Search Results for biofuels
40 item(s) were returned.
Discussion

“60 Minutes” Calls Cleantech a Bust

Author(s): OurEnergyPolicy.org
Administrator
OurEnergyPolicy.org
Date: January 8, 2014 at 2:30 PM

A recent “60 Minutes” segment essentially called the cleantech industry a failure, eliciting a flurry of criticisms defending the green technology sector. “Hoping to create innovation and jobs, [President Obama] committed north of $100 billion in loans, grants and tax breaks to cleantech. But instead of breakthroughs, the sector suffered a string of expensive tax-funded flops. Suddenly cleantech was a dirty word,” said “60 Minutes’” host, Lesley Stahl. One of the main criticisms against the CBS segment was that it conflated the cleantech venture capital sector of Silicon Valley with the Department of Energy’s loan guarantee program. The critics have… [more]

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Should The Renewable Fuel Standard Change With Fuel Demand?

Author(s): Matthew Carr
Managing Director, Industrial & Environmental Section
Biotechnology Industry Organization
Date: October 30, 2013 at 7:00 AM

A recent editorial in the Wall Street Journal, co-signed by Rep. Patrick Meehan (R-Pa.), argues that growing renewable fuel obligations under the federal Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) have come into direct conflict with declining U.S. demand for transportation fuel.  The editorial asserts that current fuel distribution infrastructure and automobile engine guidelines limit the amount of ethanol that can be blended into gasoline to 10 percent, creating a “blend wall” beyond which further blending of ethanol becomes economically unreasonable. Meanwhile, in response to high fuel prices, consumers have radically curbed their driving habits and sought out new cars that meet more… [more]

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Fuel Choice and Energy Security

Author(s): OurEnergyPolicy.org
Administrator
OurEnergyPolicy.org
Date: October 22, 2013 at 7:05 AM

A report, “Fuel Choice for American Prosperity,” recently published by the United States Energy Security Council (USESC), a group within the Institute for the Analysis of Global Security (IAGS), identifies challenges facing the United States’ pursuit of energy security. Despite oil imports expected to fall to their lowest level since 1987 (EIA), the total amount of money the U.S. spends on oil imports has increased. If energy security is defined as “reliable supply at an affordable price,” as the report’s authors define, the U.S. has improved the former, but failed to impact global oil prices, which have risen more than… [more]

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Evaluating the Renewable Fuel Standard

Author(s): OurEnergyPolicy.org
Administrator
OurEnergyPolicy.org
Date: June 12, 2013 at 4:30 PM

The U.S. EPA finalized amendments to the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) program that include new renewable fuel production pathways for renewable diesel, renewable naphtha, and renewable electricity (used in electric vehicles) from landfill biogas. According to the EPA, “Adding these new pathways will enhance the ability of the biofuels industry to supply advanced biofuels, including cellulosic biofuels, which greatly reduce the greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) compared to the petroleum-based fuels they replace.” However, these changes don’t address some of the fundamental problems associated with the RFS, according to critics. For example, NACS, the international trade association that serves the convenience… [more]

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Sizing Up President Obama’s Energy Blueprint

Author(s): OurEnergyPolicy.org
Administrator
OurEnergyPolicy.org
Date: March 15, 2013 at 5:36 PM

According to The President’s energy blueprint, the Obama Administration is calling on Congress to establish a $2 billion Energy Security Trust to invest in breakthrough research into technologies, such as advanced electric vehicles, homegrown biofuels, fuel cells, and domestically produced natural gas. The funds would come from oil and gas royalty revenues generated from development in Federal waters off the Outer Continental Shelf (OCS). Other highlights of the blueprint include: Making the renewable energy Production Tax Credit permanent and refundable; A new $25 million prize for the first, natural gas combined cycle power plant to integrate carbon capture and storage;… [more]

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Algae Biofuels: A Way Forward or A Dead End?

Author(s): OurEnergyPolicy.org
Administrator
OurEnergyPolicy.org
Date: October 29, 2012 at 7:05 AM

Proponents of algae biofuels have stressed its low environmental impact, reduced greenhouse gas emissions, reduced dependence on foreign oil, and utilization of marginal lands. However, a recent report from the U.S. National Research Council has found that algae biofuels cannot currently be produced on a large scale without using unsustainable amounts of energy, water, and fertilizer – exactly the kinds of impacts algae biofuel production was intended to avoid. Notwithstanding this, the report’s authors do not write off the technology. Jen Stutsman of the Department of Energy said in a statement “[The] report outlines the need for continued research and… [more]

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Will EPA’s 4-Gallon Minimum Mandate Cause More Harm Than Good?

Author(s): OurEnergyPolicy.org
Administrator
OurEnergyPolicy.org
Date: October 8, 2012 at 7:20 AM

A new U.S. Environmental Protection Agency mandate under the Renewable Fuel Standard will require a minimum four-gallon purchase of the E10 ethanol-gasoline blend at service station pumps selling both E10 and E15 fuel from the same hose. E15 is an 85% gasoline, 15% ethanol fuel blend, and has only been approved for use in vehicles manufactured after 2001. Roughly two-thirds of gasoline pumps in U.S. gas stations use one hose to dispense different blends of fuel. This has lead to concerns that residual E15 could end up in the engines of vehicles not designed to run on the higher blend, such… [more]

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Water-Energy Nexus Debate Heats Up

Author(s): OurEnergyPolicy.org
Administrator
OurEnergyPolicy.org
Date: August 20, 2012 at 10:44 AM

As drought continues to affect much of the U.S., many observers are thinking critically about the water-energy nexus. A New York Times article points out the myriad ways in which water shortages can threaten energy, from low river levels reducing hydropower output, to cities banning the use of municipal water for hydraulic fracturing. Although we have yet to see water access limit our ability to produce energy, it could lead to higher energy prices, particularly for natural gas, which will increasingly require water recycling and freshwater transport from non-local sources. Biofuels will also increase in price, if crops fail and… [more]

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House Takes Aim at DoD Biofuel Efforts

Author(s): OurEnergyPolicy.org
Administrator
OurEnergyPolicy.org
Date: May 21, 2012 at 12:24 PM

The House Armed Services Committee’s newly proposed 2013 Pentagon budget contains a provision that would prevent the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) from purchasing alternative fuels, largely in the form of biofuels, if they cost more than traditional fuels. The proposal comes at a time when the military is ramping up its use of biofuels and the U.S. biofuel industry could use the certainty provided by a customer as large and influential as DoD. An example of DoD’s alternative fuels efforts:  In 2009, the navy announced a plan that would have the navy utilize 50% non-oil energy in its operations… [more]

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Fraud in Renewables Markets

Author(s): OurEnergyPolicy.org
Administrator
OurEnergyPolicy.org
Date: April 27, 2012 at 7:52 AM

In 2007, US EPA began using renewable identification numbers (RINs) to track fuel producer compliance with the Energy Policy Act of 2005’s Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS), which calls for fuel blends to contain a minimum amount of renewable fuels. RINs quantify the biofuel, produced or imported, used in fuel blends. Fuel producers buy and sell them, and then submit them to demonstrate compliance. The complexity of RIN markets and RFS compliance has come under scrutiny lately, as several instances of fraud have emerged. In 2010, two small biofuel producers – Clean Green Fuel and Absolute Fuels – started selling fraudulent… [more]

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