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EIA raises 2024 RD output forecast, cuts 2025

  • : Biofuels
  • 24/06/11

The US Energy Information Administration (EIA) today raised its forecasts for domestic renewable diesel (RD) production and consumption in 2024 while cutting expectations for next year.

The US is expected to produce 218,000 b/d of renewable diesel this year, according to EIA's latest Short-Term Energy Outlook (STEO), up by 2.8pc from last month's forecast. The EIA raised its 2024 outlook for US renewable diesel consumption to 244,000 b/d, up by 3.4pc from last month's STEO.

For next year, the EIA expects 272,000 b/d of US renewable diesel production, down by 4.6pc from its forecast last month and down by 7.4pc from its initial 2025 forecast in January. EIA sees US renewable diesel consumption at 290,000 b/d next year, 4pc below its May projection.

The agency raised its 2024 projection for US net imports of renewable diesel by 7.7pc to 28,000 b/d while keeping the 2025 outlook unchanged at 17,000 b/d.

Dimmer prospects for US renewable diesel growth next year come as declining environmental credit prices weigh on production margins. Prompt-month credits for California carbon allowances have fallen by 10pc so far this year, while spot California low-carbon fuel standard credits have fallen by 34pc and vintage 2024 biomass-based D4 diesel credits are 30pc lower, according to Argus assessments.

US biodiesel production this year is expected to average 100,000 b/d, according to the STEO, up by 1pc from May's outlook, with domestic consumption at 110,000 b/d. US biodiesel production and consumption in 2025 are forecast at 90,000 b/d and 85,000 b/d, respectively, unchanged from the prior outlook.

The EIA expects US biofuels to increasingly substitute for petroleum distillate, predicting renewable diesel and biodiesel this year will grow to 9pc of total distillate consumption, up from 7pc in 2023.


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24/07/18

EU’s von der Leyen re-elected as Commission president

EU’s von der Leyen re-elected as Commission president

Brussels, 18 July (Argus) — The European Parliament today approved Ursula von der Leyen's re-election as president of the European Commission. Nominated by EU states in June, von der Leyen received 401 votes, by secret ballot, from parliament's 720 newly elected members. Von der Leyen called for continuing climate and energy policy in her 2024-29 mandate to achieve greenhouse gas (GHG) cuts of at least 90pc by 2040 from 1990 levels. "I have not forgotten how [Russian president Vladimir] Putin blackmailed us by cutting us off from Russian fossil fuels. We invested massively in homegrown cheap renewables. And this enabled us to break free from dirty Russian fossil fuels," said von der Leyen, promising to end the "era of dependency on Russian fossil fuels". She did not give an end date for this, nor did she specify if this includes a commitment to end Russian LNG imports. Von der Leyen went on to detail political guidelines for 2024-29. In the first 100 days of her new mandate, she pledged to propose a "clean industrial deal", albeit without giving concrete figures about how much investment this would channel to infrastructure and industry, particularly for energy-intensive sectors. The clean industrial deal will help bring down energy bills, she said. Von der Leyen told parliament the commission would propose legislation, under the European Climate Law, establishing a 90pc emission-reduction target for 2040. Her political guidelines also call for scaling up and prioritising clean-tech investment, including in grid infrastructure, storage capacity, transport infrastructure for captured CO2, energy efficiency, power digitalization, and deployment of a hydrogen network. She will also extend aggregate demand mechanisms beyond gas to include hydrogen and critical raw materials. Her political guidelines note the dangers of dependencies or fraying supply chains, from Putin's "energy blackmail" or China's monopoly on battery and chip raw materials. Majority report Passing the necessary legislation to implement her stated policies will now require approval from EU states and from parliament. Unless amplified by Germany's election next year, election victories by far-right parties in France and elsewhere appear not to threaten EU state majorities for specific legislation. Parliament's political centre-left S&D and liberal Renew groups, as well as von der Leyen's own centre-right EPP, have elaborated key policy requests . These broadly call for the continuation of von der Leyen's Green Deal, the set of legislation and policy measures aimed at 55pc GHG emission reduction by 2030, compared with 1990 levels. A symbolic issue for von der Leyen to decide, or compromise on, is the internal combustion engine (ICE). Her EPP group wants to stick to technological neutrality and to revise the phase-out, by 2035, of new ICE cars if they cannot run exclusively on carbon-neutral fuels. The EPP wants an EU e-fuel, biofuel, and low-carbon fuel strategy. Von der Leyen's guidelines reflect the need to gain support from centre-right, centre-left, and greens. For the ICE phase-out, she said the 2035 climate neutrality target for new cars creates investor and manufacturer "predictability" but requires a "technology-neutral approach, in which e-fuels have a role to play." She made no mention of carbon-neutral biofuels. It will be impossible for von der Leyen to satisfy all demands in her second mandate. That includes policy asks put forward by the EPP, ranging from a "pragmatic" definition of low-carbon hydrogen, market rules for carbon capture and storage, postponing the EU's deforestation regulation, to catering more for farmers, even by scrapping EU wildlife protection for wolves and bears. EU member states are expected to propose their candidates for commissioners in August, including those responsible for energy, climate, and trade policies. When parliament has held hearings for candidates in late October, von der Leyen's new commission would then be subject to a final vote. By Dafydd ab Iago Send comments and request more information at feedback@argusmedia.com Copyright © 2024. Argus Media group . All rights reserved.

France's Annecy Haute-Savoie airport will offer SAF


24/07/15
24/07/15

France's Annecy Haute-Savoie airport will offer SAF

London, 15 July (Argus) — Global airport operator Vinci Airports and TotalEnergies have partnered to provide sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) and electric charging stations at France's Annecy Haute-Savoie Mont-Blanc airport. TotalEnergies will supply SAF made from waste and residues such as used cooking oil (UCO) to be blended up to 35pc with conventional aviation fuel. It will also install an electric charging station for light aircraft with minimum power of 22 kW. The installation is expected to be completed by October. Vinci Airports first made SAF available to users of Clermont-Ferrand Auvergne airport in France in 2021. The SAF, produced from UCO, is supplied by Air BP under a refuelling contract with Vinci Airports. The company said five of its airports now offer biofuels. By Evelina Lungu Send comments and request more information at feedback@argusmedia.com Copyright © 2024. Argus Media group . All rights reserved.

New Mexico statute could make LCFS tricky


24/07/12
24/07/12

New Mexico statute could make LCFS tricky

Houston, 12 July (Argus) — US independent refiner Valero warned other New Mexico's low-carbon fuel standard (LCFS) advisers today that lawmakers may make the program uniquely difficult. The language lawmakers passed earlier this year appeared to require the state's Clean Transportation Fuel Standard to reduce the carbon intensity of blended transportation fuels, said Brian Bartlett, part of Valero's public policy and strategic planning group, in a presentation to fellow advisory committee members on the draft rulemaking. That could mean tougher initial targets for the program if the state sets requirements for finished fuels already blended with biofuels, in addition to requirements for neat gasoline and diesel common to other markets, he said. "We are looking at it from the definition that is in the statute, and that is a different definition than is in any other statute," Bartlett said. Regulators and some other advisers in the meeting did not agree with the interpretation as the only way to read the law. LCFS programs require yearly reductions to transportation fuel carbon intensity. Higher-carbon fuels that exceed the annual limits incur deficits that suppliers must offset with credits generation from the distribution to the market of approved, lower-carbon alternatives. New Mexico lawmakers earlier this year directed the state Environment Department to establish an LCFS by July 2026. The state is speeding toward a formal rulemaking this summer to establish a program on a faster timeline. California's LCFS exists almost entirely through agency rulemakings. The law that led to its creation directs the state to reduce emissions, but legislators did not prescribe a transportation program. Oregon lawmakers, in part building off of that model, referenced a low-carbon fuel standard (LCFS) in 2009 legislation but did not include blended fuels in its definitions. Washington's legislation, passed in 2021 and leading to a program that began enforcement last year, defined regulated fuels as "electricity and any liquid or gaseous fuel" used for transportation. The law explicitly directs reductions using gasoline and diesel baselines, similar to other states. Under the interpretation proposed today, New Mexico would be unique in needing to determine a baseline for blends such as 10pc ethanol gasoline, or 5pc biodiesel. Blended fuels, especially renewable diesel blends, have driven much of the recent credit generation and carbon intensity reductions in west coast programs. "I think that's a novel interpretation that you have presented, and the Environment Department will definitely consider it," the agency's environmental protection division director Department Michelle Miano said. Representatives of ExxonMobil and Phillips 66 suggested that the process may need more time to offer sufficient technical expertise to the department. The Environment Department is seeking to complete a technical report ahead of a planned August petition for a rulemaking establishing the program to the state's Environmental Improvement Board. The advisory committee will meet to discuss the technical report and hold public comment on 26 July. By Elliott Blackburn Send comments and request more information at feedback@argusmedia.com Copyright © 2024. Argus Media group . All rights reserved.

Spanish biodiesel demand flat in May


24/07/12
24/07/12

Spanish biodiesel demand flat in May

Barcelona, 12 July (Argus) — Spain's biodiesel consumption was flat on the month in May but down sharply on revised figures for May 2023, according to strategic reserve Cores. There is ongoing fallout from an energy ministry audit into blending compliance. Cores figures show a little over 110,000t of demand in May, very close to levels in January-April. Consumption in the first five months of the year was 545,000t, lower than a revised 715,000t in January-May 2023. The reserve made significant revisions to 2023 demand in the previous two months of data, citing a "certification audit" by the energy ministry at the end of March. It made no major revisions to 2023 data this month. Cores data show biodiesel demand for 2023 at 1.93mn t, up from an original 1.32mn t, and a blend rate of 8.9pc in volume terms, up from 6.1pc. The audit was highly critical of 2023 domestic biofuels blending, including missed obligations and payments. It said a failure to hit blending obligations meant more than €581mn ($631mn) needed to be paid. One fuels distributor has been temporarily suspended from the programme, under a resolution passed by markets regulator CNMC on 28 June. This company has been removed from the ministry's list of companies eligible to participate in the biofuels blending certification system Sicbios. It appears a significant amount of the debt owed to the ministry comes from this firm, which has been receiving imports of diesel loaded in Turkey . A further 51 companies are waiting to formalise their exit from Sicbios, the ministry said. Other problems in the system include companies that insist they have not blended biofuels but are unable to provide documentation. Others have made sales and not completed the full process, were not registered but have asked for tickets, have exceeded blending of biofuels made from first generation feedstock, or have gone out of business. By Adam Porter Spanish biodiesel demand '000t Send comments and request more information at feedback@argusmedia.com Copyright © 2024. Argus Media group . All rights reserved.

Port Houston fully reopens, others to follow


24/07/11
24/07/11

Port Houston fully reopens, others to follow

New York, 11 July (Argus) — Port Houston fully reopened today in the wake of Hurricane Beryl after the US Army Corps of Engineers and US Coast Guard gave the all-clear, with other Texas ports soon to follow, according to the Greater Houston Port Bureau. "As of this morning, we are lifting all restrictions for the Houston ship channel — no more draft restrictions," port bureau president Captain Eric Carrero said. Draft restrictions remain in place at 35ft for the port of Galveston, at 30ft for Texas City, and at 36ft for Freeport, according to Carrero. Freeport is also restricted to daylight operating hours. "We are reviewing the surveys for Texas City, Galveston, and Freeport and we are hoping to lift those restrictions as well," Carrero said. The return of Port Houston to full capacity three days after Hurricane Beryl made landfall on 8 July will likely assuage concerns that damage to Texas ports would cut the supply of refined product shipments from the region at a time when refineries along the US Gulf coast hit 97pc utilization in the week ended 5 July, the highest rate since June 2023, according to US Energy Information Administration data. Any vessel glut that had built up outside of Port Houston is likely to clear quickly now that full operating conditions have been restored, according to vessel piloting services in the region. The port of Freeport was the closest of the Houston-area ports to Hurricane Beryl's landfall, which could explain additional caution given to the port in maintaining its daylight hours, given the larger potential for the storm to have blown obstructions into the port's waters. The reopening of Port Houston will likely help to shift additional Army Corps and Coast Guard personnel to the other Texas ports to help complete the necessary surveys and ensure that critical aids to navigation are where they should be before giving the all-clear. By Ross Griffith Send comments and request more information at feedback@argusmedia.com Copyright © 2024. Argus Media group . All rights reserved.

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