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Trump signs $2 trillion CARES Act into law
Tuesday, March 31, 2020 7:49 AM

President Trump signed the $2 trillion CARES Act into law on March 27. The bill is the third COVID-19 stimulus packaged signed into law. A fourth stimulus package is in the works that could provide more targeted relief for renewable fuel producers.

COVID-19 reduces demand for fuel, ethanol plants cut production
Tuesday, March 31, 2020 7:48 AM

Economists at the University of Illinois on March 26 published an analysis illustrating how COVID-19 is reducing demand for transportation fuels, including ethanol. Meanwhile, several plants have announced they will idle or reduce production.

Marquis Energy continues operations during COVID-19 pandemic
Tuesday, March 31, 2020 7:39 AM

Hennepin, Illinois-based Marquis Energy sent a letter to its farmers and community members on March 27 announcing the company’s ethanol plant is “economically and logistically positioned to remain open" despite the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Corn use for fuel ethanol reaches 469 million bushels in January
Tuesday, March 31, 2020 7:37 AM

The USDA recently released its Grain Crushings and Co-Products Production report for March, reporting that corn use for fuel ethanol production for January was down from the previous month, but up from January 2019.

EPA issues guidance on future SRE actions, RFS compliance date
Saturday, March 28, 2020 3:25 AM

The U.S. EPA on March 27 announced it intends to develop an “appropriate implementation and enforcement response” to the Tenth Circuit Court’s SRE ruling “after appeals have been resolved and the court’s mandate has been issued."

Pacific Ethanol to idle more than 60% of capacity by end of March
Saturday, March 28, 2020 2:50 AM

Pacific Ethanol on March 27 said it is idling capacity in response to the unprecedented decline in gasoline and ethanol demand due to the impacts of COVID-19 and announced it is providing high-quality alcohol for the production of hand sanitizer.

EPA announces enforcement discretion policy for COVID-19 pandemic
Saturday, March 28, 2020 2:46 AM

The U.S. EPA on March 26 announced g a temporary policy regarding EPA enforcement of environmental legal obligations during the COVID-19 pandemic. The policy applies to civil violoations duirng the outbreak.

Events and Ideas
Friday, March 27, 2020 10:30 PM

FROM THE APRIL ISSUE: Editor Lisa Gibson previews the magazine, including feature articles about bacteria research, cooling tower maintenance and cleaning, coverage of IRFA's January Renewable Fuels Summit, and more.

Bits of the Batch
Friday, March 27, 2020 9:30 PM

FROM THE APRIL ISSUE: Researchers use new molecular biology tools to identify inhabitants of ethanol plant bacterial communities.

Rex idles NuGen plant, explores carbon sequestration project
Friday, March 27, 2020 6:25 AM

Rex American Resources released fiscal fourth quarter financial results on March 26. The company announced a potential carbon sequestration project under development at its One Earth Energy plant in Illinois and discussed the impact of COVID-19.

USDA appoints Jekanowski, Wu to leadership positions
Friday, March 27, 2020 6:17 AM

The USDA has announced the appointment of Mark Jekanowski as chairman of the World Agricultural Outlook Board and David Wu as deputy assistant secretary for administration. Both previously served at the USDA in other positions.

Bion brings scientific expertise to RFA membership
Friday, March 27, 2020 6:00 AM

Bion has joined the Renewable Fuels Association as an associate member. Bion, based in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, is a testing company that specializes in analytical standards, reference material, and proficiency testing programs.

From the 3 E's to the 3 C's
Friday, March 27, 2020 4:07 AM

FROM THE APRIL ISSUE: Touting ethanol as a source of clean octane, it's ability to reduce carbon, and allowing consumer choice in the marketplace.

Cooling Considerations
Friday, March 27, 2020 3:42 AM

FROM THE APRIL ISSUE: Experts discuss different approaches to optimize cooling towers and limit summer production slowdowns.

Kcoe Isom hosts crisis planning webinar
Thursday, March 26, 2020 6:34 AM

Kcoe Isom hosted a webinar on March 24 that discussed crisis planning and employee communication during the COVID-19 pandemic. The event also discussed emergency family and medical leave and offered tips for working remotely.

Biofuel groups welcome Trump’s decision not to appeal SRE ruling
Thursday, March 26, 2020 6:18 AM

Ethanol and farm groups today welcomed the Trump Administration’s decision not to seek a re-hearing of a recent ruling by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit that struck down certain small refinery exemptions under the RFS.

USGC issues letter to export customers on COVID-19
Thursday, March 26, 2020 6:17 AM

The U.S. Grains Council on March 23 published a letter to its global customers that provides answers to questions related to the continued operations of U.S. grain production and export facilities during the COVID-19 pandemic.

CropEnergies supplies ethanol for use in disinfectants
Thursday, March 26, 2020 6:13 AM

European ethanol producer CropEnergies has announced plans to alter its operations and partially shift production from fuel ethanol to neutral alcohol in order to help meet the need for disinfectants during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Andersons shuts down ethanol plants for extended maintenance
Thursday, March 26, 2020 6:11 AM

The Andersons announced March 24 that it will idle its Element ethanol plant in Colwich, Kansas, for an extended maintenance and repair period and will take spring maintenance shutdowns at the four facilities owned by its joint venture with Marathon.

The Case for 95 RON Now
Thursday, March 26, 2020 4:04 AM

FROM THE APRIL ISSUE: A case for moving beyond the RFS to a 95 RON minimum octane standard.

Policy, Predictions and Positivity
Wednesday, March 25, 2020 11:30 PM

FROM THE APRIL ISSUE: Industry leaders at the Iowa Renewable Fuels Summit in January looked back at 2019, offered predictions for 2020, and held hope for the ethanol industry’s future.

Oil refineries challenge Tenth Circuit Court ruling on SREs
Wednesday, March 25, 2020 6:44 AM

Wynnewood Refining and HollyFrontier filed petitions with the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals on March 24 requesting a rehearing en banc of the court’s Jan. 24 ruling that struck down three SREs approved by the U.S. EPA.

USDA: Progress made on implementation of US-China trade deal
Wednesday, March 25, 2020 6:42 AM

The USDA and Office of the U.S. Trade Representative on March 24 announced continued progress with the implementation of agriculture-related provisions of the U.S.-China Phase One Economic and Trade Agreement, including those related to DDGS.

US, Brazil classify ethanol industry as essential during pandemic
Wednesday, March 25, 2020 6:37 AM

The governments of the two largest ethanol producing countries, the U.S. and Brazil, have each classified ethanol plant employees as essential critical infrastructure workers during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Maine enacts tax credit for renewable chemicals
Wednesday, March 25, 2020 6:34 AM

Maine Gov. Janet Mills on March 18 signed a bill establishing a tax credit for renewable chemical production that provides an 8 cent per pound tax credit for eligible products beginning on Jan. 1, 2021.

RFA: New report shows ethanol industry fueled by veterans
Wednesday, March 25, 2020 6:32 AM

A study released this week on employment in the U.S. energy sector shows that America’s ethanol industry employs a significantly larger share of military veterans than any other segment of the energy industry.

Business Briefs
Wednesday, March 25, 2020 4:57 AM

FROM THE APRIL ISSUE: Growth Energy names American Biofuels Visionary, RFA announces 2020 Industry Award, Grains Council plans trade strategy, E15 added to two Nebraska retail sites, and Valero promotes three.

Ethanol producers help produce hand sanitizer to combat COVID-19
Tuesday, March 24, 2020 6:16 AM

The U.S. government on March 18 relaxed regulations to allow producers of fuel ethanol and beverage alcohol to shift production to ethanol-based hand sanitizers. Days later, several ethanol plants are taking action to help combat COVID-19.

Senators urge Trump not to challenge court’s SRE ruling
Tuesday, March 24, 2020 6:11 AM

A bipartisan group of 16 senators sent a letter to President Trump on March 19 urging him not to challenge a Jan. 24 ruling by the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals that struck down three small refinery exemptions (SREs) approved by the U.S. EPA.

USDA Rural Development implements remote operational status
Tuesday, March 24, 2020 6:09 AM

USDA Rural Development on March 20 announced that it has implemented enterprise-wide remote operational status, effective immediately, to help protect the health of employees, customers and the greater community during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Study shows environmental benefit of ethanol vehicles
Tuesday, March 24, 2020 6:07 AM

A recent study by researchers at the Great Lakes Bioenergy Research Center explores the environmental benefits of decarbonizing the U.S. light duty transportation fleet, and the role ethanol can play in limiting global temperature increases.

RFA: Casey’s becomes 5,000th station to offer E85
Tuesday, March 24, 2020 6:02 AM

The number of fuel stations now offering Flex Fuel E85 has reached an important milestone. A Casey’s store in Ankeny, Iowa, has become the 5,000th station nationwide to sell E85, according to the Renewable Fuels Association.

Oil refiners to challenge Tenth Circuit Court decision on SREs
Saturday, March 21, 2020 3:56 AM

Wynnewood and HollyFrontier filed a petition with the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals on March 19 announcing they will seek a rehearing en banc of the court’s Jan. 24 ruling that struck down three SREs approved by the U.S. EPA.

UNICA releases updated data, helps fight COVID-19 pandemic
Saturday, March 21, 2020 3:54 AM

UNICA, the Brazilian sugarcane industry association, recently released ethanol production and sales data for February and has announced its members are donating alcohol for use in hand sanitizer to help contain the spread of COVID-19.

Ocean Park: 2019 ethanol mergers and acquisitions below average
Saturday, March 21, 2020 3:51 AM

Last year’s low margins impacted mergers and acquisitions in North America’s ethanol industry, according to a report released by Ocean Park. Total North American ethanol capacity bought and sold during 2019 was the second lowest in five years.

Biofuels Caucus urges Trump to let court ruling on SREs stand
Saturday, March 21, 2020 3:47 AM

The bipartisan Biofuels Caucus sent a letter to President Trump on March 17 urging the administration to forgo an appeal of the Tenth Circuit Court’s Jan. 24 ruling that struck down three small refinery exemptions (SREs) approved by the U.S. EPA.

Ethanol industry seeks to protect employees during pandemic
Friday, March 20, 2020 8:26 AM

The ethanol industry is struggling with demand destruction resulting from COVID-19, an oil price war, ongoing trade disputes, and SREs. “Folks, this is not going to be good, and our biggest concern by far is our people," said Al-Corn CEO Randy Doyal.

EPA: 25 SRE petitions now pending for compliance year 2019
Friday, March 20, 2020 8:19 AM

The U.S. EPA released updated small refinery exemption (SRE) data on March 19, reporting that two additional SRE petitions have been filed under the Renewable Fuel Standard for compliance year 2019.

Recovering phosphorus from DDGS can help reduce pollution
Friday, March 20, 2020 8:17 AM

A new study from University of Illinois examines the best way to recover phosphorus from dried distillers grains with solubles (DDGS) as a co-product, which can then potentially be used as fertilizer for corn and soybean production.

SIRE navigates ‘uncharted territory’ of COVID-19, falling prices
Thursday, March 19, 2020 6:59 AM

Mike Jerke, president and CEO of Southwest Iowa Renewable Energy, dicusses ways in which his company is working to help flatten the curve of the COVID-19 outbreak while protecting employees and ensuring plant operations can continue.

Coalition urges EPA to not appeal Tenth Circuit Court decision
Thursday, March 19, 2020 6:47 AM

The coalition that won a unanimous court decision against the U.S. EPA continued its call for the agency to not appeal the decision by launching a new social media campaign aimed at encouraging policymakers and the EPA to do the right thing.

Gevo discusses plans to produce low carbon ethanol, jet fuel
Thursday, March 19, 2020 6:44 AM

Officials from Gevo Inc. discussed plans to produce renewable aviation fuel and upgrade the company’s biorefinery in Luverne, Minnesota, to produce low carbon ethanol during a fourth quarter earnings call, held March 17.

Ethanol prices hit historic lows during pandemic
Thursday, March 19, 2020 1:53 AM

Ethanol producers are being impacted by the pandemic, oil war, trade disputes and small refinery waivers. With prices reaching as low as 94 cents per gallon as of March 18, ethanol producers are bracing for difficult decisions and possible closures.

ACE: Economic stimulus needed amid COVID-19 market fallout
Thursday, March 19, 2020 1:51 AM

As the COVID-19 spreads across the U.S., threatening American lives and adversely impacting the nation’s economy, the transportation fuel sector will be especially hard hit. Declines in consumer gasoline use will shrink demand for corn ethanol.

RFA welcomes new member Barchart
Thursday, March 19, 2020 1:49 AM

The Renewable Fuels Association has announced that Barchart has recently joined the organization as a new associate member. Based in Chicago, Barchart is a global provider of market data and intelligence to the financial, media and commodity sectors.

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