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(Posted Thu. Nov 7th, 2019)

Keywords: Ethanol

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...

NCGA to EPA: Good Intentions Don’t Provide Certainty

(Posted Wed. Oct 30th, 2019)

Keywords: Ethanol

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...

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

(Posted Tue. Oct 29th, 2019)

Keywords: Ethanol

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...

EPA Plan to Address RFS Waivers Falls Short

(Posted Tue. Oct 15th, 2019)

Keywords: ethanol RFS waivers

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...

Researching the Next Generation of Biobased Materials

(Posted Thu. Oct 10th, 2019)

Keywords: Ethanol

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...

Ethanol Again Fuels Winners of Crappie Masters National Tournament

(Posted Wed. Oct 2nd, 2019)

Keywords: ethanol

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...

(Posted Wed. Sep 18th, 2019)

Keywords: Trade Ethanol

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...

NCGA Files Court Motion in Support of E15

(Posted Tue. Sep 10th, 2019)

Keywords: Ethanol

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.

NCGA: EPA Must Account for Waivers

(Posted Fri. Aug 30th, 2019)

Keywords: Ethanol Farm Policy

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...

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

(Posted Thu. Aug 29th, 2019)

Keywords: Ethanol Farm Policy

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...

(Posted Thu. Aug 22nd, 2019)

Keywords: Ethanol Farm Policy

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...

Tell EPA: Waivers Are Gutting the RFS

(Posted Tue. Aug 20th, 2019)

Keywords: Ethanol Farm Policy

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. 

American Coalition for Ethanol Conference Focuses on Growing Markets

(Posted Mon. Aug 19th, 2019)

Keywords: ethanol

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...

NCGA Statement: EPA Waivers Undermine RFS

(Posted Fri. Aug 9th, 2019)

Keywords: farm policy ethanol

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...

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

(Posted Thu. Aug 8th, 2019)

Keywords: Ethanol

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...

NCGA Testimony: EPA Must Account for RFS Waivers

(Posted Wed. Jul 31st, 2019)

Keywords: ethanol farm policy

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...

(Posted Wed. Jul 31st, 2019)

Keywords: ethanol farm policy

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...

NCGA Recognizes Senator Fischer with President’s Award

(Posted Thu. Jul 18th, 2019)

Keywords: trade ethanol farm policy

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...

(Posted Wed. Jul 17th, 2019)

Keywords: ethanol

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,...

NCGA Takes Ethanol Waiver Message Back to Airwaves

(Posted Tue. Jul 16th, 2019)

Keywords: ethanol farm policy

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.  

National Corn Growers Association in the Spotlight at BIO World Congress

(Posted Thu. Jul 11th, 2019)

Keywords: Ethanol Biotechnolgoy

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...

EPA Favors Oil Refiners Over Corn Farmers

(Posted Fri. Jul 5th, 2019)

Keywords: Farm Policy Ethanol

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...

Fill-Up with E15 this Fourth of July

(Posted Tue. Jul 2nd, 2019)

Keywords: Ethanol

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.

Coalition Asking Auto Manufacturers to Offer more Flex Fuel Vehicles

(Posted Wed. Jun 26th, 2019)

Keywords: ethanol

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.  

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

(Posted Thu. Jun 20th, 2019)

Keywords: Farm Policy Ethanol

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,...

(Posted Fri. Jun 14th, 2019)

Keywords: Ethanol Farm Policy

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...

NCGA Joins President at Iowa Ethanol Plant

(Posted Tue. Jun 11th, 2019)

Keywords: Ethanol Farm Policy

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,...

NCGA Highlights Negative Effect of Ethanol Waivers

(Posted Thu. Jun 6th, 2019)

Keywords: ethanol farm policy

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...

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

(Posted Fri. May 31st, 2019)

Keywords: Ethanol

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...

FUELS2019 Brings Together Industry Stakeholders to Discuss Liquid Transportation Fuels

(Posted Wed. May 29th, 2019)

Keywords: Ethanol

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...

(Posted Thu. May 23rd, 2019)

Keywords: Ethanol

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...

(Posted Mon. Apr 29th, 2019)

Keywords: Ethanol

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...

(Posted Fri. Apr 26th, 2019)

Keywords: Ethanol

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!

Crappie Masters Tournament Season in Full Swing

(Posted Wed. Apr 24th, 2019)

Keywords: Ethanol

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...

(Posted Mon. Apr 15th, 2019)

Keywords: Ethanol policy

  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...

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

(Posted Thu. Apr 4th, 2019)

Keywords: Ethanol

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...

NCGA Testifies in Support of Year-Round E15

(Posted Fri. Mar 29th, 2019)

Keywords: Ethanol

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...

Diving into the Changing Nutrient Profile of Distillers Feed Products

(Posted Tue. Mar 26th, 2019)

Keywords: ethanol animal ag livestock

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...

(Posted Thu. Mar 14th, 2019)

Keywords: Ethanol policy

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...

NCGA Statement on E15 Proposed Rule

(Posted Tue. Mar 12th, 2019)

Keywords: Ethanol policy

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.”  

(Posted Tue. Mar 5th, 2019)

Keywords: Ethanol

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.

We Love Ethanol

(Posted Thu. Feb 14th, 2019)

Keywords: ethanol

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...

New Study Reaffirms the Environmental Benefits of the RFS

(Posted Thu. Feb 14th, 2019)

Keywords: ethanol

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...

RFA Outlines 2019 Priorities at National Ethanol Conference

(Posted Tue. Feb 12th, 2019)

Keywords: Ethanol

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...

The Next Wave: Growth Energy Celebrates 10 Years

(Posted Mon. Feb 11th, 2019)

Keywords: Ethanol

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...

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

(Posted Mon. Jan 28th, 2019)

Keywords: ethanol sponsorship Crappie Masters

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,...

NCGA Sponsorship with DigestData Connects Start-Ups with Trusted Partners

(Posted Wed. Dec 19th, 2018)

Keywords: ethanol

In a first of its kind partnership, the National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) has joined with Biofuels Digest to support the creation and launch of DigestData, an online database designed to help facilitate networking and the transfer of information between interested parties working in the bio-based industry.  NCGA’s sponsorship provides DigestData users with free access to search research and pilot scale facilities along with facility details such as certifications, available equipment, and primary contact information.   “The goal was to bring more visibility to these facilities and projects in the United States,” said Feed, Food and Industrial Action Team Chair Dan Wesely. “Our sponsorship ensures that this information is always available for free to those who sign up and subscribe. We want companies to recognize the number of facilities that are located right here in the Midwest, close to the untapped potential that corn can provide as a feedstock. DigestData provides a...

Decreased Ethanol Market Demand May Lead to Higher Ending Stocks for U.S. Corn

(Posted Wed. Dec 12th, 2018)

Keywords: production ethanol

According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) World Agricultural Supply and demand Estimate (WASDE) report released today, decreased demand forecasts for U.S. corn from ethanol markets will impact ending stocks, which are projected 45 million bushels higher than the previous month.   Notably, ethanol demand forecasts reflect data showing that corn use during the quarter from September through November fell relative to prior years for the first time since 2012.   The corn price forecast remained at $3.60 per bushel at the midpoint while the range narrowed to between $3.25 and $3.95.   Click here to read the full report.  

NCGA Testifies in Support of RFS

(Posted Tue. Dec 11th, 2018)

Keywords: ethanol policy rfs

Texas farmer and National Corn Growers Association past president and chairman, Wesley Spurlock, today testified on behalf of NCGA at a House Energy and Commerce Environment Subcommittee hearing to review a discussion draft of the 21st Century Transportation Fuels Act.   Spurlock told the Subcommittee of the significant opportunities the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) has created for farmers.   “The RFS is one of the most ambitious and successful energy, environmental and economic policies Congress has enacted, not only for farmers and rural communities but also for drivers, our air quality and our nation’s energy security. As use of homegrown renewable fuels has grown and as farmers have become more productive using fewer resources, the benefits of the RFS have exceeded those Congress projected,” Spurlock said.   Spurlock’s testimony cited farmers’ increased productivity, increasing their average yield by more than 25 bushels per acre, or 17 percent, since 2007, as well as...

EPA Fails to Account for Future Refinery Waivers in Final 2019 RVO Rule

(Posted Fri. Nov 30th, 2018)

Keywords: ethanol policy

The National Corn Growers Association today said the EPA’s final 2019 Renewable Volume Obligation (RVO) rule under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) moves renewable fuels and energy security forward in 2019, but the growth will only be realized if EPA does not grant refiners further RFS exemptions.   “We are pleased the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) maintained the implied conventional ethanol volume of 15 billion gallons and increased the total 2019 renewable fuel volume as intended by the RFS. However, EPA granted refineries 2.25 billion gallons in RFS waivers over the past year but did nothing to account for those lost volumes. If EPA continues to grant large amounts of waivers in this manner, the volumes set in this final rule cannot be met,” said NCGA President Lynn Chrisp.   In comments on the rule, NCGA and its grower members urged EPA to take steps to maintain the integrity of the RFS, including projecting 2019 waivers and accounting for those gallons to keep the...

NCGA Calls for More Equitable Trade Relief

(Posted Tue. Nov 20th, 2018)

Keywords: trade market access aid ethanol

National Corn Growers Association President Lynn Chrisp today urged U.S. Department of Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue to consider changes to the Market Facilitation Program (MFP) ahead of the second round of payments.   In a letter to Perdue, Chrisp said that he continues to hear from farmers who are disappointed in USDA’s approach to calculating the first round of MFP payments because it was too narrow in scope and did not capture the real-time impacts of trade disruptions on our markets.   Chrisp asked Perdue to add ethanol and distillers dried grains with solubles (DDGS) to the calculation of damages for corn. Using USDA’s methodology, gross trade damages for ethanol and DDGS amounts to $254 million, which was not accounted for in the first MFP payments. Chrisp also asked the Secretary to allow farmers who suffer production losses from disasters to use an alternative to 2018 production for their MFP calculation. This would ensure farmers suffering from drought,...

NCGA Statement on Environmental Groups Petition to the EPA on Land Use

(Posted Wed. Oct 31st, 2018)

Keywords: ethanol policy

The following is a statement from Nebraska farmer Lynn Chrisp, president of the National Corn Growers Association (NCGA), on a petition filed by environmental and conservation groups regarding land use.   “The acreage data is very clear: farmers are planting fewer acres to corn today than we did when the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) was expanded,” said Lynn Chrisp, president of the National Corn Growers Association. “And it’s not just corn acres that have fallen. The area planted to principal crops is shrinking nationwide. The reality of what is happening on today’s farms is not accurately portrayed in the petition.”   Farmers planted fewer acres to corn in 2018 (89.1 million) than they did when the RFS was expanded in 2007 (93.5 million). During that same time, ethanol production expanded from 6.5 billion gallons to 15.8 billion gallons. Overall, the area planted to principal crops in the U.S. has fallen from 328.6 million acres in 2000 to 322 million acres in 2018, according...

NCGA Urges EPA and NHTSA to Recognize Benefits of High-Octane Fuels

(Posted Fri. Oct 26th, 2018)

Keywords: ethanol policy

The National Corn Growers Association today emphasized the benefits for fuel economy and emissions reductions from the use of high-octane fuels in comments to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA) on the proposed SAFE Vehicles Rule.   “As producers of the primary feedstock used for ethanol production, corn farmers have a strong vested interest in the future of transportation fuels,” NCGA President Lynn Chrisp wrote.   The organization’s comments urged regulators to consider fuels and vehicles as a system of high-octane fuel used with optimized engines. NCGA also believes high-octane, low-carbon fuel can help support harmonization between federal and state standards.   “Pairing advanced engines with certain higher-octane fuel improves vehicle performance and efficiency while using less energy and releasing fewer emissions, particularly when the octane source is a midlevel ethanol blend,” wrote...

NCERC Celebrates 15 Years of Advancing Biofuels

(Posted Mon. Oct 22nd, 2018)

Keywords: Ethanol

The National Corn-to-Ethanol Research Center (NCERC) is celebrating its 15-year anniversary this month, after opening its doors in 2003. The Illinois Corn Growers Association was instrumental in fostering its development.   The National Corn Growers Associations (NCGA) has worked closely with NCERC since its inception and continues partnering on various projects.  The NCGA and NCERC partnership has underscored the advantages to the corn and ethanol industries since the beginning.   NCERC Executive Director John Caupert said NCERC’s portfolio of services has expanded since opening their doors in the fall of 2003, but their mission has remained the same: creating opportunities for our nation’s farmers.   “The NCERC has directly contributed to the growth of the ethanol industry, helping grow ethanol production in the United States from 2.8 billion gallons annually to the nearly 16 billion gallons of production today,” said Caupert. “NCERC has assisted in advancements in fuel...

NCGA Welcomes Year-Round E15

(Posted Tue. Oct 9th, 2018)

Keywords: ethanol policy

National Corn Growers Association President Lynn Chrisp today praised an announcement from President Trump, setting the necessary regulatory steps in motion to allow for year-round sales of E15.   “Corn farmers across the country have been advocating for year-round sales of higher ethanol blends like E15 to help grow demand, provide consumers with more options at the pump and improve economic conditions across rural America,” said Chrisp. “We thank President Trump for following through on his commitment to America’s farmers.”   Outdated regulations currently require 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. Updating this regulation will give consumers year-round access to a fuel choice that can save them between three and 10 cents per gallon.   “Earlier this year, the President correctly described this barrier as ‘unnecessary’ and ‘ridiculous’,”...

Crappie Masters National Championship Winners: 'Never Hesitate' When Filling Up with Ethanol

(Posted Tue. Oct 2nd, 2018)

Keywords: ethanol Crappie Masters

The 2018 Crappie Masters Tournament Trail concluded last week with the National Championship at Truman Lake in Clinton, Mo. Two, 21-year-old Missouri natives were the winners of the final tournament, which was held Sept. 26 – 29.   For the second consecutive year, the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) and the National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) sponsored the national fishing tournament, which highlights the use of 10 percent ethanol (E10) in our nation’s waterways. Regular gasoline, which is blended with E10, produces less greenhouse gas emissions, keeps the air, and water cleaner.   The team, Matthew Rogers and Baylor Mead, won the 2018 championship with 21.19 pounds using E10 in their boat.   “We never hesitate when filling up our boat with E10,” Rogers said. “There are many benefits of using ethanol. We want to keep our waterways clean and the fish population healthy.”   “Our boat runs great on E10,” said Mead. “I am very pleased with the performance and mileage we...

NCGA Statement on EPA RFS Website Updates

(Posted Thu. Sep 20th, 2018)

Keywords: ethanol RFS

The following is a statement from North Dakota farmer Kevin Skunes, president of the National Corn Growers Association (NCGA), in response to the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) updated Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) transparency website that will provide information on granted small refinery waivers and data on Renewable Identification Number (RIN) prices.   “We appreciate the step EPA Acting Administrator Andrew Wheeler has taken to update the RFS data website to bring some initial transparency to refinery exemptions.  This information is a good place to start.    “However, there are a lot of questions left unanswered. We will still not know EPA’s justification for granting a refinery waiver and, without a change in how EPA accounts for those exempted gallons, those waived gallons will still be lost from RFS obligations.  It’s helpful to know when the harm is being done, but EPA needs to go a step further and take steps to mitigate the damage.    “We...

(Posted Thu. Sep 20th, 2018)

Keywords: Ethanol

In a recent letter  to EPA Acting Administrator Wheeler, members of the U.S. House of Representatives Biofuels Caucus provided comment on the Agency’s 2019 Renewable Volume Obligations (RVO) proposal. Echoing comments from NCGA and other ethanol advocates, the Caucus members emphasized the growth potential for ethanol and advanced biofuels while also cautioning the EPA against further undermining the RFS through secret waivers for refineries.   “Corn farmers thank members of the bipartisan House Biofuels Caucus for advocating for a continued strong RFS, greater transparency from EPA and reallocation of waived gallons to keep RFS volumes whole,” said NCGA president Kevin Skunes. “We appreciate the Caucus’ efforts to promote the benefits of renewable fuels and stand up for farmers and rural communities.”   As the Caucus points out in the letter, the RFS volumes EPA sets this fall will be undermined if EPA continues issuing refinery exemptions.   “We urge the EPA to put an end...

NCGA to Drivers: Fuel Up with E15 Beginning Sunday

(Posted Fri. Sep 14th, 2018)

Keywords: ethanol RVP

The National Corn Growers Association is urging drivers to fuel up with E15 as the fuel again becomes available Sunday following its limited summer availability. NCGA also renewed its call for President Trump to follow through on his commitment to allow for year-round sales of E15 and ethanol blends greater than 10 percent.   “Starting September 16, consumers will once again have the option to choose E15 at the pump,” said NCGA President Kevin Skunes. “E15 typically costs 3 to 10 cents less than regular E10 gasoline and offers more environmental benefits, making it a common-sense choice for many drivers. When consumers benefit from choice, it makes no sense than an outdated regulation prevents E15 from being sold in many areas for three and a half months of the year.”   “Just this week, USDA said it is anticipating near-record level corn production. Approving year-round E15 would go a long way toward growing the market for this year’s crop,” Skunes added.   NCGA recently...

Farm, Ethanol Groups Urge President Trump to Restore Integrity to RFS, Allow Year-Round E15 Sales

(Posted Wed. Sep 12th, 2018)

Keywords: ethanol policy

In a letter to President Trump today, the American Farm Bureau Federation, National Corn Growers Association, National Farmers Union, National Sorghum Producers, American Coalition for Ethanol, Growth Energy, and Renewable Fuels Association urged the administration to act immediately to restore the integrity of the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) and allow year-round sales of E15 and other mid-level ethanol blends. The groups also expressed concern that any benefit from year-round E15 sales and proper implementation of the RFS could be nullified if refiners are given further regulatory bailouts that undercut the spirit and intent of the law.   The letter follows comments made by Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue on Aug. 29 that an announcement on the RFS and E15 would be coming soon. “With ethanol prices hitting a 13-year low and net farm income plummeting to half of the record $123 billion achieved in 2013, such an announcement could not come at a more critical juncture for...

(Posted Fri. Sep 7th, 2018)

Keywords: Ethanol

The National Corn Growers Association commended Reps. David Young, R-Iowa, and Collin Peterson, D-Minn., today on the introduction of the Restoring Our Commitment to Renewable Fuels Act to keep the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) whole. Their legislation specifically requires that, when the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) grants exemptions to small refineries, each exempted gallon be reallocated to other refineries and blenders. The bill also stipulates that small refinery exemption petitions be subject to public disclosure.   Although the RFS provides EPA with the tools to ensure exemptions are accounted for when setting RFS volumes, EPA is not using them. EPA has retroactively waived 2.25 billion ethanol-equivalent gallons and failed to reallocate those gallons to others, effectively reducing RFS requirements. This legislation specifically requires EPA to make up waived gallons and ensures EPA is no longer able to reduce the RFS through retroactive refinery waivers. It also...

Trade, RFS Lead Conversations at Farm Progress Show

(Posted Fri. Aug 31st, 2018)

Keywords: Trade Ethanol

  National Corn Growers Association farmer leaders and staff attended this week’s Farm Progress Show in Boone, Iowa to let attendees know the importance of trade, the RFS and Farm Bill. Chairman Wesley Spurlock, President Kevin Skunes and First-Vice President-elect Kevin Ross attended the show.    President Skunes participated in a pro-RFS rally and a Farmers for Free Trade news conference. After the RFS rally, Skunes had the opportunity to talk with Ag Secretary Sonny Perdue one-on-one.   “I wanted to let the Secretary know that farmers appreciate his support in Washington D.C. and thank him for carrying our message with the administration,” Skunes said. “However, I was very direct and let the Secretary know that there are steps that can be taken now to help farmers and the rural economy and that’s getting RVP (allowing year-round E15 ethanol sales) done now. I also voiced our displeasure with the one-cent per bushel for corn in the trade mitigation package is...

(Posted Tue. Aug 28th, 2018)

Keywords: Ethanol

All Farm Progress Show attendees who support ethanol are invited to a pro-Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) rally on Wednesday, August 29, 2018, at 11:15 am at the Sukup Grain Bin. This event, which is being coordinated by the Iowa Renewable Fuels Association (IRFA) and Iowa Corn Growers Association, will help the Show welcome U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue and remind him how important the RFS and E15 are to the rural economy – and to the farmers who depend upon this key market.   The Sukup Grain Bin, Booth 1024, is quite large and will not be difficult to locate. So, please, take a moment and join NCGA President, Kevin Skunes to show rural America’s support for the fuel that fuels our families.   You can follow along on the NCGA Facebook and Twitter pages for updates should there be any schedule changes.

(Posted Tue. Aug 21st, 2018)

Keywords: Ethanol

The American Coalition for Ethanol’s annual conference focused on issues impacting the ethanol industry including an update from ACE leadership, discussions on untapped opportunities in the industry, future demand for liquid fuels and fuel quality standards.   “I knew 2018 was going to be like none other,” Jennings said. “Where do we go from here? How do we shape a positive outcome moving forward? For starters, we capitalize on the clout of American farmers and rural America as we lead to the mid-term election. We must keep grassroots pressure on the White House and EPA to make good on the President’s promise to maintain 15 billion gallons in the RFS, including reallocation of the small refinery waivers, and to finally approve RVP relief of E-15 and higher blends.”   National Corn Growers Association Interim CEO Jon Doggett participated in the event as a speaker on a panel on trade and tariffs. “Corn farmers and the ethanol industry need market access,” Doggett said. “Farmers...

(Posted Fri. Aug 17th, 2018)

Keywords: Ethanol

The National Corn Growers Association today submitted comments to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) on the proposed rule for the 2019 volume standards under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) program. The rule proposes an implied 15 billion-gallon volume for conventional ethanol but fails to account for, nor consider comments on, retroactive exemptions granted to refineries.   “To uphold the full clean air, cost-savings, energy independence and rural economic benefits consumers and farmers receive from the RFS, EPA must also use the 2019 volume rule to make and keep the RFS whole,” NCGA President and North Dakota Farmer Kevin Skunes said.   In the proposed rule, EPA disclosed the agency granted retroactive exemptions to 48 refineries for 2016 and 2017 RFS obligations, amounting to 2.25 billion ethanol-equivalent gallons. Through this proposed rule, EPA has the tools to ensure retroactive exemptions do not further reduce volumes. However, EPA stated the agency is not...

Biofuel and Farm Leaders Mark 13th Anniversary  of the RFS

(Posted Wed. Aug 8th, 2018)

Keywords: ethanol

Thirteen years ago this Wednesday, August 8, the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) was signed into law, sparking a new era of U.S. biofuel leadership that continues to support rural jobs, increase energy security, and deliver clean, affordable options at the fuel pump. The nation’s leading farm and biofuel advocates marked the occasion by calling on Acting Administrator Andrew Wheeler at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to quickly deliver on the president’s pledge to uphold the RFS and expand the market for ethanol blends, including E15. “For 13 years, the RFS has been a driving force for economic opportunity across the heartland,” said Kevin Skunes, president of National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) and a North Dakota farmer. “Today, biofuels are more important than ever. Farm income has fallen to a 12-year low, and the EPA’s refinery waivers have left more and more families facing an uncertain future. The EPA can address this uncertainty and take action now by approving...

(Posted Thu. Aug 2nd, 2018)

Keywords: Ethanol

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Department of Transportation (DOT) today recognized the benefits of high octane fuels, such as mid-level ethanol blend, in their proposed SAFE Vehicles rule. The agencies specifically requested comments on how EPA, “could support the production and use of higher octane gasoline” to support compliance with vehicle fuel economy and greenhouse gas emissions standards.   As corn growers know, ethanol is a high octane fuel that provides a cost effective means for automakers to reduce GHG emissions and improve fuel economy when used with optimized engines. Analyzing fuels and vehicles as a system provides automakers with more flexibility and options to meet vehicle standards.    As an active member of the High Octane Low Carbon Alliance (HOLC), NCGA has advocated for the benefits of high octane fuels. The agencies’ proposed rule today acknowledges HOLC and information we provided on high octane fuels as this proposed rule was...

NCGA Calls on EPA to Account for Refinery Waivers

(Posted Wed. Jul 18th, 2018)

Keywords: ethanol public policy

The National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) today called for EPA to maintain a strong, equitable Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) that follows Congressional intent and levels the playing field for America’s farmers by using the annual volume rule to repair the damage from extensive refinery exemptions.   Michigan farmer Russell Braun provided testimony on behalf of NCGA during an Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) hearing on the agency’s proposed biofuel targets for 2019.   “With corn prices low, EPA’s decisions have a greater impact on my livelihood and other farmers’ as well.  We believe EPA should use the Renewable Fuel Standard volume rule to remedy the harm caused by the extensive retroactive exemptions given to refineries over the past year and ensure future exemptions are accounted for. These refinery exemptions decrease ethanol blending and reduce demand and profits for my corn crop. Every gallon of renewable fuel blending waived by EPA reduces the consumer benefits of...

NCGA Statement on EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt’s Resignation

(Posted Thu. Jul 5th, 2018)

Keywords: ethanol

The following is a statement from North Dakota farmer Kevin Skunes, president of the National Corn Growers Association (NCGA), on Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Scott Pruitt’s resignation.   “It’s no secret corn farmers have been frustrated with Scott Pruitt’s ongoing actions over the past year that have seriously undermined the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS).   “Even with this leadership change at the EPA, our priorities do not change. We will continue to push the EPA to stop granting unjustified RFS waivers. We expect the EPA to account for the more than 1.6 billion gallons the agency waived from 2016 and 2017 RFS obligations, and we will continue ask EPA to follow through on the president’s commitment to remove outdated regulations to allow higher blends of ethanol like E15 to be sold year-round. We are hopeful Acting Administrator Andrew Wheeler will work with America’s corn farmers to give consumers more options at the pump to save them money and reduce...

(Posted Tue. Jun 26th, 2018)

Keywords: Ethanol

The following is a statement from North Dakota farmer Kevin Skunes, president of the National Corn Growers Association (NCGA), on EPA’s Proposed Biofuel Requirements for 2019.   “For corn farmers, what’s not included in EPA’s proposed rule says more than what’s included.   “It is encouraging that EPA is following Congressional intent and proposing some growth in the RFS volumes and continuing to propose an implied 15-billion-gallon volume for conventional ethanol. However, by continuing to allow retroactive exemptions to refineries, EPA will undercut the volumes in this rule, rendering the proposed blending levels meaningless. Furthermore, the proposed rule states that EPA will not consider comments on how small refinery exemptions are accounted for.    “EPA also had an opportunity to propose a remedy for the 1.6 billion gallons the agency has retroactively waived from the 2016 and 2017 volume requirements over the past year. NCGA believes that if EPA is going to grant...

(Posted Thu. Jun 21st, 2018)

Keywords: Ethanol

The National Corn Growers Association commends House lawmakers who serve on the House Energy and Commerce Committee and the House Agriculture Committee for asking EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt to stop manipulating the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) by granting small refinery exemptions to refiners who are making millions of dollars in profits.   Yesterday, these lawmakers submitted a letter to Administrator Pruitt asking him to provide more information and transparency about RFS exemptions granted and the process for granting those exemptions, calling on him to be more transparent and to stop undercutting the renewable fuels market. They pointed out that taking this action is “inflicting further economic pain in rural communities and throughout the agriculture sector.”   The 12 Representatives who signed on to the letter include: Dave Loebsack – Iowa, Cheri Bustos – Illinois, Paul Tonko – New York, Collin Peterson – Minnesota, Bobby Rush – Illinois, Ann McLane Kuster – New...

Midwest Farmers to Pruitt: It’s Time to Take Action

(Posted Thu. Jun 14th, 2018)

Keywords: ethanol public policy

(Photo courtesy of the American Coalition for Ethanol)   This week, farmers across the Midwest made their voices heard and shared their frustrations with EPA Administer Scott Pruitt for not moving forward with the president’s request to make higher blends of ethanol, like E15, available year-round and for granting RFS waivers to refineries at the expense of farmers.    Pruitt made his way through farm country, making stops in Kansas, South Dakota and Nebraska.    “Corn growers came out in force this week to reinforce the importance of allowing higher blends of ethanol in the marketplace and shine a spotlight on EPA’s actions that are destroying demand for corn,” said NCGA President Kevin Skunes. “We have to continue to beat-the-drum and be vocal about these issues. Farmers have been very clear – It’s time for Administrator Pruitt to uphold the president’s statements on granting E15 year-round and time to stop granting waivers to refiners.”   Pruitt started his visit in...

(Posted Tue. Jun 12th, 2018)

Keywords: ethanol

Lowered supply projections and increased yield forecasts may bump the price farmers receive for a bushel of corn upward by ten cents according to U.S. Department of Agriculture reports released today. Given the shift was, in large part, due to strong exports, the information reinforces the incredible economic importance of U.S. trade policies that allow for further demand growth.   This report indicated no change to projected production since the month prior. If realized, the yield, projected to 174 bushels per acre, would be the third-highest yield on record.   Beginning stocks projections were lowered to reflect a 75-million-bushel increase in 2017/2018 projected exports to 2.3 billion bushels. If realized, this would be the highest export level since 2007/2008. Notably, April exports hit a record high, surpassing November 1989 which was the best prior month to that point. May exports are expected to remain strong given export inspection data.   The report also indicates...

(Posted Fri. Jun 8th, 2018)

Keywords: ethanol

Monday, June 11, at 9 p.m. central time, the Renewable Fuels Association custom motorcycle will be unveiled on Discovery Channel’s American Chopper. RFA teamed up with Paul Junior Designs on the project. The custom bike runs on ethanol.   “We are looking forward to the episode airing and can’t wait for the public to see the bike,” said RFA Vice President of Industry Relations Robert White. “We hope corn farmers will tune in and follow along on social media using the #fuelyourknowledge hashtag.”   The “Fuel Your Knowledge” campaign was launched by RFA to educate consumers about the proper use of ethanol-blended fuels in motorcycles and other small engines.   E10 is endorsed for use by all motorcycle manufacturers. Ethanol blends of gasoline provide consumers with a lower-cost, high performance fuel. It’s homegrown and burns cleaner and cooler than gasoline.   For more information on RFA’s partnership with American Chopper, click here.   To learn more about the Fuel Your...

NCGA Commends Efforts to Protect the RFS

(Posted Wed. Jun 6th, 2018)

Keywords: ethanol public policy

Following White House postponement of potential damaging changes to the Renewable Fuel Standard, NCGA President and North Dakota farmer Kevin Skunes thanked those who stood up for America’s corn farmers.   “The nation’s corn growers thank Senator Chuck Grassley, Senator Joni Ernst and USDA Secretary Sonny Perdue for their advocacy and steadfast support for farmers, rural communities and renewable fuels. We greatly appreciate their efforts,” Skunes said. “With the expectation that the Administration was preparing to take drastic actions to unravel the RFS, farmers are very pleased those actions have been set aside and strongly encourage the Administration to keep the President’s commitment to America’s farmers and leave the RFS intact.”

Farm and Biofuel Coalition Demands that EPA Account for Lost Volumes Due to Secretive, Retroactive Small Refinery Exemptions
Coalition Petitions EPA to Revise the Way It Calculates Annual Renewable Fuel Obligations; EPA Is Failing to Comply with Statutory Mandate

(Posted Mon. Jun 4th, 2018)

Keywords: ethanol

Today a coalition of biofuel and agriculture groups petitioned the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to change its regulations to account for lost volumes of renewable fuel resulting from the unprecedented number of retroactive small refinery exemptions from Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) obligations recently granted by EPA. The parties on the petition are the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA), American Coalition for Ethanol (ACE), Growth Energy (Growth), National Biodiesel Board (NBB), National Corn Growers Association (NCGA), Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO), and National Farmers Union (NFU).    This petition comes days after several ethanol and farm groups challenged three specific small refinery exemptions granted by EPA. While the lawsuit in the Tenth Circuit challenged those exemptions as wrongly decided, this petition to EPA seeks a broader, forward-looking remedy to account for the collective lost volumes caused by the unprecedented number of retroactive...

NCGA Calls for Year-Round E15

(Posted Fri. Jun 1st, 2018)

Keywords: ethanol

Consumers across the country will lose access to the option of E15 today, just as families plan to hit the road on summer vacation and gas prices are on the rise. Despite President Trump’s repeated commitment to year-round E15, an outdated regulatory barrier still limits the ability of fuel retailers to offer ethanol blends greater than 10 percent in most of the country from June 1 to September 15.   The National Corn Growers Association is urging the Environmental Protection Agency to expeditiously take steps to remove this barrier and allow for year-round sales of ethanol blends greater than 10 percent, such as E15.   “E15 is typically more affordable at the pump and is better for the environment,” said NCGA President Kevin Skunes. “There is no good reason to limit access to E15 in the summer, which is an especially busy time for families making more stops to refuel.”   Federal law and regulations limit the amount of evaporative emissions from vehicle fuel, which is...

Ethanol Coalition Files Suit Against EPA’s Secretive Small Refinery Exemptions
While Investors Reaped Millions, Three ‘Small’ Refineries Claimed They Could not Afford to Comply with Renewable Fuel Obligations

(Posted Wed. May 30th, 2018)

Keywords: ethanol

The Renewable Fuels Association (RFA), National Corn Growers Association (NCGA), American Coalition for Ethanol (ACE) and National Farmers Union (NFU), with support of Farmers Union Enterprises, today filed suit in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 10th Circuit to challenge several waivers from the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) granted in secret to profitable refining companies.    The petitioners are challenging three EPA decisions, made under unusually clandestine proceedings, to exempt refineries in Wynnewood, Oklahoma; Cheyenne, Wyoming; and Woods Cross, Utah from the RFS requirements of the Clean Air Act. The Wynnewood refinery is owned by Wynnewood Refining Company, a subsidiary of CVR Energy, and the Cheyenne and Woods Cross refineries are owned by Holly Frontier Corporation. The companies have since estimated in financial disclosures that the exemptions have saved them a collective $170 million in compliance...

NCGA Statement on RFS White House Meeting

(Posted Tue. May 8th, 2018)

Keywords: ethanol farm policy

The following is a statement from North Dakota farmer Kevin Skunes, president of the National Corn Growers Association (NCGA), on the outcome of today’s White House meeting regarding the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS).    “President Trump today reaffirmed his commitment to our nation’s farmers by approving year-round sales of E15 without a RIN cap. This is a positive step because we know a RIN price cap would have been damaging to farmers.   “We have numerous questions, however, about a potential plan now being developed by USDA Secretary Perdue and EPA Administrator Pruitt to address small refiner waivers by potentially offering biofuels credits on ethanol exports, an idea that would harm our ethanol export success.   “NCGA has opposed RIN credits on exports, an idea that EPA stated last fall that it would not pursue. Offering RIN credits, which are supposed to be derived from a domestic renewable fuel use, for ethanol exports would threaten trade markets and impact corn...

Corn Growers Thank Perdue, Urge Continued Advocacy

(Posted Mon. May 7th, 2018)

Keywords: ethanol farm policy

On behalf of corn farmers nationwide, NCGA and state corn grower associations sent a letter to USDA Secretary Perdue Monday thanking him for his advocacy within the Trump Administration and his recent statements encouraging the Administration to advance RVP parity. The associations urged Perdue to continue his efforts in support of farmers and rural America. “As you work with President Trump, EPA Administrator Pruitt and Members of Congress, we encourage you to continue to advocate for real solutions, such as RVP parity for higher blends, and to continue to highlight the demand destruction caused by EPA’s refinery exemptions, as well as how EPA’s actions contradict President Trump’s commitments,” the associations wrote.   Click here for full text of Perdue letter

NCGA Calls on President to Allow for Increased Ethanol Blends

(Posted Mon. May 7th, 2018)

Keywords: ethanol farm policy

The National Corn Growers Association today urged President Trump to follow through on the necessary steps to implement year-round sales of higher ethanol blends, such as E15, ahead of a planned Tuesday White House meeting regarding biofuels issues.     “Year-round sale of higher ethanol blends, like E15, would replace outdated policy and provide benefits not only for farmers but also for consumers and the environment,” said NCGA President Kevin Skunes. “Corn farmers have made huge strides in increasing productivity but, at the same time, are facing a fifth consecutive year of declining corn crop receipts. A firm commitment to the RFS would help provide the stability farmers need during difficult times.”   NCGA was joined by the American Farm Bureau Federation, National Farmers Union, American Soybean Association and National Association of Wheat Growers in a letter to the President thanking him for his recent comments in support of higher blends and urging that he begin the...

NCGA Statement on Today’s High-Octane Hearing in Washington D.C.

(Posted Fri. Apr 13th, 2018)

Keywords: ethanol

The following is a statement from North Dakota farmer Kevin Skunes, president of the National Corn Growers Association (NCGA), on today’s Environment Subcommittee Hearing “High-Octane Fuels and High Efficiency Vehicles: Challenges and Opportunities.”   “While corn growers are pleased that the value of octane that comes naturally from ethanol is being recognized by automakers, we need to look at the whole of any policy being proposed. We can’t look at an octane standard in isolation. We must look at the sum of all the parts.   “Congress enacted the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) because it was important to diversify the transportation fuel supply, and that diversity remains an important energy policy objective. One way to evaluate any proposal related to the transportation fuel supply is to ask whether it makes our transportation fuel more dependent on oil or whether it continues to provide opportunities to expand the use of homegrown biofuels.     “With the ongoing push for...

 NCGA Statement on President Trump’s Announcement on RVP Parity

(Posted Thu. Apr 12th, 2018)

Keywords: ethanol public policy

The following is a statement from North Dakota farmer Kevin Skunes, president of the National Corn Growers Association (NCGA), on today’s announcement from President Trump on RVP parity.   “Today, at a meeting at the White House with governors and lawmakers, President Donald Trump committed to making policy changes that would allow for the sale of blends greater than 10 percent, such as E15, year-round. The National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) is very pleased with this announcement, and we thank the President for this commitment to America’s corn farmers and rural America.   “Allowing the sale of E15 all year, will allow for less confusion and more savings at the pump for consumers, continue to benefit the environment with the further reduction of emissions and provide corn farmers with a more stable market.  NCGA has been advocating for this parity for higher blends of ethanol not only for these benefits but also because of the additional ethanol blending addresses refiner...

Ag & Ethanol Groups Holding RFS Twitter Townhall Monday

(Posted Fri. Apr 6th, 2018)

Keywords: ethanol

On Monday, April 9, from 7 – 10 AM Central Daylight Time (CDT) several agriculture and ethanol groups will be participating in a Twitter Townhall, prior to the scheduled meeting happening at the White House regarding the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS). Yesterday, NCGA sent out a Grassroots call to action, asking members to send a letter or call President Trump and their appropriate member of Congress. This social media effort provides another opportunity for your voice to be heard.   You can participate in the Twitter Townhall, by using the #RFSWorks. Some sample Tweets you can use are: President @realDonaldTrump - Keep your promise to farmers - support the RFS. Don't give in to Big Oil. #RFSWorks President @realDonaldTrump - Don't undermine the RFS. Let farmers and rural America know you still have their best interests in mind. Farmers can't afford the EPA destroying corn and ethanol demand. #RFSWorks @EPAScottPruitt - When will you stop being in Big Oil's back pocket? Do...

Stop the EPA from Messing with the RFS

(Posted Thu. Apr 5th, 2018)

Keywords: ethanol

While the White House weighs options, the EPA continues to undermine and mess with the RFS, granting questionable RFS waivers to refiners with no transparency and failing to provide regulatory parity for higher blends of ethanol. The EPA continues to check-off the items on Big-Oil’s wish list while gutting corn and ethanol demand and undermining the President’s commitment to the RFS in the process. NCGA and state corn growers sent this letter to EPA this week.   It’s time for EPA and the White House to consider real solutions, including RVP parity that would allow year-round sales of blends greater than 10 percent. The oil industry has already gotten a gift from the EPA. Since these discussions about capping RIN prices started in January, RIN prices have fallen 50 percent. Corn farmers and their allies need to tell the President that ‘enough is enough.’   It is time for EPA to stop the backdoor reductions to the RFS and time for higher blends of ethanol to receive RVP parity....

NCGA Statement on PES Bankruptcy Settlement

(Posted Thu. Apr 5th, 2018)

Keywords: ethanol

The following is a statement from North Dakota farmer Kevin Skunes, president of the National Corn Growers Association (NCGA), on yesterday’s Philadelphia Energy Solutions (PES) Bankruptcy Settlement, granted by a federal Bankruptcy Court in Delaware.   “The National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) is extremely disappointed in the bankruptcy court’s ruling, allowing PES to waive the majority of its obligation under the RFS. This settlement is not acceptable and completely undermines the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS). This settlement negotiated is just another example of how the Agency is willing to dismantle the RFS. This settlement rewards corporations, such as the $12 billion Carlyle Group, which should be liable for PES’ RFS obligations, at the expense of farmers. Farmers are entering their fifth year of low prices and net farm losses and can’t afford reducing demand for ethanol, as corn is the primary feedstock used in the production of conventional biofuel. As EPA’s actions...

NCGA Statement on Small Refinery Exemption

(Posted Wed. Apr 4th, 2018)

Keywords: ethanol

The following is a statement from North Dakota farmer Kevin Skunes, president of the National Corn Growers Association (NCGA), on a letter NCGA and 22 state corn associations sent to the EPA regarding the recent small refinery exemptions from RFS volume obligations.   “Today the National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) along with state corn grower associations, sent a letter to EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt on the small refinery exemptions being granted, allowing refineries to avoid meeting their RFS volume obligations.   “EPA continues to take actions that undermine the RFS and contradict President Trump’s commitments to America’s corn farmers. EPA is clearly overstepping its bounds, and we ask Administrator Pruitt to stop granting these waivers and damaging the RFS behind closed doors.   “Yesterday, EPA reportedly granted exemptions to one of the nation’s largest refiners, Andeavor, which posted net profits of $1.5 billion in 2017. This improper application of the small...

NCGA Statement on RFS Waivers Issued to Large Refiner by EPA

(Posted Tue. Apr 3rd, 2018)

Keywords: ethanol

The following is a statement from North Dakota farmer Kevin Skunes, president of the National Corn Growers Association (NCGA), on the RFS waivers reportedly granted to a large refiner by the EPA.   “EPA’s reported actions are unacceptable,” Skunes said. “EPA cannot undermine the RFS by granting waivers to refiners who are making profits as large as the one reported by Reuters. Granting these waivers significantly reduces the number of gallons of fuel blended with ethanol hurting rural economies and the nation’s corn farmers. When refiners aren’t meeting their blending obligations, corn farmers pay the price.   “EPA’s small refiner exemption process has no transparency,” Skunes said. “We need the EPA to live up to Administrator Pruitt’s October commitment to senators to, ‘act consistent with the text and spirit of the RFS,’ and to do so in an ‘open and transparent manner that advances the full potential of this program.’ We call on the EPA to stop granting these waivers to...

NCGA Submits Comments to DOJ on Proposed PES RIN Settlement

(Posted Tue. Mar 27th, 2018)

Keywords: ethanol

Yesterday, the National Corn Growers Association submitted formal comments to the U.S Department of Justice on the proposed Settlement Agreement between Philadelphia Energy Solutions (PES) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regarding the outstanding RFS compliance obligations the refiner has included in its Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing.   NCGA is opposed to the proposed settlement, as it would undermine the RFS.   “As producers of the primary feedstock used in the production of conventional biofuel, a key component of the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS), corn farmers maintain a vested interest in the integrity of the RFS and in the Renewable Identification Number (RIN) compliance system for obligated parties,” said NCGA President Kevin Skunes. “This proposed settlement agreement would have negative policy implications for the RFS and future compliance with the Clean Air Act. As such, NCGA urges DOJ to withdraw and reconsider the proposed Settlement Agreement because it...

Sustained Farmer Advocacy Needed to Help Protect the RFS in Washington

(Posted Mon. Mar 19th, 2018)

Keywords: ethanol

Concerns continue this week that the Trump Administration could decide to strike a deal for oil refiners that would have immediate and lasting effects for ethanol demand and, therefore, for corn prices as well. However, the National Corn Growers Association remains active on members’ behalf, including running a major advertising campaign in the nation’s capital.   Thanks to everyone who has already made your voice heard in Washington in support of the RFS. NCGA continues to ask farmers to make sure your views are heard.   President Trump, your Members of Congress and USDA need to understand the economic challenges farmers are facing today and the direct role a healthy ethanol market plays for the future of family farms. The proposal from the oil industry, being considered by the President, could cut farm income almost $4 billion dollars per year for the next two years.  There are better solutions, including RVP parity to allow year-round sale of blends greater than 10 percent,...

NCGA Applauds Midwest Governors for Continued Support on the RFS

(Posted Thu. Mar 15th, 2018)

Keywords: Ethanol

The following is a statement from North Dakota farmer Kevin Skunes, president of the National Corn Growers Association (NCGA), on the letter to President Trump from Midwest Governors regarding the importance of not weakening the Renewable Fuel Standard.   “We want to thank these governors for their leadership and continued support on this very important issue that has such a large impact on America’s farmers and rural communities,” said Skunes. “The RFS is a job creator, economic driver and gives the public an affordable option at the fuel pump. These six governors have a strong understanding of the benefits of the RFS and outlined why other proposals on the table would have a negative impact on rural America.”   The six governors who sent the letter to President Trump include: Kim Reynolds – Iowa; Eric Holcomb – Indiana; Jeff Colyer – Kansas; Eric Greitens – Missouri; Pete Ricketts – Nebraska; Dennis Daugaard – South Dakota. To view a copy of the letter, click

Mr. President, Don’t Cap Our Future

(Posted Fri. Mar 9th, 2018)

Keywords: ethanol

The National Corn Growers Association President Kevin Skunes told US Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue this morning that proposed changes to the Renewable Fuel Standard would trigger significant losses in farm income and in rural jobs.  Skunes asked the Secretary to work with President Trump to ensure the President understands the economic challenges farmers are facing today.   “Corn farmers have fought hard the past ten years, within Congress, with the last Administration, and in the Courts to protect the opportunity for renewable fuels to continue to grow as an option for consumers,” said Skunes. “Today, the President is considering a proposal from the oil industry that could cut farm income almost $4 billion dollars per year for the next two years.  It is a deal that American farmers cannot afford.  My message to the Secretary today was to ask the President not to cap future growth and opportunity in rural America by implementing a bad policy that would only serve to...

Latest RFS Bill Ignores Wealth of Science Documenting Ethanol’s Environmental Benefits

(Posted Thu. Mar 8th, 2018)

Keywords: ethanol

Statement by Kevin Skunes, National Corn Growers Association President, and Arthur, North Dakota farmer regarding the Udall/Welch Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) Legislation H.R. 5212/S. 2519)   “This legislation seeks to kill our most successful American renewable energy program. The bill ignores current science reflecting the significant environmental benefits of ethanol and would have catastrophic consequences for our nation’s economy, our energy security, and family farmers.   The sponsors of this legislation need to understand farmers’ productivity. Ethanol production is not significantly impacting land use.  In fact, planted corn acres were lower in 2017 than when the RFS was expanded in 2007, yet we produced significantly more biofuels. We produce more biofuels because average crop yields have increased by more than 25 bushels per acre, not because we are farming more land. The total agriculture footprint in the United States is shrinking.   Corn production is also...

Purdue University Analysis Confirms Potential Economic Fallout from Changes to RFS

(Posted Wed. Mar 7th, 2018)

Keywords: ethanol

Economists at Purdue University have analyzed the potential economic implications of a price cap on RINs in conjunction with an E15 RVP waiver. Their analysis finds that a price cap—even when paired with an RVP waiver--would prevent achievement of the objectives of the Renewable Fuel Standard, reduce overall biofuel blending, and halt investment in higher blend infrastructure.   Statement by National Corn Growers Association President Kevin Skunes regarding a new study by Purdue University.   “The new Purdue University analysis continues a drum beat of data that makes it very clear messing with the Renewable Fuel Standard, and specifically manipulating the Renewable Identification Number (RIN) system, is a potential economic disaster for farmers and rural America.   A RIN price cap—even when paired with RVP parity for E15 and higher blends—weakens the RFS and would prevent achievement of the clean air and economic objectives that launched this innovative, renewable fuels...

RFS Tinkering Would Deal Substantive Blow to Farmers

(Posted Tue. Mar 6th, 2018)

Keywords: ethanol

Statement by National Corn Growers Association President Kevin Skunes regarding a new study by the Center for Agricultural and Rural Development (CARD) at Iowa State University.   “This economic analysis backs up what corn farmers have been telling the Administration – that manipulating the RIN market mechanism would reduce ethanol blending and impact corn prices. A drop of 25 cents per bushel in corn prices, as CARD economists project from a RIN price cap, would devastate farmers and stagger rural communities.   “This spring farmers will begin planting knowing they face their fifth growing season with corn prices hovering at or below the cost of production. According to the Federal Reserve Bank, we lost 12,000 farms in 2016. This decline must be stopped.    “The CARD analysis clearly shows an artificial cap on Renewable Identification Number (RIN) prices in exchange for an RVP waiver allowing year-round sales of E15 would be a bad deal for rural America and the nation’s...

Corn Congress Stands Up in Support of RFS

(Posted Mon. Mar 5th, 2018)

Keywords: ethanol

During last week’s Corn Congress, the National Corn Growers Association’s biannual delegate meeting, 124 delegates representing 28 states delved into policy and debated the most pressing issues facing America’s farmers. The thoughtful discussion yielded significant insight into many issues, but the most pressing discussion turned to the current debate over the Renewable Fuel Standard.   The farmers in attendance voted unanimously to approve a “Sense of the Corn Congress” motion directed toward President Trump.  The motion states:   “Whereas, the Renewable Fuel Standard has been a successful public policy for our nation’s energy security, the environment and rural America; and   “Whereas, the Renewable Identification Number component of the Renewable Fuel Standard is vital to the success of the RFS; and   “Whereas, RINs are the market mechanism that drives blending to obligated levels; and   “Whereas, any cap or other manipulation of the RIN program would disrupt that...

NCGA Statement on Today's White House Meeting

(Posted Thu. Mar 1st, 2018)

Keywords: ethanol

The following is a statement from North Dakota farmer Kevin Skunes, president of the National Corn Growers Association (NCGA), in response to today’s White House meeting on the Renewable Fuel Standard.   “For corn farmers, the question for the ongoing White House discussions is simple – what is the problem you are trying to solve?” said Skunes.   “According to EPA, refiners don’t have a problem.  EPA concluded in November that refiners are able to recover the cost of RINs through the prices they receive for refined products and that RIN values are not causing economic harm to refiners.    “For farmers, ethanol blending equals corn demand. Farmers care about RIN values, not because we want them to be high, but because we want the RIN market mechanism to work freely to incentivize blending. Increased blending will, in turn, lower RIN values, exactly the way the RFS is intended to work.  Government manipulation of the RIN market, on the other hand, disrupts the incentive to...

(Posted Mon. Feb 26th, 2018)

Keywords: ethanol

The National Corn Growers Association, along with other agricultural organizations, sent a letter to President Trump on Monday, calling on the President to maintain the integrity of the RFS.   “We appreciate the President’s support of the RFS since the early days of his campaign,” said NCGA President Kevin Skunes. “Rural America supported President Trump last year, now we need the President to support rural America.  Supporting policy changes that undermine the RFS will hurt farmers, renewable fuel plant workers, and rural America.”   The U.S. Department of Agriculture projects 2018 net farm income will decline an additional $4.3 billion this year, a 6.7 percent reduction from 2017 levels. This represents the lowest net farm income, in nominal dollars, since 2006 and is a 50-percent decline in net farm income since 2013.   The letter to the President disputes the recent claims made by an East Coast refinery that the RFS is to blame for their recent bankruptcy.  “Mismanagement...

(Posted Wed. Feb 21st, 2018)

Keywords: ethanol

The following is a statement from North Dakota farmer Kevin Skunes, president of the National Corn Growers Association (NCGA), in response to Senator Cruz’s remarks during the Philadelphia refinery (PES) town hall.   “While most refiners are reporting double-digit profit increases, Philadelphia Energy Solutions has filed for bankruptcy protection because its investors put their interests ahead of their workers’ interests. It’s disingenuous for Senator Cruz to claim he’s looking out for refinery workers, when he’s really looking out for Wall Street investors who made bad business decisions yet ensured they got their payout first, putting refinery jobs at risk.   “Senator Cruz is right about one thing – this is not about pitting corn farmers and refinery workers against each other. Corn farmers see refinery owners and investors failing to take responsibility for their poor business decisions. The Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) works for consumers, union workers, farmers and our...

(Posted Fri. Feb 16th, 2018)

Keywords: ethanol

The following was first issued as a press release from the Renewable Fuels Association.   A new analysis from the University of Illinois shows that the conditions that caused high conventional biofuel (D6) RIN prices are changing rapidly and that “…it is not out of the realm of possibility for D6 RINs prices to fall back their pre-2013 level of just a few cents without making any changes to the RFS.”    The authors argue that high D6 RIN prices have been driven by the “gap” that exists between domestic ethanol consumption (estimated at 14.5 billion gallons in 2017) and the 15-billion-gallon statutory requirement for conventional renewable fuels. The size of that “gap” continues to shrink rapidly as E10, E15, and E85 blending has expanded. Thus, as that expansion continues at a rapid pace, the “gap” will be fully closed and RIN prices will fall dramatically. As the Renewable Fuels Association has pointed out, this is exactly how the RFS was intended to work. Establishing RVP...

We are Ethanol Strong!

(Posted Thu. Feb 15th, 2018)

Keywords: ethanol

This week, the Renewable Fuels Association held their annual National Ethanol Conference with a focus on growing markets in the U.S. and abroad. RFA President and CEO Bob Dinneen opened the conference with the State of the Industry address, focusing on everything the ethanol industry has done to be "Ethanol Strong."   "I am more confident than I have ever been that the U.S. ethanol industry, led by the visionaries in this room, is poised for continued growth and unprecedented success," Dinneen said. "That is not just because the industry is strong today and getting stronger. It is because this industry knows what it takes to succeed, and remains resolute in the face of setback, determined in the face of adversity, and committed to the farmers who grow our feedstock, consumers who use our fuel, and a nation that rewards innovation. I am inspired by your strength. You are Ethanol Strong."   "The RFS has been a tremendous success," Dinneen added. "It does not need to be...

(Posted Wed. Feb 14th, 2018)

Keywords: ethanol

Agriculture leaders came together last week to discuss why biofuels are so important to the industry. At Growth Energy’s Executive Leadership Conference, NCGA past President and Chairman Chip Bowling was part of a panel to discuss the current state of the farm economy and how biofuels can help.   "If the renewable fuels standard stays intact, we will get higher blends of ethanol in the fuel system and that creates higher demand for our corn,” Bowling said. “We also see exports of ethanol as a major way to grind corn immediately. We need to keep pressure on lawmakers in Washington D.C. to strengthen and preserve the RFS. That is the best way to increase profitability for corn farmers!”   Joining Bowling on stage were Mark Poeschl, CEO of the National FFA Organization and National FFA Foundation; Roger Johnson, president of the National Farmers Union; Zippy Duvall, president of the American Farm Bureau Federation; and panel moderator Jeff Broin, chairman and CEO of POET.   The...

(Posted Tue. Feb 13th, 2018)

Keywords: ethanol

Ron Alverson, a farmer, founding member of the South Dakota Corn Growers Association, and board member of Dakota Ethanol LLC, is the recipient of the RFA 2018 Industry Award.   The Industry Award is given annually to individuals that demonstrate great dedication and innovation within the industry. Alverson was presented the award this morning during the 23nd Annual National Ethanol Conference (NEC).   For more than 40 years, Alverson has grown corn and soybeans near Chester, S.D. He is a founding member and past president of the South Dakota Corn Growers Association, helped establish the corn checkoff program to create new markets and uses for corn and helped pass South Dakota’s first ethanol productive incentive. Alverson founded Dakota Ethanol LLC, which operates a 48 million gallon per year ethanol plant in Wentworth, S.D., and is a past chairman of the American Coalition for Ethanol.   Alverson has also been working to educate policymakers and industry partners about the...

NCGA Statement on EPA’s Final 2018 Renewable Volume Obligation

(Posted Thu. Nov 30th, 2017)

Keywords: Ethanol

The following is a statement from North Dakota farmer Kevin Skunes, president of the National Corn Growers Association (NCGA), in response to today’s announcement by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) of the final 2018 Renewable Volume Obligation (RVO) under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS).   “NCGA is pleased to see the EPA meet the Administration’s commitment to keep the RFS on track when it comes to conventional ethanol. Not only has EPA hit the mark with the 15 billion-gallon implied target, but EPA has also improved on the proposed rule by correctly growing the total 2018 volume from the 2017 level as intended in the RFS.   “This year’s corn crop is bigger than anyone anticipated, resulting in the largest carryover supply in 30 years. Farmers want to rely on the marketplace for their income, and ethanol has been critical in our effort to increase profitable demand for U.S. corn.   “While we are concerned that the RVO number for cellulosic ethanol is not set...

(Posted Tue. Oct 31st, 2017)

Keywords: Ethanol

The following piece originally ran as a news release created and distributed by Growth Energy at: https://growthenergy.org/2017/10/30/growth-energy-2-billion-miles-surpassed-e15/.   Growth Energy announced that in just five months, American drivers have surpassed another billion miles on E15, bringing the total miles driven across the U.S. to 2 billion. This comes  on the heels of Growth Energy’s recent announcement that more than 1,000 stations across the country are currently offering E15 to consumers.   “This latest milestone cements the fact that drivers have embraced the tremendous benefits E15 offers and highlights just how rapidly consumer demand is growing,” said Growth Energy CEO Emily Skor. “E15 is a smart choice for consumers who care about their car’s engines, want a healthy environment, and seek better value at the pump. We’re thrilled to lead the charge with Prime the Pump to bring more and more drivers this option every day.”   More than 1,000 fuel stations...

(Posted Mon. Oct 30th, 2017)

Keywords: Ethanol

The following piece originally ran as a news release created and distributed by the Renewable Fuels Association at: http://www.ethanolrfa.org/2017/10/rfa-data-more-than-4000-u-s-stations-offering-e85/   Drivers of flex fuel vehicles (FFVs), which can handle higher ethanol blends up to 85 percent, now have even more places to fuel up. According to E85prices.com, operated by the Renewable Fuels Association, there are now more than 4,000 stations throughout the U.S. offering E85.   There are more than 22 million FFVs on U.S. roads and now consumers have greater access to higher ethanol blends. Minnesota offers the most E85 stations, but states outside the Corn Belt have shown the greatest uptick in recent years. States like California, Texas, Florida, North Carolina and Pennsylvania have demonstrated tremendous growth in offering higher ethanol blends.   Greater consumer access to E85 is due to a combination of factors, including RFA’s overall market development efforts, the...

(Posted Fri. Oct 20th, 2017)

Keywords: Ethanol

In a letter to seven senators sent late Thursday, EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt took significant strides toward strengthening the foundation for ethanol and renewable fuels.  The Administrator emphasized his commitment to implementing renewable fuel volumes at or above levels proposed, as well as to examining the Agency’s authority to fix regulations that currently limit the year-round sale of E15 and higher ethanol blends.  Administrator Pruitt also said the Agency would not pursue regulations to change the treatment of RINs relative to ethanol exports, a proposal that would have undermined the integrity of the RFS and our exports.   “NCGA greatly appreciates the leadership of these seven senators to make renewable fuels a priority,” said Kevin Skunes, NCGA president. “Their advocacy for farmers, rural communities and renewable fuels, as well as the advocacy of other Members of Congress who joined recent Senate and House letters to EPA, helped ensure EPA understood our concerns...

(Posted Thu. Oct 19th, 2017)

Keywords: Ethanol

The National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) today urged EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt to pull back on the further reductions to the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) volumes the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) contemplates in the October 4, 2017 Notice of Data Availability (NODA).   In the NODA, EPA requested additional comments on potential reductions in volume requirements under the RFS. While EPA proposed no direct changes to the implied 15 billion gallon volume for conventional ethanol, NCGA believes the volume reductions EPA is exploring are inconsistent with the law and with the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit’s July 28, 2017 decision in Americans for Clean Energy v. EPA.   “As one of the petitioners comprising Americans for Clean Energy, NCGA is concerned with EPA’s attempt to incorrectly apply the Agency’s waiver authority in order to justify further reductions in volumes,” NCGA President Kevin Skunes wrote in comments submitted...

(Posted Wed. Oct 18th, 2017)

Keywords: Ethanol

The National Corn Growers Association thanks Senator Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) for continuing to stand up for farmers, rural communities and biofuels. Senator Grassley, along with Senators Deb Fischer (R-Nebraska), Ben Sasse (R-Nebraska), Joni Ernst (R-Iowa), John Thune (R-South Dakota), Mike Rounds (R-South Dakota) and Pat Roberts (R-Kansas) met yesterday with EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt to discuss concerns regarding EPA's administration of the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS), including proposals to reduce RFS volumes.   “We would like to thank Senator Grassley for organizing the meeting and to all senators who participated for making sure EPA understands how important the RFS is for agriculture," said NCGA President Kevin Skunes. “NCGA appreciates the senators' commitment to a strong RFS and their leadership in ensuring our voices are heard in EPA's decision-making process."   After the meeting, Senator Ernst released a statement saying “Our meeting today was another clear...

(Posted Tue. Oct 17th, 2017)

Keywords: Ethanol

When planning a family vacation, you probably don’t put a lot of thought into which gas stations you are going to stop at, when you are going to stop and the type of gasoline you are going to fill-up with. Well, Renewable Fuels Association’s Vice President of Industry Relations, Robert White, did just that and recently shared his journey.   The following piece originally ran as a blog post created and distributed by the Renewable Fuels Association at: http://www.ethanolrfa.org/2017/09/vacation-powered-by-e85/.   The average U.S. worker leaves nearly half of his or her vacation days on the table each year. I am usually guilty of this too, but this year I wanted to make the most of time off and find a fun trip for myself, my wife and our 13-month-old daughter. We decided on visiting some national parks and monuments in Colorado and Utah. Naturally, this adventure had to be done in a Flex Fuel vehicle, and we chose our 2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee as our mode of transportation. The...

American Ethanol and NCGA to Roll Out Big Promotion at Talladega Race

(Posted Wed. Oct 11th, 2017)

Keywords: Ethanol

Talladega Motor Speedway will once again be the home of “the big one” on Oct. 13-15, only this time it will be the National Corn Growers Association conducting their largest American Ethanol NASCAR promotion to date, not the seemingly inevitable fast racing and wrecks that make the track famous.   NCGA will be partnering with corn farmers from across the U.S. - including Alabama, Kansas, Iowa and Michigan - to promote E15 American Ethanol all weekend in the popular Fan Zone exhibit area, nearby campgrounds, on-track signage, the pavement in pit road and the in-house video system.   “Corn Growers partnered with Growth Energy under the American Ethanol banner to spread the positive benefits of E15 and higher ethanol blends. Since 2011 drivers on all three of NASCAR’s racing series have completed more than 10-million miles on E15,” said Don Glenn, NCGA board member and farmer from Hillsboro, Alabama. “And E15 has worked seamlessly in these high performance engines. Today, a...

(Posted Fri. Oct 6th, 2017)

Keywords: Ethanol

Yesterday, a bipartisan group of 38 senators, led by Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) and Amy Klobuchar (D-Minnesota), sent a letter to EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt, urging him to implement a strong final 2018 Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) rule as intended by Congress.   “We urge you to continue to implement the RFS as intended by Congress and release a strong final rule that would give consumers more choices at the pump, strengthen our economy and make our country more secure,” the Senators wrote.   EPA has proposed an implied volume of 15 billion gallons of conventional ethanol in 2018, consistent with the level set by Congress. However, the Agency also proposed reducing cellulosic and total renewable fuel volumes by 73 million gallons and 40 million gallons, respectively. Most recently, EPA proposed additional volume reductions as the Agency prepares to finalize 2018 volumes. In comments to the EPA earlier this year, emphasized in a letter to President Trump this week, NCGA called...

(Posted Tue. Oct 3rd, 2017)

Keywords: Ethanol

The National Corn Growers Association and other biofuel advocates sent a letter to President Donald Trump today, urging the White House to “act quickly to prevent actions” at the Environmental Protection Agency that could undermine the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS).   “The proposed changes are inconsistent with the law and threaten the growth and prosperity of the U.S. biofuels industry,” wrote the National Corn Growers Association, the Biotechnology Innovation Organization, Growth Energy, the Association of Equipment Manufacturers, the Advanced Biofuels Business Council and other industry leaders.   “EPA’s changes are also inconsistent with Administrator Pruitt’s assurances to uphold the law and your long-standing support of ethanol and the RFS. If the proposed changes are finalized, EPA’s actions would cause severe harm to our industry, undermining your efforts to drive economic growth and secure America’s status as the global leader in biofuel production.”   “Actions speak...

(Posted Thu. Aug 31st, 2017)

Keywords: ethanol

In comments submitted today to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the National Corn Growers Association asked the Agency to maintain the proposed amount of conventional ethanol blended into the nation’s gas supply for 2018, and to raise the amount of cellulosic, advanced, and total biofuels.   In a letter to EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt, NCGA President Wesley Spurlock writes, “In the 10 years since Congress expanded the RFS in 2007, corn farmers have responded to the growing market for ethanol, increasing production efficiency to help meet the RFS goal of moving the United States toward greater energy independence and security, boosting production of clean, renewable fuels and protecting consumers.”   In its proposed rule for the 2018 standards for the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) program, EPA proposed an implied volume of 15 billion gallons for conventional ethanol in 2018, consistent with the level intended by Congress. This is a change from the previous four...

(Posted Thu. Aug 24th, 2017)

Keywords: Ethanol

The following piece originally ran as a press release created and distributed by the Renewable Fuels Association.     A new economic modeling study that will soon be published in the American Journal of Agricultural Economics finds that the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) has substantially benefitted the U.S. economy by lowering gasoline and crude oil prices, cutting crude oil imports, adding value to U.S.-produced agricultural commodities and reducing U.S. greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.   “The results confirm that the current RFS program considerably benefits the agriculture sector, but also leads to overall welfare gains for the United States,” according to the study’s authors, Iowa State University economists GianCarlo Moschini, Harvey Lapan and Hyunseok Kim. “We find that the RFS has indeed proved to be a remarkably effective tool for farm support.”   The analysis found the RFS in 2015 saved the U.S. economy $17.8 billion in gasoline expenses, compared to a case where no...

(Posted Tue. Aug 8th, 2017)

Keywords: Ethanol

Every successful industry needs advocates of heroic stature. If they happen to be gregarious, fearless and zealous in their beliefs that’s a huge bonus. Keith Holmes was that guy, and today he is being remembered at a memorial service in Spring Lake, Michigan.   Keith, who was killed in a crash recently during the St. Clair River Classic offshore powerboat race in Michigan, throttled and raced boats in the Offshore Powerboat Association, American Powerboat Association, Offshore Super Series and Superboat International series competitions. He also was a believer in the benefits of ethanol fuel.   As the owner of CK Motorsports and throttleman of the American Ethanol Cat Can Do Catamaran, he used his love of racing to show recreational and professional powerboaters that ethanol worked on the water as well as the road.   Keith worked with NCGA and a number of the state corn organizations to set the record straight on ethanol use in marine engines.  His voice will definitely be...

(Posted Fri. Jul 28th, 2017)

Keywords: Ethanol

Pocono Raceway is the greenest venue in NASCAR, and maybe in professional sports. But the track will get even more “green” this weekend as Austin Dillon and the American Ethanol #3 car hit the track with an American Ethanol paint out.   You can catch Austin competing in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series at Pocono’s Tricky Triangle this Sunday for the Overton's 400 at 3 p.m. ET on NBCSN. Although all cars will be racing on E15 American Ethanol, Austin’s car will drive the point home in this, the third, fully marked up car of the 2017 season.   “I love being the renewable fuels guy. The best part is the American part. It’s special to be kind of the leader in that category,” Dillon said.   As Monster Energy Series drivers are getting ready for Sunday’s race, American Ethanol will already be in the spotlight miles away at the NASCAR Xfinity Series in Iowa on Saturday, July 29, in the U.S. Cellular 250 presented by American Ethanol. You can tune in for that race at 3:30 p.m. ET...

(Posted Fri. Jul 28th, 2017)

Keywords: Ethanol

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit ruled today in favor of the National Corn Growers Association and other renewable fuels advocates, agreeing with the petitioners that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) erred in how it interpreted and used the “inadequate domestic supply” waiver in the Renewable Fuel Standard law in setting renewable fuel volumes for 2014-2016.     In Americans for Clean Energy et al v. Environmental Protection Agency, the Court vacated EPA’s decision to reduce the total renewable fuel volume requirement in 2016 and remanded the rule to EPA for further consideration.   The following is a statement from the National Corn Growers Association:   “Today’s court decision is a win for farmers, the biofuels industry, and consumers. This ruling affirms our view that the EPA did not follow the law when it reduced the 2014-2016 renewable fuel volumes below levels intended by Congress. The court held that EPA was wrong to interpret...

(Posted Fri. Jul 21st, 2017)

Keywords: Ethanol

The following is a statement from the National Corn Growers Association regarding the Consumer and Fuel Retailer Choice Act (S. 517):   “Corn farmers appreciate the work of Senator Deb Fischer (R-Nebraska) and the bipartisan Senate sponsors of the Consumer and Fuel Retailer Choice Act to advance this legislation.  While this legislation will not move to a committee markup at this time, we will continue to back efforts to remove this unnecessary roadblock to consumer choice that saves drivers money and is better for the environment.   “It is unfortunate that some have turned a focused effort to remove an outdated regulatory barrier into a referendum on a wide range of other issues unrelated to a simple question, which is whether a consumer choice barrier for three months of the year is still justified. As experts testified to the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, this barrier has no environmental or economic justification. On the narrow question of whether retailers...

(Posted Wed. Jul 5th, 2017)

Keywords: Ethanol

The following is a statement from Texas farmer Wesley Spurlock, president of the National Corn Growers Association, in response to today’s announcement by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) of the proposed 2018 renewable volume obligation (RVO) under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS).   “We are pleased to see EPA pick up where last year’s RFS rulemaking left off and propose a rule that keeps the RFS on track for conventional ethanol production. EPA’s proposal is good for farmers who are facing tough economic times and good for consumers who want affordable fuel choices that give us a cleaner environment.   “The Renewable Fuel Standard has been a resounding success: cleaner air, greater energy independence, and stronger rural communities. We call on the EPA to keep the RFS moving forward in line with the law and in a timely manner. Doing so will bring greater stability and certainty to the marketplace and spur increased investment in renewable fuels.   “NCGA will...

(Posted Tue. May 30th, 2017)

Keywords: Ethanol

Late Sunday night, American Ethanol driver and spokesperson, Austin Dillon captured his first Monster Energy Cup Series win, driving the celebrated No. 3 car to victory at the Coca-Cola 600. Dillon’s win came at his home track, the Charlotte Motor Speedway, and is the first for the Richard Childress Racing No. 3 car since October 15, 2000, when Dale Earnhardt won at Talladega.   “NCGA is obviously thrilled by the win because it further validates the abilities of ethanol fuel on the road and on the track. Specifically, it provides great positive exposure for E15 at a time when the fuel is beginning to make significant gains in consumer retail space, said Paul Jeschke, Chairman of NCGA’s Ethanol Action Team and Mazon, Illinois farmer.  “Corn farmers tasked NCGA with building support for ethanol with consumers outside its traditional Midwestern customer base and our partnership with Growth Energy, under the American Ethanol banner, has raised the profile of E15...

(Posted Mon. Apr 24th, 2017)

Keywords: Ethanol

In response to oral arguments held earlier today by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit on the petition for review of the Renewable Volume Obligations for 2014-2016 filed by Americans for Clean Energy, et al. v. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in January 2016, the American Coalition for Ethanol, BIO, Growth Energy, National Corn Growers Association, National Sorghum Producers, and Renewable Fuels Association issued the following statement:   “Today’s proceedings reinforced our view that the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) renewable fuel targets for 2014 through 2016 were legally and factually indefensible, as well as wholly inconsistent with Congressional intent behind the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) program.  That program was designed to transform the fuel market and force the oil industry to change the status quo—not to perpetuate it, as EPA has done through its annual rulemakings. The statutory basis for granting a waiver based on an...

Get to know the Ethanol CEO – ACE’s Brian Jennings

(Posted Thu. Mar 23rd, 2017)

Keywords: Ethanol

NCGA joined ethanol producers and supporters this week in Washington, D.C. for the American Coalition for Ethanol’s (ACE) annual fly-in. ACE Executive Vice President Brian Jennings led a group of farmers, ethanol producers, fuel retailers and other business leaders on the “Biofuels Beltway March” to Capitol Hill to lobby on behalf of the ethanol industry. A fourth generation South Dakota rancher and farmer himself, Brian knows first-hand the importance of ethanol to rural communities. Before becoming ACE’s top executive in 2004, Brian was education director and lobbyist for the South Dakota Farmer's Union and served on the staff of U.S. Senator from South Dakota Tim Johnson for six years working on agriculture, energy, rural development and trade issues. NCGA had a few questions for Brian to find out more about him and his views on the ethanol industry. Here’s what he had to say:   NCGA: What’s ACE’s number one strategic priority?   Jennings: Our top priority is to increase the...

Get to Know the Ethanol - CEO RFA's Bob Dinneen

(Posted Wed. Feb 22nd, 2017)

Keywords: Ethanol

If there is a conversation going on involving ethanol, look over your shoulder – you’ll more than likely see President and CEO of the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) Bob Dinneen at the center of it. An expert on energy, the environment and issues involving the ethanol industry, he is a sought after speaker and regularly testifies before federal agencies and congressional committees. However, coalition-building seems to be Bob’s greatest talent. Thanks to his tireless advocacy for all things ethanol, Bob has successfully paved an ethanol-friendly pathway that has expanded the Renewable Fuels Standard to reach 36 billion gallons by 2022. NCGA wanted to know what is on Bob’s mind when he’s on the job. Here’s what he told us:   NCGA:       What’s RFA’s number one strategic priority?   Dinneen:   Our top priority is growing demand. In today’s agriculture economy, farmers must sell their product at a price below the cost of production. Similarly, the ethanol industry is challenged...

(Posted Wed. Feb 22nd, 2017)

Keywords: Ethanol

In a letter sent Monday to National Ethanol Conference attendees, President Donald Trump reiterated his commitment to ethanol and the Renewable Fuel Standard.   “Rest assured that your president and this administration values the importance of renewable fuels to America’s economy and to our energy independence. As I emphasized throughout my campaign, renewable fuels are essential to America’s energy strategy,” Trump wrote.   “As important as ethanol and the Renewable Fuel Standard are to rural economies, I also know that your industry has suffered from overzealous, job-killing regulation. I am committed to reducing the regulatory burden on all businesses, and my team… [will] identify and reform those regulations that impede growth, increase consumer costs, and eliminate good-paying jobs without providing sufficient environmental or public health benefit,” Trump added.   “Thank you to President Trump for reaffirming your support for ethanol and the RFS,” said NCGA President...

(Posted Fri. Feb 10th, 2017)

Keywords: Ethanol

NCGA joined ethanol producers and supporters this week in Miami, Fla. at Growth Energy’s Executive Leadership Conference to hear Growth’s take on the state of the industry and the opportunities and challenges that lie ahead. Leading this effort is Emily Skor, Growth Energy’s new CEO. Although new to the ethanol industry, Skor has made a career advocating on behalf of the consumer products industry. Having held several previous challenging roles in consumer health care products and crisis communications, she is no stranger to controversy. It is clear Emily Skor intends on making a difference not only at Growth Energy, but also within the ethanol industry as a whole. NCGA had a few questions for Emily to find out more about her vision, concerns, and what makes her tick. Here’s what she had to say:   NCGA:   What’s Growth Energy’s number one strategic priority?   Skor:       We are committed to supporting and expanding the nation’s incredible ethanol industry, and our top goal is...

(Posted Thu. Jan 26th, 2017)

Keywords: Ethanol

All in all, 2016 was a good year for the ethanol industry. EPA followed statute and set renewable volume obligations at the levels intended by Congress.  Shortly after, USDA released its new lifecycle analysis of corn-based ethanol and reaffirmed the fuel’s ability to significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions when compared to gasoline. However, as pointed out by Colorado Corn CEO Mark Sponsler in a recent Journal-Advocate article, ethanol advocates should not and will not rest on their laurels any time soon. “Ethanol is a clean-burning, renewable, high-octane biofuel that's reducing our dependency on foreign oil, boosting rural economies, and helping lower gas prices at the pump, commented Sponsler. “There's no good reason, based on fact and sound science, that ethanol advocates have had to spend so much time on the defense.”   Candidate Trump recognized ethanol’s benefits to the U.S. economy by promising to defend the RFS. To thank President Trump for his unwavering support...

(Posted Wed. Nov 23rd, 2016)

Keywords: ethanol

The following is a statement from Texas farmer Wesley Spurlock, president of the National Corn Growers Association, in response to today’s announcement by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) of the final 2017 renewable volume obligation under the Renewable Fuel Standard.   “Today the EPA moved in the right direction by increasing the 2017 ethanol volume to statute. This is critical for farmers facing difficult economic times, as well as for consumers who care about clean air, affordable fuel choices, and lowering our dependence on foreign oil.   “The Renewable Fuel Standard has been one of America’s great policy success stories. It has improved our energy independence, our air quality, and our rural economies. Although we believe the EPA did not have authority to reduce the ethanol numbers in the first place, we are pleased to see the RVO finally back on track.   “Moving forward, we call on the EPA to continue following the law and keep the RFS on track. Doing so...

(Posted Fri. Oct 21st, 2016)

Keywords: Trade Ethanol

A study recently released by the U.S. Grains Council, of which the National Corn Growers Association is a founding member, finds that a significant portion of U.S.-produced corn ethanol will likely meet Japan's 50 percent greenhouse gas reduction threshold over gasoline, supporting the case for that fuel's competitiveness and its sustainability compared to other fuel sources.   These results will help the Council and its industry partners dispel myths about U.S. ethanol and help make the case for opening the door for U.S. ethanol in the Japanese market. In particular, the study will help show key Japanese government officials and industry stakeholders that U.S. corn ethanol meets Japan's rigorous international sustainability requirements.   The ongoing efficiency improvements in corn ethanol production, an increased number of co-products from that production and improvements in U.S. corn cultivation practices have resulted in significant reductions in ethanol's greenhouse gas...