Biobased and Renewable Products News: Biofuels

August 2, 2013
Department of Energy Holds Sixth Annual Biomass 2013 Conference in Washington, D.C.
On July 31 and August 1, 2013, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) held its sixth annual "Biomass 2013: How the Advanced Bioindustry is Reshaping American Energy." Over two days, attendees heard from Senators, Representatives, Obama Administration officials, and representatives of industry on the current and future progress of the biofuels, renewable chemicals, and biobased products industries. The Biomass 2013 website, including detailed information on the conference and its program is available online. During the conference, speakers discussed the immense progress that has ... read more >
July 26, 2013
House Energy & Commerce Subcommittee Two-Day Hearing On The RFS
The House Energy & Commerce Committee's Subcommittee on Energy and Power held its much anticipated two-day hearing on the RFS, with 16 witnesses from both sides testifying. The following is the full list of witnesses: Panel I • Mr. Jack N. Gerard, President and CEO, American Petroleum Institute • Mr. Charles T. Drevna, President, American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers • Mr. Bob Dinneen, President and CEO, Renewable Fuels Association • Mr. Michael McAdams, President, Advanced Biofuels Association • Dr. Jeremy I. Martin, Senior Scientist, ... read more >
July 19, 2013
Federal Appeals Court Throws Out EPA Rule Temporarily Exempting Biogenic Carbon Emissions From New Permitting Requirements
On July 12, 2013, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia issued its decision in Center for Biological Diversity v. EPA. In a 2-1 decision, the court vacated the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) rule (the Deferral Rule) exempting bioenergy and other biogenic sources of greenhouse gas emissions from new greenhouse gas permitting requirements under EPA's Tailoring Rule for a period of three years. This deferral was meant to allow EPA time to study and develop a proper method of accounting for greenhouse gas emissions from these sources. The court held that ... read more >
July 19, 2013
Latest Action On RFS
Activity on the federal Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) is in full swing on Capitol Hill. Last week, the House Energy & Commerce Committee's Subcommittee on Energy and Power issued its fifth and final white paper on the RFS seeking input from stakeholders on "implementation issues" with the policy. The white paper is available online. The white paper follows the Subcommittee's hearing last month at which government witnesses testified on the effectiveness and implementation of the RFS. Specifically in this latest white paper, the Subcommittee is requesting, among ... read more >
July 19, 2013
EPA Expected To Approve Barley As Feedstock Under RFS
EPA has announced that it will soon publish in the Federal Register a notice for comment on EPA's conclusion that the use of barley as a feedstock can meet the lifecycle emissions reductions requirements for both conventional and advanced biofuels under the RFS. These findings help ensure the likelihood that EPA will approve barley as a biofuels feedstock to help meet the volumetric requirements under the RFS. Specifically, EPA has found that: "barley, when used to make ethanol at facilities that use natural gas for all process energy, grid electricity, and drying 100% distillers ... read more >
July 19, 2013
European Parliament Committee Votes To Limit Crop-based Biofuels And Count ILUC In Greenhouse Gas Emissions Calculations
Last week, the European Parliament's (EP) Committee on Environment, Public Health and Food Safety voted to include indirect land use change in calculations to measure greenhouse gas emissions. It also voted to limit biofuels made from crops and create a minimum level of advanced biofuels within the European Union's (EU) fuel supply. Under the measure, crop-based biofuels would be capped at 5.5 percent of the EU's fuel supply by 2020. Some supporters of the proposal believe that the use of land to grow energy crops reduces the availability of land for food crops. The full EP ... read more >
June 27, 2013
House Energy And Commerce Hearings On RFS
On Wednesday, June 26, 2013, the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Energy and Power held a hearing on "Overview of the Renewable Fuel Standard: Government Perspectives." Three government witnesses testified at the hearing: Adam Sieminski, Administrator, U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA); Joseph Glauber, Chief Economist, U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA); and Christopher Grundler, Director, Office of Transportation and Air Quality, Office of Air and Radiation, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). A link to the official website on the hearing, which ... read more >
June 27, 2013
Supreme Court Rulings In Favor Of EPA
The U.S. Supreme Court this week made two rulings considered favorable to EPA. In the first ruling, which is also favorable to the biofuels industry, the Court decided that it would not review a lower court ruling that upheld EPA's limited approval of E15 (fuel blended with 15 percent ethanol). In 2009, the ethanol industry petitioned EPA to approve an increase in the amount of ethanol allowed to be blended in gasoline from 10 percent to 15 percent. In 2010, EPA approved the use of E15 fuel for model year 2007 and later vehicles. In 2011, the Agency extended that approval to include ... read more >
June 27, 2013
DOD Awards Funding For Advanced Biofuels Project
Last week, in a win for the biofuels industry, the Department of Defense (DOD) awarded $4.1 million to Red Rock Biofuels LLC as part of its joint $510 million initiative with the Departments of Agriculture and Energy to help facilitate the commercialization of U.S. advanced drop-in biofuels for military and commercial use. This latest award signifies that DOD is moving forward with its biofuels goals despite strong opposition on Capitol Hill and recent remarks by the new Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel expressing his hesitance to spend money on it in the midst of mandated budget cuts. As ... read more >
June 27, 2013
Siemens And LanzaTech Team Up On Biofuels
LanzaTech and the metal division of Siemens have announced that they have entered into a ten-year marketing and development agreement. LanzaTech will work to produce biofuels from steel emissions. LanzaTech, based in Illinois, uses microbes to convert waste gases from any source of carbon monoxide into fuels and chemicals. Converting steel industry emissions into fuels could help reduce harmful air emissions, as iron and steel emissions make up approximately 6.7 percent of the world's carbon ... read more >
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