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March 20, 2013
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The News Source for the Ethanol Industry

  Top Story 
  • RFA calls for multiagency probe of Big Oil's "unlawful conduct"
    The Renewable Fuels Association wrote a letter to four federal agencies calling for a multiagency probe into the oil industry for its "highly discriminatory and unlawful conduct" aimed at undermining the Renewable Fuel Standard and stifling the rollout of E15. RFA described how ConocoPhillips reportedly threatened to penalize and cancel the franchise of the Zarco 66 filling station in Kansas, the first retailer in the U.S. to offer E15, unless it started to offer "premium gasoline." "For franchisees like Zarco 66, the message that the oil industry is delivering is loud and clear: Stop selling renewable fuels, or face the consequences," said Bob Dinneen, RFA's president and CEO. (3/19), The Des Moines Register (Iowa) (tiered subscription model)/Green Fields blog (3/19), (3/20) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
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  Market Update 
  • E10 blend wall, speculators are pushing up RIN costs, refiners say
    The E10 blend wall and rampant speculation are driving up the price of ethanol Renewable Identification Numbers, which may cost consumers $13 billion, oil executives said. Traders and hedge funds are treating the RINs market like "a casino," said Michael Jennings, chairman and CEO of HollyFrontier. Geoff Cooper, vice president of research and analysis at the Renewable Fuels Association, said that the recent increase in RIN prices doesn't reflect market fundamentals and was partly caused by "some panic buying." Bloomberg Businessweek (3/19), Reuters (3/19) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Analysis: RIN prices are not driving up gasoline prices
    It's a myth that the increased value of ethanol Renewable Identification Numbers is driving up gasoline prices at the pump, according to an analysis by Jim Lane. A reasonable estimate shows that ethanol RIN prices accounted for just seven-tenths of a cent of the 43-cent rise in wholesale gasoline prices from January to February, Lane notes. "Over the past six months, the average [wholesale] price [of gasoline] has fluctuated $0.21 per month. ... In other words, you wouldn't even notice seven-tenths of a cent; it is buried beneath ordinary gasoline price volatility," Lane states. (3/19) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Technology & Trends 
  • Gevo gains partial victory in patent case brought by Butamax
    Gevo partly won in a U.S. District Court judge's ruling on a patent-infringement case brought by Butamax Advanced Biofuels. Judge Sue Robinson ruled that Gevo doesn't infringe Butamax's patent "as a matter of law," but she stopped short of ruling whether any infringement occurred at all and denied both companies' pleas for a summary judgment. Bloomberg (3/19) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Study: Lots of land in U.S. could be used for algal biofuels
    Nearly 14% of land in the Lower 48 states could be used for algal biofuel production, according to a study by Pacific Northwest National Laboratory. "Our main driver was to look at how much land would be available for installing large algae pond systems," said Erik Venteris, lead investigator for the study. Unused land in the West, marginal croplands and Southern woodlands are among the best candidates, researchers found. blog (3/20) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Policy Watch 
  • Dinneen: Oil firms are using RIN-price hike as excuse to thwart RFS
    Oil companies are pushing up the value of ethanol Renewable Identification Numbers because they would rather trade RINs than increase ethanol blending to comply with the Renewable Fuel Standard, said Bob Dinneen, president and CEO of the Renewable Fuels Association. Oil companies are citing the recent RIN-price spike as a reason to do away with the RFS, even though it was refiners who wanted the RIN credits for RFS compliance in the first place, Dinneen said. (3/19) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • More E15 uptake would lift the blend wall, Dinneen says
    The E10 blend wall, drought-induced spike in corn prices and decreased demand for fuels are pinching ethanol production margins, resulting in the closure of several plants across the country, executives said. A more rapid adoption of E15 would help break through the blend wall and bring back some of the idled capacity, said Bob Dinneen, president and CEO of the Renewable Fuels Association. "You'd have another 6 or 7 billion gallons of ethanol demand," said Dinneen, adding, however, that E15 uptake "has been pretty slow," partly because of roadblocks put up by oil companies. KBIA-FM (Columbia, Mo.) (3/19) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Global Agenda 
  • Brazil's Raizen expects to produce 10% more ethanol in 2013-14
    Brazil-based Raizen Energia, a joint venture between Royal Dutch Shell and Cosan, will likely boost its ethanol output by 10% to about 580 million gallons in the 2013-2014 season, thanks to a bumper crop and strong demand for the biofuel, said Pedro Mizutani, Raizen's vice president. The company expects to export 20% more ethanol this year, Mizutani added. Reuters (3/19) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story

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  RFA & Member News 
  • Pledge Your Commitment to America's Future Today
    The Fuels America campaign is asking you to join the effort to promote the benefits of America's renewable fuels, which have bolstered the economies of communities nationwide. The coalition spans the full spectrum of domestically grown renewable fuel and national security stakeholders, and is dedicated to protecting the Renewable Fuel Standard and the economic and national security benefits that it provides. Join them in their fight to strengthen our country's energy backbone and help spread the word about the importance of renewable fuel by signing the Pledge For America's Energy Future. Learn more at and follow Fuels America on Twitter. LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
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