ASA Refutes EPA’s Land Use Rules

The American Soybean Association (ASA) has submitted comments to the House Agriculture Subcommittee on Conservation, Credit, Energy and Research regarding the impact of the indirect land use and renewable biomass provisions in EPA’s expanded Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS-2).

ASA sees numerous potential flaws in the approach EPA is using for indirect land use changes in its proposed rule. Further, there are numerous factors that ASA believes refute the possibility that significant international indirect land use change would result from the relatively small increase in U.S. biodiesel production called for under the RFS-2.

"The approach EPA has used in its proposed rule on RFS-2 implementation is significantly flawed and would do unnecessary and irreversible harm to the competitive position of the U.S. soy biodiesel industry," says ASA President Johnny Dodson, a soybean producer from Halls, TN. "EPA’s projections of indirect international land use changes resulting from a quite small increase in biodiesel production are built on faulty assumptions, flawed analysis, and misplaced penalties."

ASA included a detailed list of the flaws in EPA’s assumptions in its comments to the Subcommittee. These comments are available here.

When calculating the life cycle GHG impact of biofuels, the statute directs EPA to consider direct and indirect emissions, including indirect land use, of all stages of the fuel and feedstock production. The primary area of concern and disagreement has emerged over the international indirect land use assumptions that EPA has proposed to use in conducting their updated life cycle GHG analysis.

Land use change has been going on around the world for many years, long before biodiesel was produced in the U.S. The EPA analysis uses land converted to cropland from 2001-2004 and extrapolates that into the future. Since there was very little U.S. soy biodiesel produced from 2001-2004, it is illogical how EPA justifies attributing future land conversion to soy biodiesel.

"It was not the intent of Congress for soy biodiesel to be excluded from the RFS-2," Dodson says. "If soy biodiesel is excluded, the biomass-based diesel schedule under RFS-2 cannot be achieved. There are simply not enough of other biodiesel feedstocks to produce the amount of biodiesel called for in the RFS-2."

ASA believes EPA must use the rulemaking process to correct and improve the life cycle analysis that will ultimately be used to implement the RFS-2 program.

The biodiesel industry is creating valuable green jobs and making a positive contribution to the economy. In 2008 alone, the U.S. biodiesel industry supported over 51,000 jobs, added over $4 billion to the nation’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and generated over $866 million in tax revenue for federal, state and local governments.

"ASA looks forward to working with Congress and coordinating with industry partners and the academic and scientific community to provide the information to demonstrate that U.S. soy biodiesel is the cleanest burning biofuel available today, and is not responsible for international land use changes," Dodson says.

Leave a Reply

Latest News
Ryan Bartlett
Crop InputsCompass Minerals Appoints Vice President, Innovation An…
December 8, 2016
Ryan Bartlett, Ph.D., has joined Compass Minerals as vice president, innovation and product development. Dr. Bartlett will be responsible for Read More
HerbicidesHerbicides 2017: New Cropping Systems Set For Debut
December 7, 2016
Herbicide-resistant weed are inching ever-closer to a potentially frightening saturation point here in the U.S. Heading into 2016, USDA planting Read More
CropLife 100Wilbur-Ellis Acquires Michigan Ag Retailer
December 7, 2016
Wilbur-Ellis’ Agribusiness, a recognized leader in precision agriculture technology and the distribution and marketing of plant protection, seed and nutritional Read More
Fertilizer storage The Andersons
CropLife 1002016 Fertilizer Report: Another Really Rough Year For A…
December 7, 2016
In many ways, the fertilizer category cannot seem to catch a break. During the early part of the 2010s decade, Read More
R4023 Sprayer, John Deere
CropLife 100Ag Retail Equipment Report: The Green Party Continues
December 7, 2016
In the annual race for sales in the ag retail equipment marketplace, the color schemes for participants are a little Read More
Winter wheat
HerbicidesTalinor Herbicide Approved For Wheat And Barley
December 7, 2016
Talinor herbicide from Syngenta has received federal registration from the U.S. EPA, giving wheat and barley growers a new option Read More
Forage Sorghum
UncategorizedMilestone Achievement Continues For Dow AgroSciences, A…
December 7, 2016
New and innovative forage products are on the horizon driven by continued collaboration between Dow AgroSciences, a wholly owned subsidiary Read More
Palmer pigweed seedhead in cotton
HerbicidesNew WSSA Factsheet Explores Weed Seeds And Their Longev…
December 7, 2016
Did you know some weed seeds can lie dormant in the soil for more than a century and then sprout Read More
Crop InputsARA 2016: 5 Developments Worth Monitoring Into 2017
December 6, 2016
You can pretty much set your watch to it (do people even still wear watches? I know I do…but I’m Read More
Tim McCardle, ARA Chairman
CropLife 100BRANDT COO Named ARA Chairman
December 5, 2016
BRANDT EVP and Chief Operating Officer Tim McArdle has been named chairman of the Agricultural Retailers Association (ARA) during a Read More
Crop InputsWilbur-Ellis Receives ResponsibleAg Certification At Mo…
December 5, 2016
Wilbur-Ellis Co., a recognized leader in precision agriculture technology and the distribution of crop protection products, announces the ResponsibleAg certification Read More
Young Corn Closeup
Eric SfiligojThe Read On 2017 For Agricultural Fortunes Is Anybody’s…
December 5, 2016
As I (and others) have written in recent months, the nation has just experienced one of the most offbeat election Read More
Acceleron B-300 seed coating
Crop InputsThe BioAg Alliance Launches New Yield-Boosting Microbia…
December 5, 2016
As part of their commitment to develop and commercialize innovative microbial solutions for farmers through The BioAg Alliance, Monsanto Co. Read More
ManagementCorn and soy planting update; Takeaways from Climate Co…
December 2, 2016
AgriBusiness Global Editor Dave Frabotta Joins Paul Schrimpf for a discussion of global corn and soybean planting trends, and a Read More
Radish cover crop taproot
Crop InputsSoil Health Institute, Datu Research Receive Grant To E…
December 1, 2016
The Soil Health Institute (SHI) and Datu Research have announced a $626,000 grant from the Walton Family Foundation to quantify the Read More
Mike Stern
Precision AgClimate Corp. CEO Talks Retailer Support For Digital Ag
December 1, 2016
CropLife Magazine’s sister publication, AgriBusiness Global, recently sat down with Mike Stern, CEO of The Climate Corp., following the Monsanto subsidiary’s Read More
ManagementAg Industry Comes Together To Address Climate Change
December 1, 2016
Addressing climate change — and more specifically, decreasing greenhouse gas emissions from agriculture — can only be achieved through collective Read More
Young soybean field
HerbicidesLiquid Formulation Valor EZ Herbicide Available For 201…
December 1, 2016
Valent U.S.A. Corp. has released Valor EZ; a liquid formulation of the company’s leading herbicide, Valor. Named Valor EZ Herbicide Read More