House Agriculture Committee Unveils Its Draft Farm Bill 2018
On April 12, 2018, House Agriculture Committee Chair Michael Conaway (R-TX) released the Committee’s draft Farm Bill reauthorization, the “Agriculture and Nutrition Act of 2018” (H.R. 2). The 600-plus page draft legislation includes a number of provisions that will be of interest to Biobased and Renewable Products Advocacy Group (BRAG®) members and the biofuel industry, including the following sections:
The full text of H.R. 2 and a section-by-section summary are available on the House Agriculture Committee Farm Bill webpage along with several related fact sheets. The House Agriculture Committee marked-up and passed the bill package on April 18, 2018. The House is likely to hold a floor vote in early May.
EPA Seeking Applications For 2018 Safer Choice Partner Of The Year Awards
On April 25, 2018, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced it was seeking applications for the 2018 Safer Choice Partner of the Year Awards in a notice in the Federal Register. At the 2018 Partner of the Year Awards, Safer Choice will recognize stakeholder organizations from five broad categories:
EPA states it developed the Partner of the Year Awards to recognize Safer Choice stakeholders “who have advanced the goals of the Pollution Prevention Act by reducing pollution at its source through safer chemistry.” All applications and accompanying materials must be received by Wednesday, June 27, 2018. Award winners will be recognized at a ceremony in the fall of 2018. See also “EPA To Hold Safer Choice Partner & Stakeholder Summit 2018” below. More information is available in our memorandum “ACS GCI Announces Opening of 2018 Green Chemistry Challenge Awards; EPA Announces Opening of 2018 Safer Choice Partner of the Year Awards.”
EPA To Hold Safer Choice Partner & Stakeholder Summit 2018
EPA recently announced that it will be hosting a Safer Choice Partner & Stakeholder Summit on May 14, 2018, at the Gaylord National Resort & Convention Center at National Harbor in Oxon Hill, Maryland, that will “build off of the previous Summits, exploring topics of importance to stakeholders and the program. The Summit will include informational sessions, and also breakout sessions with a focus on dialogue and developing solutions that can advance Safer Choice.” Registration is available online. See also “EPA Seeking Applications For 2018 Safer Choice Partner Of The Year Awards” above.
ACS GCI Announces Opening Of 2018 Green Chemistry Challenge Awards
On April 20, 2018, the American Chemical Society (ACS) Green Chemistry Institute (GCI) announced the opening of the 2018 Green Chemistry Challenge Awards. The announcement states that EPA “supports the continuation of the awards program for 2018 under the sponsorship of the ACS GCI,” and “[t]o ensure continuity, the awards categories and guidelines are remaining the same, only the timing of the awards cycle is changing, and the ACS GCI will be managing the awards program and making final decisions about award winners.” The award guidelines and nomination package will be posted on the ACS GCI website by April 30, 2018; Submissions will be accepted from April 30, 2018, through July 2, 2018; award winners will be notified no later than August 31, 2018; and the awards ceremony will be held in Washington, D.C. in October 2018.
More information is available in our memorandum “ACS GCI Announces Opening of 2018 Green Chemistry Challenge Awards; EPA Announces Opening of 2018 Safer Choice Partner of the Year Awards.”
Japan Will Allow U.S. Corn Ethanol Imports To Reach GHG Reduction Targets
On April 17, 2018, it was announced that Japan’s new biofuel policy will allow imports of ethyl tert-butyl ether (ETBE) made from U.S. corn-based ethanol. Japan has updated its sustainability policy to tighten the carbon intensity reduction requirements of ethanol that is used to make ETBE from a 50 percent reduction to a 55 percent reduction. Originally, the policy only allowed sugarcane-based ethanol for import and production of ETBE, but the sugarcane-produced ethanol was not able to meet the 55 percent greenhouse gas (GHG) reduction standard. The new regulations will allow U.S. corn-based ethanol to meet up to 44 percent of the total estimated annual demand of 217 million gallons used to make ETBE, or as much as 95.5 million gallons of ethanol annually.
“The U.S. Grains Council is pleased by this decision and that Japan recognizes these improved benefits of U.S. product. We continue to work around the world, sharing the benefits of U.S. ethanol with other countries that are serious about reducing their GHG emissions,” stated Tom Sleight, President and Chief Executive Officer of the U.S. Grains Council, which has an office in Japan working closely with the Japanese government and industry. “From this decision, it is unequivocal that continued improvements in carbon intensity reductions are critical to gain and maintain market access for U.S. ethanol.”
Unilever Partners With Ioniqa And Indorama Ventures To Test Feasibility Of PET Waste Conversion
On April 4, 2018, Unilver announced a partnership with Ioniqa and Indorama Ventures to pioneer a technology that converts Polyethylene Terephthalate (PET) waste back into transparent virgin grade material for use in food packaging. This technology, developed by Ioniqa, aims to increase the percentage of PET that is recycled by making it possible to convert all PET waste, including colored packs, back into PET after separating out color and other contaminates. Unilever’s partnership is testing the feasibility of this technology at an industrial scale, with the goal of making the PET stream fully circular.
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The Biobased and Renewable Products Advocacy Group (BRAG®) helps members develop and bring to market their innovative biobased chemical products through insightful policy and regulatory advocacy. BRAG is managed by B&C® Consortia Management, L.L.C., an affiliate of Bergeson & Campbell, P.C.
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