EPA releases Final Renewable Fuel Standards for 2014, 2015 and 2016

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest In a long awaited and much-debated announcement, EPA has finalized the volume requirements and associated percentage standards that apply under the RFS program in calendar years 2014, 2015, and 2016 for cellulosic biofuel, biomass-based diesel, advanced biofuel, and total renewable fuel. EPA also finalized the volume requirement for biomass-based diesel for 2017.“The Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) is an incredibly successful energy policy and we appreciate the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) revision to their original proposal. However, reducing the amount of renewable fuel required in the RFS will have a negative effect on the American economy and hinder additional investments in biofuels,” said Chad Kemp, president of the Ohio Corn & Wheat Growers Association. “Renewable fuels are one of the reasons the U.S. imported less oil than we produced. A major factor in this increasing trend towards energy independence is the increased use of corn ethanol. We should be moving forward with our goals of energy independence and cleaner air, not reversing this success.”The final requirements will boost renewable fuel production and provide for robust, achievable growth of the biofuels industry. The final rule considered the many public comments EPA received on the proposal, and incorporates updated information and data. EPA is finalizing 2014 and 2015 standards at levels that reflect the actual amount of domestic biofuel used in those years, and standards for 2016 (and 2017 for biodiesel) that represent significant growth over historical levels.Final Renewable Fuel Volumes2014201520162017Cellulosic biofuel (million gallons)33123230n/aBiomass-based diesel (billion gallons)1.631.731.902.00Advanced biofuel (billion gallons)2.672.883.61n/aRenewable fuel (billion gallons)16.2816.9318.11n/a(Units for all volumes are ethanol-equivalent, except for biomass-based diesel volumes which are expressed as physical gallons.)Final Percentage Standards201420152016Cellulosic biofuel0.019%0.069%0.128%Biomass-based diesel1.41%1.49%1.59%Advanced biofuel1.51%1.62%2.01%Renewable fuel9.19%9.52%10.10%The final 2016 standard for advanced biofuel is nearly 1 billion gallons, or 35%, higher than the actual 2014 volumes, while the total renewable standard requires growth from 2014 to 2016 of over 1.8 billion gallons of biofuel, or 11% higher than 2014 actual volumes. Biodiesel standards grow steadily over the next several years, increasing every year to reach 2 billion gallons by 2017.“America’s corn farmers are proud to grow a cleaner burning, renewable fuel source for America and the world,” said Maryland farmer Chip Bowling, president of the National Corn Growers Association. “In July, we asked the Environmental Protection Agency to restore the 2014-16 corn ethanol renewable volume obligation to comply with the Renewable Fuel Standard as passed by Congress and signed into law.“While we are pleased to see the EPA take a step forward and revise its original proposal, the fact remains that any reduction in the statutory amount will have a negative impact on our economy, our energy security, and the environment. It is unfortunate that Big Oil’s campaign of misinformation continues to carry weight in the court of public opinion, and in this decision.“The Renewable Fuel Standard has been one of America’s most successful energy policies ever. Because of it, our economy is stronger, we are more energy independent, and our air is cleaner. We should be strengthening our commitment to renewable fuels, not backing down.“In light of the EPA’s decision, we are evaluating our options. We will fight to protect the rights of farmers and consumers and hold the EPA accountable.”Growth Energy and its members are pleased to see that the President and the Environmental Protection Agency have recognized the need to move the renewable fuel industry past the so-called blend wall for the sake of America’s climate, energy security and rural economy. While this rule still relies on a flawed methodology that sets renewable fuel volumes below the statutory levels enacted by Congress, it is an important improvement from the proposed rule, and moves the industry closer to getting America’s most effective climate policy back on track and providing certainty for biofuels in the marketplace.Specifically, Growth Energy is pleased that the RVOs have been finalized after such a long delay and that the levels have increased from the original proposal. This final rule makes it possible to drive the growth of higher ethanol blends through the so-called blend wall, giving consumers choices at the pump, such as low-cost E15. Additionally, the numbers for 2016 represent a final rule closer to the statutory levels established by Congress, avoid the “reset” and indicate a more certain future for renewable fuels.The volumes established by EPA will provide some certainty to biodiesel producers and feedstock providers and will continue to generate many benefits for consumers and the environment. As outlined in the comments submitted by the American Soybean Association (ASA) in July, the benefits of biodiesel include a more diversified energy market; increased domestic energy production; reductions in greenhouse gas emissions; new jobs and economic development; expanded markets; and reduced soy meal feed costs.While the volumes in the Final Rule do not fully capitalize on the capacity and growth potential of U.S. biodiesel, it does provide a step in the right direction.“We are glad to see the volumes for biomass-based diesel increased above the Proposed Rule and previous proposals,” said Wade Cowan, ASA President. “Biodiesel provides significant economic and environmental benefits and we have the capacity to do more. The Administration wants to address climate change and reduce greenhouse gas emissions and biodiesel can contribute more to that effort.”Biodiesel is a domestically produced, renewable fuel that is proven to achieve emissions reductions ranging from 57 to 86 percent and is the first and only Advanced Biofuel to reach commercial-scale production nationwide. Biodiesel has made up the vast majority of Advanced Biofuel production under the RFS to date.Joe Jobe from the National Biodiesel Board tells the Ohio Ag Net’s Dale Minyo that there are some good things coming out of EPA’s decision on the RFS, but also some things that need work.Joe Jobe National biodiesel Boardlast_img read more

Break [n.] an interruption in continuity

first_img Return to article. Long DescriptionAlpha Stock Images – http://alphastockimages.com/by Misty Krippel, EdMInterruptions to typical daily routines can happen often.  These breaks in routine can be unexpected, like when a family member comes down with the flu.  They can also be expected, such as a holiday or summer vacation.  Some families, particularly military families, may frequently experience a break in their routines as they move from one location to another.  Such disruptions to a family’s routine can result in a brief gap in early intervention (EI) or early childhood special education (ECSE) services.At times a break in services may occur due to concerns within the EI/ECSE agency and families may be left waiting to begin services for an extensive period of time.  If a family suspects this, they should contact the agency and discuss their concerns, the established procedures, and the timeline for obtaining services.  Families can also contact their local Parent and Training Information Center for additional guidance.In this blog, we want to focus on creative activities that can be embedded into everyday activities during a break in typical routines or during a time of transition such as a move, that can help young children maintain the skills they have developed until EI/ECSE services resume.COMMUNICATIONAn interruption to the services a child receives can feel overwhelming to caregivers.  They may worry that their child’s developmental progress will be negatively impacted.  The following resources provide opportunities to practice communication skills in everyday settings:Let’s Play: This website suggests fun activities to promote early communication skills with infants and toddlers. Be sure to check out our favorite “The Power of Peekaboo.”Our Montessori Home: This mother, who is also a Montessori educator, has several ideas to help toddlers and preschoolers identify beginning sounds. These ideas are portable, adaptable, and use items in a child’s everyday environment.FINE MOTORFine motor skills such as grasping objects, scribbling, coloring, or tying shoelaces use small muscles, but they accomplish important tasks.  There is no shortage of ideas to potentially help develop these skills in young children.  Here are two we liked:Paper Tube Threading: Toilet paper or paper towel tubes, a hole punch, and a few straws make for a great threading activity for preschoolers to practice their fine motor skills. Bonus – if a paper tube is needed, a young toddler can practice the fine motor skills involved in unrolling a nearly empty toilet paper roll!  Don’t all kids love to do that?Cardboard Lacing: Families who experience a break due to a move can repurpose their moving boxes using this activity and some yarn, string, or old shoelaces.  If a family doesn’t have any moving boxes lying around, they can use a side from a cardboard cereal or cracker box instead.GROSS MOTORGross motor development involves large muscle groups and activities such as walking, jumping, pushing, lifting, and more.  Check out the following ways to use common objects to help strengthen young children’s gross motor skills:Hands On As We Grow: This website has 35 gross motor skills that preschool children will love. The list includes such games as “The Floor is Lava” and “Dumpster Diving.”  During a winter holiday break in routine, families could play a game of “Newspaper Throwing” and call it “Snowball Fight!”Tissue Paper Kicking: With the supervision of a caregiver, this tissue paper activity can be used to encourage babies to kick and strengthen their leg muscles.  Wax paper, cellophane, bubble wrap, or packing paper could also be used.PROBLEM-SOLVINGProblem-solving skills are continuously crafted throughout the lifespan.  Young children need support and practice to develop these important skills.  These resources can help professionals and families provide that support for children:Adam & Mila: This website explains problem-solving in the context of infants and toddlers and identifies activities for young children to support the development of these critical life skills.   These simple activities are fun and use common toys or items.DIY Shape Puzzles: Repurposed cardboard and paper shapes can be used to create a simple puzzle. Caregivers can cut shapes from construction paper, magazine pages, or use plain white paper and encourage a child to color on it.  Coloring the shapes incorporates fine motor skills into this activity as well.SOCIAL-EMOTIONALMaking friends, identifying emotions, regulating behavior, and feeling empathy for others are all a part of social-emotional development.  Similar to problem-solving skills, social-emotional development is an ongoing process.  Sample resources to help foster these skills in young children are:Mirror, Mirror: This blogger shares her ideas for using a mirror to foster social-emotional skills in infants and toddlers.  Caregivers, siblings, and others can all join in the fun.Glad Monster, Sad Monster Book Nook: The Center on the Social and Emotional Foundations for Early Learning created a handout with several ideas for using the book Glad Monster, Sad Monster to promote social-emotional skill development.  Hop on over to Pocket of Preschool for additional activities to use with this book.Breaks in EI/ECSE services don’t have to mean a loss in skill development.  Using common items and a little bit of creativity it is possible for a child to maintain the skills they have worked so hard to acquire…even over the summer or during a family move.  What are your favorite ideas?  Leave a comment below! Alpha Stock Images – http://alphastockimages.com/last_img read more

Punjab CM Amarinder Singh directs ministers to draw action plan

first_imgWith his government completing its half-term, Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh on Monday directed his ministers to formulate a comprehensive action plan for their respective departments and engage more closely with legislators to give further impetus to the development work in their regions. The Chief Minister and his Council of Ministers discussed the progress made by the government over the past 30 months and the way forward as they geared up to take the State’s development plans forward, an official statement said here. Mr. Singh expressed satisfaction over the work done so far by all the departments, despite the severe financial crunch faced by his government as a result of the gross mismanagement of the State by the SAD-BJP coalition in the 10 years of their rule. Terming the half-way mark of his government as “an occasion to stop and review the work of the past and to draw out a detailed strategy for the second half”, he underlined the need to go forward with focussed action plan. He asked the ministers to work closely with the MLAs in their respective areas to get their inputs and feedback on a regular basis. Mr. Singh directed them to pay special attention to the development work identified or initiated by the MLAs in their constituencies. He said it was important to look at the future strategy from both political and administrative viewpoints. “Politically, we need to identify how to engage better with the people, take our achievements to them and prioritise their issues that need urgent attention,” Mr. Singh stressed. Underpinning the administrative aspect of the government’s role, he urged the ministers to review their work of the past 30 months from the perspective of the progress made with respect to implementation of the poll promises and the manifesto announcements. In this context, he asked them to take particular note of the performance on the flagship government of India programmes and the new legislations or policies of the government. Restructuring of the departments and recruitment of critical manpower for smooth and timely execution of policies and projects were identified by the Chief Minister as a crucial focus area for all the ministers, as the government prepared to move forward even more pro-actively and aggressively towards the development of the State. He was of the view that every department should check and review its achievements holistically with a focus on issues that had not been addressed very effectively so far or were yet to be taken up by the government. Mr. Singh emphasised on the importance of ensuring that the aspirations of the people, who continue to have high hopes from the government, are fulfilled completely. He said while every member of the government had shown exemplary performance in these 30 months, it was time now to scale up the levels even further. While 140 of the 161 announcements of the government had been implemented already, the remaining were also in the process of execution, he said. Mr. Singh called for concerted measures to bring Punjab back on the track as India’s leading State in terms of overall development and across the key indices of health, education, industrialisation, agriculture and law and order. While considerable progress had been made on every count, his government was committed to ensuring the highest levels of all-round development for the State and every section of its people, the Chief Minister said.last_img read more

JAMAICA MORTGAGE BANK LEAD FINANCIER OF UWI STUDENT HOUSING

first_img Keynote Speaker on Opening of Natl Tourism Symposium in TCI Related Items:courtney wynter, Jamaican mortgage bank, university of west indies Recommended for you Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApp Student invites Obama to Turks and Caicos; he says ‘Absolutely’ Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsAppKingston, 19 Sept 2014 (Jamaica Information Service) – ​The Jamaica Mortgage Bank (JMB) is the lead financier for the first phase of a major housing project on the Mona campus of the University of the West Indies (UWI), which will provide accommodation for 1,584 students over the next three years.Ground was broken on Thursday (September 18) for the development, which is being undertaken at a cost of $4 billion.Under phase one of the project, 576 units will be constructed at a cost of $1.35 billion for delivery by August 2015. The JMB and National Commercial Bank have signed a syndicated loan agreement with 138 Student Living Jamaica Ltd, the developers and proposed operator of the new residences, for the first phase, with JMB taking on the role of lead bank.A syndicated loan is one that is offered by a group of lenders (called a syndicate) who work together to provide funds for a single borrower.General Manager of JMB, Courtney Wynter, said the project can contribute to economic progress through investment in education, and housing development and construction, which are key drivers of growth. “Our analysis shows that for every $250 million that is spent by the housing sector the Government benefits by earning about $103 million, which is just about 40 per cent”, he noted.Mr. Wynter pointed out that the public-private partnership for student accommodation is the first of its kind in Jamaica.“The JMB is excited to be leading this innovative approach to financing. The project will have a tremendous impact on education and training as it supports the university’s strategic drive to increase enrolment, particularly in the areas of medicine, law and engineering,” he added.The housing development involves the construction of 11 six-storey buildings and will be configured to allow access for the disabled.The construction period is 36 to 48 months and should be completed in three segments at the beginning of the 2015, 2016, and 2017 academic years. KIDNEY SPECIALIST RETURNS HOME, WORKING AT HOSPITALSlast_img read more

Rugby players training for beach tournament next weekend

first_imgFacebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApp International Rugby Action this weekend – Bahamas vs TCI Bahamas takes out TCI in Rugby on the weekend Recommended for youcenter_img Related Items:bcw wahoos, beach tournament, meridian field, rugby, seven stars tag league Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsAppProvidenciales, 29 Oct 2015 – Turks and Caicos Rugby Federation players are in training mode as they prepare for their Beach Rugby Tournament on November 7. Tonight at the Meridian Field, there is training for the u19s and from 6:30-8:30pm fans can enjoy tag rugby. Next time we will have a recap of the Seven Stars Tag League, where the top four teams were: BCB Wahoos and the Meridian Marauders with 13pts each and the BCQS Jolly Ranchers andRed Mist, each with 9pts after last week’s action. last_img read more