News & Analysis as of

Ethanol Mandates under RFS and EPA’s Lifecycle GHG Analysis

In a settlement with the American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers (AFPM) and the American Petroleum Institute (API), the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) agreed to set renewable fuel obligations for calendar...more

PHMSA Proposes to Expand the Requirements for Pipelines Carrying Hazardous Liquids

The rules would add gathering lines and pipelines in non-HCA areas. On October 13, the US Department of Transportation’s Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) issued a Proposed Rule that would...more

Energy & Environment Update - September 2015 #2

Energy and Climate Debate: We are half way through a busy September, and Congress will focus much of the rest of the month on a continuing resolution. Energy and climate issues will garner some attention in committee...more

RFA Asks EPA To Allow Higher Ethanol Blends In Midwest Region After Refinery Outage Leads To High Prices At The Pump

On August 14, 2015, the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) asked EPA to waive Reid Vapor Pressure requirements for E15 and to also allow E12 blending. Reid Vapor Pressure is a measure of gasoline's volatility and is regulated...more

Energy Information Administration Issues Short Term Energy Outlook Report

On August 11, 2015, the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) released the Short Term Energy Outlook (STEO) report. The report outlined expectations for regular gasoline to average a retail price of $2.41 for all of...more

LEAP publishes new Northwest Europe Barge General Terms and Conditions

The oil industry group Leadership for Energy Automated Processing (LEAP) has published its Northwest Europe Barge General Terms and Conditions (GTCs). The new GTCs have been designed to be used by participants in the...more

Australia Reaches Agreement To Tax Biodiesel And Ethanol

On June 17, 2015, the Australian government made a bipartisan agreement to tax Australian-produced biodiesel and ethanol. Cleaner fuel grants for renewable and biobased diesel fuels will end by July 1, 2015, as will the...more

USDA Is Now Accepting Applications From States For Biofuels Infrastructure Partnership

On June 12, 2015, the USDA began accepting applications for grants under the Biofuels Infrastructure Partnership (BIP). Through the Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC), BIP will provide up to $100 million in grants to support...more

European Parliament Votes To Continue Requiring Ethanol

On May 20, 2015, the European Parliament voted to reject a plan that would eliminate the requirement for import licenses of ethanol of agricultural origin. The plan was rejected with a vote of 486 to 164 amid concerns that...more

EPA Proposes Renewable Fuel Standards for 2014-2016

On May 29, EPA took long-awaited action on the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS), with the unusual step of proposing standards for several years at once. EPA is reproposing the 2014 RFS—its original proposal of November 2013...more

Possible Renewable Identification Number Price Spike Due to Proposed EPA Compliance Deadline Causes Biofuel Industry Concern

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) sets the annual percentage standards for ethanol, cellulosic biofuel, biomass-based diesel, advanced biofuel, and total renewable fuels that apply to all gasoline and diesel produced...more

DOT Tank Car Rule Reflects Refined Cost-Benefit Analysis

On May 1, 2015, the U.S. Department of Transportation, acting through the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration, issued a much-anticipated final rule on the enhanced tank car standards and operational...more

Corn-Based Ethanol Debate Intensifies – – A Bit

A recent article in USA Today questions whether ethanol’s days are numbered. While that article is written from the perspective of whether the stock of ethanol producing companies is a good investment, it focuses on some of...more

Fuel Choice And Deregulation Act Of 2015 Introduced In The U.S. Senate

On March 26, 2015, Senators Rand Paul (R-KY) and Chuck Grassley (R-IA) introduced S. 899, the Fuel Choice and Deregulation Act of 2015, a bill to provide regulatory relief to alternative fuel producers and consumers. ...more

Ethanol And Agricultural Groups Send USDA A Letter In Favor Of Ethanol Funding

On March 26, 2015, a group of ethanol and agricultural groups sent a letter (the industry letter) to the U.S. House of Representatives Appropriations Committee's Subcommittee on Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug...more

EPA Requests Information On Cellulosic Biofuels And E15

EPA is accepting public comments through May 26, 2015, on two proposed information collection requests (ICR) published in the Federal Register on Tuesday, March 24, 2015. The proposed ICRs concern projected cellulosic...more

New Pipeline Safety Rules: What You Need to Know

Executive Summary - New regulations for pipeline construction, safety and transportation issued by the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA), which is an agency of the Department of...more

Flint Hills Resources Expands Ethanol Operations Into The Southern U.S.

Flint Hills Resources has completed the acquisition of an ethanol plant near Camilla, Georgia, from Southwest Georgia Ethanol, LLC. Flint Hills Resources' biofuels business now includes seven ethanol plants with a combined...more

District Court Delivers Significant Blow to GS CleanTech's Patents

A recent ruling in a closely watched patent infringement case involving several patents relating to methods for processing ethanol byproducts — and specifically recovering oil from thin stillage — could significantly impact...more

What Price Market Integrity? The Various “Benchmark Reviews”

When the LIBOR scandal first came to light, governments and regulators quickly took the view that “something had to be done” about pricing indices (Benchmarks). Since that moment, the FX scandal and further investigations...more

World’s Largest Cellulosic Biorefinery Opens

On October 17, 2014, Abengoa opened -- and DOE Secretary Ernest Moniz dedicated -- the world's largest cellulosic biorefinery in Hugoton, Kansas. This second generation cellulosic ethanol plant will process 1,000 tons of...more

DuPont And P&G Announce Plans To Use Cellulosic Ethanol In Tide® Detergent

On October 6, 2014, DuPont and Proctor & Gamble announced their joint plan to replace currently used corn-based ethanol with cellulosic ethanol in North American Tide® laundry detergent. According to DuPont's press release on...more

Secretary Vilsack Confirms Administration Support For Biofuel Production Level

Last week, U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Secretary Tom Vilsack spoke at a biofuel industry conference and addressed concerns raised over the likelihood that the final 2014 Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) rule would...more

Second DOE-Funded Cellulosic Ethanol Biorefinery Opened

On September 3, 2014, POET-DSM's Project LIBERTY in Emmetsburg, Iowa, celebrated its grand opening. This will be the first commercial-scale cellulosic ethanol plant to use corn waste as a feedstock, using biochemical...more

Rules for Rail Transport of Crude Oil and Ethanol Still a Work in Progress

In response to rail accidents over the past several years involving crude oil and ethanol, the U.S. Department of Transportation (“DOT”) has been working with industry stakeholders and the National Transportation Safety Board...more

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