.”

Their efforts have resulted in 11 stations across northeastern Nebraska and Yankton, South Dakota, with pumps that could dispense a range between E15 and E85 fuel, including E20 and E30. “Recently, we funded new pumps in Yankton, South Dakota, and Pilger, Nebraska,” Harder said. “We are currently evaluating a few locations in northeast Nebraska, and will continue to look for prospects in the area. Generally, we choose non-branded parties that want to differentiate their product line to compete with chains.”

Husker Ag received 1st ACE Power by People Award in 2015

Harder will speak about his direct marketing experience at the American Coalition for Ethanol Conference in Omaha Aug. 15-17. He will present on how ethanol producers and fuel marketers improve the availability of competitively-priced ethanol through direct marketing.

NEB Administrator Todd Sneller believes Husker Ag is a leader for the state’s ethanol industry.

“Nebraska looks to companies that go above and beyond to show what’s possible for the future of ethanol,” Sneller said. “Husker Ag continues to push forward with higher-blends that benefit our economy and environment.”

Husker Ag now utilizes more than 29 million bushels of corn per year to produce about 85 million gallons of denatured ethanol, expected to be at 90 million gallons by the end of 2017.

ACE, ACE Ethanol Conference, Ethanol, Ethanol News

Committee Hears Testimony on E15 Bill

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Ethanol supporters and retailers made their case before the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works committee for a bill that would fix a frustrating and confusing situation and allow 15 percent ethanol to be sold year round.

The Consumer and Fuel Retailer Choice Act, sponsored by Senator Deb Fischer (R-NE), would extend the Reid vapor pressure (RVP) waiver to ethanol blends above 10 percent during the summer months to provide regulatory certainty and increase economic opportunity for fuel retailers. “Currently, it’s illegal for E15 to be sold during the busy summer travel season from June 1st to September 15th,” said Fischer. “As a result, fuel retailers are required to change fuel labels at the pumps before and after the summer season. This leads to increased costs and greater confusion for consumers.”

Listen to Sen. Fischer’s remarks here: Sen. Fischer E15 Hearing

Mike Lorenz with Sheetz, a Pennsylvania-based convenience store chain, testified that they recently started offering E15 at 190 of their store locations because consumers want to buy it. “And after millions of E15 transactions by thousands of customers purchasing millions of gallons, we have not had a single customer complaint or any cases of misfueling.”

Lorenz says their experience with E15 found that during the RVP months, they lose 40 percent of their customer base. “It makes no sense to make a fuel retailer see sales plummet during the summer driving months because of an outdated regulation in desperate need of a simple technical fix,” he said.

Listen to Lorenz’ comments here: Mike Lorenz, Sheetz, opening statement

Audio, E15, Ethanol, Ethanol News, Retailers

30th Annual ACE Conference – Tested, Proven, Driven

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The 30th annual American Coalition for Ethanol (ACE) conference is coming up Aug. 15-17 in Omaha with the theme of Tested Proven Driven and a big focus on marketing E15 and higher blends.

“This year’s conference again showcases people who are doing the actual work of developing new markets for ethanol,” said Ron Lamberty, senior vice president of ACE.

The conference will feature two fuel marketers talking about what they have had to do to make higher blends available to more consumers. Charlie Bosselman of Bosselman Enterprises and Pump & Pantry c-stores will be joined by JETZ Convenience Centers owner Bob O’Connor to explain how they’re adding E15 and flex fuel locations and how those new fuels impact their bottom lines.

“If you want to sell more ethanol, the easiest, most cost-effective way is by listening to the people who are already out there getting it done,” Lamberty said.

The conference also features a breakout session with Bosselman Enterprises and Husker Ag to explain how they are growing their volume by supplying ethanol directly to retailers by passing on Renewable Identification Number (RIN) value and promoting ethanol’s other marketplace advantages.

Registration is now open and you can listen to this interview to find out more of what’s in store at the 30th ACE Conference. Interview with Ron Lamberty, ACE on annual conference

ACE, ACE Ethanol Conference, Audio, blends, Ethanol

Ethanol Groups Urge Passage of RVP Waiver

Cindy Zimmerman 1 Comment

With the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee holding a hearing today on the Consumer and Fuel Retailer Choice Act, ethanol organizations are urging lawmakers to “expeditiously” pass legislation that would ensure consumers have year-round access to 15% ethanol (E15).

Renewable Fuels Association president and CEO Bob Dinneen “enthusiastically supports” the legislation which would resolve the issue by extending the Reid vapor pressure (RVP) waiver to ethanol blends above E10.

“The biggest remaining obstacle to E15 growth is the inequitable application of gasoline vapor pressure regulations,” Dinneen wrote in a letter this week to committee leadership. “Resolving the issue of RVP parity for E15 will remove the regulatory barrier that currently hinders stations from offering year-round access to E15 and other higher level ethanol blends,” he wrote.

“Senators Fischer (R-NE), Ernst (R-IA), and Duckworth (D-IL), all members of the EPW Committee, are providing timely leadership in making sure this priority issue gets the attention it deserves in Congress,” said American Coalition for Ethanol (ACE) executive vice president Brian Jennings. “Today’s hearing can be the first step toward enactment of legislation to give retailers the choice to offer E15 and higher blends to their customers year-round.”

Mike Lorenz of Sheetz Inc. will be among those testifying during the hearing to speak for retailers who would like to offer E15 year round. “This minor fix would be a major relief to retailers offering E15 today and would remove one of the biggest barriers for other retailers who want to offer E15,” Lorenz said. “Consumers should also benefit from this rule update, since E15 typically sells for less than regular unleaded gasoline and is cleaner burning and higher octane.”

The hearing begins at 10:00 Eastern time.

ACE, E15, Ethanol, Ethanol News, RFA

Polls: Small Engine and Motorcycle Owners Pick Right Fuel

Cindy Zimmerman

New polls commissioned by Growth Energy show that U.S. small engine and motorcycle owners are smarter than the oil companies think they are and the majority are quite capable of choosing the right fuel for their needs.

The polls, conducted by Quadrant Strategies, interviewed 500 homeowners who used small engine products such as lawnmowers, and 500 motorcyclists. They found almost identical results with 95-96 percent of owners saying they found it easy to pick the right fuel, 98 percent reporting satisfaction with their fuel’s performance, and 90 percent who considered it important to have options at the pump, including ethanol blends. This is contrary to ethanol critics who claim that higher blends of ethanol, such as E15 which is not approved for small engines or motorcycles, will cause confusion and misfuelling issues.

“Ninety-seven percent of all fuel sold in the U.S. contains 10 percent ethanol, which is a high-performance option for all common outdoor equipment,” said Donn Larson, President and CEO of Larson Sales, Inc., one of America’s premier outdoor power equipment distributors, with a network of hundreds of dealers, covering a large part of the north central United States. “Ethanol provides a non-toxic octane boost to fuel, and owners report that picking the right blend is as simple as reading the label on every pump. It also reduces the need for freeze-preventing additives, which is great for snow blowers.”

The Renewable Fuels Association has been sponsoring Free Fuel Happy Hours during the huge Sturgis Motorcycle Rally in South Dakota for several years now as a way of educating bikers about ethanol. RFA also has information about ethanol in the official Buffalo Chip Campground guide to the rally and signage all around the campground and on the center stage jumbotrons where top name entertainers perform nightly.

Ethanol, Growth Energy, Motorcycle, RFA, Sturgis

Iowa Races Spotlight Corn and Ethanol

cindy zimmerman

The Iowa Speedway hosts two racing events this summer that put corn and ethanol in the spotlight on the track.

The NASCAR XFINITY Series American Ethanol E15 250 presented by Enogen is coming up Saturday, June 24. This is the fifth consecutive year of the American Ethanol partnership and the fourth consecutive year with Enogen at Iowa Speedway. Enogen corn was specially developed by Syngenta for ethanol production with an enzyme that breaks down corn starch into sugar, which when combined with Cellerate™ process technology can increase ethanol production by 20 percent.

In an interview at last year’s race, Chris Tingle, head of Enogen Commercial Operations with Syngenta, talked about the company’s support of ethanol. Interview with Chris Tingle, Enogen, at 2016 race

Next month it will be the 11th Iowa Corn 300, one of the major IndyCar racing events of the year, sponsored by Iowa Corn on July 9. “IndyCars, which run at speeds over 200 miles per hour, are powered by 85 percent ethanol, so fans can see firsthand the power and performance of cleaner-burning ethanol,” said Iowa Corn Promotion Board President Larry Klever.

This year’s race will be one of the premier events to celebrate Iowa Corn Growers Association’s 50th anniversary, according to President Kurt Hora. “Promoting Iowa Corn and homegrown ethanol, celebrating 50 years of ICGA and educating consumers will be all accomplished with this one great event,” Hora said.

Learn more from Iowa Corn.

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