Fri, December 01, 2023

Trump Administration in Talks as Biofuel Energy Wanes

Biofuel Energy: Biofuel boiler house on a blue sky background

Biofuel Energy: Biofuel boiler house on a blue sky background

On Thursday, top Trump administration officials met to study choices for suppressing a reaction in politically influential farm states over recent biofuel energy policy moves.

The actions comprise revoking refusals given to some oil refineries from the renewable fuel requirements they use such as corn-based ethanol.

In the meeting and a memo, the Agriculture Department pushed the idea that explicitly aligns options for President Donald Trump. It is amid the strong obstruction from the Environmental Protection Agency.

It is the one who manages the program that commands biofuel energy.

Thursday’s meeting followed an outbreak of White House dialogs this week on the issue.

It was according to sources familiar with the deliberations who asked not to remain anonymous before any official declaration.

After news reports reported the data, biodiesel energy maker Renewable Energy Group Inc. grew as much as 7%. It is the steepest gain in two months.

Meanwhile, the U.S. ethanol producer Green Plains Inc. scaled as much as 3.6%.

In addition, corn futures also progressed.

On the flip side, gasoline futures declined for the first time in a week.

The administration is trying to soften anger in Iowa and other states dangerous to the president’s re-election.

It was after Trump, during a campaign kickoff speech in Orlando, stated some false or misleading claims as he has so often repeated as president.


The motive is to waive 31 oil refineries from 2018 shares, reassuring the use of ethanol and soybean-based biodiesel.

But any shift to favor agricultural interests over oil companies might also have political consequences in Pennsylvania and other campaign battleground states.

Recovered Support

In Thursday’s conference, administration officials deliberated about a series of likely policy changes. The Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue outlined the plans in an August 20 memo.

In the memo, Perdue said, “By taking decisive action now, I believe we can regain support among farmers and the biofuel industry.”

Perdue suggested withdrawing some of the oil-refinery exemptions that had been arranged to “big” companies.

All of them were about seven to eight of the current batch of 31. It is despite cautions from top EPA officials that the cancelations could be illegal.

The Agriculture Department, which did not instantly respond to a request for comment, also endorsed transferring some of the biofuel energy quotas. These are the ones renounced and anticipated.

The start of a final regulation that will set biofuel energy targets for 2020 is probable by November 30.

The agency also is in search of a formal role that will be stating the targets for the next two years. This is also to help shape the future of the Renewable Fuel Standard.

The White House was by now reviewing an enlisted EPA “RFS reset” rule that did not make extensive changes to the program.

Perdue labeled the rule as “negative toward biofuels energy and contrary” to the president’s “stated support” for the law.

He also indicated that the regulation might be an instrument for more striving biofuel-blending requirements.

The EPA also must take steps to accelerate the adoption of E15 gasoline that covers 15% ethanol.

Moreover, he suggests flex-fuel vehicles that can run on an 85% blend.


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