The Bioeconomy Coalition of Minnesota is advocating strongly for two bills in the state that if passed would result in a two-year, $5 million production incentive for producers, and a capital loan equipment program. The bills, HF 536 and SF 517, would benefit companies that develop biochemicals, advanced biofuels, and anaerobic digestion projects. There is concern, however, that the legislation would increase the production of corn rather than encourage the production of crops that do not require the same heavy use of fertilizer as corn. Citing concerns about fertilizer runoffs in the river, combined with corn being an easy source to convert to biofuel, the Minnesota Environmental Partnership and Friends of the Mississippi River have suggested amending the bills to: (1) require biofuel refineries receiving the production incentive to have at least 50 percent of their feedstock come from perennials; and (2) pay incentives to farmers who switch from corn to perennials. HF 536 has already been changed to include a 20 percent bonus for the use of perennials over corn. It is likely that both bills will continue to change to reflect continued concerns about water quality in Minnesota.
- Bergeson & Campbell, P.C.
- Biofuel Legislation In Minnesota Criticized For Focus On Corn
Petition for Waiver of 2016 cellulosic biofuel volumetric requirements
On December 28, 2016, the American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers (AFPM) submitted a petition requesting that EPA waive the cellulosic biofuel volumetric requirements for the 2016 compliance year citing an inadequate domestic supply of the fuel. Based on the amount of cellulosic fuel produced through November, AFPM estimated that between 173.8 and 190 million gallons will be produced in 2016, which is approximately 40 to 60 million gallons below the 230 million gallon target set by EPA in December 2015....
Unconventional Pretreatment of Lignocellulose with Low-Temperature Plasma
AbstractLignocellulose represents a potential supply of sustainable feedstock for the production of biofuels and chemicals. There is, however, an important cost and efficiency challenge associated with the conversion of such lignocellulosics. Because its structure is complex and not prone to undergo chemical reactions very easily, chemical and mechanical pretreatments are usually necessary to be able to refine them into the compositional building blocks (carbohydrates and lignin) from which value-added platform...
EPA Publishes Final 2017 RFS Requirements
On December 12, 2016, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) published a final rule, Renewable Fuel Standard Program: Standards for 2017 and Biomass-Based Diesel Volume for 2018, in the Federal Register. This final rule sets the annual percentage standards for cellulosic biofuel, biomass-based diesel, advanced biofuel, and total renewable fuel for motor vehicle gasoline and diesel produced or imported in 2017, as reported in the Biobased and Renewable Products Advocacy Group’s (BRAG®) blog post...
EPA Convenes Hearing On Proposed Renewables Enhancement and Growth Support Rule
On December 6, 2016, EPA held a hearing on its proposed Renewables Enhancement and Growth Support rule. The proposed rule would update the regulatory structure to allow biofuel producers to process and convert biomass at different facilities, update fuel regulations to allow for more high-ethanol fuel blends in flex fuel vehicles, and permit cellulosic biofuels to be produced from new feedstock sources. Testimony provided by Growth Energy and the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) focused on the impact of the...
India Launches Biofuel-Run Bus Service
On December 5, 2016, Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC) launched the Aapli bus service, India’s first green bus service, in Nagpur, which includes five buses that will run on ethanol biofuel. Nitin Gadkari, the Union Minister for Road Transport and Highways, aims for Nagpur to be the first city to have all of its buses powered by biofuel through the addition of new green buses and the conversion of existing diesel-run buses. During the launch event at Yeshwant Stadium, Gadkari stated the plan was to produce...