Ethanol Report 4-28-21

The Supreme Court heard oral arguments this week on the appeal of a case over the Small Refinery Exemption program under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS). The case was decided unanimously last year by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit, which held that only small refineries that have remained continuously exempt from obligations under the RFS are …

Vilsack and Regan at Agri-Pulse Ag and Food Policy Summit

The fifth annual Agri-Pulse Ag and Food Policy Summit was held virtually March 22-24, offering insight from members of Congress, political appointees, food and agricultural leaders from coast to coast, along with industry and academic experts with the theme: “Climate Risks, Rewards and Uncertainties.” Newly confirmed Biden appointees Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack and EPA Administrator Michael Regan were among …

Senators Question EPA Nominee on RFS and WOTUS

The Waters of the United States (WOTUS) rule and the Renewable Fuel Standard were two topics Environmental Protection Agency nominee Michael Regan addressed during his confirmation hearing before the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee on Wednesday. Sen. James Inhofe (R-OK) called WOTUS the “one that everyone ought to be concerned about because that’s the number one issue.” Regan, who …

EPA Administrator Wheeler in Mississippi

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Andrew Wheeler was in Mississippi on Monday where he announced a $2 million dollar initiative that encourages smart and sustainable pest control in agriculture. The initiative, which is an extension of EPA’s Pesticide Environmental Stewardship Program (PESP), expects to award grantees up to $200,000 to implement sustainable pest management practices that align with the …

EPA Finalizes Pesticide AEZ Rules

EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler visited another farm this week to make an agricultural announcement. At Overman Farms in Goldsboro, N.C., Wheeler announced finalized improvements to requirements for the pesticide application exclusion zone (AEZ), the area surrounding pesticide application equipment during outdoor production pesticide applications. Listen to Wheeler’s announcement below and read more about the changes from EPA. (6:33)

EPA Announces Dicamba Registration Decision

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Andrew Wheeler at a Georgia cotton farm on Tuesday announced that EPA is approving new five-year registrations for two dicamba products and extending the registration of an additional dicamba product. All three registrations include new control measures to ensure these products can be used effectively while protecting the environment, including non-target plants, animals, and other …

EPA Administrator Wheeler Visits Ohio Farm

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Andrew Wheeler kicked off a swing through northeast Ohio Tuesday which included attending an Ohio Farm Bureau event on a dairy farm in Stark County where he highlighted EPA’s commitment to working with Ohio’s farmers on a number of environmental issues. During the event, Administrator Wheeler delivered remarks to a group of farmers highlighting President …

EPA and USDA Announce Next Gen Fertilizer Challenge

The Environmental Protection Agency has teamed up with USDA to advance agricultural sustainability with the Next Gen Fertilizer Challenges. The competition includes two challenges that seek proposals for new and existing fertilizer technologies to maintain or improve crop yields while reducing the impacts of fertilizers on the environment. EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler and U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue announced …

EPA Working on 2021 RVO, Waiver Requests

Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Andrew Wheeler says they are working to get the 2021 Renewable Volume Obligations “done as quickly as possible” and promises they will not be as late as the previous administration. During a press call on Wednesday, Wheeler said EPA is also being very diligent in its review of retroactive small refinery waiver petitions, which now total …

EPA Reviewing RFS Gap Year Waiver Requests

During a visit to Wisconsin this week, Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Andrew Wheeler was once again questioned about the status of so-called “gap year” waiver requests from refineries asking for relief from their Renewable Fuel Standard obligations from previous years. Because the petitions go back as much as eight years, Wheeler said he is not sure how long it will …

EPA Administrator Gives Update on Retroactive SREs

EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler said Wednesday that the agency will not be making an announcement on proposed 2021 Renewable Volume Obligations this week. Last year the 2020 RVO proposal was announced on July 5. Wheeler also provided an update on the status of the 52 requests for retroactive waivers from blending obligations in previous years during a press call July …

Biofuels Groups Express Concerns at EPA Hearing

Representatives from multiple ethanol and biodiesel stakeholder organizations and companies testified at an Environmental Protection Agency hearing Wednesday on the proposal to make up for volumes lost under the Renewable Fuel Standard due to small refinery waivers. Audio from some witnesses: Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig – (5:42) Renewable Fuels Association President and CEO Geoff Cooper – (5:16) American …

Biofuels Groups Disappointed With EPA Proposal

The Environmental Protection Agency issued a Supplemental Proposal for Renewable Fuels Volumes Tuesday, following up on the administration plan announced October 4. Biofuel groups expressed disappointment in the proposal, which they say is different than what was presented to them. “If the Oct. 4 announcement from EPA was a big step forward, today’s supplemental proposal is a step backward,” said …

Biofuels Industry Reacts to Administration Plan

The Environmental Protection Agency and U.S. Department of Agriculture announced a plan Friday to promote biofuels under the Renewable Fuel Standard in an effort to make up for small refinery exemptions (SRE)that have caused many renewable fuel plants to halt production. Under the plan, EPA will propose and request public comment on expanding biofuel requirements beginning in 2020 and will …

EPA Ditches WOTUS Rule

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Andrew Wheeler and Department of the Army Assistant Secretary of the Army for Civil Works R.D. James announced the repeal of a 2015 rule that impermissibly expanded the definition of “waters of the United States” (WOTUS) under the Clean Water Act. The agencies are also recodifying the longstanding and familiar regulatory text that existed …