Biodiesel Byproduct may be Economical Ingredient in Livestock Feed
Biodiesel is made from a variety of agricultural oils that are byproducts and co-products of producing protein in meal for livestock feed. According to the National Biodiesel Board (NBB), now glycerin, the main byproduct of producing biodiesel, could be making its way into the livestock industry as an ingredient in cattle feed.
During biodiesel production, glycerol is separated from oil through a chemical reaction. This separated oil is removed from the oils that will become biodiesel, and the remaining glycerol is a potential ingredient in livestock feed.
A recent article in the High Plains Journal, studies by Texas AgriLife Research and West Texas A&M University personnel evaluated the energy value of the glycerin in replacing corn or hay in cattle diets. Jim MacDonald, Ph. D., AgriLife Research beef cattle nutritionist in Amarillo said, “I feel very comfortable using crude glycerin up to 7.5 percent of a diet…We also observed no negative impacts on animal health up to 10 percent inclusion in diets of newly received calves.”
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Two Iowa Ethanol Plants Consider Switch to Butanol
Butamax Advanced Biofuels, a joint venture of DuPont and BP, announced Monday, April 30, that two Iowa ethanol plants, Lincolnway Energy of Nevada and Corn LP of Goldfield, are considering converting their operations to production of biobutanol, a fuel with higher energy content than ethanol. These two plants would join Highwater Ethanol of Minnesota as “early adopters” of butanol, with a target of production for the automobile consumer market by 2014.
“This is just the first step to find out what we need to know about butanol. We’re still a ways from even signing a letter of intent,” Rick Brehm of Lincolnway Energy told the Des Moines Register.
Butanol is a flammable alcohol that can be made from either fossil fuels or renewable sources; either corn grain or the stalks, cobs or other parts of the plant can be used.
The conversion won’t be cheap. Butamax President Paul Beckwith said the price for new equipment would be about 20 to 30 percent of the original cost of a plant. That would be up to $30 million for a 50 million gallon facility
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Shimkus, Peterson Circulate Letter on RFS
On Wednesday, May 9, Representatives John Shimkus (R-IL) and Collin Peterson (D-MN) circulated a “Dear Colleague” letter to the House of Representatives in a response to a previously circulated letter criticizing the Renewable Fuels Standard (RFS).
The letter stated:
“As originally envisioned by Congress in 2005, the multiple purposes of the RFS were to enhance energy security, reduce consumer fuel prices by diversifying our energy portfolio, create jobs and stimulate economic activity, and improve the environment. By any measure, the RFS is achieving these goals and providing tangible benefits to the American public.
National oil import dependence has fallen from 60.3% in 2005, the year the first RFS was passed, to 45% in 2011. That’s the lowest rate since 1995. In 2011, ethanol production displaced the need for the amount of gasoline refined from 477 million barrels of imported crude oil. Additionally, by extending U.S. fuel supplies, ethanol — which sells at a significant discount to gasoline — has helped keep gas prices lower than they would be otherwise.
Further, the ethanol industry now supports 400,000 high-paying jobs across the nation – jobs that can’t be outsourced.”
To view the entire letter click here.
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USDA Projects Record Corn Production for 2012
On Thursday, May 10, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) released its first estimate of the 2012/2013 corn crop size and reported a record production of 14.79 billion bushels. That’s an increase of 2.4 billion bushels from last year and up 1.7 billion bushels from the previous record in 2009 of 13.09 billion bushels.
The USDA also projected corn for ethanol use to be 5 billion bushels for the year running from September 1, 2012 to August 31, 2013.
To read the entire USDA report click here.
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Iowa Farmland Rents Highest in 8 Years
Rents paid for soybean and corn cropland in Iowa rose 18 percent from 2011 to 2012, according to an Iowa State University Extension and Outreach rental rate survey in Business 380 magazine.
The increase brought the average cash rent for land to grow corn and soybeans up $38 to $252 per acre. This increase was also the largest since the survey started in 1994, breaking the increase record of $30 per acre set last year.
Rent estimates for the highest quality one-third of farmland in each county rose by an average of 20 percent. The increase was attributed to the strong rise in corn and soybean prices since 2010 and continued in 2012.
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May 31 Kum and Go Grand Opening in Sioux City
On May 31, fill up your flex-fuel vehicle with E85 for only 85 cents a gallon at the Kum and Go grand opening in Sioux City, located at 1925 Lakeport Street. This special deal is available from 11:00 am to 1:00 pm.
E85 for 85 cents is only good for flex-fuel vehicles.
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Groups Urge Congress to Support Production of Advanced Aviation Biofuels
The Advanced Biofuels Association, the Algal Biomass Organization, Airlines for America, the Biotechnology Industry Organization, and the American Farm Bureau Federation wrote letters on Tuesday, May 8, to leaders of the House and Senate Armed Services Committees and Appropriations Defense Subcommittees, urging them to support the Department of Defense’s (DoD) commitment to accelerate production of American-made, advanced biofuels for use in military jets, ships and vehicles.
The letter states:
“Continued reliance on foreign oil puts U.S. troops at risk of supply disruptions during military or humanitarian missions. Moreover, the oil market is unpredictable and the price per barrel of oil often has dramatic fluctuations, which wreaks havoc on military budgets. In fiscal years 2011 and 2012, for instance, DoD came up $5.6 billion short in its budget for military operations and maintenance because it spent more on fuel than anticipated.
“Budget shortfalls associated with fuel prices spikes force military leaders to make tough decisions, such as asking Congress for supplemental resources that are difficult to secure. U.S. advanced biofuel producers have made rapid progress toward cost-competitiveness…DoD’s efforts to reduce use of foreign oil and increase use of American biofuels can provide more certainty for military fuel purchasers and therefore reduce the Department’s massive operational cost overruns.”
To read the letters click here.
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NCGA Launches Ethanol Rocks Video Contest
The National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) works with growers to develop and implement programs and projects that will provide long term benefits for corn growers and U.S. agriculture. As such, the NCGA is conducting a nationwide competition to promote the advantages of ethanol in motor vehicles. Corn ethanol replaces millions of gallons of imported foreign oil, burns more cleanly than traditional gasoline and has created tens of thousands of jobs across rural America.
The NCGA Ethanol Rocks Video Contest invites high school and college students to produce a promotional video that highlights the benefits of this fuel. All entries must be in by close of business on Monday, October 15, 2012. NCGA acknowledges the Iowa Renewable Fuels Association (IRFA) for sharing its success with the Fuel the Future video competition.
To view the IRFA's Fuel the Future winner click here.
Questions regarding the NCGA “Ethanol Rocks” Video Contest may be directed to email@example.com.
Click Here for Entry Form and Official Rules
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Biofuels Industry Making Substantial Contribution to Global Economy
A Global Renewable Fuels Alliance (GRFA) study showed that the biofuels industry contributed $277.3 billion to the global economy. The study, “Contribution of Biofuels to the Global Economy”, was done in partnership with the global economic research company, Cardno Entrix, and outlines the economic footprint of the biofuels industry that is continuing to grow at a strong pace.
Global biofuel production generated 110 billion liters (more than 29 billion gallons) in 2010 and provided nearly 1.4 million jobs in all sectors of the global economy. The amount of ethanol produced globally has doubled since 2005 and has increased three-fold in the last 10 years. By 2020, the global biofuel industry is forecasted to grow to produce more than 196 billion liters (more than 51 billion gallons) and support more than 2.2 million jobs.
“It is promising to see the global biofuels industry growing during these difficult economic times,” stated Bliss Baker, spokesperson for the GRFA. “The global biofuels industry is a bright spot in the current world economy and is contributing billions of dollars to output and creating hundreds of thousands of jobs all while reducing our reliance on crude oil.”
To read the full study click here.
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Panetta links Environment, Energy and National Security in Speech
On Thursday, May 3, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta (pictured on the right) stated that climate change and oil dependence are issues of national security, and the Pentagon will take a lead role in shifting the way the country uses energy.
Defense Secretary Leon Panetta
In remarks made at a Washington, D.C., reception held by the Environmental Defense Fund, Panetta became the highest-level official to draw a clear line between environmental, energy and security issues since their relationship was formally established in Pentagon strategy two years ago.
“As someone who now faces a budget shortfall exceeding $3 billion because of higher-than-expected fuel costs, I have a deep interest in more sustainable and efficient energy options,” said Panetta, pointing to the military’s commitment of adding 3 gigawatts of renewable energy in the coming years and emphasizing the military’s history of anticipating trends.
To read the entire Governors’ Biofuels Coalition article click here.
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Port Canaveral Receives First Biodiesel Shipment
According to the National Biodiesel Board (NBB), it may not be long before cruise ships head out to sea powered by cleaner burning biodiesel. Port Canaveral recently received its first shipment of 50,000 barrels of biodiesel, initially intended to power trucks and other vehicles, but eventually it’s expected to be used in cruise ships as well.
“A new market for biofuels will be created by 2015, as regulations go into effect requiring the cruise industry to switch from heavy bunker fuel to more environmentally friendly diesel-grade oil,” Bill Adkins, a spokesman for Seaport Canaveral, said in a news release. “Cruise ships sailing in warm waters are expected to be leading the conversion to biofuel-based energy, and the Port of Canaveral will be ready.”
According to Seaport Canaveral, their multi-million dollar infrastructure investment allows for the receipt, blending and distribution of biodiesel fuel at its terminal. The terminal, which will blend from 5 percent to 20 percent biodiesel, serves cruise ships as well as over-the-road fuel customers.
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Grand Canyon National Park Declared “Clean Air Champion”
According to a National Biodiesel Board (NBB) article, during an Earth Day celebration on April 22 at Grand Canyon National Park, the park was recognized as a Clean Air Champion. This honor was largely due to the Grand Canyon’s leadership in reducing the use of petroleum fuels to decrease air pollution and dependence on foreign oil by using B20 in approximately 100 vehicles.
The park is home to two biodiesel pumps, which provide B20 for Grand Canyon Staff and park concessionaires. In addition to using biodiesel, the park uses compressed natural gas (CNG) to power its transit buses, implemented a bicycle rental operation and made major improvements to the park’s multi-modal greenway trail system
Several other National Parks, like Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore, Yellowstone National Park, Grand Teton National Park and Great Smoky Mountains National Park also rely on cleaner burning biodiesel fuel to power their vehicles and equipment.
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Florida Energy Bill Supports Renewable Energy Industry
According to the National Biodiesel Board (NBB), Florida is the latest state to pass legislation encouraging the development and expansion of the renewable energy industry within the state. The legislation, HB 7117, contains measures that include a sales tax exemption and investment tax credits for biofuels production, similar to the legislation that was in place from 2006 to 2010.
The bill specifically addresses biodiesel, ethanol and renewable fuel, which is defined as a fuel produced from biomass that is used to displace fossil transportation fuels. It also includes a sales tax exemption for materials used in the distribution of B10 to B100, E10 to E100 and other renewable fuels including infrastructure, transportation and storage materials. The tax exemption is scheduled to expire on July 1, 2016.
“It is great to see another state pass legislation that supports the biodiesel industry,” stated Shelby Neal, NBB director of state governmental affairs, “State policy support is critical as the industry works to expand infrastructure nationwide.”
To read the entire Florida Energy bill click here.