Posted July 26, 2013
Earlier we took a look at claims by the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) that ethanol production was “a particularly important catalyst” and “major driver” of declines in finished motor gasoline imports (Spoiler Alert: No). Today, continuing the Sisyphean task of correcting false narratives put forth by the RFA, let’s look at the notion that ethanol is leading the way in providing energy security. RFA’s statement in a House hearing this week:
In fact, cumulative new ethanol production since 2005 has accounted for 62% of new domestically-produced liquid fuels, while cumulative new U.S. crude oil production has accounted for 38%.
Posted July 25, 2013
Over two days this week the Energy and Power Subcommittee of the House Energy and Commerce Committee heard concerns from scientists, poultry producers, automakers, drivers, restaurant owners, tool makers, store owners, environmentalists and the oil and natural gas industry about problems with E15 and/or the current Renewable Fuel Standard. Leading the charge the other way was the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) with a simple message: our product is so great; the government should continue to force people to buy it.
Posted July 24, 2013
National Journal – Ethanol Mandates Starting to Worry Some Senate Democrats
NJ’s Amy Harder reports that ethanol requirements in the Renewable Fuel Standard are generating pressure on some Democratic senators. “Mid-Atlantic lawmakers, in particular, are hearing from the poultry industry, which is concerned about rising feedstock prices, and from oil refineries, which are facing increased costs for blending ethanol with gasoline,” writes Harder.
PennLive.com – Hydraulic Fracturing is Well Regulated
In a letter to the editor, the executive director of the Associated Petroleum Industries of Pennsylvania counters claims by anti-hydraulic fracturing groups and individuals. “In reality, hydraulic fracturing is rigorously regulated by state agencies and federal laws overseeing oil and natural gas development,” writes Stephanie Wissman. “In addition, strict standards are developed by the oil and natural gas industry in collaboration with specialists who best understand the unique geology and hydrology of their communities.”
Posted July 24, 2013
“Ethanol blended fuels have the potential to provide drivers with a welcome choice at the pump, which supports American jobs, promotes American energy independence and can save Americans money. In order to realize these benefits, it is imperative that increased ethanol blends — or any new fuels — are only brought to market when consumers have been clearly informed and protected. The introduction of E15 gasoline to consumers has failed to meet this obligation.”
Posted July 9, 2013
New York Post – Fracking Phobia Fails Yet Again
In a guest post, National Review Online’s Rich Lowry takes issue with a new film’s claims that the EPA is a “tool of the oil and natural gas industry.” It never occurs to anti-fracking crusaders that perhaps the evidence doesn’t back up the anti-fracking hysteria, he writes.
The news magazine highlights the debate over the Renewable Fuel Standard, which will be the subject of an upcoming House hearing. “There will be a push in our committee by some, Republicans and Democrats, to do away with the RFS, saying that it's just completely unnecessary today," said Rep. Lee Terry.
Posted June 28, 2013
There is a classic xkcd cartoon where a one of the characters says they can’t come to bed because “Someone is wrong on the internet.” Though the options for who exactly that someone was are almost unlimited, statistically there is a good chance the character was referring to Bob Dinneen. Witness this tweet:
Posted June 27, 2013
Important testimony at a House hearing yesterday from U.S. Energy Information Administration chief Adam Sieminski on flaws in the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS), including its mandates for increasing ethanol use.
Sieminski, who heads the government agency charged with counting and quantifying energy of all sources, testified before the House Energy and Commerce’s subcommittee on energy and power, basically saying the current RFS is broken:
· “The RFS program is not projected to come close to achievement of the legislated target that calls for 36 billion gallons of renewable motor fuels use by 2022.
· Substantially increased use of biofuels can only occur if they can be used in forms other than the low-percentage blends of ethanol and biodiesel that account for nearly all of their current use.
· The implicit premise that cellulosic and other advanced biofuels would be available in significant quantities at reasonable costs within 5 to 10 years following adoption of the 2007 RFS targets has not been borne out.”
Posted June 24, 2013
AP reports on the debate surrounding the Renewable Fuel Standard and E15 gasoline after a recent ruling by the Supreme Court. "The ever increasing ethanol mandate has become unsustainable, causing a looming crisis for gasoline consumers," API's Bob Greco said. "We're at the point where refiners are being pressured to put unsafe levels of ethanol in gasoline, which could damage vehicles, harm consumers and wreak havoc on our economy."
Houston Chronicle – Energy Surge Spreads Its Wealth Around City
Houston is arguably the center of American energy. With the surge in domestic energy, the city’s business sector – and revenues – has grown over the last few years. The Chronicle highlights the “vibrant metropolitan area.”
Posted June 21, 2013
Study: Tier 3 Sulfur Rule Would Do Little to Improve Air Quality - http://bit.ly/19YBiXp
Although the Environmental Protection Agency’s proposed Tier 3 gasoline sulfur rule could cost billions, a new study from ENVIRON International Corporation found that it would do very little to reduce fine particulates and improve air quality, API Director for Regulatory and Scientific Affairs Howard Feldman told reporters yesterday.
EPA Acknowledges Pavillion Study Deficiencies – http://bit.ly/14OceP1
After two years of study in Pavillion, Wyoming, the EPA has yet to demonstrate any evidence of hydraulic fracturing linked to groundwater contamination. This echoes former EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson’s comments from 2011 that “there is no proven case where the fracking process itself has affected water.”
Posted June 14, 2013
In a blog post earlier this month Kristy Moore of the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) took some shots at testing by the Coordinating Research Council (CRC) that showed higher levels of ethanol in fuel could damage the engines of millions of U.S. vehicles. A separate CRC study found that higher ethanol blends also could damage fuel pump systems, potentially leaving motorists stranded on the road and/or stuck with repair bills.
Obviously, both findings complicate RFA’s mission to increase ethanol use – which explains RFA’s cavalier dismissal of sound research and sound science, as well as its disingenuous defense of mandates in the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS), which is forcing more ethanol on the public than is safe.