Conference Addresses Ethanol Policy Issues

Cindy Zimmerman

Farm Foundation Bioeconomy Conference“Policy Risks and Consequences for the Biofuels Industry” will be one of the topics addressed during a Farm Foundation conference entitled “Transition to a Bioeconomy: Risks, Infrastructure and Industry Evolution” June 24-25 in Berkeley, California.

Seth Meyer with the University of Missouri’s Food and Agricultural Policy Research Institute (FAPRI) will talk about some of the findings in a new report that presents 500 different scenarios based on possible weather, production and other market influences.

Seth Meyer FAPRIMeyer says they found that the two main important factors in any scenario are the price of oil and feedstock production.

“We did this in January and yet we’ve seen oil prices exceed most people’s expectations and that changes the dynamics of which policies are important,” Meyer said. “And then you add to that an unexpected change in (corn) yields and it changes which policies are important yet again.”

Generally speaking, if oil prices are high and production is normal, the Renewable Fuels Standard for corn ethanol is less important. “When we start getting a short crop, those mandates all of the sudden become very binding. It’s a very complicated question,” said Meyer.

When it comes to the blender’s credit, Meyer says that again depends on the situation. “If oil prices would moderate, the mandates would be driving production.”

Listen to an interview with Meyer here:

Domestic Fuel will provide coverage of the Transition to a Bioeconomy conference that will include an overview of the industry, how biofuels are impacting other segments of the market, and the bioeconomy’s impacts at the farm level. Other sessions will address risks of the bioeconomy; legal, transportation and public policy infrastructure issues; and the challenges and opportunities of the next decade in research, education, business and finance.

Energy, Farm Foundation