In The News

Ethanol

Apr 29, 2022

NCGA Thanks EPA for Following Through on President Biden’s E15 Emergency Waiver

Key Issues: EthanolFarm Policy

Author: Julie Busse

The following is a statement from NCGA President Chris Edgington on today’s announcement from the EPA issuing an emergency fuel waiver for E15 sales.   “We thank EPA Administrator Michael Regan for following through on the president’s recent announcement in Iowa and taking the action needed to ensure drivers maintain access to lower-cost, lower-emissions E15,” said NCGA president Chris Edgington. “We also agree with EPA’s assessment that treating E15 the same as regular fuel in the market maintains air quality. By acting today, and commitment to act through the summer, the Biden Administration will help increase the fuel supply by relying on more domestic biofuels and reducing our dependence on oil.”   Environmental Benefits of E15:  E15 has a lower RVP than E10 and, therefore, results in lower evaporative emissions, the goal of RVP regulation. Blending more ethanol to make E15 displaces and dilutes the most toxic aromatic hydrocarbon components in gasoline, reducing...

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Apr 12, 2022

Corn Growers Thank President Biden for Counting on Biofuels to Lower Costs, Boost Energy Independence

Key Issues: EthanolFarm Policy

Author: Bryan Goodman

President Biden announced today that his administration would use existing authority to prevent drivers from losing access to lower-cost and lower-emission E15, a higher ethanol blend often marketed as Unleaded 88.   The president made the announcement at a POET ethanol production facility in Menlo, Iowa, and NCGA President Chris Edgington participated in the event.   “Corn growers thank President Biden for ensuring drivers continue to have access to a lower-cost fuel choice and acknowledging how renewable ethanol helps reduce prices, lower emissions and improve our nation’s energy security,” said Edgington. “Farmers are proud to contribute to cleaner, less expensive fuel choices.” A 2021 court decision resulting from oil industry efforts to limit the growth of higher ethanol blends was set to end full-market access for E15 beginning this summer, absent action from the Biden administration or Congress.   With a host of factors driving up gas prices, including Russia’s invasion...

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Apr 8, 2022

Biofuel & Ag Leaders Respond to EPA Decision to Reverse Refinery Exemptions, Decry Lack of Real Market Impact

Key Issues: EthanolFarm Policy

Author: Bryan Goodman

Top farm and biofuel leaders responded to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) decision to reverse 31 controversial small refinery exemptions (SREs) granted in August 2019 and expressed disappointment with EPA’s decision to allow refineries with previously-granted SREs to not have to take additional actions to meet their obligations under the RFS by blending more biofuel or purchasing additional Renewable Identification Numbers (RINs). Biofuel and farm advocates had challenged the exemptions in the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals, forcing the agency to reevaluate its approval for select oil refiners to avoid their obligations under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS). Leaders at Growth Energy, Renewable Fuels Association, National Corn Growers Association, Clean Fuels Alliance America, American Coalition for Ethanol, and National Farmers Union released the following statement on yesterday's decision from EPA:      “While today’s decision is an important step in reversing...

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Mar 24, 2022

Corn Growers Call on the Biden Administration to Use Emergency Authority to Maintain Consumer Access to Lower-Cost Fuel

Key Issues: EthanolFarm Policy

Author: Bryan Goodman

Corn grower leaders from 19 states sent an open letter to President Biden today calling on him to use the administration’s existing emergency authorities to tap more homegrown renewable fuels, like ethanol, to help stabilize energy markets and lower the price of fuel for consumers.   The letter comes as Russia’s attack on Ukraine has impacted energy markets, increasing oil and gas prices.   The letter called on the president to prevent consumers from losing the choice of E15, often marketed as Unleaded 88, a higher ethanol blend that costs less and reduces emissions. A 2021 court decision resulting from oil industry efforts to limit the growth of higher ethanol blends reversed year-round market access for E15, beginning this summer, absent action from the Biden administration or Congress.   “We urge your administration to act to prevent consumers from losing access to a lower-cost fuel option on June 1,” the letter read. “As gas prices have increased following the rise in oil...

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Mar 18, 2022

Wrong Again: It’s Time to Get the Facts Straight on Corn Production and Ethanol

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Julie Busse

I’ve been farming for a long time, so I’ve heard all the arguments about corn and ethanol – and they’re always wrong. The Washington Post Editorial Board suggested waiving the renewable fuel standard would help address outcomes of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Instead, the Washington Post should be crediting farmers’ increased productivity and efficiency, resulting in higher yields using fewer resources, meeting food and fuel needs to keep prices down.   What’s happening in the world today is disheartening. I recognize how fortunate we are to live in this country where we will plant crops this spring without a war coming through our fields. Corn farmers’ yields are up more than 25 bushels per acre since 2007 on a similar acreage footprint, and we are here to answer the call and help feed and fuel the world.   For the current 2021-22 corn marketing year, USDA estimates corn ending stocks at 1.5 billion bushels. We carried out 1.2 billion bushels in the 2020-21 marketing year....

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Mar 4, 2022

Biofuel & Ag Leaders Call on White House to Provide Relief at the Pump Through Higher Blends of Biofuels

Key Issues: EthanolFarm Policy

Author: Bryan Goodman

To provide relief at the pump in response to the ongoing Russia-Ukraine crisis while simultaneously reducing carbon emissions from the transportation sector, six farm and biofuel organizations wrote to President Biden urging his administration to use existing authority to allow for the year-round sale of gasoline blended with up to 15% ethanol (E15).   In a letter to the White House, American Farm Bureau Federation, Growth Energy, National Corn Growers Association, National Farmers Union, National Sorghum Producers, and the Renewable Fuels Association explained that an immediate move to restore year-round sales of E15 can ease the impact of oil market disruptions and surging gas prices caused by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.   “As American families continue to confront skyrocketing gas prices, we write today to urge the Administration to take a simple action that can provide immediate relief at the pump while simultaneously reducing carbon emissions from the transportation...

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Feb 25, 2022

#ICYMI: RFA Salutes National Corn Growers Association With 2022 Industry Award

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Julie Busse

The National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) received the Renewable Fuels Association’s 2022 Ethanol Industry Award in recognition of the group’s dedicated and sustained efforts on behalf of the ethanol industry over the last 40 years. The award, RFA’s highest recognition, was presented at the 27th annual National Ethanol Conference earlier this week in New Orleans.   “RFA and NCGA have worked together for decades on policy, market development, research, and promotional efforts aimed at growing our nation’s ethanol industry,” Cooper said. “NCGA CEO Jon Doggett was personally involved in the very early negotiations with RFA, the oil industry, and other ag groups in an effort that ultimately led to the passage of the Energy Policy Act of 2005. That legislation created the RFS and set the ethanol industry on a growth path few could have imagined. And it was NCGA that laid out the first vision for a 15 billion bushel corn crop and 15 billion gallons of ethanol by 2015 that became the...

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Feb 17, 2022

NCGA Staff Person Receives TOBI Award at Growth Energy Conference

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Julie Busse

During the recent Growth Energy Executive Leadership Conference, NCGA Communications Director Julie Busse received the TOBI Award for Public Affairs. Seven individuals were recognized for their leadership within the biofuels industry in the categories of Get Biofuel, Public Affairs, Technical, Advocacy, Market Development, Global Market Development and Membership.   In 2021, NCGA expanded its communications efforts, thanks to support from state partners and the Ethanol Action Team, to be on T.V., had sponsored content on Politico, were the sponsors of the AgriPulse Deep Dive on Biofuels, and were seen on digital platforms. The campaign’s goal was to reach policymakers and staff and highlight the environmental benefits of corn ethanol.   Also, at the conference, NCGA CEO Jon Doggett, Board Chairman John Linder and First Vice President Tom Haag participated in a panel with Growth Energy CEO Emily Skor, discussing the opportunities for continued collaboration and current issues...

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Feb 16, 2022

Senators Highlight Environmental, Economic Value of Ethanol and the Renewable Fuel Standard

Key Issues: EthanolFarm PolicyHigh-Octane Low-Carbon

Author: Bryan Goodman

Three U.S. senators today highlighted the environmental and economic benefits of corn ethanol during a hearing on the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) held before the U.S. Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works.   During the hearing, Sens. Joni Ernst (R-Iowa), Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.) and Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich.), who serve on this important committee, discussed the transportation emission reductions that result from renewable fuels, ethanol’s contribution to lowering fuel prices and agriculture’s role in producing and improving renewable fuels, among other issues.   “We appreciate Sens. Duckworth, Ernst and Stabenow for setting the record straight when it comes to agriculture and ethanol,” said National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) president Chris Edgington. “We were very pleased to have them highlight and include NCGA’s statement, which shows the environmental benefits of ethanol, into the hearing record.”   NCGA’s statement to the committee explains how...

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Feb 9, 2022

NCGA President Applauds EPA for Attempt to End RFS Waiver Abuse, Calls on Agency to Commit to Timely Release of Strong RFS Volume Standards

Key Issues: EthanolFarm Policy

Author: Bryan Goodman

The National Corn Growers Association submitted comments this week applauding the Environmental Protection Agency’s efforts to rein in exemptions provided to small oil refineries while calling on the agency to commit to the timely implementation of strong blending requirements under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS).   “The RFS is a successful energy and economic policy for consumers, our environment and for farmers,” Iowa farmer and NCGA President Chris Edgington said. “A return to consistent and timely RFS administration in 2022 is key to maximizing carbon and pollutant reductions, expanding our energy supply to lower consumer costs, and supporting rural economic growth.”   Edgington indicated in his comments that NCGA strongly supports the proposed 2022 RFS volumes, which include an implied volume of 15 billion gallons for conventional renewable fuel and an increase in total renewable fuel, while expressing opposition to proposed retroactive reductions from final 2020...

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Feb 2, 2022

Key U.S. Senators Call on EPA Administrator to Prioritize Renewable Fuels Standard as NCGA Calls on Farmers to Weigh In on Rule

Key Issues: EthanolFarm Policy

Author: Bryan Goodman

Allies of corn growers in the U.S. Senate sent a letter to EPA Administrator Michael S. Regan today calling on him to prioritize the Renewable Fuels Standard.   Sens. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) and Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), with the support from a bipartisan group of 12 senators, called on the administrator to maintain proposed blending requirements for 2022; deny all pending Small Refinery Exemptions; eliminate proposed retroactive cuts to the 2020 renewable volume obligations; and set 2021 RFS volumes at the statutory levels.   “The RFS is a significant tool for EPA to reduce the carbon footprint of our transportation sector,” the senators wrote. “By taking the above actions, the EPA can quickly restore integrity, stability, and growth to the RFS and the U.S. biofuel sector while ensuring that the program continues to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, diversify our fuels, drive down gas prices, strengthen our national security, and drive rural economic opportunity.” NCGA’s leadership...

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Jan 4, 2022

NCGA to EPA: Renewable Fuel Standard Important to Farmers, Helps Lower Emissions

Key Issues: EthanolFarm Policy

Author: Bryan Goodman

Timely implementation of meaningful Renewable Fuels Standard volumes provides certainty in agriculture markets, reduces emissions and lowers fuel prices, NCGA told U.S. Environmental Protection Agency officials today during the agency’s public hearing on proposed RFS volume standards for 2022 and 2021 and proposed reconsideration of 2020 volumes.   “Corn farmers produce low-carbon feedstock for low-carbon ethanol, offering immediate and affordable emissions reductions and a vital pathway for agriculture to help address climate change,” NCGA President Chris Edgington told EPA. “But our success helping you meet these commitments depends on EPA sending a clear and firm message that volume requirements will be enforced.”   Edgington urged EPA to move quickly to finalize the strong 2022 volume proposal and the denial of pending RFS waiver petitions, actions that would put more clean fuels in the market and repair RFS integrity. He also told EPA that proposed retroactive cuts to 2020...

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Dec 9, 2021

Farm, Biofuel Groups Ask EPA to Resolve Summertime E15 Barrier

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Julie Busse

To improve air quality and remove arcane barriers to innovation and consumer choice in the retail fuel marketplace, six national farm and biofuel organizations have asked the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to enact regulations requiring lower-volatility conventional gasoline blendstock in the summertime. This would result in lower tailpipe and evaporative emissions during the summer ozone control season and improve air quality.   In a letter to EPA Administrator Michael Regan, the Renewable Fuels Association, American Farm Bureau Federation, Growth Energy, National Corn Growers Association, National Farmers Union, and National Sorghum Producers said reducing the volatility of gasoline by just 1 pound per square inch (psi) would yield significant environmental benefits.   Regarding air quality, the six organizations referenced and attached a new study using EPA modeling tools, showing that reducing the vapor pressure of conventional gasoline blendstock by 1 psi “…would be...

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Dec 7, 2021

NCGA Reacts to EPA Proposed Biofuel Blending Volumes

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Bryan Goodman

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency today released delayed proposed biofuel blending volumes under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS). The agency proposed an increase in the total biofuel blending requirement for 2022 of 22.77 billion gallons, which allows for an implied ethanol volume of 15 billion gallons. EPA also proposed to add 250 million gallons in response to a 2017 court decision, with the remainder of that 500-million-gallon court remand pledged to come in next year’s rulemaking.   The proposal includes a total renewable fuel volume of 18.52 for 2021, and a 2.96-billion-gallon reduction from the previous final 2020 volume requirement, the first time EPA has proposed a retroactive RFS volume reduction.   In addition, EPA proposed denial of the 65 pending RFS refinery waiver petitions. The U.S. Department of Agriculture separately released COVID assistance funding for biofuel producers that Congress approved last year and committed an additional $100 million to...

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Nov 18, 2021

NCGA Urges EPA to Issue Delayed Renewable Fuel Standard Volumes

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Bryan Goodman

The Environmental Protection Agency issued a proposal today to further extend Renewable Fuel Standard compliance deadlines for 2019 and later because the agency has yet to propose and finalize 2021 and 2022 RFS volume requirements.   National Corn Growers Association President Chris Edgington made the following statement on the proposal:   “Through this year, we’ve heard from EPA that its intent is to uphold the law and put the RFS back on track following the waiver abuse of recent years. With 2022 just around the corner, EPA has yet to propose RFS volumes for the coming year, adding uncertainty to the renewable fuels marketplace. Rather than prolong the uncertainty, we urge the EPA to follow the statute by issuing RFS volumes that continue to provide for 15 billion gallons of ethanol. This will allow consumers to take advantage of the economic and environmental benefits of clean, renewable fuel like ethanol, which lowers fuel prices for drivers today.”

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Oct 15, 2021

NCGA to Administration Officials: Use of Higher Ethanol Blends Will Cut Gas Prices

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Bryan Goodman

As the White House met this week with executives from the oil and gas industry seeking help with high fuel prices, NCGA reminded administration officials that corn growers offer an immediate solution for lowering fuel prices.     NCGA issued a response on social media, saying: “@WhiteHouse Trying to cut gas prices? How about blending more biofuels – homegrown ethanol costs less than gasoline, and even the small step of choosing a 15% ethanol blend at the pump today saves drivers 10 cents or more per gallon while cutting carbon emissions too.”   This latest action is part of a larger campaign by NCGA to demonstrate the benefits of ethanol to policymakers. When it comes to fuel price concerns, ethanol currently costs less per gallon than gasoline, so blending more ethanol lowers fuel prices while also reducing greenhouse gas emissions.   NCGA has been working closely with Washington policymakers, reminding them that they can address these issues by:   Ensuring consumers...

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Sep 27, 2021

NCGA to EPA: Ethanol Needed to Lower Greenhouse Gas Emissions

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Bryan Goodman

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency should focus on opening pathways for all low-carbon fuels and technologies, such as ethanol, as it seeks to lower greenhouse gas emissions, the National Corn Growers Association explained to EPA in comments submitted today.   The agency’s written comments come as EPA hears from stakeholders on its proposed rule to set more stringent greenhouse gas emissions standards for vehicles for model year 2023 to 2026. Unfortunately, the role that higher blends of low-carbon ethanol can play in meeting new standards was conspicuously absent from EPA’s proposal.   “EPA missed an opportunity in this proposal to broaden the solutions that reduce transportation emissions by beginning a transition to low-carbon, high-octane fuels to advance climate, air quality and environmental justice goals with these and future standards,” NCGA President John Linder stated in the comments. “Furthermore, alternative fuel vehicles such as flex-fuel vehicles, which have...

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Sep 9, 2021

NCGA, RFA, Growth Energy Statement on RVP Rehearing Petition Denial

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Bryan Goodman

Today, Growth Energy, the National Corn Growers Association, and the Renewable Fuels Association released the following statement after the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals denied their petition for rehearing regarding the recent American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers, et al. vs. EPA decision, in which the court vacated a 2019 regulation allowing year-round sales of a fifteen percent ethanol fuel blend (E15).   “Our petition for rehearing was an opportunity for the D.C. Circuit to remedy a decision that runs counter to legal precedent and which, if maintained, threatens our nation’s rural economy and progress on moving toward a clean energy future.   “Today’s petition denial is another hurdle to ensuring year-round access to low-carbon E15, however, due to timing, American drivers and retailers will be able to finish out the E15 summer driving season without disruption to their access to cleaner fuel choices at the pump. Moving forward, we continue to push for a permanent...

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Sep 9, 2021

Group Spotlights Biofuel Benefits for California’s Carbon-Neutral Future

Key Issues: EthanolHigh-Octane Low-Carbon

Author: Julie Busse

In joint comments submitted last week to the California Air Resources Board (CARB), a group of ag and biofuel organizations and companies highlighted the role  renewable fuels like ethanol can and should play in helping the state achieve its goal of reaching carbon neutrality by 2045 or sooner. CARB is in the  process of updating its Scoping Plan, which lays out the path toward achieving the state’s carbon reduction targets.   The comments were signed by leadership of the Renewable Fuels Association, Growth Energy, National Corn Growers Association, Aemetis Inc., Alto Ingredients Inc., Calgren Renewable Fuels, Pearson Fuels, Propel, POET and RPMG. Their letter spotlights recent state-funded research that indicates pathways to carbon neutrality through greater reliance on renewable fuels like low-carbon ethanol.   “The carbon intensity of the fuel continues to drop as farmers and fuel producers invest in better techniques and technologies,” the group writes. “Ethanol in a wide...

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Sep 8, 2021

Biofuel and Ag Leaders Oppose EPA Motion to Remand 2018 SREs without Vacatur

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Ken Colombini

Last night, the Renewable Fuels Association, Growth Energy, National Corn Growers Association, National Biodiesel Board, American Coalition for Ethanol, and National Farmers Union opposed the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) motion to remand but not vacate the 31 small refinery exemptions (SREs) the Trump Administration granted in August 2019. The coalition of biofuel and ag leaders is currently challenging the 31 SREs in the D.C. Circuit, arguing that EPA’s issuance of the exemptions was arbitrary and capricious and exceeded the Agency’s authority under the Clean Air Act.   Together, these leaders provided the following statement in opposition to this motion:   “While it is encouraging that EPA intends to reconsider the 31 SREs granted for the 2018 compliance year, we must oppose EPA’s motion to remand without a deadline and without addressing the SREs’ ongoing damage to the biofuel industry. In addition to seeking a remand of the SREs, the Biden...

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Sep 1, 2021

EP. 23 - Congressional Rep. Cheri Bustos and the Next Generation Fuels Act: A Full Tank of Good Policy

Key Issues: EthanolHigh-Octane Low-Carbon

Author: Dusty Weis

The fifth-term Congresswoman from Illinois is the recipient of the NCGA’s President’s Award.    The Next Generation Fuels Act is poised to reinforce the market for American ethanol, and it’s been introduced in Congress with bipartisan support.   And in this episode of the podcast, we’re joined by Illinois Congresswoman Cheri Bustos, who was honored with the NCGA President’s Award this year for her support as sponsor of the Next Generation Fuels Act.   She’ll outline the specifics of the bill, share the outlook from Washington and detail what you can do to make sure this important piece of legislation becomes law.     Direct Share Link   Transcript   Rep. Cheri Bustos: Creating jobs, opening up opportunities for our family farmers, driving down carbon emissions. All of that happens if we can get the Next Generation Fuels Act passed, this is an opportunity that we have, and I would love to be able to get this signed into law and make this part of how we do business...

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Aug 27, 2021

NCGA’s Linder Tells EPA to Turn to Ethanol to Address Greenhouse Gas Emissions

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Bryan Goodman

Policymakers can meet their ambitious goals of quickly lowering greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by turning to biofuels like ethanol, National Corn Growers Association President John Linder told the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency this week.   “EPA’s proposal for vehicle greenhouse gas emissions standards for 2023 through 2026 is an ambitious increase,” Linder said. “The good news is we don’t have to wait to reduce emissions. Thanks to today’s ethanol, we can use fuel available right now to make a difference.”   His comments came as EPA conducted public hearings on proposed revised emission standards for light-duty vehicles for model year 2023 through 2026 and as the Biden Administration announced a goal of achieving a 50% to 52% reduction in greenhouse gas by 2030. Linder was one of several stakeholders providing input to EPA at the virtual public hearing.   Looking at all possible solutions will ensure the country can take advantage of not only the low-carbon benefits of...

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Aug 26, 2021

Next Generation Fuels Act Provides Key Piece of the Clean Energy Solution

Key Issues: EthanolHigh-Octane Low-Carbon

Author: Bryan Goodman

The National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) today welcomed the reintroduction of The Next Generation Fuels Act (H.R. 5089), legislation to transition gasoline and vehicles to low-carbon, higher octane fuel to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and meet future needs of more advanced vehicles by taking advantage of the benefits of higher ethanol blends. The legislation is sponsored by Rep. Cheri Bustos (D-Ill).   “Ethanol is uniquely positioned to immediately and affordably decarbonize transportation, including through paving the way to future vehicles with greater fuel efficiency and fewer emissions,” said NCGA President John Linder. “The Renewable Fuel Standard was a game-changer for corn farmers, and the Next Generation Fuels Act builds on that success in advancing our commitment to providing the cleanest, most efficient and lowest cost energy solution.”   The bill would require that automakers phase in higher levels of clean, low-carbon octane by model year 2031. The...

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Aug 17, 2021

Biofuel and Farm Group Intervenors File Petition for Rehearing of D.C Circuit RVP Decision

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Julie Busse

Growth Energy, the National Corn Growers Association (NCGA), and the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) filed a petition for rehearing with the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals regarding the recent American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers, et al. vs. EPA decision, in which the court vacated a 2019 regulation allowing year-round sales of a fifteen percent ethanol fuel blend (E15). The petition asks the full court to rehear the case because of significant legal errors in the three-judge panel’s decision, handed down on July 2nd.   Together, the three national organizations stated: “If allowed to stand, this court’s decision to vacate EPA’s rulemaking to allow E15 to be sold year-round will have devastating consequences for the market expansion of homegrown biofuels. Petitioning for a rehearing is a critical next step in giving biofuel producers and farmers a fair shot in the marketplace and providing American drivers with better access to cleaner fuel choices. We are hopeful that...

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Aug 9, 2021

Biofuel and Ag Leaders Call for Accountable Life Cycle Analysis for SAF Tax Credits

Key Issues: EthanolFarm Policy

Author: Julie Busse

On Friday, Growth Energy, American Farm Bureau Federation, National Biodiesel Board, National Corn Growers Association, National Farmers Union, and the Renewable Fuels Association sent a letter to the U.S. Senate Committee on Finance and the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Ways and Means outlining its recommendations for a sound and effective sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) tax credit.   In an effort to decarbonize transportation and reduce aviation emissions, Congress is considering new legislation to establish a tax credit to promote and develop robust domestic SAF production. To be successful, the ag and biofuels coalition notes in their letter, the tax credit must be based on accurate carbon accounting in life cycle analysis (LCA) led by the U.S. Department of Energy:   “Numerous members of our respective organizations are poised to produce SAF or sustainable feedstocks for SAF. Many others are looking to work toward participation in the full value chain in the...

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Aug 5, 2021

NCGA: Ethanol Crucial in Helping President Meet Emission Reduction Goals

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Bryan Goodman

President Biden today announced proposed revisions to the vehicle fuel efficiency and emissions standards through model-year 2026 and a non-binding executive order setting a goal of making half of new vehicles sold in 2030 electric or plug-in hybrid electric vehicles. Automakers have previously announced similar goals.   “Time is of the essence if we’re going to meet the President’s ambitious goals for reducing emissions,” said John Linder, president of the National Corn Growers Association. “The good news is we don’t have to wait until 2030 for new vehicles and technologies to reduce emissions. Thanks to today’s ethanol, we can use fuel available right now, in the vehicles we’re all driving today, to make a difference.”   Using higher volumes of ethanol is an immediate way to lower greenhouse gas emissions, and more low-carbon liquid fuels will be needed to decarbonize transportation on a timely and affordable basis, Linder added.   “We encourage policymakers to focus more...

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Jul 29, 2021

EP. 22 - Transportation Energy Reality Check, with Fuels Institute Executive Director John Eichberger

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Dusty Weiss

Corn and ethanol still have an important role to play in fueling America’s transportation needs.   Between a couple of recent high-profile court cases and all the hype surrounding electric vehicles, stakeholders in the corn and ethanol industry are looking for a little reassurance right now.   But the reality of the transportation energy puzzle is a little more complex than what you’ve heard on the news.   So in this episode, we’re joined by John Eichberger, executive director of the Fuels Institute, for a reality check about the present and future of the transportation energy sector. Together with NCGA CEO Jon Doggett, he discusses the shifting makeup of the American transportation fleet, the hurdles to mass adoption that electric vehicles still face, the probable impact of recent court cases, and why ethanol remains the best option for decarbonizing American transportation today.         Direct Share Link   TRANSCRIPT   John Eichberger: There are very low carbon...

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Jul 26, 2021

NCGA Seeks Action Team, Committee Members, Leadership

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Cathryn Wojcicki

The National Corn Growers Association is seeking applications from members interested in working on 2022 NCGA action teams, which begin Jan. 1, 2022. This service provides growers an opportunity to play an active role in shaping their industry’s future and becoming a part of the national agricultural leadership community.   The action teams specialize in important subject areas, including Ethanol; Market Development; Member & Consumer Engagement; Production Technology Access; Risk Management & Transportation; Stewardship; and Sustainable Ag Research. Positions are also available on Standing Committees, which include CornPAC and the Resolutions Committee.    Qualified applicants must be an NCGA member or prospective member and/or contribute to their state checkoff program, if applicable. Ideal candidates should have an interest or expertise in a particular area relevant to the team focus.   Action Teams represent a cross-section of corn production. The teams may utilize staff,...

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Jul 21, 2021

New NCGA Campaign Promotes Environmental Benefits of Ethanol in Washington D.C.

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Julie Busse

The National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) launched a new campaign in Washington D.C., outlining the environmental benefits of corn ethanol that can be realized today. The digital campaign is made up of non-skippable video units on streaming services, video on local websites within Washington D.C. and social media marketing on Facebook and Instagram. Additionally, NCGA was the sole sponsor of the latest Agri-Pulse Podcast Deep Dive series on biofuels and sponsored content in Politico. All of these efforts explore not only the environmental benefits of ethanol, but the policy demand needed to ensure the industry is on a level playing field moving forward in the transportation and energy sectors.   “It is important for us to have a voice in our nation’s capital where decisions that impact how the ethanol industry operates are made,” said NCGA Ethanol Action Team (ETHAT) Chair and Iowa Farmer Mark Recker. “The timing of these communications efforts comes at a critical time for the...

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Jul 20, 2021

NCGA Expresses Opposition to Anti-Ethanol Legislation

Key Issues: EthanolFarm Policy

Author: Bryan Goodman

The National Corn Growers Association strongly opposes a bill that was introduced in the U.S. Senate today, referred to as the “Corn Ethanol Mandate Elimination Act,” which would remove the implied conventional biofuel blending requirement from the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS), increasing harmful emissions and use of fossil fuels.   “This bill is ill conceived and would have a devastating impact on air quality, the diversity of our energy supply, fuel prices and rural economies,” said NCGA president John Linder. “Blending ethanol into the fuel supply is one of the most effective ways to lower carbon emissions to combat climate change and replace the most toxic components of gasoline.”   Today’s corn growers sustainably produce more corn on less land with fewer resources than when the RFS was enacted and are committed to further improvements in sustainability. These extraordinary results have been accomplished as food price inflation has decreased as ethanol production has...

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Jul 14, 2021

NCGA Supports Legislation to Provide E15 Market Access Solution

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Julie Busse

The National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) thanks bipartisan members of Congress in both the House and Senate for their continued support of corn growers and rural America through the introduction of legislation that would ensure higher blends of ethanol, specifically E15, are available in the marketplace year-round. Led by Representatives Angie Craig (D-Minn.), Adrian Smith (R-Neb.) and co-chairs of the House Biofuels Caucus, 22 House members introduced H.R. 4410, the Year-Round Fuel Choice Act. In the Senate, Senator Deb Fischer (R-Neb) and Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), led introduction of the Consumer and Fuel Retailers Choice Act with 10 bipartisan cosponsors.   “Corn growers stand behind the many benefits of higher ethanol blends like E15 and support ensuring its continued access to the marketplace on the same terms as standard ten percent blends. E15 is lower in carbon, tailpipe and evaporative emissions, not to mention lower in price, so it’s no surprise oil companies have...

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Jul 2, 2021

NCGA Supports New Bill to Close Door on RFS Waiver Abuse

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Julie Busse

The National Corn Growers Association thanks Representative Randy Feenstra (R-Iowa) and Angie Craig (D-Minn.) for introducing new legislation today to prevent future Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) waiver abuse in response to last week’s Supreme Court decision, clarifying the intent of the law that small refineries must have received continuous RFS exemptions in order to have an exemption to extend.   “Corn growers thank Representatives Randy Feenstra and Angie Craig for taking the lead on helping close the door on RFS waiver abuse,” said National Corn Growers Association President John Linder. “With 70 waiver petitions pending, corn growers join Members of Congress in urging EPA to use the tools they do have from the Tenth Circuit Court decision and EPA’s stated support for the Court’s opinion to resolve those waivers and move forward with putting the RFS back on track with strong volume requirements.”   For more information on the new House SRE bill, click Read More

Jul 2, 2021

GROWTH ENERGY, RFA, NCGA DISAGREE WITH COURT DECISION TO REVERSE E15 YEAR-ROUND

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Julie Busse

The D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals reversed a 2019 rule by the Environmental Protection Agency that lifted outdated restrictions on the sale of a fifteen percent ethanol fuel blend (E15). The case, American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers, et al. vs. EPA, was a challenge by oil refiners to the rulemaking that allowed the year-round sale of E15. Growth Energy, the Renewable Fuels Association, and the National Corn Growers Association were intervenors on behalf of EPA in the case and issued a joint statement expressing disappointment in the court’s ruling:   “We disagree with the court’s decision to reject EPA’s move to expand the RVP waiver to include E15, a decision that could deprive American drivers of lower carbon options at the pump and would result in more carbon in the atmosphere.   “We are working to ensure the continuity of E15 sales through the 2021 summer season and beyond. This decision could impact summertime sales across all non-RFG areas where nearly two-thirds...

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Jul 1, 2021

NCGA Supports Biofuel Infrastructure Legislation

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Julie Busse

The National Corn Growers Association thanks Sens. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) and bipartisan co-sponsors for the introduction of three new bills that would help expand the use of higher ethanol blends in the marketplace and thanks bipartisan House members for introducing and supporting similar legislation.     “The three pieces of legislation introduced by Senators Klobuchar, Ernst and Thune offer pathways to include biofuels in ongoing congressional discussions over an infrastructure package and clean energy incentives,” said NCGA Director of Public Policy and Renewable Fuels Kathy Bergren. “Ethanol’s low carbon and environmental benefits should be recognized and utilized in any infrastructure package. Getting higher blends of ethanol into the marketplace and more vehicles on the road that can use those higher blends further reduces greenhouse gas emissions, provides consumers more options, and gives farmers a stable market for their sustainable corn crop.”   The Biofuel...

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Jun 25, 2021

Biofuels Coalition Disappointed in Supreme Court Decision to Overturn Tenth Circuit’s RFS Refinery Exemption Ruling

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Julie Busse

A coalition of renewable fuel and farm groups expressed “extreme disappointment” in today’s U.S. Supreme Court decision overturning a 2020 appellate court ruling that struck down three improper small refinery exemptions granted by previous EPA administrators. However, because certain elements of the appellate court ruling were left unchallenged and were not reviewed by the Supreme Court, the groups remain optimistic that the Biden administration will discontinue the past administration’s flagrant abuse of the refinery exemption program.   Today’s decision stems from a May 2018 challenge brought against EPA in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit by the Renewable Fuels Association, the National Corn Growers Association, National Farmers Union, and the American Coalition for Ethanol, working together as the Biofuels Coalition. The petitioners argued that the small refinery exemptions were granted in direct contradiction to the statutory text and purpose of the...

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Jun 21, 2021

NCGA Thanks Members of Congress for Calling on the Administration to Uphold the RFS

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Julie Busse

Last week, agriculture and biofuels leaders in both the House and Senate stood up for the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) in a series of letters and on the Senate floor, advocating for the Biden Administration to set strong 2021 and 2022 RFS volumes and opposing options to waive or exempt refiners from the RFS.     Senate and House Democrats sent a letter to EPA Administrator Michael Regan and National Economic Council Director Brain Deese on Wednesday saying, “As your Administration continues to push for meaningful and rapid climate action, biofuels can and should play an important role in decarbonizing vehicle emissions. Recent studies demonstrate that using ethanol in place of gasoline reduces greenhouse gas emissions by almost half, while biodiesel cuts greenhouse gas emissions by an average of 74 percent. Exempting refiners of their obligations to blend biofuel would mean increased reliance on oil and more carbon emissions – a result this country cannot afford if we are to...

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Jun 16, 2021

Industry Representatives Outline the Future of Ethanol at Farm Futures Summit

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Julie Busse

Today, at the Farm Futures Business Summit in Iowa, both corn farmers and ethanol industry leaders shed light on the future of ethanol. The National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) sponsored the panel with Iowa corn farmer and NCGA Ethanol Action Team (ETHAT) member Kelly Nieuwenhuis, Renewable Fuels Association CEO Geoff Cooper, and Growth Energy Senior Vice President Mike Lorenz.   RFA CEO Geoff Cooper kicked off the panel discussion, outlining the landscape of the industry, noting that ethanol is a renewable, high-octane, hydrogen-rich low-carbon molecule with an incredibly bright future. “We have a lot of room to grow in the world market,” Cooper stated. “Corn ethanol’s average reduction in greenhouse gas emissions compared to gasoline is 46%. No other fuel at the same scale can make that claim.”   Growth Energy SVP of Market Development Mike Lorenz, who spent 20 years with Sheetz, discussed the expansion of higher blends of ethanol, like E15. “The future of ethanol is...

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May 28, 2021

Road Trips, Playlists and Ethanol – The Right Combination for Summer

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Julie Busse

This article was written by John Linder, National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) President who also farms in Edison, Ohio and published in Agweb's Guest Commentary, May 27, 2021.   Memorial Day is the “unofficial” kickoff to summer - planting is winding down, the school year is coming to an end, some good corn-fed products are going on the grill, and people are actually planning summer vacations again. There are so many songs that come to mind when I think of summer and road trips……On the Road Again, Travelin’ Man, Highway to H…..wait…..how about Life is a Highway instead. Where am I going with this?   A few months ago, I wrote an opinion piece, The Secret to Clean Air is No Secret. It’s Ethanol. A lot has happened in that time that makes that piece even more relevant today than it was then. There’ve been two new studies highlighting the environmental benefits of renewable corn ethanol. Just this month, a new analysis from the U.S. Department of Energy’s Argonne National...

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May 20, 2021

Ethanol Credited for Its GHG Reductions in USDA’s Climate Strategy

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Neil Caskey

Today, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) published the 90-Day Progress Report on Climate-Smart Agriculture and Forestry.  The report is in response to President Biden’s Executive Order on Tackling the Climate Crisis at Home and Abroad which directed USDA to collect stakeholder input on how to best use programs, funding and financing capacities to encourage the voluntary adoption of climate-smart agricultural practices.    The report focuses on USDA’s commitment to developing tools to assist farmers in quantifying benefits of climate smart practices and supporting research and data collection to support carbon measurement and verification capabilities. The progress report mentions that USDA could help support carbon credit prices but emphasizes the use of private markets to compensate farmers for practices.   The document acknowledges the role of agriculture in decarbonizing the transportation sector and stated, “The growth of the U.S. biofuels sector, driven in part by...

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May 19, 2021

U.S. Court of Appeals Vacates Three Small Refinery Exemptions from the Previous Administration

Key Issues: EthanolFarm Policy

Author: Julie Busse

National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) President John Linder made the following statement after three small refinery exemptions granted by the previous administration were overturned today by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit.   “We are pleased the court has vacated these waivers that were granted unnecessarily in the final hours of the previous administration. The waivers would have accounted for roughly 260 million ethanol equivalent gallons. We look forward to working with EPA Administrator Regan to uphold the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) and appreciate his early actions to change course when it comes to RFS waivers.”

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May 7, 2021

New Study Finds Corn Ethanol Champions Lower Greenhouse Gas Emissions

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Julie Busse

A new analysis from the U.S. Department of Energy’s Argonne National Laboratory concludes greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from corn ethanol are now 44% to 52% lower than gasoline, thanks to improvements in the efficiency of both corn and ethanol production. The retrospective study analyzed data from  U.S. corn and ethanol production between 2005 and 2019, finding a 23% decrease in corn ethanol’s carbon intensity. (This reduction is due to improvements in corn yield, decreases in fertilizer intensity inputs, increases in ethanol yields, and reductions in ethanol plant energy use.) From the 15 years studied, an additional 140 million metric tons (MMT) GHG emission reductions were made possible by the reduction in corn ethanol’s carbon intensity.   “Relying on updated data and the best science show ethanol is truly a low carbon fuel, with the potential to become even more low carbon, thanks to how farmers continue to improve corn production practices and increased yields that produce...

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Apr 26, 2021

Biofuels Coalition Readies for Oral Arguments in Supreme Court

Key Issues: EthanolFarm Policy

Author: Ken

In oral arguments scheduled for Tuesday morning, four agriculture and biofuel organizations will argue that the U.S. Supreme Court should affirm a unanimous 2020 decision from 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 Renewable Fuel Standard are eligible for future extensions of the compliance exemption.   The four organizations comprising the Biofuels Coalition—the Renewable Fuels Association, the National Corn Growers Association, National Farmers Union, and the American Coalition for Ethanol—will share time during Tuesday’s oral arguments with the U.S. Department of Justice, which will be representing the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. EPA announced in February that it supports the Tenth Circuit’s decision.   “EPA had exceeded its authority by creating new exemptions when the statute only authorizes the agency to extend the temporary, time-limited...

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Apr 19, 2021

NCGA Submits Comments to EPA on E15 Fuel Dispenser Labeling and Underground Storage Tanks

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Julie Busse

The National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) today submitted comments to the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) proposed rule to update fuel pump labeling for E15 and improve the process for retailers to demonstrate compatibility of their equipment so they can offer higher ethanol blends.   “As producers of the primary feedstock for ethanol, corn growers support expanding availability of higher ethanol blends such as E15, an immediate, available, and affordable solution to lowering carbon emissions in transportation,” NCGA President John Linder wrote in the organization’s comments. “Finalizing this proposal will remove additional barriers to retailers offering E15 and provide an immediate fuel decarbonization opportunity.”   Updating EPA’s fuel pump label and supporting compliance demonstration for underground storage tanks (USTs) will benefit both consumers and retailers. NCGA’s comments urged EPA to adopt proposed updates to the E15 label and make further revisions to...

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Apr 13, 2021

RFA, Growth Energy and NCGA Defend Year-Round E15 in Court

Key Issues: EthanolFarm Policy

Author: Ken Colombini

Today, the D.C. Circuit Court will hear oral arguments in American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers, et al. vs. EPA, a case in which oil refiners challenge the Environmental Protection Agency’s 2019 rulemaking that paved the way for the year-round sale of E15. As intervenors in the case, the Renewable Fuels Association, Growth Energy and the National Corn Growers Association will also argue in support of upholding the E15 rule in court today.   In a joint statement, RFA, Growth Energy and NCGA said, "Oil refiners are simply trying to reclaim more market share by blocking American drivers from year-round access to a more affordable, lower-carbon fuel at the pump. Studies have repeatedly shown that the volatility of E15 is lower than that of E10. And other recent studies find that a nationwide switch from E10 to E15 would significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions –equivalent to removing approximately 3.85 million vehicles from the road. If the refiners had their way and...

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Apr 5, 2021

The Potential for Corn and the Animal Ag Sector Through Next-Generation DDGS

Key Issues: EthanolAnimal Agriculture

Author: Julie Busse

Opportunities for new corn fractionation technologies at dry mills create value by further separating out the various components of corn to allow differential utilization of the subsequent product streams. Feed rations and specific ingredients for animals can be optimized by separating corn into its most valuable components.   Dried Distillers Grains with Solubles (DDGs) are a co-product of the ethanol production process and used 1.075 billion bushels of corn in 2020. DDGs are a valuable feed ingredient for cattle, swine, poultry, and aquaculture as they are rich in the protein, fat, minerals, yeast, and vitamin that animals need.   DDGs were never initially engineered, as they were an accidental discovery derived from the ethanol manufacturing process. As these next generation DDGs products become increasingly competitive in their nutritional composition, ethanol manufacturers have the opportunity to diversify their portfolio, plugging into newly created revenue sources. If an...

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Mar 31, 2021

Biofuels Coalition Welcomes Amicus Briefs in Supreme Court RFS Case

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Ken Colombini

The Renewable Fuels Association, National Corn Growers Association, National Farmers Union, and American Coalition for Ethanol (collectively referred to as the “Biofuels Coalition”) thanked the states of Iowa, Nebraska, Illinois, Michigan, Minnesota, Oregon, South Dakota, and Virginia for filing an amicus curiae brief in the Supreme Court today in support of the Coalition’s arguments in HollyFrontier Cheyenne Refining, LLC, et al., v. Renewable Fuels Association, et al. The Coalition also expressed its appreciation to the other biofuel and agriculture groups that filed amicus briefings in support of the biofuels industry.   HollyFrontier and other refiners are asking the Supreme Court to overturn the January 2020 ruling of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit in Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) v. EPA, in which the court found EPA exceeded its authority in granting certain small refinery waivers. Recognizing that “the renewable fuel and agriculture industries are the...

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Mar 24, 2021

Biofuels Coalition Files Brief in Supreme Court Case

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Julie Busse

Today, the Renewable Fuels Association, the American Coalition for Ethanol, the National Corn Growers Association and the National Farmers Union, working together as the Biofuels Coalition, filed their response brief in the Supreme Court case HollyFrontier Cheyenne Refining, LLC, et al., v. Renewable Fuels Association, et al.   In the brief, the coalition argues in support of the challenged Tenth Circuit decision, which held that only small refineries that have remained continuously exempt from obligations under the Renewable Fuel Standard program are eligible for future extensions of the compliance exemption.   “We believe the Tenth Circuit got it right the first time, and we will continue to defend the court’s ruling and stand up for the farmers and renewable fuel producers harmed by the granting of these illegal waivers,” the coalition said. “We strongly believe the Tenth Circuit Court’s ruling is consistent with both the Clean Air Act and Congressional intent.”   The...

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Mar 11, 2021

Regan Confirmed to Lead EPA

Key Issues: EthanolFarm Policy

Author: Liz Friedlander

The U.S. Senate on Wednesday confirmed Michael Regan, on a 66-34 vote, to serve as Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).   The EPA oversees implementation of the Renewable Fuels Standard (RFS), a top priority for corn farmers.   Following his nomination by President Bident, NCGA President John Linder said, “The National Corn Growers Association looks forward to working with Regan on issues of importance to corn farmers overseen by the EPA, most notably the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS). The RFS was a game-changer for corn farmers nearly 20 years ago but previous administrations have failed to uphold the law and implement it as Congress intended. NCGA hopes to have an open dialogue with the new Administrator upon his confirmation and work together to uphold the RFS, reduce emissions through greater use of biofuels, ensure farmers’ access to crop protection products based on sound science and seek practical solutions to issues important to...

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Feb 22, 2021

Farm, Biofuel Leaders Embrace EPA’s New Position on Tenth Circuit’s Small Refinery Waiver Decision

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Ken Colombini

Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced that it is supporting the Tenth Circuit Court’s January 2020 decision in Renewable Fuels Association et al. v. EPA. After careful review of the decision, EPA’s new leadership agrees with both the court and the biofuel litigants that small refinery exemptions were meant to be temporary and that only pre-existing exemptions may be “extended” by the agency.    EPA states that it “agrees with the court that the exemption was intended to operate as a temporary measure and, consistent with that Congressional purpose, the plain meaning of the word ‘extension’ refers to continuing the status of an exemption that is already in existence.”     The four petitioners in the case—the Renewable Fuels Association, National Corn Growers Association, American Coalition for Ethanol and National Farmers Union—released the following statement:   “Our nation’s biofuel producers and farmers appreciate EPA’s careful review of the Tenth...

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Feb 4, 2021

Senate Shows Support for Ethanol

Key Issues: EthanolFarm Policy

Author: Liz Friedlander

A flurry of positive action in support of renewable fuels took place in the U.S. Senate this week.   On Wednesday, Sens. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., and Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, led a letter signed by 13 other farm-state Senators to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to highlight the “pressing concern of restoring integrity to the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) and to alert you to pressing policy decisions that the Administration must make to bring regulatory certainty to the transportation fuels sector of the economy.”   Also, Wednesday, Sen. John Thune, R-S.D., along with Klobuchar, reintroduced the Adopt GREET Act, legislation that would require the EPA to update its greenhouse gas modeling for ethanol and biodiesel.   “This bill will ensure EPA uses the most recent science and data to accurately measure the greenhouse gas emission reduction benefits of ethanol,” said NCGA President John Linder, president of the National Corn Growers Association. “The Department of...

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Jan 28, 2021

New Study Highlights the Environmental Benefits of Corn-Ethanol Showing a Reduction in Carbon Emissions by Almost 50 Percent

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Julie Busse

A new study released this week further emphasizes the need and benefits of corn ethanol in the nation's fuel supply. Scientists from Harvard University, Tufts University and Environmental Health & Engineering Inc., in Carbon Intensity of Corn Ethanol in the United States: State of the Science showed that corn ethanol reduces greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 46 percent, compared to gasoline.   “This study underscores what we have known for a long time,” says NCGA President John Linder. “Corn farmers continue to use sustainable practices to grow an affordable and abundant crop that is the solution to combating climate issues. This study is another reason why we need to continue moving to higher blends of ethanol as the baseline for the nation's fuel supply.”   “Updated analysis such as this reflects changes in corn production that reduce carbon intensity and updated land use data that shows land use is a ‘minor contributor’ to ethanol’s profile,” Linder added. “Relying on...

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Jan 27, 2021

Court Seeks Status Report on EPA Compliance with Order on Renewable Volumes

Key Issues: EthanolFarm Policy

Author: Liz Friedlander

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit today directed the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to submit a status report every 60 days “on its progress in complying with the court’s remand” stemming from the July 2017 ruling in Americans for Clean Energy v. EPA.  The 2017 ruling required EPA to address its improper waiver of 500 million gallons of 2016 renewable fuel blending requirements under the Renewable Fuel Standard.   Today’s order from the D.C. Circuit was in response to a motion filed in December 2020 by biofuel and farm organizations, in which the groups asked the court to enforce its 2017 decision by requiring EPA to fully restore the 500 million gallons that were inappropriately waived from the 2016 RFS requirements. While the court denied the motion, the groups welcomed the court’s requirement that EPA provide status reports every 60 days on its progress in responding to the court’s decision.   The coalition, which includes the Renewable...

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Jan 25, 2021

Crappie Masters-NCGA-RFA Partnership Highlights Benefits of E10 in Marine Engines

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Julie Busse

Combating the myths that exist about the use of gasoline blended with 10-percent ethanol has been the primary goal of the partnership between Crappie Masters, the National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) and the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA). The Crappie Masters National Tournament Trail kicked-off over the weekend with a two-day national qualifier at St. Johns River in Deland, Fla., where Robert and Tommy Sellers took home top honors and once again the winners powered their way to victory with E10 fuel.  NCGA and RFA are co-title sponsors for the fifth year in a row.   “We are looking forward to another great season being teamed up with the National Corn Growers Association and Renewable Fuels Association coming off our sixth straight year of all winners of the national tournament trail using E10 fuel in their boat,” said Crappie Masters President Mike Vallentine. “The anglers have been receptive to learning about ethanol fuel and now have full confidence after seeing...

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Jan 19, 2021

NCGA: EPA Undercuts Corn Farmers, Ethanol Again

Key Issues: EthanolFarm Policy

Author: Liz Friedlander

National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) President John Linder today made the following statement after the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) granted oil refineries two Small Refinery Exemptions (SREs), or waivers, for 2019 Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) blending and one SRE for 2018.    “It shouldn’t be a surprise to those who have been paying attention for the last four years that this EPA would undermine corn farmers and the ethanol market on its way out the door. There is no reason for the EPA to take this action now, especially with the Supreme Court set to consider the Tenth Circuit ruling in the new term. Corn farmers need an EPA that will follow the law as written and intended by Congress. NCGA looks forward to working with the Biden Administration to rectify the harm caused by this EPA’s abuse of small refinery exemptions and restore the integrity of the Renewable Fuel Standard.”   Today’s waivers roughly account for 260 million ethanol equivalent gallons. NCGA last...

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Jan 15, 2021

EPA Takes Positive Steps Forward for Ethanol

Key Issues: EthanolFarm Policy

Author: Liz Friedlander

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) today issued proposed regulatory changes related to required pump labeling and infrastructure compatibility for E15. This is a long-awaited proposal and gives stakeholders, including NCGA, the opportunity to provide comments that will be considered by the incoming Biden Administration to complete this rulemaking process to address retail barriers.   The agency today also issued a request for comments on Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) waiver requests made by oil state Governors and refiners in 2020.   “Today’s announcement is a positive step forward for corn growers,” said NCGA Public Policy Director, Renewable Fuels, Kathy Bergren. “NCGA looks forward to working with the incoming Biden Administration to restore RFS integrity and stop RFS waiver abuse.  We also stand ready to work with them on a final rule that supports greater E15 distribution and sales by addressing labeling and infrastructure barriers.”   EPA’s announcements today...

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Jan 13, 2021

U.S. Farm & Biofuel Leaders Condemn Rumors of Last-Minute RFS Waivers

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Liz Friedlander

America’s top biofuel and farm advocates called on President Trump to reject last-minute attacks on the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) and American farmers throughout the country, a plan reported to be under consideration by Andrew Wheeler, administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The following joint statement was issued by the Advanced Biofuels Business Council, Fuels America, Growth Energy, the National Biodiesel Board, the National Corn Growers Association, the National Farmers Union, and the Renewable Fuels Association: “Reports indicate that the EPA is considering a last-minute flood of oil industry waivers, along with other regulatory favors, that would sabotage the rural recovery and shatter this administration’s promises to supporters across the heartland. There is no justification for President Trump, Andrew Wheeler, and their allies to award a massive, short-sighted handout to oil companies at the expense of farm communities. While no one benefits from...

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Jan 11, 2021

Tenth Circuit Court Plaintiffs Respond to Supreme Court Action

Key Issues: Ethanol

The U.S. Supreme Court has announced it will review the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit’s decision in RFA et al. v. EPA,  which overturned three inappropriately granted small refinery exemptions under the Renewable Fuel Standard. The following is a statement from the four co-petitioners in the lawsuit: the Renewable Fuels Association, National Corn Growers Association, National Farmers Union and American Coalition for Ethanol.    “Our groups believe the Tenth Circuit got it right the first time, and we will continue to defend the court’s ruling and stand up for the renewable fuel producers and farmers who have been harmed by the granting of these waivers. We strongly believe the 10th Circuit Court’s ruling is consistent with the Clean Air Act and Congressional intent, and we are confident that the Supreme Court will ultimately affirm the Tenth Circuit’s decision.”

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Jan 8, 2021

Farm & Biofuel Coalition Rejects EPA’s Excuses for Failing to Comply with 2017 Court Order

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Katie Muckenhirm, Ethanol Today

Today, a coalition of the nation’s largest biofuels and agricultural trade groups filed its reply in support of its motion in the U.S. Court of Appeals in the District of Columbia. The motion, originally filed on November 23, 2020, asks the court to enforce its 2017 decision requiring the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to address its improper waiver of 500 million gallons of biofuel demand in the 2016 renewable volume obligation (RVO).      The coalition, which includes Growth Energy, Renewable Fuels Association, National Biodiesel Board, American Coalition for Ethanol, National Corn Growers Association, National Farmers Union, and National Sorghum Producers issued a statement following the filing:      “EPA should not be allowed to hide behind claims that restoring 500 million improperly waived gallons is an administrative burden that would inconvenience oil industry interests. What’s at stake is the proper implementation of the RFS and the rural communities that...

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Dec 18, 2020

NCGA Statement: Regan nominated to Lead EPA

Key Issues: EthanolFarm Policy

Author: Liz Friedlander

National Corn Growers Association President John Linder today made the below statement following the news that President-elect Joe Biden has nominated Michael Regan to serve as Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator.   “The National Corn Growers Association looks forward to working with Regan on issues of importance to corn farmers overseen by the EPA, most notably the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS). The RFS was a game-changer for corn farmers nearly 20 years ago but previous administrations have failed to uphold the law and implement it as Congress intended. NCGA hopes to have an open dialogue with the new Administrator upon his confirmation and work together to uphold the RFS, reduce emissions through greater use of biofuels, ensure farmers’ access to crop protection products based on sound science and seek practical solutions to issues important to agriculture.”

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Dec 16, 2020

Farm, Biofuels, Trade Leaders Label Brazil Decision ‘Devastating’ For U.S. Ethanol

Key Issues: EthanolTrade

Author: Liz Friedlander

A statement from: Ryan LeGrand, President and CEO, U.S. Grains Council Emily Skor, CEO, Growth Energy Geoff Cooper, President and CEO, Renewable Fuels Association Jon Doggett, CEO, National Corn Growers Association The U.S. Grains Council, Growth Energy, the Renewable Fuels Association and the National Corn Growers Association issued the following statement in response to the Brazilian government’s decision to let the current tariff rate quota (TRQ) expire, replacing it with a 20 percent tariff on all imports of U.S. ethanol: “Brazil’s decision to impose a 20 percent tariff on all U.S. ethanol imports is devastating for the U.S. ethanol industry, the future of cooperation and coordination between our nations. Not only does this decision risk destroying the great progress our two nations have made as global leaders in ethanol production, it marks a dramatic turn in our bilateral trade relationship. “Today, Brazilian ethanol receives unfettered access into the U.S. market,...

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Dec 9, 2020

EPA, DOJ Oppose Refiner Request for Supreme Court Review of Tenth Circuit Decision on RFS Exemptions

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Liz Friedlander

In a filing submitted yesterday, the Department of Justice recommended against Supreme Court review of the Tenth Circuit Court’s ruling earlier this year that invalidated several small refinery exemptions issued by EPA under the Renewable Fuel Standard. The DOJ filing is in response to a petition submitted in September by HollyFrontier Corporation and CVR Energy, in which the oil refiners ask the Supreme Court to review the Tenth Circuit’s January decision.   The petitioners in the original Tenth Circuit Court challenge—the Renewable Fuels Association, National Corn Growers Association, National Farmers Union, and American Coalition for Ethanol—welcomed the government’s brief opposing Supreme Court review of the appeals court decision. RFA, NCGA, NFU and ACE plan to file their own brief with the Supreme Court today echoing the points raised by DOJ and adding others in opposing review of the Tenth Circuit’s decision.    In January, the Tenth Circuit invalidated three exemptions...

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Dec 8, 2020

Biofuels Coalition Files Brief Challenging 31 Small Refinery Exemptions in 2018

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Ken Colombini

The Renewable Fuels Association, Growth Energy, National Corn Growers Association, National Biodiesel Board, American Coalition for Ethanol, and National Farmers Union today filed a brief challenging EPA’s August 2019 decision to exempt 31 small refineries from their obligations to comply with the Renewable Fuel Standard in 2018. Collectively known as the Biofuels Coalition for this case, the group submitted its filing to the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals, arguing that EPA lacked the authority to issue such exemptions and that it acted in an arbitrary and capricious manner in attempting to do so.   In its brief, the Coalition asserts some of the same arguments that the Renewable Fuels Association, NCGA, NFU, and ACE successfully made in the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals against three small refinery exemptions, including the fact that EPA lacked the authority to extend small refinery exemptions that had lapsed in earlier years. The Coalition also took on EPA’s failure to...

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Dec 4, 2020

Setting the Stage for the Next Generation Fuels Act

Key Issues: EthanolFarm PolicyHigh-Octane Low-Carbon

Author: Liz Friedlander

The National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) has long sought new and creative ways to build demand for our product. Since 2005, the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) has helped to promote both energy independence and a stable, prosperous U.S. economy.   The Next Generation Fuels Act (H.R. 8371) is the next step in corn farmers’ efforts to build on the success of the RFS to continue growing the role of low carbon, affordable and renewable ethanol in the fuel supply. Not only does this legislation yield economic benefits for rural America, but it also results in common sense environmental benefits.   The introduction of the bill follows several years of work by corn farmers to boost long term corn demand for clean, affordable ethanol. But introduction of this legislation is just the beginning of a long process.   The current Congress is set to adjourn by mid-December, making the next week a critical time to raise awareness and build additional support for the Next Generation Fuels...

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Dec 1, 2020

Lending a Helping Hand – State Corn Grower Associations Partner with Ethanol Plants to Distribute Hand Sanitizer

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Julie Busse

The coronavirus pandemic flipped the world on its head and knocked farmers off our feet when it started its spread. But instead of giving in, we showed the true spirit of rural America by helping our neighbors out. Hand sanitizer suddenly became a vital necessity, and ethanol facilities shifted their production capabilities to meet this sudden spike in demand.   State associations jumped in to help with the distribution. The Illinois Corn Growers Association partnered with other farm groups to distribute sanitizer to retailers to keep them in the field through the critical planting period. “I thought it was important to help the community during this crisis. It made the most sense to purchase products made right here in Illinois and distribute them across the state. Logistics was the trickiest part,” Rodney Weinzierl, executive director of Illinois Corn, said.   The New York Corn and Soybean Growers Association teamed up with Western New York Energy to deliver sanitizer to...

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Nov 23, 2020

Farm & Biofuel Leaders Urge Courts to Hold EPA Accountable on Improper 2016 Waiver

Key Issues: Ethanol

Today, a coalition of the nation’s largest biofuels and agricultural trade groups filed a motion in the U.S. Court of Appeals in the District of Columbia asking the court to enforce its 2017 decision requiring the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to address its improper waiver of 500 million gallons of biofuel demand in the 2016 renewable volume obligation (RVO).     The coalition, which includes Growth Energy, Renewable Fuels Association, National Biodiesel Board, American Coalition for Ethanol, National Corn Growers Association, National Farmers Union, and National Sorghum Producers issued a statement following the filing:     “It is simply unconscionable that EPA would so brazenly ignore a federal court’s order. The agency must do right by America’s farmers and biofuel producers and supporters. Together, our coalition represents millions of rural families, who should not have to resort to more court proceedings to hold EPA accountable to the law. It’s well past...

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Nov 10, 2020

Watch now! Unleashing the Power of Ethanol: NCGA and Growth Energy Town Hall

Key Issues: EthanolHigh-Octane Low-Carbon

Author: Julie Busse

The National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) and Growth Energy recently held a town hall, discussing exciting ethanol initiatives and other opportunities on the horizon for corn growers and biofuel producers. Growth Energy CEO Emily Skor and NCGA President John Linder participated in the Town Hall with Farm Journal’s Chip Flory.   “We need all the markets we can, and we need market-based solutions,” Linder told viewers. Linder outlined the market potential of getting E15 in California, which is 750 million gallons of ethanol or 260 million bushels of corn. Linder also outlined the market potential of a high-octane low-carbon fuel with the Next Generation Fuels Act, telling viewers eventually the annual usage of corn would be 1.8 billion bushels   Linder and Skor outlined the latest policy priorities for the biofuel and ag industry, opportunities for growth in the domestic and global marketplace, the path to increased consumer choice at the pump via higher ethanol fuel blends,...

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Oct 27, 2020

Working Together to Build Demand

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Geoff Cooper, RFA

This is a guest editorial, provided to NCGA by Geoff Cooper - President and CEO, Renewable Fuels Association.   At the Renewable Fuels Association, our “reason for being” is really quite simple: Build new markets and grow demand. In fact, RFA’s mission statement is crystal clear on this point: Drive expanded demand for American-made renewable fuels and bioproducts worldwide.   We know this cannot be accomplished alone. We realize building demand for ethanol and its coproducts is important not just for RFA’s ethanol producer members, but also for those who supply them—our nation’s corn farmers. For this reason, we are extremely grateful for our strong and long-standing relationship with NCGA and our ability to collaborate on important demand creation programs.   The recent collaboration on the USDA’s Higher Blends Infrastructure Incentive Program is one of the best examples of our work together. With support from the corn growers, RFA was able to assist three dozen retailer...

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Oct 26, 2020

NCGA to EPA: Remove Barriers to Increase Ethanol Demand

Key Issues: EthanolFarm Policy

Author: Liz Friedlander

The National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) today, along with 14 state affiliate associations, urged the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to provide more certainty and use forward-looking data analysis to update policy that will lead to greater flex-fuel vehicle (FFV) production and increased demand for higher blends of ethanol.   The associations submitted comments in response to EPA’s request for input on data sources and analytical approaches on which to base an updated weighting factor (F-factor) for E85 FFVs for model year 2021 and later.   “As the producers of the primary feedstock for ethanol, corn farmers support a forward-looking, consistent, long-term F-factor that provides automakers with greater certainty in compliance crediting for planning vehicle production,” the associations wrote.   “Corn farmers have responded to the demand for clean, renewable fuel with increased productivity. Corn production has improved on all measures of resource efficiency,...

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Oct 23, 2020

DigestData Facilitates Networking Across the Bio-Based Materials Industry Connecting Start-Ups with Trusted Partners

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Julie Busse

In 2018, the National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) partnered with Biofuels Digest to support the creation and launch of DigestData. This online database was designed to facilitate connections and the transfer of information between interested parties working in the biobased industry. The sponsorship by NCGA continues to provide free access for users to search research and find pilot-scale facilities.   This database allows companies, investors, and innovators to easily find facilities that they can contact to scale up their technologies as well as partners that can help commercialize their products. There is a large opportunity to utilize facilities located in areas with major corn production, creating an opportunity to tap the further potential of corn as an industrial feedstock.   “Thanks to NCGA’s support and the other initial sponsors, we’ve been able to hire freelancers twice a year to keep the database up to date as projects and products evolve, and to add new projects...

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Oct 22, 2020

Unleashing the Potential of Ethanol: National Corn Growers Association and Growth Energy hosting a Free Virtual Town Hall Meeting

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Julie Busse

The National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) and Growth Energy will discuss exciting ethanol initiatives and other opportunities on the horizon for corn growers and biofuel producers during a free virtual town hall meeting on Wednesday, October 28 at 11:00 a.m. Central/12:00 p.m. Eastern.   This year, the global pandemic has challenged rural America like never before. But corn growers and ethanol producers have stood together to weather the storm and seize opportunities for growth. Today, these partners remain focused on the same mission: to drive demand and propel this industry forward. That’s why Growth Energy and the National Corn Growers Association are proud to present this virtual town hall where farmers, biofuel producers and leaders of both businesses and communities will hear about:   The latest policy priorities for the biofuel and ag industry Opportunities for growth in the domestic and global marketplace The path to increased consumer choice at the pump via...

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Oct 22, 2020

Market Growth Opportunities for Ethanol: A conversation between an Iowa Corn Farmer and Growth Energy’s CEO

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Julie Busse

There are many opportunities for market growth in the ethanol space, and the National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) works closely with the ethanol associations to help share the story of the benefits of ethanol and drive demand locally and in Washington D.C.   Growth Energy CEO Emily Skor sat down with Iowa corn farmer and Ethanol Action Team Vice Chair Kelly Nieuwenhuis to talk about small refinery exemptions (SRE’s), E15 in the marketplace and future market growth opportunities. “There are a lot of positives looking forward, and I’m looking forward to playing offense instead of defense,” Nieuwenhuis said. “It’s time to get in the lead and share our message and make sure everyone knows the benefits of biofuels.”   During the conversation, Skor mentioned the industry is at a critical juncture for biofuels. “At Growth Energy, we will continue to work with the National Corn Growers and the ethanol industry because when we speak with one voice, that’s when we have the best...

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Oct 21, 2020

Growing Ethanol Markets: E15 Testing to Start in California

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Julie Busse

The National Corn Growers Association (NCGA), along with state corn organizations, ethanol partners and the auto industry, are working with the California Air Resources Board (CARB) to conduct vehicle testing at the University of California at Riverside (UCR). E15 in the California market is important to growing ethanol demand. CARB is a part of the California Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and is the state’s clean air agency.   The testing will demonstrate the environmental benefits and compatibility of E15 in selected makes and models of vehicles. This process will help pave the way for sales of E15 and higher blends of ethanol in California.   “With the scope of research agreed upon and contracts signed, E15 testing in California can move forward,” said JR Roesner, Indiana farmer and Ethanol Action Team (ETHAT) member. “If we can achieve E15 as the base fuel in California, based on estimated total gasoline usage in the state in 2015, the potential market opportunity...

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Oct 8, 2020

NCGA Joins Secretary Perdue Supporting Higher Blends of Ethanol

Key Issues: EthanolFarm PolicyHigh-Octane Low-Carbon

Author: Liz Friedlander

National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) First Vice President Chris Edgington, along with Minnesota Corn Growers Association leadership, today joined U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Secretary Sonny Perdue for an Albert Lea, Minn., event in support of higher blends of ethanol.   Perdue announced today that USDA has invested $22 million out of the up to $100 million in grants available to increase American ethanol and biodiesel sales through the Higher Blends Infrastructure Incentive Program (HBIIP).  According to USDA, the $22 million HBIIP investments are projected to increase ethanol demand by nearly 150 million gallons annually. USDA will announce the remaining grant recipients in the coming weeks.   Further developing the infrastructure needed for higher blends of ethanol continues to be a priority for NCGA. These cost-share grants will support more retailers offering E15 and E85 across the country. Increasing the availability of higher blends today also helps expand...

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Oct 7, 2020

Reaching Retailers to Foster the Adoption of Higher Ethanol Blends

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Julie Busse

The American Coalition for Ethanol (ACE) has been a leader in retailer education when it comes to utilizing and accessing higher blends of ethanol like E15 and E85. ACE’s Flex Fuel Forward website is a resource for retailers by retailers.   Ron Lamberty, Senior Vice President of Market Development, says the organization launched a new tool for retailers, helping them determine the compatibility of existing station equipment with E15.   “A huge number of retailers have E15 compatible equipment and could sell it tomorrow without a big investment,” Lamberty said. “But they don’t know, and most haven’t even checked, because API, AFPM, oil companies and petroleum marketer groups have been telling station owners their equipment isn’t compatible with E15 since it was approved, and replacing it will cost hundreds of thousands of dollars. We just want them to check because a lot of them will be shocked to find out they can add E15 for next to nothing.”   The National Corn Growers...

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Oct 5, 2020

High-Octane Low-Carbon Fuels: The Importance to Corn Farmers and Consumers

Key Issues: EthanolHigh-Octane Low-Carbon

Author: Julie Busse

A high-octane low-carbon (HOLC) fuel in the marketplace, once fully implemented, has the potential to increase ethanol consumption by more than 5 billion gallons. That’s equal to over 1.8 billion bushels of new annual corn demand. Not only is a HOLC fuel good for corn farmers, but it also benefits consumers and the environment.   Brian West, former Group Leader for the Fuels and Engines Research Group at the National Transportation Research Center at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL), says based on the engine testing work he’s done, the move to a HOLC fuel just makes sense.   “Ethanol has a high Research Octane Number (RON), which is why it is attractive as a spark-ignition engine fuel,” says West. “At ORNL, we tested an unmodified Ford F-150 with conventional E10 gasoline and splash blended that with more ethanol, to make a 98 RON E25 and found modest improvements in efficiency and the truck was four-tenths of a second faster in an acceleration test. Then, in a series of...

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Oct 2, 2020

Advancing and Driving Demand for Biofuels Through Research at the National Corn-to-Ethanol Research Center

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Julie Busse

The National Corn-to-Ethanol Research Center (NCERC) has expanded its capabilities and offerings over the years, but one thing remains the same; its mission to create opportunities for America’s corn farmers.   NCERC opened its doors, thanks to the work and partnership with the Illinois Corn Growers Association (ICGA), back in 2003. Along with ICGA, NCGA has worked closely with NCERC to help underscore the advantages of renewable corn ethanol.    “Ethanol production in the United States has grown significantly since NCERC opened its doors from roughly 2.8 billion gallons annually to the nearly 16 billion gallons of production today,” said NCERC Executive Director John Caupert. “NCERC has assisted in advancements in fuel ethanol production, with more than 75 products and technologies that have passed through our doors now in the commercial marketplace. These products and technologies are being utilized in every commercial corn ethanol plant operating today, with a significant...

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Sep 29, 2020

American Coalition for Ethanol and Fuel Ethanol Workshop Focus on the Future of Biofuels

Key Issues: EthanolHigh-Octane Low-Carbon

Author: Julie Busse

Looking ahead to the future and setting plants up for success were the primary subjects addressed at the American Coalition for Ethanol (ACE) and Fuel Ethanol Workshop (FEW) virtual meetings.   “Rising Up” was the theme of ACE’s annual meeting, with guest speakers from OPIS, Casey’s General Stores, Pump & Pantry, and a keynote address from the U.S. Department of Agriculture Deputy Secretary Steve Censky.   ACE CEO Brian Jennings addressed conference attendees saying, “These are extraordinary times. Merely playing defense on the RFS and hoping trade wars subside does not constitute a plan to increase ethanol use. At some point in the future, we will look back at 2020, knowing it was the year that defeated us, or the year we took control and got ahead. I hope you join ACE in Rising Up and going on offense to develop these new clean fuel markets to increase ethanol demand.”   You can learn more about ACE’s virtual conference here.   FEW included a pre-workshop on low carbon...

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Sep 24, 2020

Next Generation Fuels Act Paves Way for Future of Renewable Fuels

Key Issues: EthanolHigh-Octane Low-Carbon

Author: Liz Friedlander

The National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) today welcomed the introduction of The Next Generation Fuels Act, legislation to transition to a higher octane fuel in order to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and meet future needs of more advanced vehicles. Corn growers support a low carbon octane standard as a means toward boosting long term corn demand for clean, affordable ethanol.   The Next Generation Fuels Act, introduced by Rep. Cheri Bustos, D-Ill., recognizes the high octane, low carbon benefits of corn ethanol.   Establishing a new 98 Research Octane Number (RON) standard for gasoline and requiring that sources of additional octane result in at least 30 percent fewer greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions than unblended gasoline, will ensure the progress already made to lower emissions through cleaner renewable fuels continues. Through advanced engine design features that take advantage of this new fuel, automakers will be able to increase engine performance and significantly...

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Sep 16, 2020

Peterson Effort to Address RFS Waivers Moves Forward

Key Issues: EthanolFarm Policy

Author: Liz Friedlander

The House Committee on Energy and Commerce Tuesday released legislation containing provisions of legislation led by House Agriculture Committee Chairman and Congressional Biofuels Caucus Co-Chair Collin Peterson, D-Minn., to provide transparency into the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) granting of small refinery exemptions (SREs), or waivers.   The Clean Economy Jobs and Innovation Act (H.R. 4447) would set an annual deadline for refiners to request exemptions from the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) and require EPA to publicly release the name of refiners requesting a waiver, the number of gallons requested to be waived and the number of gallons of biofuel that will not be blended as a result of the waiver. These provisions mirror the policies contained in Peterson’s Renewable Fuel Standard Integrity Act (H.R. 3006).   Providing more transparency to EPA’s waiver process will give farmers, biofuel producers and the public a clearer understanding of EPA’s justification for...

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Sep 15, 2020

Next Generation DDGs and the Potential for Corn and the Animal Ag Sector

Key Issues: EthanolAnimal Agriculture

Author: Julie Busse

Opportunities for new corn fractionation technologies at dry mills create value by further separating out the various components of corn to allow differential utilization of the subsequent product streams. Feed for animals is optimized by separating corn into its most valuable components.   Dried Distillers Grains with Solubles (DDGs) are a co-product of the ethanol production process and used 1.2 billion bushels of corn in 2019. DDGs are a feed ingredient for cattle, swine, poultry, and aquaculture, rich in protein, fat, minerals, yeast, and vitamins.   DDGs were never initially engineered, as they were an accidental discovery derived from the ethanol manufacturing process. As these next generation DDGs products become increasingly competitive in their nutritional composition, ethanol manufacturers have the opportunity to diversify their portfolio, plugging into newly created revenue sources. If an ethanol plant is experiencing a lull in liquid fuel demand, they could offset...

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Sep 14, 2020

NCGA: Denial of Gap-Year Waiver Petitions Positive, Pending Current-Year Waivers Yet to be Addressed

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Liz Friedlander

The National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) today welcomed the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) denial of 54 of 68 pending past-year (2011-2018) small refinery exemptions (SREs), or waivers, to oil refiners. However, 14 gap-year waivers remain under required review at the Department of Energy (DOE). The EPA also has 31 waivers under consideration for 2019 and 2020 Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) compliance years. NCGA President Kevin Ross made the following statement:   “Asking for waivers for nearly ten years ago was a new low by the oil industry to undermine the RFS and rewrite history. Denying these petitions was the obvious answer and farmers are pleased to begin to move past this distraction. We thank our bipartisan supporters in Congress, including Senator Ernst, for their advocacy in upholding the RFS.   “While denial of these past-year waivers is obviously positive news for farmers and biofuel producers, we’re never going to have the certainty we need until the...

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Sep 14, 2020

Brazil Tariff Rate Quota for Ethanol Extended for 90 Days

Key Issues: EthanolTrade

Author: Liz Friedlander

After expiring on August 31 and a 20 percent tariff was temporarily applied to all U.S. ethanol, Brazil’s tariff rate quota (TRQ) has been extended for a further 90 days starting on Sept. 14. National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) CEO Jon Doggett joined Ryan LeGrand, President and CEO, U.S. Grains Council; Emily Skor, CEO, Growth Energy; and Geoff Cooper, President and CEO, Renewable Fuels Association in the below statement:   “The U.S. Grains Council, Growth Energy, the Renewable Fuels Association and the National Corn Growers Association believe the 90-day extension of the TRQ serves neither Brazil’s consumers nor the Brazilian government’s own decarbonization goals, especially while Brazil’s ethanol producers continue to be afforded virtually tariff-free access to the U.S. market. The extension falls during Brazil’s annual inter-harvest period when U.S. ethanol exports to Brazil are traditionally low, causing greater uncertainty for U.S. exporters looking to make selling...

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Sep 10, 2020

Brummette Joins NCGA Washington Office

Key Issues: EthanolNew Uses

Author: Liz Friedlander

Rosy Brummette has joined NCGA’s Washington, D.C. office as Manager of Public Policy for Market Development and Renewable Fuels. Brummette will play a vital role in NCGA’s efforts to expand market opportunities for corn and advocating for the organization’s ethanol and trade policy goals.   Brummette most recently served as a Policy Analyst for the U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry under Ranking Member Debbie Stabenow, D-Mich., where she focused on biofuels, energy, agriculture conservation and climate issues. She played a key role during the 2018 Farm Bill, leading staff-level conference negotiations on the conservation title for the Senator.   “NCGA is pleased to welcome Rosy to our Public Policy team,” said Kathy Bergren, NCGA Public Policy Director, Renewable Fuels. “She brings a wealth of agriculture policy experience that will enable her to hit the ground running and play a key role in advocating for NCGA policy priorities.”   Brummette grew...

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Sep 9, 2020

Ethanol Coalition Welcomes Reports of ‘Gap-Year’ Waiver Petition Denials, Denounces Refiners’ Supreme Court Petition

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Liz Friedlander

The National Corn Growers Association (NCGA), Renewable Fuels Association (RFA), Farmers Union (NFU) and American Coalition for Ethanol (ACE) today welcomed news reports that President Trump has directed the Environmental Protection Agency to reject dozens of so-called “gap year” small refinery exemption petitions intended to circumvent the Tenth Circuit Court’s decision in RFA et al. v. EPA.   Meanwhile, the groups denounced CVR Refining and HollyFrontier Corporation’s last-minute request, filed late on September 4, for the U.S. Supreme Court to review the Tenth Circuit Court’s ruling. The decision in question overturned three improperly granted small refinery exemptions under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS).   NCGA, RFA, NFU and ACE were the four petitioners in the successful Tenth Circuit Court case, in which a panel of judges unanimously found EPA abused its authority by granting small refinery exemptions to CVR Refining and HollyFrontier that were not extensions of...

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Sep 3, 2020

Expanding Access to Higher Blends through Pump Infrastructure

Key Issues: EthanolHigh-Octane Low-Carbon

Author: Julie Busse

Building out the infrastructure needed for future mid-level blends of ethanol continues to be a priority of the National Corn Growers Association (NCGA). Over the past three-years, NCGA and state partners have worked with Wayne Fueling Systems to produce and sell fuel pumps certified to deliver fuel containing up to 25 percent ethanol.   Thanks to this key partnership, NCGA has supported the sale of more than 50,000 new fuel pumps across the U.S., building out the infrastructure needed to support future mid-level blends of ethanol.   “This lays the groundwork for growing ethanol demand and moving the industry forward,” said NCGA Market Development Vice President Jim Bauman. “Corn farmers' support of NCGA’s multi-year fuel pump infrastructure program supports the introduction of higher octane fuels delivered by low-carbon, affordable, corn-based ethanol.”   NCGA also recently partnered with the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA), assisting fuel retailers in applying for the...

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Aug 14, 2020

NCGA Submits Comments on EPA Vehicle Test Fuel Rule

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Liz Friedlander

The National Corn Growers Association today submitted comments to the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) proposed rule on Vehicle Test Procedure Adjustments for Tier 3 Certification Test Fuel. The proposed rule would change vehicle emission test procedures following the update in test fuel from E0 to E10 fuel and would have the effect of discouraging lower carbon fuels such as higher ethanol blends.   “Lower greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from vehicles and improved fuel economy benefit consumers, our environment, and our energy security. Just as updating the test fuel from E0 to E10 reduced GHG emissions by blending cleaner, renewable ethanol with gasoline, E15 and future fuels that blend more ethanol will further reduce emissions and improve fuel economy when used with optimized engines.   “Vehicle test procedures for E10 certification fuel must not create impediments to low carbon fuels, such as E15 and higher blends and the vehicle technologies that help reach our...

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Aug 5, 2020

Virtual Town Hall Features NCGA Corn Board Member

Key Issues: EthanolTrade

Author: Liz Friedlander

The AgTalks virtual town hall discussion continued today in conjunction with what would have been Minnesota IDEA FarmFest. This year’s in-person event was canceled, and sessions held virtually due to COVID-19.   National Corn Board Director and Minnesota farmer Harold Wolle served as a panelist during the town hall to discuss the future of agriculture, with a focus on trade, supply chains and global competitiveness. The town hall gave panelists the opportunity to provide updates from their industries and take questions from conversation participants, including local corn growers.   Wolle highlighted the importance of the ethanol industry, a market that takes more than 35 percent of the annual U.S. corn crop, and NCGA’s efforts to support the industry’s recovery and long-term success.   “In terms of global competitiveness, the expansion of ethanol exports is an opportunity to really move the demand needle for our industry. Global customers are increasingly turning to ethanol...

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Jul 14, 2020

NCGA Mid-Year Report Offers Look at Efforts to Help Corn Farmers Meet the Challenges of 2020

Key Issues: EthanolSustainabilityTradeAnimal AgricultureBiotechnologyConsumer EngagementHigh-Octane Low-CarbonNew UsesProduction

Author: Mark Lambert

Despite marketing and economic challenges and a pandemic, farmer leaders of National Corn Growers Association continue to advocate and work to improve the lot of the nation’s family corn farmers. Some of the steps being taken are covered in a new  2020 mid-year report  released online today.   “2020 began with reason for optimism in our industry. The signing of the USMCA trade deal, emerging corn purchases by China, a successful challenge to EPA granting RFS waivers and approval of year-round sales of E-15 had us all looking toward an economic rebound. Then the Coronavirus pandemic stunned the world,” said Kevin Ross, NCGA president. Through it all, corn farmers continue to go to work.  They answer the bell, responding by putting us on track to produce an abundant crop once again.”   You can view the report here.    

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Jul 2, 2020

NCGA Submits Fueling Regulations Comments to EPA

Key Issues: EthanolFarm Policy

Author: Liz Friedlander

The National Corn Growers Association this week submitted comments to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) on the Agency’s Fuels Regulatory Streamlining proposed rule to update and streamline certain fuel regulations.   Clear and objective regulations around the manufacture and sale of fuels, including existing E85 for use in flex-fuel vehicles, E15, and future mid-level ethanol blends, are important to corn growers.   NCGA President Kevin Ross asked EPA to ensure proposed changes to the definition of gasoline do not add new and unnecessary regulatory burdens for E85, keep pathways to higher ethanol blends open, and build on the successful rule for year-round E15 by addressing additional regulatory barriers to expanding E15 sales.   Ross urged EPA to, “follow through and take action to update E15 labeling and equipment certification requirements. Streamlining E15 labeling and certifying current E10 equipment for E15 would support more retailers offering this fuel to...

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Jul 2, 2020

Agriculture Recognized in House Climate Report

Key Issues: EthanolFarm PolicyHigh-Octane Low-Carbon

Author: Liz Friedlander

The U.S. House Select Committee on the Climate Crisis this week released a report titled, “Solving the Climate Crisis: The Congressional Action Plan for a Clean Energy Economy and a Healthy, Resilient, and Just America.” The report from the Democratic Majority details the Select Committee’s plan for recommended Congressional action to provide climate solutions.   Notably, the report includes several provisions related to agriculture, including an expansion of conservation programs and increased funds for climate-related research, recognizing the positive role agriculture can play in addressing climate change.   The Select Committee also recognizes the benefits of renewable fuels, like ethanol, in reducing carbon emissions. Ethanol already offers much lower carbon emissions than fossil fuels which, by accounting for beneficial farming practices and other improvements, can be further reduced in the future.   NCGA is pleased to see the report acknowledge that high-efficiency...

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Jun 16, 2020

NCGA to Take Part in House Biofuels Caucus Town Hall

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Liz Friedlander

NCGA CEO Jon Doggett will join members of the U.S. House of Representatives Biofuels Caucus and other biofuels leaders for a virtual Congressional Biofuels Caucus Town Hall this Wednesday evening. The open discussion will focus on the challenges, opportunities, and next steps for the ethanol industry.   Corn growers can join the town hall live, Wednesday, June 17, at 5:00 p.m. ET/4:00 p.m. CT on YouTube - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dZiI1Rju7L0&feature=youtu.be .   Corn’s two largest markets, ethanol and animal agriculture, were severely impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, and corn farmers are facing an $89 per acre loss for the 2020 corn crop. NCGA is focused on getting these important markets functioning again and supporting growers throughout this difficult time. The town hall discussion will be an opportunity to learn more about these efforts across the biofuels sector.  

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Jun 16, 2020

Crappie Masters National Tournament Trail in Full Swing

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Julie Busse

The 2020 Crappie Masters National Tournament Trail is back up and running, after delays from COVID-19. This year, Crappie Masters has grown and expanded their reach by adding state chapters.   Brian Sowers, the voice of Crappie Masters, says that a lot of new anglers have been involved this year, because of the expansion which has allowed them to spread the message of using E10 fuel in marine engines.   “Having chapters in the south is a very vital part of sharing our message,” Sowers said in an interview with NCGA. “The southern part of the U.S. has been an area that hasn’t been as receptive to the message of using E10 fuel in their boats. Having the teams down there, who can have a one-on-one conversation about E10, is important.”   Sowers went on to say the primary message they share with anglers is that E10 fuel is the better choice, it’s cleaner for the environment and water and gives boaters better performance and supports America’s corn farmers.   The National Corn...

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Jun 12, 2020

U.S. Farm & Biofuel Leaders Demand Answers on Retroactive EPA Exemptions

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Liz Friedlander

In a letter this week, America’s top biofuel and farm advocates called on the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to offer answers on a new effort to undermine the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS). During a Senate hearing last month, administration officials confirmed their consideration of retroactive small refinery exemptions (SREs) covering previous years. The “gap-filings” are designed to reconstitute a continuous string of exemptions for select oil companies “to be consistent with the Tenth Circuit decision,” thus circumventing court limits on new oil industry handouts at the expense of farmers and biofuel producers.   “These ‘gap filings’ appear to be little more than the latest in a string of oil industry tactics designed to subvert the law and sidestep a court order to uphold the RFS,” wrote the National Corn Growers Association, Growth Energy, the National Biodiesel Board, the Renewable Fuels Association, the American Farm Bureau Federation, the American Soybean...

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May 11, 2020

NCGA Joins U.S. Farm & Biofuel Leaders Petitioning Congress for COVID-19 Relief

Key Issues: EthanolCOVID-19

Author: Liz Friedlander

America’s top biofuel and farm advocates called on House and Senate leaders to ensure the next round of COVID-19 relief does not overlook U.S. ethanol and biodiesel production. The joint letter to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell echoes bipartisan appeals from House and Senate members, as well as governors across the heartland. It was signed by the Renewable Fuels Association, Growth Energy, the National Biodiesel Board, the American Farm Bureau Federation, the National Corn Growers Association, the American Soybean Association, the National Farmers Union, the National Oilseed Processors Association, the National Renderers Association, the National Sorghum Producers, and Fuels America.   “The situation we face is dire,” wrote biofuel and farm advocates. “More than 130 biofuel plants have already partially or fully shut down as motor fuel demand plunged to 50-year lows. America’s biofuel plants purchase annually more than one-third of U.S. corn...

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May 5, 2020

USDA Biofuels Infrastructure Grants Announced

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Julie Busse

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Monday announced additional details on the $100 million in grants available to fuel retailers and distributors under the Higher Blends Infrastructure Incentive Program (HBIIP). HBIIP is intended to increase the sale and use of higher blends of ethanol and biodiesel by expanding infrastructure for renewable fuels derived from U.S. agricultural products.   “American ethanol and biofuel producers have been affected by decreased energy demands due to the coronavirus, and these grants to expand their availability will help increase their use during our economic resurgence,” USDA Secretary Sonny Perdue said.   Perdue first announced this funding in his address to corn farmers at this year’s Commodity Classic in San Antonio.   One of the program requirements outlined by USDA is for all funded equipment to be certified for use with at least 25 percent ethanol blends, an important feature supported by NCGA to ensure the infrastructure funded...

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May 1, 2020

Coalition Opposes API Petition on 2020 RFS Obligations

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Liz Friedlander

A coalition of ethanol and farm groups today sent a letter to the Environmental Protection Agency opposing the American Petroleum Institute’s recent petition requesting reconsideration of the 2020 Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) final rule.   API claims reconsideration of the 2020 RFS rule is necessary in light of the coalition’s recent Tenth Circuit court victory that overturned small refinery exemptions illegally granted by EPA. The successful Tenth Circuit court challenge was brought against EPA by the Renewable Fuels Association, National Corn Growers Association, National Farmers Union, and American Coalition for Ethanol.   Specifically, API argues that the 2020 RFS rule should be revised to eliminate measures that prospectively “reallocate” RFS blending obligations expected to be lost to refinery waivers. API claims reallocation of expected waivers is no longer needed because the Tenth Circuit decision should significantly curtail the number of waivers granted. However, EPA...

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Apr 28, 2020

NCGA Welcomes Ethanol Infrastructure Legislation

Key Issues: Ethanol

The National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) today welcomed the introduction of the Clean Fuels Deployment Act of 2020, legislation from Reps. Abby Finkenauer, D-Iowa, Roger Marshall, R-Kansas, Angie Craig, D-Minn., and Don Bacon, R-Neb., to incentivize the deployment of fueling infrastructure for ethanol blends greater than 10 percent and biodiesel blends greater than 20 percent.   “The National Corn Growers Association appreciates the leadership of Reps. Finkenauer, Craig, Marshall and Bacon to help grow the market for higher blends of ethanol,” said NCGA President Kevin Ross, an Iowa farmer. “Expanding infrastructure for higher blends will help to increase future demand for farmers and ensure biofuels will continue to be included in federal efforts to provide consumers with cleaner, affordable fuels.”   The bill authorizes $500 million over five years to help retailers offer higher ethanol blends, expand the geographic area selling ethanol blends, support biodiesel fuel...

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Apr 14, 2020

New Analysis Shows U.S. Agriculture Reducing Per-Unit GHG Emissions

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Julie Busse

New analysis of updated data from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, combined with U.S. Department of Agriculture data, shows U.S. farmers and ranchers continue to reduce per-unit greenhouse gas emissions. All told, the U.S. agricultural sector accounts for less than 10% of total U.S. emissions. That’s less than the emissions from the transportation, electricity generation and industrial sectors. Globally, agriculture accounts for about 24% of GHG emissions.   The EPA’s U.S. Inventory of Greenhouse Gas Emissions provides a first look at 2018 U.S. emissions data, which is incorporated into a new Market Intel report from the American Farm Bureau Federation. The Market Intel report finds that per-unit methane emissions from livestock have declined since 1990 as livestock producers have increased productivity. During the past 30 years, U.S. milk production has increased 71% while per-unit emissions of milk have declined by almost 25%. Beef production has increased almost 50%,...

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Apr 8, 2020

Tenth Circuit Denies Refiners’ Rehearing Request

Key Issues: Ethanol

In welcome news to corn farmers, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit yesterday denied a request for a rehearing of a recent ruling that struck down certain small refinery exemptions (SREs) under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS).   On January 24, a panel of Tenth Circuit judges unanimously ruled that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) had vastly exceeded its authority in granting exemptions from 2016 and 2017 RFS requirements to three refineries.   NCGA, along with the Renewable Fuels Association, American Coalition for Ethanol and National Farmers Union, brought the challenge against EPA in May 2018 in response to the massive demand destruction caused by the Agency’s illegal and indiscriminate use of SREs.   With the Court’s denial of refiners’ appeal request, NCGA strongly urges EPA to act quickly to appropriately apply the Tenth Circuit decision nationwide and deny pending SREs. 

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Mar 25, 2020

Corn Farmers Welcome Administration’s Decision Not to Seek Re-Hearing of Tenth Circuit SRE Ruling

Key Issues: Ethanol

The National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) today joined ethanol and farm groups welcoming 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 (SREs) under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS). On January 24, a panel of Tenth Circuit judges unanimously ruled that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) had vastly exceeded its authority in granting exemptions from 2016 and 2017 RFS requirements to three refineries.   “EPA’s decision not to appeal the Tenth Circuit decision means EPA’s abuse of RFS waivers should be significantly reduced going forward, preventing further demand destruction. Ethanol is an incredibly important market for corn farmers that makes fuel cleaner, and it is imperative EPA now follow the Court’s direction and implement the RFS as intended. Farmers are pleased the Administration did not appeal the Tenth Circuit ruling and we urge...

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Mar 19, 2020

Renewable Fuels Coalition Launches Campaign Calling for EPA Not to Appeal 10th Circuit Decision

Key Issues: Ethanol

With the need for a decision only days away, the coalition that successfully won a unanimous court decision against the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency 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. Click here for a video created by the four associations to drive this point home in Washington.   The coalition made up of the Renewable Fuels Association, National Corn Growers Association, American Coalition for Ethanol and National Farmers Union, took the EPA to court and won over several exemptions it granted to small refineries, releasing them from their renewable fuel obligations in 2016 and 2017. The Trump administration sought and secured an extension of the appeal deadline until Tuesday, March 24.   "With the renewable fuels industry reeling from coronavirus, trade disputes and small refinery exemptions, now is certainly not the time for the Trump...

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Mar 10, 2020

Ethanol, Farm Groups Respond as Administration Mulls Appeal of Tenth Circuit SRE Ruling

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Julie Busse

On March 9, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit approved requests by the U.S. Department of Justice, HollyFrontier, and CVR Energy for an extension of the deadline to file motions asking for a rehearing en banc of Renewable Fuels Association et al. v. EPA, in which the Court found EPA vastly exceeded its authority in granting compliance exemptions to three refineries from 2016 and 2018 Renewable Fuel Standard obligations. The new deadline for requesting a rehearing in the Tenth Circuit is March 24.   The petitioners in the case—the Renewable Fuels Association, National Corn Growers Association, American Coalition for Ethanol, and National Farmers Union—offered the following statement:   “We are very disappointed that the Administration has opted to kick the can on deciding whether to appeal the court decision, as all initial indications suggested EPA would not appeal the ruling and would correctly apply the decision nationally. This delay just prolongs uncertainty...

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Mar 3, 2020

NCGA Welcomes USDA Action to Increase Biofuels Usage

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Julie Busse

U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue last week announced plans to increase biofuels usage in USDA vehicles, directing the department to acquire alternative fueled vehicles when replacing conventionally fueled vehicles. Moving to vehicles that can use E85 or biodiesel will increase efficiencies and performances of the USDA fleet, one of the largest civilian fleets in the federal government.   Perdue also announced USDA will make $100 million in grants available this year for the newly created Higher Blends Infrastructure Incentive Program (HBIIP), expanding fueling infrastructure to make higher blends like E15 more available nationwide. Last month, NCGA submitted comments to USDA outlining corn farmers’ recommendations for the HBIIP program.   NCGA is committed to growing demand for corn farmers and appreciated that Perdue shared these announcements directly with growers during his address to Commodity Classic in San Antonio on Friday. NCGA appreciates USDA’s leadership to...

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Feb 19, 2020

Focus Forward: RFA Conference Dives into the Issues and Opportunities Facing the Ethanol Industry in 2020

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Julie Busse

Putting 2019 in the rear-view mirror, the Renewable Fuels Association is focusing forward in 2020, looking at the future of clean fuel standards and high-octane low-carbon fuel.   At the National Ethanol Conference, CEO Geoff Cooper, in his state of the industry address, told the roughly one-thousand attendees, “as we focus more acutely on positioning ethanol in discussions about energy and climate change, we need to play to ethanol’s unique strengths and emphasize the Three Cs: Clean Octane, Carbon Reduction and Consumer Choice.”   Cooper went on later in his speech to say “As we write the next chapter of renewable fuels policy, RFA and its allies believe ethanol has a tremendous opportunity to serve as the key ingredient of a future high octane low carbon fuel that delivers significant benefits to American consumers.”   NCGA CEO Jon Doggett was part of a stakeholder’s round table discussion with Callie Eideberg of the Environmental Defense Fund, John Reese with Shell Oil...

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Feb 10, 2020

Growing Biofuels Demand in 2020 and Beyond:

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Julie Busse

Growing demand for the ethanol industry domestically with E15 and higher ethanol blends and expanding markets internationally were the key themes of the Growth Energy Executive Leadership Conference last week, Vision 2020.   National Corn Growers Association President Kevin Ross participated in a discussion on-stage with Mark Marquis, CEO of Marquis Energy. “The farmer voice is so important in Washington D.C.” Ross told the crowd. “We are a grassroots organization and partnerships with industry groups that have similar goals like Growth Energy will help us continue to grow the E15 market and higher blends of ethanol.”   Growth Energy CEO Emily Skor, during her CEO address, told attendees “Make no mistake, successful E15 market adoption paves the way for even higher blends. We will only get higher blends when we show E15 isn’t niche fuel – that this higher blend is the preferred, regular fuel consumers use every time they fuel up.”   Skor went on to say "We now have more than...

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Feb 4, 2020

NCGA’s Annual Report Reflects On Significant Wins Amidst Challenging Times

Key Issues: EthanolSustainabilityTradeAnimal AgricultureBiotechnologyConsumer EngagementFarm PolicyNew UsesProductionResearch

Author: Mark Lambert

The National Corn Growers Association’s Ann ual Report for the 2019 fiscal year is now available online.  The report highlights memorable events and victories accomplished in a year characterized by weather and policy challenges.   “NCGA was in some pretty amazing positions in 2019. From sharing the stage with President Trump to having a beer with the Coors family after the Super Bowl attack on corn sweetener,” said 2019 NCGA First Vice President Kevin Ross from Iowa. “We are constantly prepared to engage, and we are looking for new allies and new conversations to represent corn growers better.”    Through unruly weather, flooding, sluggish markets and trade disruptions, NCGA members kept moving forward together to reach long-term, strategic goals to improve prices and the overall future of the industry. As the year ended NCGA’s grassroots efforts resulted in several major trade victories, a strong support system through the farm bill, and more opportunity for E15 and other...

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Jan 30, 2020

RFA & NCGA Co-Title Sponsorship of 2020 Crappie Masters Tournament Trail Begins This Week

Key Issues: Ethanol

The 2020 season of the Crappie Masters Tournament Trail begins later this week, with the Renewable Fuels Association and the National Corn Growers Association signed on as co-title sponsors for the fourth consecutive year. The first tournament begins Friday, Jan. 31 at St. Johns River in DeLand, Fla.   “We are excited to get the 2020 season kicked off in DeLand, Fla.,” said Crappie Masters President Mike Vallentine. “The St. Johns River is such a unique fishery that allows participants to try several methods to catch fish plus you can always expect to see some big weights. We are also thrilled to be representing the Renewable Fuels Association and American Ethanol by sharing the truth about ethanol and educating our anglers, listeners, viewers and followers. For five straight seasons, all winning teams with Crappie Masters have been running E10 fuel in their boat with no reported problems. We understand there is more work to do and we are honored to take on this...

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Jan 27, 2020

Tenth Circuit Court Strikes Down EPA Small Refinery Exemptions

Key Issues: EthanolFarm Policy

In a decision that is expected to broadly impact the Environmental Protection Agency’s approach to granting small refinery exemptions (SREs) under the Renewable Fuel Standard, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit late on Friday struck down three exemptions that were improperly issued by EPA.   The court ruling stems from a May 2018 challenge brought against EPA by the Renewable Fuels Association, the National Corn Growers Association, the American Coalition for Ethanol and National Farmers Union.   “We are extremely pleased with the Tenth Circuit’s decision to vacate the waivers granted by EPA to three refineries owned by CVR Energy and HollyFrontier,” said RFA President and CEO Geoff Cooper. “The Court has affirmed our long-held position that EPA’s recent practices and policies regarding small refinery exemption extensions were completely unlawful. And while the decision addresses three specific exemptions, the statutory interpretation issues resolved by the court...

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Dec 19, 2019

NCGA: Corn Farmers Underwhelmed by Final RVO Rule

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Mary Quigley

National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) President Kevin Ross today made the following statement on the release of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) final 2020 Renewable Volume Obligation (RVO) rule, setting renewable fuel volume requirements for the coming year, including accounting for 2020 refinery waivers. The final rule uses a three-year average of the Department of Energy (DOE) recommended waivers as an estimate for 2020 waivers rather than an average of actual gallons waived by the EPA.   “The Administration has chosen to move forward with a final rule that corn farmers believe falls short of adequately addressing the demand destruction caused by EPA’s abuse of RFS refinery waivers. While using the DOE recommendations to account for waivers is an improvement over the status quo, it is now on corn farmers to hold the Administration to their commitment of a minimum of 15 billion gallon volume, as the law requires. We will use future rulemakings and other...

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Dec 18, 2019

Corn Farmers to Congress: Pass USMCA!

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Mary Quigley

National Corn Growers Association members this week traveled to Washington, D.C. to make a final push for passage of the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) in the House of Representatives. House passage before the end of the year would provide some certainty to farmers facing challenging times and instill confidence in other important trading partners that the United States is open for business.   NCGA members shared with lawmakers the importance of USMCA for corn farmers. Mexico and Canada are the U.S. corn industry’s largest, most reliable market. In 2018, 21.4 million metric tons of corn and corn co-products were exported to Mexico and Canada, valued at $4.56 billion.   The NCGA members also met with members of the U.S. Senate, urging they quickly consider and pass USMCA in the new year. Corn farmers cannot afford to lose this North American market which is why it is so important USMCA be ratified.

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Nov 21, 2019

Hitting the Road for Thanksgiving? Fill-up with E15!

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Julie Busse

According to AAA, consumers traveling this Thanksgiving by automobile is up 2.8 percent from last year, with 49.3 million cars expected to be on the road. That is the highest number since 2005. With E15 now available at more than 2,000 stations nationwide, there’s no reason to not fill-up with the cleaner burning more cost-effective fuel.   A few benefits of filling up with E15 include:   E15 is between 3 and 10 cents less expensive than regular gas. Corn ethanol is cleaner burning and reduces greenhouse gas emissions by 40-45 percent. The number of E15 locations continues to grow and is available in 30 states. The number of locations offering E15 continues to increase!   Click here to view a Thanksgiving infographic with these E15 facts

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Nov 20, 2019

Tell EPA to Follow Through on RFS Commitment

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Liz Friedlander

Corn farmers have until November 29 to tell the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to follow through on the President’s commitment to farmers and the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS).   Since early 2018, EPA has granted 85 RFS exemptions to refineries, totaling 4.04 billion ethanol-equivalent gallons of renewable fuel. These waivers reduce demand for ethanol, lower the value of our crop and undermine the President’s support for America’s farmers. Waivers benefit big oil at the expense of corn farmers.   Despite an agreement announced by President Trump in early October that directed the EPA to follow the letter of the law and keep the RFS whole, the EPA proposal now available for comment falls well short of the 15 billion gallon RFS.   EPA is proposing to use a three-year average of the Department of Energy’s (DOE) recommended waivers, rather than the three-year average actually waived by the EPA as promised in the October 4 agreement. EPA has consistently waived nearly...

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Nov 8, 2019

NCGA Thanks Senate Leaders for Weighing in on EPA Waiver Proposal

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Mary Quigley

U.S. Senators representing many corn states yesterday took action to press EPA to follow the law and adhere to the deal President Trump made with farmers and the EPA to address RFS waivers.   Sens. Deb Fischer (R-Neb.), Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), Joni Ernst (R-Iowa), John Thune (R-S.D.), Mike Rounds (R-S.D.), Roy Blunt (R-Mo.), and Mike Braun (R-Ind.), each submitted comments to the Federal Register regarding the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) supplemental rule on the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS). In individual letters to EPA Administrator Wheeler, the Senators expressed concerns about the way the agency plans to calculate the reallocation of biofuel gallons lost due to exemptions for oil refineries and asked EPA to fix the problem in the final rule.   NCGA greatly appreciates the Senators’ calls for EPA to provide more accuracy and certainty in the final rule and standing up for RFS integrity. Farmers are grateful for their continued support and advocacy.   Farmers...

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Nov 7, 2019

Ag-Auto-Ethanol Work Group Annual Forum Focuses on High-Octane Low-Carbon Fuel

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Mary Quigley

The Ag-Auto-Ethanol Work Group Annual Forum, held in Detroit, Michigan, took a deep dive into environmental issues, future engine technologies and the potential cost-benefit of high-octane low-carbon fuels at the pump. Representatives from state and national corn growers’ associations, government entities, automakers, the ethanol industry, and researchers were all in attendance.   “NCGA and state corn grower associations continue to educate members of Congress and their staffs on the fuel-efficiency benefits of high-octane fuel, along with the benefits of higher blends of ethanol,” NCGA Renewable Fuels Public Policy Director Kathy Bergren told attendees. “Higher blends of ethanol lower carbon emissions, reduce aromatic emissions and improve air quality and support rural economies.”   “This forum is an opportunity to bring together a cross-section of groups which span the entire value chain to talk about the future and provide updates on current research and initiatives,” said...

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Oct 30, 2019

NCGA to EPA: Good Intentions Don’t Provide Certainty

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Beth Musgrove

Minnesota farmer and National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) Ethanol Action Team member Brian Thalmann today called on the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to follow the law and accurately account for expected refinery waivers in the 2020 RFS volume rule.   Thalmann testified at an EPA hearing to review the agency’s supplemental proposal to the 2020 Renewable Volume Obligation (RVO) rulemaking.   “We’re in the thick of harvest and, quite frankly, I would rather be in the field. But the issue we’re discussing today is too important to corn farmers like me not to be here. I have a simple message - when it comes the Renewable Fuel Standard, we need EPA to follow the law. As farmers, we follow rules put in place by state and federal agencies, including the EPA. We are simply asking EPA to do the same for us,” Thalmann said.    Today’s hearing follows an October 4 announcement from President Trump directing the EPA to follow the letter of the law and keep the RFS whole by...

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Oct 29, 2019

Congressional Hearing: “Protecting the RFS: The Trump Administration’s Abuse of Secret Waivers”

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Cathryn Wojcicki

The U.S. House of Representatives Energy and Commerce Committee’s Subcommittee on Environment and Climate Change held a hearing today to discuss the impact of the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) waivers. Since early 2018, EPA has granted 85 RFS exemptions to refineries, totaling 4.04 billion ethanol-equivalent gallons of renewable fuel. Refinery exemptions under the Trump Administration have totaled nearly six times more gallons than those under the previous Administration.   The hearing also included discussion on the Renewable Fuel Standard Integrity Act of 2019 (H.R. 3006), legislation supported by NCGA that would set a deadline for refineries to apply for RFS waivers and bring much-needed transparency to the waiver process.   The Subcommittee heard testimony from several witnesses, including Iowa farmer, NCGA Ethanol Action Team member, and Siouxland Energy Cooperative President Kelly Nieuwenhuis.   “I’m taking time away from harvest...

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Oct 15, 2019

EPA Plan to Address RFS Waivers Falls Short

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Julie Busse

National Corn Growers Association President Kevin Ross today made the below statement following the release of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) supplemental proposal to the 2020 Renewable Volume Obligation (RVO) rulemaking. The proposed rule follows an announcement from President Trump last week directing the EPA to follow the letter of the law and keep the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) whole.   “While corn farmers appreciate the EPA’s intent to follow Department of Energy recommendations on waivers going forward, the proposed rule fails to provide the assurance needed that EPA’s practices for granting waivers will change going forward. Farmers have long been skeptical of the EPA’s administration of the RFS. This proposal doesn’t provide farmers confidence in EPA’s ability to follow through and make this right. President Trump made a commitment to farmers and instructed the EPA to follow the law, but this proposal appears to come up short...

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Oct 10, 2019

Researching the Next Generation of Biobased Materials

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Mary Quigley

The Department of Energy (DOE) Bioenergy Technology Office (BETO) recently held a workshop on Leveraging First Generation Bioethanol Production Facilities. The National Corn Growers Association participated in the event, which was held in Ames, Iowa at the Ames Laboratory, a national laboratory operated for the U.S. Department of Energy by Iowa State University.   The workshop focused on how to leverage existing infrastructure and available feedstocks to create biobased materials and chemicals. Suggestions and proposals from the workshop may be used to inform future DOE Bioenergy Technology Office funding announcements. NCGA’s Director of Market Development, Sarah McKay, presented a Rapid-Fire Talk during the workshop. McKay discussed NCGA’s priorities and approach for increasing corn demand and driving the bioeconomy.   “NCGA has a three-pillar approach toward increasing corn demand and driving the bio-economy,” said McKay. “This approach creates new opportunities, improves...

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Oct 4, 2019

NCGA: Farmers Thank Trump Administration for Listening and Upholding the RFS

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Mary Quigley

The National Corn Growers Association today welcomed an announcement from President Trump directing the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to follow the letter of the law and keep the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) whole.    The RFS and corn farmers have repeatedly come under attack from big oil and the EPA, including the most recent approval of 31 additional RFS exemptions for oil companies, reducing corn demand for ethanol and increasing total waived biofuels demand to 4.04 billion gallons under the Trump Administration. Today’s announcement that EPA will reopen the rulemaking for the 2020 RFS volumes and propose to account for waivers in the volume requirements allows EPA to follow the law and restore integrity to the RFS.   “We’re very grateful the President listened to our concerns and is upholding his commitments to put the RFS back on track,” NCGA President Kevin Ross said. “Corn farmers weren’t shy in telling the President that the impact of these waivers would lead...

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Oct 2, 2019

Ethanol Again Fuels Winners of Crappie Masters National Tournament

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Beth Musgrove

For the fifth consecutive year, the winning team of the Crappie Masters National Championship powered their boat with clean, renewable ethanol. The 2019 season concluded last week with Robert Carlile and Craig Nichols coming out on top with a two-day weight of 31.97 pounds at Grenada Lake in Grenada, Mississippi.    The National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) and the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) were co-title sponsors of the Crappie Masters Tournament Trail for the third consecutive year.   “We’ve had a dream season,” said Carlile. “When we are filling up our boat before coming to the tournaments, we never think twice about filling up with E10. We will continue to put ethanol in our boat.”    “We are proud to use E10 in our boat and be a part of the group of winning teams who use ethanol,” said Nichols. “Our engine runs great when using ethanol-blended fuel. We see the benefits of running ethanol in our engine first-hand.”   The team received a $2,000 bonus from the...

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Sep 25, 2019

Trade and Biofuels Offer Solution for Weak Ag Economy

Key Issues: EthanolTrade

Author: Mary Quigley

Earlier this week, NCGA attended the Ag Outlook Forum in Kansas, City. Guests, including NCGA manager of Market Development, Michael Granché, traveled from Missouri, Kansas, Iowa, and Nebraska to hear from esteemed speakers on the health of the U.S. agricultural economy, the trade war, and what potential challenges and opportunities lay ahead for the industry.   Speakers included; Kansas Senator Jerry Moran, Missouri Governor Mike Parson, and USDA Deputy Secretary Steve Censky, all of whom opened the floor to receive questions from the audience after their remarks. Guests also had the opportunity to engage in a roundtable discussion on Workforce Development led by Mark Stewart, CEO and President of Agriculture Future of America.   Granché found the Forum to be a valuable networking opportunity and enjoyed hearing from different perspectives across the industry. “It’s been a tough year for the industry as a whole. Just like Governor Parson said, ‘he’s never met a farmer who hasn’t...

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Sep 18, 2019

NCGA Leaders Fly-In to Washington

Key Issues: EthanolTrade

Author: Liz Friedlander

NCGA State Executives, representing eleven state associations travelled to Washington, D.C. this week to urge members of Congress to pass the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) and continue the education effort on NCGA’s Low Carbon/High Octane proposal. The State Executives also pressed lawmakers to use their influence with President Trump regarding potential Administrative actions to mitigate the effects of RFS waivers.   “Having representatives of NCGA’s state affiliates in Washington provides lawmakers and their staffs with a first-hand account of the importance of USMCA and ethanol policy to corn farmers,” said NCGA Vice President of Public Policy Brooke Appleton. “This week was also an opportunity for the State Executives to meet with members of Congress who may not have corn farmers in their district but whose votes will be needed to get USMCA across the finish line.”   Passage of USMCA remains NCGA’s top legislative priority for 2019. USMCA will solidify a $4.56...

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Sep 10, 2019

NCGA Files Court Motion in Support of E15

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Mary Quigley

NCGA yesterday moved to intervene in an effort by big oil to challenge the EPA’s final RVP rule by filing a motion in support of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the final rule allowing for year-round sales of E15. If successful, the oil industry’s lawsuit would overturn the E15 rule.   NCGA and its farmer members have been long-time advocates of removing the unnecessary and outdated barrier to year-round E15. Removing that barrier took several years to accomplish, but our persistence paid off. With that barrier gone, more retailers are coming off the fence to offer consumers more fuel choice that saves drivers money and lowers emissions. Monday’s action was a continuation of NCGA efforts to increase corn grind by expanding the sales of higher ethanol blends. NCGA will be joining efforts with other ethanol advocates as the legal process continues.

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Sep 3, 2019

NCGA Hosts LCFS Regulators and Environmental Non-Profits

Key Issues: EthanolFarm Policy

Author: Mary Quigley

The National Corn Growers Association and Renewable Fuels Association last week hosted Low Carbon Fuel Standard (LCFS) regulators from the California Air Resources Board and the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality, along with representatives of leading environmental non-profit organizations for a Midwest tour of corn-growing and ethanol decarbonization technologies.   The tour was designed for individuals who already have a working understanding of ethanol but who want to learn more about the research, innovation and investment in the science of growing corn and producing ethanol firsthand.   Tour participants were able to hear from farmers and see advances in corn production practices. They learned how farm production practices already help reduce the carbon intensity of ethanol and how corn production can provide additional decarbonization benefits, including sequestering carbon in the soil.   Tour stops included Siouxland Ethanol in Jackson, Neb., and Elite Octane...

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Aug 30, 2019

NCGA: EPA Must Account for Waivers

Key Issues: EthanolFarm Policy

Author: Mary Quigley

The National Corn Growers Association today submitted comments to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) on the proposed 2020 renewable volume obligations (RVOs) under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS).   While NCGA appreciates EPA’s 15 billion gallon proposal for conventional biofuel, these proposed volumes are meaningless by failing to account for issued refinery waivers, which EPA significantly expanded during this Administration.   “NCGA has no confidence in the volumes EPA proposes for 2020. These refinery waivers have significantly outpaced annual increases in RFS volume requirements, taking RFS volume requirements backward,” NCGA President Lynn Chrisp wrote in the organization’s comments to EPA.   President Trump’s actions on ethanol have cost 2,700 rural jobs and impacted demand for more than 300 million bushels of corn as a result of ethanol plant closures and slowing production. Since 2018, the 85 RFS exemptions granted to big oil refineries have totaled 4.04...

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Aug 29, 2019

NCGA Letter to President Trump: Step In to Help Out Corn Farmers

Key Issues: EthanolFarm Policy

Author: Mary Quigley

Three weeks ago, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) stunned the corn industry with news it approved 31 additional small refinery exemptions for big oil companies. Today, NCGA President Lynn Chrisp sent a letter to President Trump encouraging him to step in and help out corn farmers that have been affected by this mistake.   The body of this letter is provided below:   Dear President Trump:   Three weeks ago, your Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) approved 31 additional refinery exemptions to big oil companies. This news sent shockwaves through the corn industry and put us back on our heels.   Days after the 31 exemptions were announced, the nation’s largest ethanol producer, POET, idled production at an ethanol plant in Indiana. This action came after they already reduced production at half their facilities, with the largest drop taking place in Iowa and Ohio. Just yesterday, Corn Plus, a farmer-owned ethanol plant in Minnesota that has been in business for over...

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Aug 22, 2019

Corn Farmers Press Trump to Take Steps to Significantly Increase Corn Demand

Key Issues: EthanolFarm Policy

Author: Mary Quigley

The impact of the Trump Administration’s recent granting of 31 refinery waivers to big oil is quickly being felt across the countryside, compounding farmer’s concerns about crop conditions, markets, and trade.   In the last 12 months, 15 ethanol plants have been shuttered or idled, including POET’s Cloverdale facility which specifically cited the most recent waivers as the cause. Given this reduced demand, it is likely more closings will follow.   Recent press reports indicate the President is, rightly, rethinking this action and NCGA is continuing to work with members of his administration and ethanol advocates in Congress. This includes sharing solutions that would significantly boost corn demand.   President Trump’s actions on ethanol have cost 2,700 rural jobs and lost demand for more than 300 million bushels of corn as a result of the ethanol plant closures and slowing production. Since 2018, the 85 RFS exemptions granted to big oil refineries have totaled 4.04 billion...

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Aug 20, 2019

Tell EPA: Waivers Are Gutting the RFS

Key Issues: EthanolFarm Policy

Author: Mary Quigley

Corn farmers have until August 30 to submit comments to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), urging the agency to keep the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) whole. Farmer comments are critically important following EPA’s recent announcement of waivers to big oil.   EPA’s annual RFS volume proposal seeks to increase total renewable fuel blending by 120 million gallons and maintain an implied conventional ethanol requirement of 15 billion gallons. But these volumes are meaningless amid EPA's expansion of retroactive RFS waivers for refineries, which now total 4.04 billion ethanol-equivalent gallons.    EPA’s proposal fails to account for projected waivers and ignores a 2017 court decision that EPA improperly cut 500 million gallons of renewable fuels blending in 2016. Tell EPA the agency must account for waived gallons in the volume rule in order to keep the RFS whole. 

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Aug 19, 2019

American Coalition for Ethanol Conference Focuses on Growing Markets

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Beth Musgrove

The American Coalition for Ethanol Annual Conference What It Takes looked at ways the industry can grow the ethanol market internationally and domestically. This was the 32nd annual ACE conference, which was held this year in Omaha, Nebraska.   ACE CEO Brian Jennings emphasized the need for “a vision of how to increase demand for ethanol and break free from the status quo.”   Jennings went on to talk about the positives of E15 being available year-round but told the crowd we have to keep fighting the EPA’s abuse of the RFS. “At ACE, we’ve come to the conclusion we can’t keep doing what we’ve been doing and hope the results get better, playing defense on the RFS and hoping trade wars subside isn’t a growth strategy. We need to turn the page, to go on offense.”   Nebraska Governor Pete Ricketts and U.S. Grains Council CEO & President Ryan LeGrand were featured speakers among the group. Some of the high-level trends and topics included improving carbon intensity scores of...

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Aug 9, 2019

NCGA Statement: EPA Waivers Undermine RFS

Key Issues: EthanolFarm Policy

Author: Julie Busse

NCGA President Lynn Chrisp made the following statement after the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) approved 31 refinery exemptions. Since early 2018, EPA has undermined the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) and granted 53 RFS waivers to big oil companies, totaling 2.61 billion ethanol-equivalent gallons of renewable fuel.   “Waivers reduce demand for ethanol, lower the value of our crop and undermine the President’s support for America’s farmers. Waivers benefit big oil at the expense of corn farmers who, between losing export markets abroad and ethanol markets at home, are losing patience.   “Mr. President, you proudly stand with farmers, but your EPA isn’t following through. You can step up for farmers today by reining in RFS waivers. Farmers expect the RFS to be kept whole by accounting for waived gallons and bringing more transparency to EPA’s secret process.   “Farmers are facing a sixth consecutive year of depressed income and commodity prices, with farm income for...

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Aug 8, 2019

Joint NCGA-ASA Op-Ed Urges President to Support Renewable Fuel Standard

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Mary Quigley

National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) President Lynn Chrisp and American Soybean Association (ASA) President Davie Stephens have written the below opinion piece urging President Trump to uphold his commitment to America’s farmers and the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS).   President Trump, Uphold Your Commitment to the RFS American farmers have a strong history of innovation. Whether that be the seeds that we plant or the tractors that we drive, we are always looking for ways to do better and increase market opportunities for our products.   Home-grown renewable fuels, like ethanol and biodiesel, are far and away our biggest success story. The Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) has reduced our dependence on foreign oil, lowered fuel prices at the pump, reduced greenhouse gas emissions and added value by increasing demand for the corn and soybeans our farmers produce.   Recently, President Trump took a significant step forward for renewable fuels, instructing the Environmental...

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Jul 31, 2019

NCGA Testimony: EPA Must Account for RFS Waivers

Key Issues: EthanolFarm Policy

Author: Mary Quigley

The National Corn Growers Association today reiterated its call on the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to keep the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) whole by accounting for waived ethanol gallons as the agency considers proposed biofuel targets for 2020.   In testimony at an EPA hearing in Ypsilanti, Mich., NCGA Board Member and Ohio farmer John Linder pressed the agency to move forward with a stronger RFS rule that supports America’s farmers, their rural communities, and consumers.   “The proposed rule we are discussing today allows retroactive refinery exemptions to continue to destroy demand for renewable fuels. In addition, the proposal ignores the D.C. Circuit Court’s decision that EPA improperly waived 500 million gallons in 2016,” Linder said.   For 2020, EPA proposes to increase total renewable fuel blending by 120 million gallons and maintain an implied conventional ethanol requirement of 15 billion gallons. The proposal does not take into account EPA’s ongoing...

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Jul 31, 2019

Coalition Seeks Court Action Forcing EPA to Account for Lost Biofuel Volumes

Key Issues: EthanolFarm Policy

Author: Beth Musgrove

An agriculture and biofuels coalition has petitioned the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit to lift a stay it placed on a joint 2018 petition asking the court to protect the renewable fuels industry from undue harm caused by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.   The petition, filed late Tuesday afternoon, asks EPA to revise its Renewable Fuel Standard regulations for setting annual percentage standards of renewable fuel to account for small refinery exemptions the Agency issues retroactively.  EPA’s current regulations factor in only future small refinery exemptions granted prior to the compliance year, despite the fact that most of the exemptions granted in recent years have been for compliance periods that had already ended.   The coalition had asked for the stay to give EPA time to review its request to reconsider its current regulations. EPA’s response never arrived, but EPA’s statements and actions over the past 13 months indicate that EPA has...

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Jul 18, 2019

NCGA Recognizes Senator Fischer with President’s Award

Key Issues: EthanolTradeFarm Policy

Author: Beth Musgrove

National Corn Growers Association President Lynn Chrisp today presented NCGA’s 2019 President’s Award to Nebraska Senator Deb Fischer. The President’s Award is given annually at NCGA’s Corn Congress meeting in Washington, D.C. to a leader who has worked to advance issues important to corn growers and agriculture.   “It is my great pleasure to present the NCGA President’s Award to Senator Fischer,” Chrisp said. “Senator Fischer has been an outspoken advocate for corn farmers from our shared home state of Nebraska and across the country, supporting policies that will help create market opportunities for corn.”   In her remarks to corn farmers, Fischer voiced her support for the pending U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA), the top legislative priority for corn growers this year. Fisher was a strong advocate for removing the barrier to year-round sales of E15 and continues to stand up for a strong Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) and against the Environmental Protection Agency’s...

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Jul 17, 2019

Corn Congress Delegates Urge President Trump to Uphold RFS

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Beth Musgrove

Delegates to the National Corn Growers Association’s Corn Congress today approved a “Sense of the Corn Congress” urging President Trump to uphold his commitment to America’s farmers and the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS). “We, the assembled voting delegates of the National Corn Growers Association, ask President Donald Trump to uphold his commitments to protect the RFS and support farmers by ensuring EPA’s administration of the RFS does not undermine the law and the benefits of renewable fuels,”the resolution states.   NCGA delegates offered the statement in response to the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) ongoing practice of providing RFS waivers to big oil companies. These waivers have reduced RFS requirements by 2.61 billion ethanol-equivalent gallons through refinery exemptions, with 38 more exemptions pending. Undermining the benefits of renewable fuels, the waivers have also reduced corn use for ethanol production, lowered domestic ethanol consumption and blend rate,...

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Jul 16, 2019

NCGA Takes Ethanol Waiver Message Back to Airwaves

Key Issues: EthanolFarm Policy

Author: Beth Musgrove

NCGA today renewed its pressure on the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to follow President Trump’s commitment to farmers and stop giving Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) waivers to big oil companies, re-running the organization’s ad that first ran last month.    Watch Ad   NCGA members are in Washington, D.C. this week for Corn Congress and meetings with lawmakers on Capitol Hill. Farmers will be urging policymakers to support legislation in the House, H.R. 3006, and Senate, S. 1840, that would seek to stop waiver abuse and address the harm these waivers are causing.   Since early 2018, EPA has granted 53 RFS small refinery exemptions (SREs), or waivers, totaling 2.61 billion ethanol-equivalent gallons of renewable fuel. There are currently 39 refinery exemption petitions pending for the 2018 compliance year. NCGA has highlighted 39 reasons why the EPA should not grant additional waivers.  

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Jul 11, 2019

National Corn Growers Association in the Spotlight at BIO World Congress

Key Issues: EthanolBiotechnology

Author: Mary Quigley

This week, farmer leaders, state staff and National Corn Growers Association staff attended and participated in BIO World Congress on Industrial Biotechnology and AgTech in Des Moines, Iowa. Topics at the event ranged from sustainability, transforming chemical markets to biofuel market growth. NCGA staff participated in three different panels throughout the event.   To kick-off the week, NCGA announced the winners of the Consider Corn Challenge II, holding a session where the winners were able to share with a large audience their technologies that will utilize field corn. NCGA Vice President of Market Development Jim Bauman moderated the session.   “Making the announcement at BIO was a great fit for our winners because they were able to participate in a number of one-on-one meetings with companies and researchers interested in learning more about their technology,” said Bauman. “It also allowed NCGA to talk about the various benefits of corn as an industrial feedstock with the...

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Jul 5, 2019

EPA Favors Oil Refiners Over Corn Farmers

Key Issues: EthanolFarm Policy

Author: Julie Busse

Today, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released the proposed Renewable Volume Obligation (RVO) rule for 2020. Once again EPA has failed to account for lost volumes due to refinery exemptions and uphold the President’s commitment to the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS).   “We are frustrated the EPA did not account for potential waived gallons going forward in the proposed rule,” said National Corn Growers Association President and Nebraska farmer Lynn Chrisp. “If the EPA continues to grant retroactive waivers, the RVO numbers are meaningless and the EPA is not following the law. Farmers are facing a very tough economic environment and the continued waiver abuse chips away at farmers’ bottom line.”   Since early 2018, the EPA has granted 53 RFS exemptions totaling 2.61 billion ethanol-equivalent gallons of renewable fuel. There are currently 38 pending petitions for 2018.   EPA also failed to uphold the D.C. Circuit Court’s 2017 ruling, requiring the Agency to account...

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Jul 2, 2019

Fill-Up with E15 this Fourth of July

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Cathryn Wojcicki

Fireworks, grilling out, road trips and spending quality time with family and friends is typically on the top of the list of must-dos for the Fourth of July. This year, as you head out on your excursion, be sure to look for E15 at the pump. Not only is it homegrown by American corn farmers,  it is also typically 3-to-10 cents cheaper per gallon than regular gasoline. Chances are your car was made after 2001; if so, it can benefit from E15!   AAA reports nearly 49-million Americans will be traveling for the Fourth of July this year, with 41.4 million hitting the road. That’s an increase of 4.3 percent over last year and the highest number by AAA for Independence Day holiday travel.   You can find E15 stations by going to either getbiofuel.com or e85prices.com.

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Jun 26, 2019

Coalition Asking Auto Manufacturers to Offer more Flex Fuel Vehicles

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Beth Musgrove

A recently formed coalition is hoping they can get enough signatures to convince auto manufacturers to offer more flex-fuel vehicles. Organizers are hoping to get at least 10,000 signatures.   Chris Schwarck of Iowa started the grassroots effort to let auto manufacturers know American drivers want more flex-fuel vehicle options, not less.   The petition states, “In recent months, auto manufacturers have signaled they are pulling back on the production of flex-fuel vehicles, which can run on a variety of higher ethanol blends, including E20, E30, and E85. If you want the option to purchase low-cost, higher-performing fuels like E30 and E85, sign the petition today and tell auto manufacturers not to limit your car and truck choices!” Click here to sign the petition today. You can read more about the petition here.  

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Jun 20, 2019

NCGA Ups Pressure on EPA to Follow President’s Lead on Ethanol

Key Issues: EthanolFarm Policy

Author: Mary Quigley

The National Corn Growers Association today will begin airing an advertisement calling on the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to follow President Trump’s commitment to farmers and stop giving Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) waivers to big oil companies. These waivers negatively impact farmers by undercutting the RFS and reducing corn demand.   Watch Ad   The ad features NCGA First Vice President and Iowa farmer Kevin Ross who recently appeared at an ethanol plant with President Trump in recognition of the Administration’s support of year-round E15. During the event, Ross thanked the President for delivering on this promise but cautioned, “The EPA’s oil refinery waivers threaten to undo your good works.”   Since early 2018, EPA has granted 53 RFS small refinery exemptions (SREs), or waivers, totaling 2.61 billion ethanol-equivalent gallons of renewable fuel. The 2017 RFS waivers effectively reduced the 15 billion-gallon implied ethanol volume to 13.18 billion gallons,...

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Jun 14, 2019

NCGA Welcomes Senate SRE Legislation

Key Issues: EthanolFarm Policy

Author: Cathryn Wojcicki

NCGA today applauded legislation introduced by Sens. Deb Fisher, R-Neb., and Tammy Duckworth, D-Ill., to bring transparency and accountability to the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Small Refinery Exemptions (SREs).   Similar to the Renewable Fuel Standard Integrity Act of 2019 introduced in the House, the Senate bill, S. 1840, would set a deadline for refineries to apply for Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) waivers and bring much-needed transparency to the waiver process. The Senators’ bill also includes specific actions EPA must take within the annual Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) volume rule to account for and reallocate waived gallons and requires EPA to report to Congress with a justification for each waiver granted. Sens. John Thune, R-S.D., Joni Ernst, R-Iowa, and Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, are original co-sponsors of S. 1840.   Within the past year, EPA has granted 54 exemptions to refineries, waiving 2.61 billion ethanol-equivalent gallons of renewable fuel blending...

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Jun 11, 2019

NCGA Joins President at Iowa Ethanol Plant

Key Issues: EthanolFarm Policy

Author: Cathryn Wojcicki

NCGA First Vice President Kevin Ross today represented NCGA in hosting President Trump for a tour of Southwest Iowa Renewable Energy, an ethanol plant in Council Bluffs, Iowa. Ross farms in nearby Minden and sells corn to the ethanol plant.   The visit was an opportunity for NCGA to thank the President for following through on the commitment to allow for year-round sales of E15, a priority for corn farmers. On May 31, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued a final rule for E15. In addition to increasing demand for farmers, higher blends of renewable fuels such as E15 reduce fuel prices for drivers by three to ten cents per gallon and result in lower emissions, improving air quality and providing greater greenhouse gas reductions.   Ross also urged President Trump to address EPA's waivers to large refiners that are undermining the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) and work with members of Congress to pass an infrastructure bill.    Members of NCGA's board of directors,...

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Jun 6, 2019

NCGA Highlights Negative Effect of Ethanol Waivers

Key Issues: EthanolFarm Policy

Author: Cathryn Wojcicki

NCGA Renewable Fuels Public Policy Director Kathy Bergren participated in a Capitol Hill briefing today for U.S. House of Representatives staff to help explain the damaging effects the EPA’s expansive Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) waivers to large, profitable refineries and recommend solutions.   Since early 2018, EPA has granted 53 RFS exemptions to refineries for the 2016 and 2017 RFS compliance years totaling 2.61 billion ethanol-equivalent gallons of renewable fuel. EPA currently has 39 waiver petitions pending for the 2018 RFS compliance year. These waivers have taken a toll on farmers by undercutting the RFS and reducing corn demand.   NCGA President Lynn Chrisp recently touched on the negative impact of these waivers, following the announcement that EPA had completed action to allow for year-round sales of E15. “While corn farmers are immensely grateful that the barrier to year-round E15 has been lifted, we won’t be able to reap the full benefits if EPA continues to...

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May 31, 2019

NCGA: Year-Round E15 a Win-Win for Farmers and Consumers

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Cathryn Wojcicki

The National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) today celebrated the Trump Administration completing actions to allow for year-round sales of 15 percent ethanol blends or E15.   “Corn farmers have been long-time advocates of higher blends of ethanol such as E15, touting its benefits to both the farmer and the consumer,” NCGA President Lynn Chrisp said. “Farmers are facing some tough times which makes this announcement particularly welcome. We thank President Trump for following through on his promise to rural America and USDA Secretary Sonny Perdue and supporters in Congress for their outspoken commitment to year-round E15.” The final rule from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) eliminates the outdated barrier that required retailers in many areas of the country to stop selling E15 during the summer months by allowing E15 to receive the same summer volatility adjustment EPA permits for E10.   Higher blends of renewable fuels such as E15 reduce fuel prices for drivers by...

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May 29, 2019

FUELS2019 Brings Together Industry Stakeholders to Discuss Liquid Transportation Fuels

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Mary Quigley

The Fuels Institute FUELS2019 conference in Dallas provided attendees with the opportunity to take a deep dive into topics around internal combustion engines, the future of retail, biofuels and more. FUELS2019 explored the market through a series of panel discussions and presentations that evaluated the pressures from the environment, government regulations and consumer behavior.   “This was a great opportunity to build new relationships, especially with the members of the retail community,” said Director of Renewable Fuels Mark Palmer. “Gaining insights from the various sectors represented at the conference helps us better understand the challenges and opportunities we have for getting more ethanol into the marketplace.”   There were roughly 150 participants in attendance from all aspects of the liquid transportation industry including retailers, refiners, auto manufacturers, ethanol producers and RIN traders.   NCGA was a sponsor of the event, providing participants with...

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May 23, 2019

House Members Introduce Renewable Fuel Standard Integrity Act of 2019 to Address RFS Waivers

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Cathryn Wojcicki

National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) today applauded legislation introduced by House Agriculture Committee Chairman Collin Peterson, D-Minn., and Representative Dusty Johnson, R-S.D. The Renewable Fuel Standard Integrity Act of 2019 would set a deadline for refineries to apply for Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) waivers and bring much-needed transparency to the waiver process.   Within the past year, EPA has granted 54 exemptions to refineries, waiving 2.61 billion ethanol-equivalent gallons of renewable fuel blending under the RFS. EPA has another 39 waiver petitions pending, with decisions from EPA expected in the coming weeks.   Currently, most refineries do not apply for a waiver until after EPA sets the RFS volumes for the coming year. This new legislation would set a June deadline for refineries to apply for RFS exemptions, allowing ample time for the Department of Energy (DOE) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to determine exemptions before the annual...

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Apr 29, 2019

NCGA to EPA: Finalize E15 Parity by June 1

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Liz Friedlander

The National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) today submitted comments on the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) proposed rule to allow year-round sales of 15 percent ethanol blends, or E15, by eliminating the outdated barrier that currently requires retailers in many areas of the country to stop selling E15 during the summer months.   “By allowing E15 to receive the same summer volatility adjustment EPA permits for E10, retailers will be able to offer drivers E15 year-round, providing choice to their customers without an interruption in sales between June and September,” NCGA President Lynn Chrisp wrote in the submitted comments.   “Corn growers have advocated for this change for several years, and we agree with EPA’s assessment that the conditions that led EPA to provide the original volatility adjustment for E10, at a time when 10 percent was the highest ethanol blend available, are ‘equally applicable to E15 today,’” Chrisp added.    In addition to being beneficial...

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Apr 26, 2019

Year Round E15 – Last Call to Take Action!

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Cathryn Wojcicki

Monday, April 29, is the deadline to submit comments to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) on the proposal to allow for year-round sales of E15.   If you have not already, click here to submit your comments.   Removing the outdated barrier to year-round sales of E15 would grow demand for corn, lower fuel prices and lower emissions.    Submit your comments today!

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Apr 24, 2019

Crappie Masters Tournament Season in Full Swing

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Cathryn Wojcicki

The Crappie Masters Tournament Trail is half over with anglers already competing in nine tournaments across the country. Seven tournaments remain, including the National Championship in September at Grenada Lake in Mississippi.   Last weekend, anglers came to the Lake of the Ozarks in Missouri to compete in a one-day tournament. The winning team was Kevin Jones and Billy Don Surface, who is sponsored by the Missouri Corn Growers Association and American Ethanol. They competed against 98 other teams. The team turned in seven crappies, the most allowed to be turned in for the weigh-in, with a combined weight of 11 pounds.   During a Facebook Live Interview with Brian Sowers, the voice of Crappie Masters, he told the National Corn Growers Association “The message we are trying to put out there is using E10 fuel in your boat. There’s no other outdoor fishing organization talking about supporting the farmers, supporting cleaner water and cleaner air.”   NCGA is a co-sponsor of...

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Apr 15, 2019

39 Reasons the EPA Shouldn’t Grant any Additional Small Refinery Exemptions

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Julie Busse

  It was recently reported that the EPA will likely be considering the 39 pending petitions for 2018 small refinery exemptions very soon. The EPA approved 53 small refinery waivers from 2016 and 2017. These waivers have a direct impact on rural America and corn farmers. With an already tough economic environment, more waiver abuse will continue to chip away at farmers’ bottom line by destroying demand for corn. While EPA considers this next round of waivers, we came up with 39 facts and reasons why they should not grant any additional SRE’s.   53 - The number of refinery waivers EPA granted for the 2016 and 2017 compliance years since early 2018. 39 – The number of refinery exemptions EPA Administrator Wheeler has pending for 2018. 9.4 percent -- The percent of the 2017 RFS ethanol volume waived through SREs. 636 million – The difference in the amount of corn bushels needed to meet the RFS volume EPA set for 2017 and the amount needed to meet the effective...

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Apr 4, 2019

Beating the Drum on Capitol Hill: Grower Leaders Attend ACE Fly-In

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Cathryn Wojcicki

This week corn farmers, state and national corn staff and ethanol producers attended the American Coalition for Ethanol (ACE) Government Affairs Summit in Washington, D.C. Attendees took to the Hill for congressional visits to talk about the importance of E15 year-round, the overall benefits of ethanol and how refinery waivers undermine the renewable fuel standard (RFS).   “Being able to show we have a unified voice in Washington, D.C. is critical,” said Ethanol Action Team Chair and Missouri farmer Jay Schutte. “We have a lot of new members of Congress. Attending events like this helps us tell the positive story of corn ethanol and how it benefits consumers, rural America and the environment.”   The conference started with an update from ACE CEO Brian Jennings on the latest policy priorities for the organization: 1) E15 year-round, free of harmful changes to the RIN market; 2) reallocation of RFS blending obligations waived for small refineries and future refinery waivers; and...

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Mar 29, 2019

NCGA Testifies in Support of Year-Round E15

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Cathryn Wojcicki

National Corn Growers Association First Vice President and Minden, Iowa, farmer Kevin Ross spoke in support today of the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) proposed rule to allow for year-round sales of E15 across the country.   “Farmers stand ready to work with the Administration to clear obstacles to higher blends of ethanol such as E15 and ensure a final rule works for the full ethanol and fuel supply chain,” Ross said. “To ensure E15 sales are not interrupted, NCGA urges EPA to complete this rulemaking by June 1.”   Ross’s comments came during a hearing held as part of the rulemaking that would remove outdated regulations requiring retailers in many areas of the country to stop selling E15, a blend of gasoline and 15 percent ethanol approved for all vehicles 2001 and newer, during the summer months.   Year-round E15 is a no-cost means for farmers to grow demand. It also saves drivers between 3 and 10 cents per gallon and reduces greenhouse gas emissions.   During...

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Mar 26, 2019

Diving into the Changing Nutrient Profile of Distillers Feed Products

Key Issues: EthanolAnimal Agriculture

Author: Julie Busse

The National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) held the first Distillers Feed Products Nutrition Roundtable, bringing together animal ag partners, animal nutrition experts and ethanol technology providers to discuss the changing number and nutrient profile of distillers feed products.   “Our goal is to start a meaningful dialogue across segments of the supply chain,” said NCGA Director of Market Development Sarah McKay. “This is just one of the many steps to better understanding how new corn fractionation technologies are being deployed in dry mills in the U.S.  These technologies create value by separating out the various components of corn to allow improved utilization of the subsequent product streams.  While this technology has a lot of potential for early adopters and could increase corn grind, it will require a change in how the value chain views and uses the products of ethanol plants.  Gathering stakeholder input and starting a dialog early should help the rollout of this...

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Mar 14, 2019

NCGA on RFS Waivers: When Will the Nonsense Stop?

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Julie Busse

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) today, National Ag Day, granted five additional Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) Small Refinery Exemptions (SRE) for the 2017 compliance year, waiving 366 million gallons of biofuels from RFS compliance.   EPA’s decision today brings the total waivers from 2016 and 2017 RFS obligations to 53, amounting to 2.61 billion ethanol-equivalent gallons.  In years prior to 2016, SREs totaled less than 300 million gallons per year.   This action continues to chip away at the RFS and corn demand, hurting America’s corn farmers. NCGA has called for EPA to account for these lost volumes and disclose which refineries receive these waivers and why the waivers are justified.   The five refineries receiving today’s exemptions produced approximately 3.4 billion gallons of gasoline and diesel fuel in 2017, resulting in 366 million Renewable Identification Numbers (RINs) being exempted.    Currently, EPA has two remaining refinery exemption petitions for...

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Mar 12, 2019

NCGA Statement on E15 Proposed Rule

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Liz Friedlander

National Corn Growers Association President Lynn Chrisp made the below statement today following the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) release of a proposed rule to allow for year-round sales of E15.   “Today’s proposed rule is great progress to getting the rulemaking completed by the start of the summer driving season, June 1. NCGA appreciates EPA’s efforts to meet this deadline, and we look forward to fully reviewing the content of the proposed rule. We will be providing comments to EPA and urging our membership to provide input during the comment process as well.   “Allowing year-round sales of higher blends of ethanol not only grows a domestic market for farmers, but E15 gives consumers more choice at the pump, a lower price option and greater environmental benefits from a cleaner fuel. It’s time to remove the barrier to all of these benefits.”  

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Mar 5, 2019

E15 Rulemaking Moves Forward

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Cathryn Wojcicki

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Monday sent a draft rule to allow for year-round sales of E15 to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for review. This is the next step in the regulatory process and meeting expectations that this rulemaking be completed when the summer driving season begins June 1.     “NCGA is pleased to see the process move forward and will be providing input during this important phase,” said NCGA President Lynn Chrisp. “A timely rule is important for the summer driving season but it’s also important that the rule is done right.”   NCGA will be providing OMB with input to help ensure a strong, clear rule for E15. Following the review and interagency approval, EPA will issue a proposed rule for public comment.

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Feb 14, 2019

We Love Ethanol

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Beth Musgrove

Happy Valentine’s Day! No matter how you celebrate the day, if you celebrate at all, we here at the National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) are thinking about the top 10 reasons why we love ethanol.   Ethanol reduces greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 40-45% compared to conventional gasoline. 16.1 billion gallons of ethanol was produced in 2018 in the United States, along with 41.3 million metric tons of distillers grains, a value-added animal feed ingredient. Ethanol is homegrown and displaces roughly 580 million barrels of oil. Exports of ethanol grew in 2018, with exports increasing 20% to 1.6 billion gallons, a new record. 5.5 billion bushels of corn is used for ethanol and distiller’s dried grains (DDGS) production. The ethanol industry contributes $46 billion to the GDP. Consumers have driven more than 7 billion miles on E15 without a single reported negative impact. There are 1,700 stations in 30 states offering consumers...

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Feb 14, 2019

New Study Reaffirms the Environmental Benefits of the RFS

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Beth Musgrove

The growing body of research on the environmental benefits of the Renewable Fuels Standard (RFS2) just got bigger. A study released last week highlights some of these benefits including improved air quality and public health.   Since the enacting of the pro-biofuel policy in 2007, the use of biofuels in our transportation fuel supply has reduced greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 600 million metric tons. This is roughly equivalent to shutting down 154 coal-fired power plants or removing half of our nation’s cars from the road for an entire year!   The Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) contracted with Life Cycle Associates, a California-based scientific consulting firm, to update its 2014 GHG analysis to see how actual CO2 reductions match up with the expectations set by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The use of biofuels—predominantly corn ethanol—reduced emissions far more than what the agency expected (422 million metric tons).   The report attributes the...

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Feb 12, 2019

RFA Outlines 2019 Priorities at National Ethanol Conference

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Cathryn Wojcicki

The Renewable Fuels Association kicked-off their National Ethanol Conference today, looking back at the many battles that the ethanol industry has fought the past year.   RFA President & CEO Geoff Cooper opened the conference with the State of the Industry report. “Our industry made significant strides in 2018 to expand the market for E15 and flex fuels like E85. Thanks to the persistent and vocal advocacy efforts of our industry, our partners in agriculture, and our champions in Congress and the Administration, we got a firm commitment from President Trump in October to eliminate what he called an “unnecessary and ridiculous” regulatory barrier to year-round E15 sales before this summer driving season begins.”   “The U.S. ethanol industry produced a record 16.1 billion gallons of high-octane, clean-burning renewable fuel in 2018, up about 200 million gallons from 2017 and the sixth straight annual increase in production. Meanwhile, you churned out 41.3 million metric tons of...

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Feb 11, 2019

The Next Wave: Growth Energy Celebrates 10 Years

Key Issues: Ethanol

Author: Cathryn Wojcicki

Last week, the annual Growth Energy Executive Leadership Conference was held, celebrating their 10-year anniversary. The conference focused on 2019 priorities, E15 and retailer expansion.   On Friday, National Corn Growers Association Vice President of Market Development Jim Bauman moderated a panel with Kansas Corn’s CEO Greg Krissek, Illinois Corn’s Executive Director Rod Weinzierl and Nebraska Corn’s Director of Market Development Roger Berry.   The panel focused on bolstering demand for biofuels. The group talked about current state and national initiatives and outlined their priorities for the next year. “U.S. corn yields continue to grow by almost 2 bushels per acre.  If this growth continues, our industry will produce around 2 billion additional acres every 10 years,” said Bauman. “The need for new U.S. corn demand is clear.  Expanding ethanol demand represents an essential pathway to grinding additional corn.  Corn farmers have and continue to support the ethanol...

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Jan 28, 2019

RFA & NCGA Co-Title Sponsorship of 2019 Crappie Masters Tournament Trail Begins This Week

Key Issues: EthanolSustainability

Author: Julie Busse

The 2019 season of the Crappie Masters Tournament Trail begins later this week, with the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) and the National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) signed on as co-title sponsors for the third consecutive year. The first of 16 tournaments begins Friday, Feb. 1 in Deland, Fla., between Daytona and Orlando, at St. Johns River.   “Crappie Masters is pleased to again have the Renewable Fuels Association as a 2019 co-title sponsor of the Crappie Masters All American Tournament Trail,” said Crappie Masters President Mike Vallentine. “We have done significant education outreach to the boating community on the benefits of 10 percent ethanol blends (E10), and have helped push back on misinformation on higher blends like E15. Every Crappie Masters tournament winning team for the past four years has safely used E10 fuel with no reported engine issues. We plan to continue to help dispel the myths propagated by ethanol’s opponents, and support homegrown,...

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