ACORE Brings Together Biofuel Industry to Publish Comments Addressing RFS Rules which Impede Advanced Biofuels Development
(American Council on Renewable Energy) ACORE Brings Together Biofuel Industry to Publish Comments Addressing RFS Rules — Industry leaders and ACORE members take up issues with co-location requirements under the RFS which impede advanced biofuels development.
Today, the American Council On Renewable Energy (ACORE) has submitted a white paper to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), calling for clarification of the agency’s interpretation of feedstock material within the definition of facility under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) (see 40 CFR 80.1401). Specifically, the definition of facility requires the production of advanced biofuel, from the delivery of feedstock material to production and final storage of the end product, to be completed at one location, controlled by the same person in order for the fuel to qualify toward meeting the RFS goals. The white paper was co-authored by leaders of the advanced biofuel industry, who pre-process their feedstock away from final refineries and are prohibited from contributing to the goals of the RFS, due to EPA’s interpretation of feedstock material.
Jeramy Shays, ACORE’s Director of Transportation, explained why EPA must clarify its interpretation of feedstock material: “The RFS calls for increasing amounts of renewable, clean, domestic biofuels to be blended into the transportation fuel market to enhance our country’s economic, energy and environmental security.” Shays said. “To fully achieve the goals of the RFS, ACORE encourages EPA to clarify its interpretation of feedstock material under the definition of facility to allow for advanced biofuels, incrementally processed at one or more facilities, to count towards the volumetric goals of the RFS.”
The paper presents multiple case studies from advanced biofuel companies that are currently ineligible to generate Renewable Identification Numbers (RINs) under the RFS due to their use of intermediates or precursors, despite the end product fuel meeting all the other requirements of the RFS. The RFS will not foster sufficient development of advanced biofuels as long as EPA’s definition of facility excludes these advanced biofuels from the RIN market.
“The ability of Algenol to generate RINs from all of our products is critical for us and for our investors, and to support the intent of the Renewable Fuels Standards. We need EPA to expedite resolution of this major impediment to commercial production of our renewable fuels”, said Paul Woods.
As Magnus Nelsson Folkelid, Business Manager, Cortus Energy explained, “Clarifying the interpretation of feedstock material under the definition of facility to allow for the development of intermediate fuels at a separate location will encourage Cortus Energy to bring its biomass innovations to U.S. markets.”
“It is important that EPA clarify its interpretation of feedstock material in the Renewable Fuel Standard definition of facility as any material that arrives at a renewable fuels facility which is processed into the end renewable fuel product for a number of reasons,” said Joanne Ivancic, executive director of Advanced Biofuels USA, a nonprofit educational organization. “This will make EPA policy implementation consistent with government investment activities in advanced biofuels development and will harmonize the activities of multiple U.S. agencies to achieve a shared national goal embodied in the Energy Security and Independence Act of 2007, to significantly transition away from fossil fuels toward sustainable, renewable transportation fuels.”
Partner at Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton LLP, Mark Riedy agreed, “Congress enacted the RFS as an incentive to develop and build a clean fuels industry for environmental and national security purposes in the same manner and for many of the same reasons that state legislatures enacted their respective RPS programs. This Administration, in particular, as a proponent of clean energy, must step up and resolve the issues that are impeding the growth of these industries. It is time for this President to take an active leadership role in securing his legacy in clean energy.” Riedy continued, “It is high time to “walk the talk” and deliver on the promises underlying the policies espoused by the Administration in order to advance the ball on clean energy.”
The paper concludes with recommendations, for how the EPA can clarify the understanding of feedstock material within the definition of facility while addressing compliance concerns, in order to remove this obstacle to the growth of advanced biofuels.
In addition to the EPA, this paper was also provided to agency officials at the Department of Energy (DOE), Department of Defense (DoD), Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the White House Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ).
Contributors to the paper included:
• Joanne Ivancic, Executive Director, Advanced Biofuels, USA
• Jacques Beaudry-Losique, Senior Vice President, Corporate and Business Development, Algenol Biofuels
• Wayne Gears, Head of Business Development, Cortus Energy
• Ted Kniesche, Vice President, Business Development, Fulcrum Bioenergy
• Mark Riedy, ACORE Chief Counsel and Partner, Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton LLP
• Laurel Harmon, Vice President, Government Relations, LanzaTech
• Pernille Hager, Vice President, Business Development, Solena Fuels
READ MORE and MORE (Street Insider) and MORE (MarketWatch) and MORE (Greenwire) and MORE (OPIS Biofuels) Download policy paper
Sustainable Bioenergy High-Impact Opportunity Launches
by Jim Lane (Biofuels Digest) … In Denmark, Novozymes and partners including the FAO, Roundtable on Sustainable Biomaterials (RSB), Bloomberg New Energy Finance, Carbon War Room, KLM and the UN Foundation announced the launch of a multi-stakeholder coalition to scale up the development and deployment of sustainable bioenergy solutions to meet the global need for sustainable energy. The coalition will act under the UN Sustainable Energy for All initiative launched earlier in the decade by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon.
The Sustainable Bioenergy High-Impact Opportunity (HIO) is a voluntary partnership of likeminded stakeholders that seeks to facilitate the development and deployment of sustainable bioenergy solutions to aid SE4ALL in reaching its goals participant universal energy access and doubling the use of renewable energy. All types of bioenergy projects are being promoted including:
1) Renewable biomass for clean cooking solutions;
2) On-farm bioenergy production to boost agricultural yield and reduce post-harvest losses;
3) Distributed electricity production using sustainable biomass from forestry and agriculture co-products;
4) Electricity and fuels from municipal solid waste (MSW);
5) Cellulosic ethanol for clean cooking and transportation; and
6) Sustainable aviation biofuels.
One of the coalition’s key goals is delivering bioenergy options that are environmentally, socially, and economically sustainable, with a focus on emerging markets and rural communities in developing countries. The effort will be
supported by Novozymes, the world’s largest technology provider to biofuel industries. FAO and RSB are co-chairing the sustainable bioenergy effort.
The Sustainable Bioenergy High Impact Opportunity (HIO) will pursue three objectives: (i) Knowledge enhancement and information sharing, (ii) Policy support; and (iii) Deployment support. Specifically, the HIO will seek novel means of financing energy access and renewable fuels projects across the globe.
The partners announced three key objectives:
#1 – KNOWLEDGE ENHANCEMENT AND INFORMATION SHARING. …
#2 — DEPLOYMENT SUPPORT. …
#3 — POLICY SUPPORT. …
By the time of ABLC Next 2014, we reported that projects have been tough to get going in the developing world – in addition to the usual barriers of feedstock, technology, market risk and policy risk — there’s the whole range of challenges that are summed up in “country risk” — and in steps Sustainable Energy For All movement to get things going from the bottom up to change that equation. The bottom up energy of new technologies and project developers combine with the top-down thrust of the UN and groups like the Asian Development Bank, to blow through the barriers. More on that here. READ MORE