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India revies policy on biomass cofiring for utility-owned, coal-fired power plants

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By Erin Voegele

May 16, 2024

PelletsPowerMarketsPolicy

India’s Ministry of Power on May 14 issued a revised policy on biomass cofiring, announcing it will now require certain coal-based thermal power plants to begin cofiring 5% biomass within one year. The requirement ramps up to 7% two years later.

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The U.S. exported 938,662.3 metric tons of wood pellets in March, up from 696,692.9 metric tons in February and 909,787.1 metric tons in March of last year, according to data released by the USDA Foreign Agricultural Service on May 2.

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The Transport Project and Coalition for Renewable Natural Gas (RNG Coalition) on April 24 announced that 79%of all on-road fuel used in natural gas vehicles in calendar year 2023 was RNG surpassing the previous year’s record-breaking level.

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The U.S. exported 696,692.9 metric tons of wood pellets in February, down from 742,824.6 metric tons in January, but up from 632,043.8 metric tons in February 2023, according to data released by the USDA on April 4.

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Legislation introduced in the Illinois Senate aims to create a technology-neutral clean fuel standard (CFS) that would reduce the carbon intensity of transportation fuels by 20% by 2038.

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U.S. manufacturers produced approximately 880,000 tons of densified biomass fuels in December, according to the March edition of the U.S. Energy Information Administration’s Monthly Densified Biomass Fuels Report.

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The Michigan Senate Committee on Energy and Environment on March 14 held a hearing to consider legislation introduced last year that aims to create a tax credit to support the purchase of sustainable aviation fuel (SAF).

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The U.S. exported 742,824.6 metric tons of wood pellets in January, down from 1.01 million metric tons the previous month, but up when compared to the 637,518.4 metric tons exported in January 2023, according to the USDA.

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New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham on March 5 signed legislation to establish a technology-neutral clean transportation fuel standard (CTFS) that aims to reduce the carbon intensity (CI) of transportation fuels by at least 30% by 2024.

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From power plants to steel mills to hospitals, the continued global push to decarbonize may lead to new market opportunities for wood pellet producers.

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The government of Singapore has unveiled an action plan that aims to decarbonize the country’s aviation sector. The program will, in part, require flights departing Singapore to be fueled with sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) starting in 2026.

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Legislation currently pending in Washington state aims to require airport operators to make a minimum 10% blend of sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) available to private jets owned by individuals or businesses once certain conditions are met.

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Legislation introduced in the New Jersey Senate on Jan. 29 aims to establish a low-carbon transportation fuel standard (LCTFS) that would reduce the average carbon intensity (CI) of gasoline and diesel by 10% below a 2019 baseline by 2030.

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The U.S. EIA expects average U.S. retail gasoline prices to decrease in 2024 because of increased inventories related to increased refinery capacity. In 2025, slightly reduced gasoline consumption is expected to further decrease prices.

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A report filed with the USDA Foreign Agricultural Service’s Global Agricultural Information Network estimates that Canadian wood pellet production was down 6 percent in 2023, with exports down 14 percent.

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Legislation introduced in the New Mexico House of Representatives on Jan. 3 aims to establish a technology-neutral clean transportation fuel standard that would reduce the carbon intensity of transportation fuels by at least 30 percent by 2040.

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The International Energy Agency released a new report on Jan. 11, Renewables 2023, predicting that global biofuel demand will expand by 38 billion liters (10.4 billion gallons) between 2023 and 2028.

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The U.S. Department of Commerce’s International Trade Administration has announced its Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Advisory Committee will hold an in-person meeting on Jan. 25 in Washington, D.C.

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Taiwan is considering the use of wood pellets to help boost its use of renewable energy, according to a report filed with the USDA. The opportunity could translate into a $300 million opportunity for wood pellet producers.

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Rep. Mariannette Miller-Meeks, R-Iowa, on Dec. 7 introduced a bill that aims to allow companies to preserve renewable identification number (RIN) credits under the Renewable Fuel Standard for renewable fuel used in ocean-going vessels.

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The California Air Resources Board has identified the Low Carbon Fuel Standard as a critical program to help California achieve carbon neutrality by 2045 and to improve air quality in the state, according to the Low Carbon Fuels Coalition.

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The U.S. Department of Commerce’s International Trade Administration has announced its Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Advisory Committee will hold a virtual meeting on Nov. 30. The meeting is open to the public, but registration is required.

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Valero Energy Corp. released Q3 financial results on Oct. 26, reporting significantly higher earnings and production volumes for its ethanol segment. Renewable diesel sales volumes were also up and the company’s SAF project remains on schedule.

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North American Wood Fiber Pricing and Demand

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By Brooks Mendell and Stephen Wright

October 30, 2023

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At the inaugural North American SAF Conference & Expo, panelists discussed opportunities, risks and challenges regarding feedstock for the momentous SAF industry.

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It’s Time for Flex Fuel Fairness

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By Geoff Cooper

September 20, 2023

Geoff Cooper, president and CEO of the RFA, discusses how U.S. EPA regulations have caused the number of flex-fuel vehicles (FFVs) capable of running E85 to plummet in recent years, from 2.8 million in 2014 to less than 350,000 in 2022.

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The USGC conducted several events across Asia this summer to inform local government officials and industry leaders about the positive impact of implementing higher ethanol blends in their countries.

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The U.S. Department of Commerce’s International Trade Administration has announced the Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Advisory Committee will hold an in-person meeting on Sept. 21 in Washington, D.C.

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A new E85 conversion kit could complement the rise of EVs by giving drivers plug-in electric hybrid vehicles capable of running on high blends of ethanol. Whether Tuomo Isokivijärvi is meeting with venture capitalists in Palo Alto, California, Finland or anywhere else in the world, he’s usually trying to explain how his company’s E85-based conversion kit technology applies to current and future light-duty passenger vehicles. He doesn’t shy away from explaining the limitations of electric vehicles—why EVs alone won’t be able to fulfill the transportation needs of the world anytime soon, despite what many investors have been repeatedly told.

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To showcase the benefits and opportunities of blending ethanol with gasoline, the USGC hosted a Latin American delegation with representatives from Guatemala, Costa Rica, Panama, Chile, Peru and Colombia in early August.

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