Top News Stories This Week
Farm Progress Show Will Go On Despite Coronavirus Pandemic
Agriculture is a critical business for this country, and farmers are seeking ways to be better at what they do.
Douglas Johnson of Perry, IA inspects John Deere equipment
at the 2015 show in Decatur, IL. 
DES MOINES REGISTER | By Donnelle Eler “ June 17, 2020 - Farm Progress Show organizers on Wednesday announced plans to move ahead with its ag get-together this year near Boone despite the COVID-19 pandemic.
The longtime annual show is an essential business event that provides farmers with needed information and tools, organizers said.
"We know that the market is dealing with a lot of issues," said Matt Jungmann, the Farm Progress events manager. "But agriculture is a critical business for this country, and farmers are seeking ways to be better at what they do."
The show, which attracts thousands of Iowa and U.S. farmers and dozens of ag companies, alternates each year between being held near Boone and Decatur, Illinois. It is scheduled to be held Sept. 1-3 and, in previous years, has drawn attendees from 45 countries. READ MORE
RFA Says EPA Ignoring Court By Considering 52 New Small Refiner Waivers 
It’s critical that court orders are complied with and the EPA or any agency isn’t allowed to just ignore those rulings.
Renewable Fuels Association President and CEO Geoff Cooper with
former RFA CEO, Bob Dinneen (October 4, 2018).
WNAX RADIO 570 | June 22, 2020 — The Environmental Protection Agency has posted 52 new small refinery waiver requests from the Renewable Fuel Standard. Renewable Fuels Association President and CEO Geoff Cooper says the requests are a blatant attempt to go back nine years and end up undermining the 10th Circuit Court decision that directed the EPA not to issue waivers in a willy nilly fashion.
He says it’s critical that court orders are complied with and the EPA or any agency isn’t allowed to just ignore those rulings.
Cooper says if these requests are granted for 52 exemptions, there will be more severe damage to the ethanol industry as well as the RFS.
He says the 52 are just added to 27 other waiver requests that are already under consideration by the EPA for 2019 and 2020. Cooper says their next step is to seek further court oversight over this issue and make sure the RFS is properly followed. READ MORE
Greenfield: Wheeler Must Step Down Immediately  
AEPA needs to release a full accounting of the RFS waivers currently under consideration.
Theresa Greenfield, running against Sen. Joni Ernst, D-IA.
I OWA BLOG | By Paul Deaton | June 23, 2020 — Here’s what Theresa Greenfield is calling for today, in response to reports that the EPA is considering as many as 52 new RFS waivers dating all the way back to 2011:
1. EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler must step down immediately.
2. EPA needs to release a full accounting of the RFS waivers currently under consideration.
3. The U.S. Senate must take immediate action to pass more direct relief for Iowa’s biofuel industry.
“Senator Ernst said she’d be different. She said she’d make ‘em squeal,” said Greenfield. “But after nearly a full term in the Senate, hardworking Iowans are the only ones squealing and our ethanol and corn producers are under attack. 
Oil Futures Jump To a 3-month High On Demand Optimism 
Sentiment has also been bolstered by evidence the OPEC+ group of producer nations is pressing ahead with output cuts. 
BLOOMBERG | By Hailey Waller and Olivia Raimonde |June 22, 2020 — Oil futures in New York and London closed at the highest level in more than three months on optimism that fuel demand is recovering as lockdowns are lifted.
Prices have rallied in recent days as states move forward with phased reopening even as concerns mount over the risk of a second wave of the pandemic. Sentiment has also been bolstered by evidence the OPEC+ group of producer nations is pressing ahead with output cuts. READ MORE
In New Fuel Clash, Oil Refiners Ask For 52 Retroactive Ethanol Exemptions
Farm and biofuel groups have called repeatedly for the EPA to implement the ruling, which would effectively end the exemptions, and to reject “gap year” petitions covering past years.
SUCCESSFUL FARMING | By Chuck Abbott | June 19, 2020 — Oil refiners are attempting to evade an adverse appellate court ruling by asking the EPA for retroactive exemptions from the ethanol mandate, said biofuel trade groups on Thursday. Refiners have filed 52 petitions for exemptions stretching as far back as 2011, potentially creating a chain of annual waivers that would allow them to seek exemptions now.
The U.S. 10th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled on Jan. 24 that the EPA could not exempt a small-volume refinery from compliance with the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) unless it already had an exemption. Farm and biofuel groups have called repeatedly for the EPA to implement the ruling, which would effectively end the exemptions, and to reject “gap year” petitions covering past years.  READ MORE
Biodiesel and Renewable Diesel’s Resiliency Even in Crisis: The Digest’s 2020 Multi-Slide Guide to REG’s Response to COVID-19
Click graphic below for eight cell presentation.
BIOFUELS DIGEST | By Jim Lane | June 18, 2020 — From planning, people and performance, Renewable Energy Group is on top of things with the coronavirus. Since biodiesel and renewable diesel production has been considered essential business, REG was still working, maintaining full operations of all refineries, and while there was lower diesel demand due to the shut down of the economy, demand for REG’s products have been pretty resilient thus far.
Here’s a look at their resiliency, biodiesel prices, feedstock prices, RINs and biofuel RIN values, fleet customers and gallons sold, positive and negative market forces in the face of COVID-19, and more.
The Senate Agriculture Committee Too Hold A Hearing This Week On Climate And Agriculture Legislation
The panel is scheduled to take testimony on the "Growing Climate Solutions Act," a bipartisan bill introduced earlier this month by Sen. Mike Braun (R-Ind.).
Sen. Mike Braun (R-Ind.), seen here on Capitol Hill last week.
E&E News | June 22, 2020 — Legislation that could encourage the creation of carbon markets to address climate change will receive a hearing this week in the Senate Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry Committee.
The panel is scheduled to take testimony on the "Growing Climate Solutions Act," a bipartisan bill introduced earlier this month by Sen. Mike Braun (R-Ind.).
The measure, S. 3894 , would create a certification program at the Department of Agriculture for technical service providers who help farmers devise carbon sequestration practices and sell carbon credits.
It would add to programs that private companies have launched in recent years, providing some certainty to farmers, supporters said.
Braun's legislation, joined by Agriculture ranking Democrat Debbie Stabenow of Michigan and Sens. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.), would also create a related advisory committee at USDA and would require a report to Congress on its implementation. READ MORE
China to Speed U.S. Farm Purchases After Secretive Hawaii Talks
China plans to accelerate purchases of American farm goods to comply with the phase one trade deal with the U.S. following talks.
BLOOMBERG NEWS |  June 19, 2020 — China will speed up imports of soy, corn, ethanol, people said.
Plan offers relief to market concerned about trade disruptions
China plans to accelerate purchases of American farm goods to comply with the phase one trade deal with the U.S. following talks in Hawaii this week.
The world’s top soybean importer intends to increase buying everything from soybeans to corn and ethanol after purchases fell behind due to the coronavirus, said two people familiar with the matter, who asked not to be named because the information is private. A separate person said China’s government has asked state-owned buyers to make efforts to meet the phase one impact. READ MORE
UK Aid Bombshell – Climate Weekly 
Aid experts and no fewer than three former prime ministers united in horror at the move.
Margaret holds UK-funded food aid for her malnourished 18-month-old James
in drought-hit Turkana, Kenya
CLIMATE HOME NEWS | By Megan Darby | June 19, 2020 — In the post-pandemic economic slump, efforts to eradicate poverty and hunger worldwide were already facing a huge setback.
What a moment, then, for Boris Johnson to signal a radical shift in priorities for UK aid, away from the poorest and towards middle income countries seen as critical to British interests.
The merger between the international development and foreign affairs ministries had been rumoured for a while but was not in Johnson’s election manifesto. Senior officials were told just hours before the public announcement. Aid experts and no fewer than three former prime ministers united in horror at the move. READ MORE
Biodiesel Improving Air Quality In Chicago Parks
As the B100 pilot program enters its second year, CPD is celebrating improved air quality and emission reductions equivalent to planting 419 trees in Chicago parks annually.
Chicago metropolitan garbage trucks as do many of their utility vehicles run on biodiesel.
BIODIESEL MAGAZINE | By The Illinois Soybean Association | June 22, 2020 — As Chicago residents begin to resume outdoor activities, they can expect to breathe a little easier. That’s because the Chicago Park District is working to improve air quality by fueling park refuse haulers with 100 percent biodiesel (B100).
It’s all part of a pilot program in partnership with the  Illinois Soybean Association  checkoff program and the  American Lung Association , aimed at reduced vehicle carbon emissions and more sustainable operations. As the B100 pilot program enters its second year, CPD is celebrating improved air quality and emission reductions equivalent to planting 419 trees in Chicago parks annually. READ MORE
Louis Dreyfus Company Launches Corporate Venture Capital Program
Over the coming months, we will invest in early-stage companies with the potential to transform the food and agriculture industries.
Sustainable soy.
BIODIESEL MAGAZINE | By Louis Dreyfus Company B.V. | June 18, 2020 — The Louis Dreyfus Company has launched a corporate venture capital program called LDC Innovations as an essential element in the company’s strategic plans to reinforce its position as a key value chain participant.
“This program is another positive step in our strategic growth plans, as part of which we are investing in innovations and technologies that can help meet increasing global demand for healthy, nutritious products that are responsibly sourced and produced,” said Ian McIntosh, LDC CEO. “Over the coming months, we will invest in early-stage companies with the potential to transform the food and agriculture industries. Most importantly, we will support businesses that share our vision for a safe and sustainable future through transparent supply chains, responsible sourcing and long-term value creation.”   READ MORE
June 23, 2020
June 23, 2020
Neste Increases R&D In Finland To Decrease Use Of Crude Oil
These new solutions decrease the use of crude oil and tackle climate change.
How mail is delivered to homes in Finland. Their large diesel trucks are the ones to run on renewable diesel!
BIODIESEL MAGAZINE | By Neste Corp. | June 18, 2020 — Neste launched a new research project to develop sustainable and globally scalable raw materials and technology solutions for transportation fuels and the production of chemicals and polymers. These new solutions decrease the use of crude oil and tackle climate change. The new technologies will be based on scalable renewable and circular raw materials that have been difficult to utilize so far, such as forestry or agricultural residues, municipal waste, algae, waste plastics and carbon dioxide. READ MORE
EU Soybean Production Up 11% This Year, Doubled In 10 Years
Italy, with a soybean area of presumably 306,000 hectares (756k acres) and a 12 percent increase in area, is likely to remain the biggest soybean producer of the EU-27 by far.
BIODIESEL MAGAZINE | By UFOP | June 18, 2020 — Soybean production in the EU-27 continues to expand in 2020 due to significant increases in farmland planted with soybeans in key EU member states.
According to information published by the EU Commission, soybean production in the EU-27 more than doubled over the past 10 years. The area planted with soybeans in 2020 is reported to amount to almost 1 million hectares. This is up around 11 percent year-on-year.
Italy, with a soybean area of presumably 306,000 hectares and a 12 percent increase in area, is likely to remain the biggest soybean producer of the EU-27 by far. READ MORE
Fuelling Europe’s Future – A Vision For How Renewable Ethanol Can Help Drive The EU Green Deal
Renewable ethanol production opens new markets for Europe’s farmers and boosts rural economies
Switchgrass is planted once, and grows for decades. Just like a lawn!
BIOFUELS INTERNATIONAL | June 22, 2020 — The EU’s transition to climate-neutrality will require every sustainable emissions-reduction tool we have.
Renewable ethanol – produced sustainably from crops and agricultural wastes and residues – is a decarbonisation solution that is already making a positive impact in the climate fight.
Renewable ethanol production opens new markets for Europe’s farmers and boosts rural economies, and its use offers consumers a convenient way to reduce harmful emissions. READ MORE
BSE Engineering And IRES Successfully Demonstrate Conversion Of Wind Power To Methanol
The process employed by BSE synthesises methanol under dynamic conditions in a tube bundle reactor and is especially suitable for converting electricity from volatile energy sources.
BIOFUELS INTERNATIONAL | June 18, 2020 — Growth Energy CEO Emily Skor has thanked two US senators for introducing legislation to reduce Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) delays in the approval of applications to produce advanced biofuels under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS).
“We applaud Senators John Thune and Jeanne Shaheen for working on a bipartisan basis to break the regulatory logjam holding back cellulosic biofuels,” said Skor.
“Studies show that advanced biofuels can cut carbon emissions by 100% or more while providing a low-cost alternative to petroleum-based aromatics that poison our air and threaten our health. READ MORE
Renewable Ethanol Is A Win For EU’s Farm To Fork Strategy  
Strategy should give more attention to the contribution already being made by European biorefineries in realising these sustainability goals.
BIOFUELS INTERNATIONAL | June 17, 2020 — The EU’s new Farm to Fork Strategy aims to build a more sustainable European agriculture and food system.
Importantly, it highlights the potential for a truly circular, bio-based economy in which advanced biorefineries produce bioenergy, protein feed for animals, sustainable fertilisers and bio-chemicals in “the transition to a climate-neutral European economy and the creation of new jobs in primary production”.
That’s a good start. But the Strategy should give more attention to the contribution already being made by European biorefineries in realising these sustainability goals – a contribution that could be increased with the right policy moves as the EU moves along the Green Deal timeline. READ REPORT
Renewable Fuels Expansion: The Digest’s 2020 Multi-Slide Guide to Gevo’s Next-Gen Renewable Fuels
Get the latest in this just released slide guide detailing how there is a rare growth opportunity over a decade in the making. 
Click graphic above to go to slide show.
BIOFUELS DIEGEST | By Jim Lane | June 22, 2020 — Gevo is developing a platform to fund expansion projects in the next phase of its unique, next generation renewable fuels business. Their commercial-scale facilities are converting agricultural, forestry and other feedstocks to high value, low pollutant, low carbon substitutes for gasoline and jet fuel.
So they check alot of boxes, but is that all? Get the latest in this just released slide guide detailing how there is a rare growth opportunity over a decade in the making, circular economy in action, high margin projects, contracted renewable fuels offtake, 3 key expansion projects, and more. READ MORE
Co-Optima’s Big Impacts for Biofuels: The Digest’s 2020 Multi-Slide Guide to U.S. Dept. of Energy Co-Optimization of Fuels & Engines
This plant will be upscaled 10-fold to produce 100 million litres of renewable fuel before 2026.
Click on graphic to access 52 slide presentation.
BIOFUELS DIGEST | By Jim Lane | June 17, 2020 — If you haven’t heard of Co-Optima, you should! This U.S. DOE initiative is tackling fuel and engine research and development to maximize vehicle fuel economy – key for biofuels!
From mapping lower-cost pathways to reduce emissions while developing knowledge that can be used to leverage diverse domestic fuel resources, boost U.S. economic productivity, and enhance national energy security – all key things to strive for during these crazy times – you can get details of their latest research in biofuels and more in this slide guide.   VIEW SLIDE SHOW
No UN Climate Talks To Be Held In 2020, As Interim Meeting Postponed Again  
Health restrictions by the German authorities left no alternative but to defer negotiations planned for October, UN Climate Change said.
Health restrictions by the German authorities left no alternative but to defer negotiations planned for October, UN Climate Change said.
CLIMATE HOME NEWS | By Chloé Farand | June 23, 2020 — There will be no UN climate negotiations this year, after preparatory talks scheduled in October have been postponed a second time into 2021. 
On Monday evening, top climate diplomats decided the intersessional meeting which happens every year between UN climate summits in Bonn, Germany, where UN Climate Change is headquartered, would not be able to take place on the proposed dates of 4-12 October. A new date for the meeting is yet to be decided.
The meeting, initially scheduled in June, was tentatively moved to October after the coronavirus pandemic made it too risky to hold international conferences. The next major summit, Cop26 in Glasgow, UK, has been pushed back to 1-12 November 2021 . READ MORE