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December 4, 2012
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The News Source for the Ethanol Industry

  Top Story 
  • RFA: EPA's carbon accounting of ethanol is outdated
    The Renewable Fuels Association sent a letter to the Environmental Protection Agency asking it to update its analyses of carbon emissions linked to corn and sugarcane ethanol production. "There have been literally dozens of new studies and modeling improvements since EPA finalized the RFS2 almost three years ago. Overwhelmingly, these new reports and data show that the corn ethanol process is far less carbon intensive than assumed by EPA" while the carbon footprint of Brazilian sugarcane ethanol is bigger than initially thought, RFA President and CEO Bob Dinneen wrote in the letter to EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson. (12/3) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Market Update 
  • CBOT corn, NYMEX oil, ethanol futures advance
    March corn settled at $7.5475 per bushel Monday, up 2 cents, on the Chicago Board of Trade. January light sweet crude gained 18 cents to close at $89.09 per barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. December denatured ethanol increased 2 cents to end at $2.428 per gallon on the CBOT. Bloomberg Businessweek (12/3), MarketWatch (12/3) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Chemical tanker rates surge as U.S. ethanol imports rise
    Chemical tanker rates are on the upswing as U.S. ethanol imports rise to a four-year high after the historic drought pushed up domestic feedstock costs. U.S. ethanol output has declined for the first time in 16 years, allowing imports, mostly from Brazil, to nearly triple in the third quarter, compared with the same period in 2011, data from the Department of Energy showed. Rates for chemical tankers plying 23 trade routes averaged a record $70.39 per metric ton this year, up 4% from 2011, said shipbrokerage firm Clarkson. Bloomberg Businessweek (12/3) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • USDA adviser: Ethanol is not driving up retail food prices
    A Wall Street Journal op-ed is wrong to single out ethanol production for rising food costs, writes Sarah Bittleman, a senior energy adviser to Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack. Energy, labor, transportation, processing and marketing costs contribute more to food cost inflation than the price of corn and other farm commodities, Bittleman states. Moreover, the current rate of food cost inflation is actually within the historical range of yearly adjustments, Bittleman notes. (12/1) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • RFA: Food groups' anti-ethanol rhetoric falls short on facts
    Allegations by food-industry groups that the Renewable Fuel Standard and ethanol production are driving up food prices are not supported by data and food-price trends, writes Geoff Cooper, vice president of research and analysis at the Renewable Fuels Association. Data confirm that food prices are not rising abnormally and "the average American household spends less of its income on food today than 10 years ago (i.e., before the 'ethanol era')," Cooper notes. "Food prices have increased just 1.7% over the past 12 months (October 2011 to October 2012)," which is lower than the overall inflation rate of 2.2% over the past year, Cooper explains. E-Xchange blog (12/3) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Ethanol doesn't waste food
    Ethanol critics who make the food-versus-fuel argument ignore some facts about food production, writes Orrie Swayze of Wilmot, S.D. "To date, few have considered that a bushel of corn produces ethanol and nearly 18 pounds of 28 percent protein distillers grains or a bushel can produce 9 pounds of 20 percent uncooked protein pork or beef. Compared with meat production, arithmetic reveals that ethanol doubles corn's food production and nearly triples corn's protein production," Swayze writes. Agweek (12/3) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Technology & Trends 
  • Feds OK grain sorghum as biofuel feedstock under RFS
    The Environmental Protection Agency has added grain sorghum to the list of advanced-biofuel feedstocks under the Renewable Fuel Standard. "We believe this new opportunity to produce advanced biofuel will increase demand for the crop and lead to greater profitability for producers across the nation," said John Duff, director of Sorghum Checkoff Renewables. Farm Futures (12/4) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • ICM reaches milestone at pilot-scale cellulosic plant in Mo.
    ICM has successfully passed 1,000 hours of continuous production at its pilot-scale cellulosic ethanol plant in St. Joseph, Mo. ICM's system, which could be installed in existing corn ethanol plants, is more cost-effective than traditional pathways to cellulosic ethanol production, the company said. Aside from corn fiber, feedstocks that have been tested at the facility include corn stover, wheat fiber, barley fiber, switchgrass, energy sorghum and bagasse. (12/3) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Report: Oil subsidies are worsening climate change
    Developed countries spent more than $58 billion in tax incentives and other assistance to oil and natural gas companies last year, undermining efforts aimed at curbing greenhouse-gas emissions that are blamed for rising global temperatures, according to a study presented by Oil Change International at the U.N.-sponsored climate talks in Qatar. Government incentives for fossil fuels were about six times those for renewable energy, the group noted. "We need to stop funding the problem and start funding the solution," said Steve Kretzmann, executive director and founder of Oil Change International. The Salt Lake Tribune (Utah)/The Associated Press (12/3) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Policy Watch 
  • Texas Farm Bureau convention shows division on ethanol policy
    Delegates to the Texas Farm Bureau convention this week in Waco, Texas, voted to end support of ethanol in state-level legislation but to continue backing the federal Renewable Fuel Standard. Some delegates said ethanol production is driving up corn prices, but others argued that it is unfair to blame the industry for elevated grain costs. "Ethanol isn't the reason why grain prices are up. Drought is what's causing that," said Kevin Huffman, president of the McLennan County Farm Bureau. Waco Tribune-Herald (Texas) (12/4) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Global Agenda 
  • LanzaTech, Baosteel can begin production at China ethanol project
    New Zealand's LanzaTech and its Chinese partner, Baosteel, are planning to develop a commercial-scale waste-gas-to-ethanol plant next year in China after getting the endorsement of Chinese regulators. The companies' demonstration-scale facility near Shanghai "clearly met international standards regarding gas conversion rates and other technical milestones," and the project "can now officially enter the commercialization phase," China's National Development and Reform Commission said. (12/3) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  RFA & Member News 
  • National Ethanol Conference Sponsorship Opportunities Available
    Don't miss your opportunity to be a sponsor at the 18th Annual National Ethanol Conference in Las Vegas, Feb. 5 through 7, 2013 at the Wynn Las Vegas. Becoming a sponsor is one of the most effective ways you can connect your business with the ethanol decision makers. Sponsorship offers significant visibility and exposure, including reduced or free conference registrations, booth space in main traffic area, and ads in the onsite conference program. Deadline is Jan. 4, 2013. Get complete information on and download the official 2013 NEC Sponsorship Prospectus. Visit the conference site for more information. LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story

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It is astonishing what force, purity and wisdom it requires for a human being to keep clear of falsehoods."
--Margaret Fuller,
American journalist and women's rights activist

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