Skip to comments.Oh, noes: 80% of biofuels producers have cut back production due to federal-mandate uncertainty
Posted on 05/15/2014 7:27:34 PM PDT by SeekAndFind
Well, who woulda’ thunk it? The Environmental Protection Agency finally decided to acknowledge the incompatibility of the Renewable Fuel Standard with both America’s declining gasoline consumption and the environmental degradation caused by the production of corn ethanol, thereby obliterating the entirely government-imposed “market” for biofuels — and what do you suppose happens? Via The Hill:
Almost eight in 10 biodiesel producers in the United States have cut back production this year due to uncertainty over federal policies that encourage making the fuels, the National Biodiesel Board (NBB) said.
The report released Wednesday was based on a survey the NBB conducted. In addition to the finding that 78 percent of producers reduced output, 57 percent of companies have idle or shut down plants and 66 percent have reduced their workforces or are considering it.
Almost all of the surveyed companies attribute the industrys decline to two recent policy developments: the expiration at the end of last year of the tax credit to produce biodiesel and a proposal last year by the Environmental Protection Agency not to increase the biodiesel mandate in the Renewable Fuel Standard.
Inconsistency in Washington is wreaking havoc on the U.S. biodiesel industry, Anne Steckel, NBBs vice president of federal affairs, said in a statement.
“Inconsistency in Washington is wreaking havoc on the U.S. biodiesel industry”? …Yeah, how about we go a little more big-picture and try, “The U.S. biodiesel industry’s utter dependence on handouts from Washington is wreaking havoc on the U.S. biodiesel industry,” perhaps? This major slowdown in production is precisely why, when the EPA announced late last year that they would be reevaluating the annually-increasing volumetric requirements mandated by the Renewable Fuel Standard for 2014 (a decision on which we’re still waiting, by the way), the biofuels industry flipped out — and their respective lawmakers have been engaged in a relentless pander-fest ever since, most recently at a Capitol Hill press conference on Wednesday including Democrat Sens. Heitkamp, Durbin, Klobuchar, Franken, Donnelly, and Cantwell:
We want to make sure that biofuels are included in the future when it comes to Americas energy, Durbin said. When theres uncertainty about the future of biofuels, theres uncertainty about these jobs.
Klobuchar and Franken said Minnesota officials have estimated that the EPAs biodiesel mandate would cause the state to lose 1,500 jobs.
Yes, it’s always very easy to talk about the tragic loss of the jobs that have been created via direct federal largesse, but what these senators aren’t talking about is the opportunity cost, i.e. the other jobs that would have been created in other and more useful areas of the private sector, if the federal government wasn’t depriving taxpayers of those dollars in the first place. Much like the huge dropoff in the egregiously subsidized wind industry without the surety of their finely tuned array of precious subsidies, the fact that biofuels producers are cutting back without their own mandates and subsidies firmly in place should serve as a red flag about the real and economically (not to mention environmentally) costly nature of this industry.
The Endangered Eight Toed Chickens seem to be coming home to roost
what a soorpise!
If electricity could be produced by failed good intentions of governmental agencies there would be an endless supply of power for everyone
Switch to corn liquor.
So sorry, says EPA!
Does this mean anything for required ethanol users, or is this just a diesel thing?
That's what it is, they just need to stop mixing it with gasoline.
Wondering how much money was spent to figure out something that many average citizens could have enlightened them on at absolutely no charge?
Strangely enough, bio diesel seems to actually have a beneficial application - blending in a very small percentage of recycled bio diesel into conventional petroleum diesel stocks to improve emissions and prolong engine life.
Ethanol, on the other hand, is an immoral waste of food grain to make a horrible fuel that requires more oil equivalent energy to distill than it provides as a fuel.
At the same time the cost of a bushel of corn has quadrupled , inflating food prices, causing world wide starvation and the overthrow of several governments including the Egyptian government
Ethanol bad, Butanol good (for fuel that is).
The AG department is going about this the wrong way. They should be requiring the production of X # of gallons of bio-diesel from a farm that is receiving CRP (crop reduction program) payments. Once the farmer starts producing bio-diesel, the first consumer in the food chain will be the farmer themselves. This will work to secure our crops and start to build a business eco system that will financially sustain the small farmer.
The AG department should work with farmers and colleges to create an opensource algae based small farming operation that does not take much time or money to produce bio-diesel. Then work to make sure that farm equipment can run on the bio-diesel.