WOTUS in the Senate

The controversial Clean Water rule known as Waters of the U.S. (WOTUS) was the subject of two bills in the Senate on Tuesday and hours of debate on both sides, despite one bill failing to invoke cloture. The bill that failed was sponsored by Sen. John Barrasso (R-WY) and would have instructed EPA to craft a WOTUS rule that “takes …

EPA Updates Farmworker Standards

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) today released updated farmworker standards to provide health protections under the law similar to those already afforded to workers in other industries. EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy, U.S. Secretary of Labor Thomas Perez and United Farm Workers president Arturo Rodriguez took part in a telephone press conference Monday to talk about the new regulations.

Clinton Unveils Ag Plan in Iowa

With a John Deere tractor as a backdrop, Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton went where no candidate has gone yet – into a detailed discussion on agricultural issues. Introduced by former Iowa governor and current Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack, Clinton discussed her plan to support rural, agricultural America during a visit to Ankeny, Iowa Wednesday. Listen to Vilsack’s introduction …

Candidates at Iowa State Fair

A majority of the presidential candidates from both parties are speaking at The Des Moines Register’s Soapbox during the Iowa State Fair. A total of 14 Republicans and four Democrats are on the soapbox schedule starting Thursday August 13 through Saturday August 22. Check the schedule from the Des Moines Register for updates. Candidate speeches will be live-streamed and archived …

Dairy Holds Up TPP Talks

After a week of meetings on the Trans Pacific Partnership, trade ministers from a dozen nations left Hawaii last weekend with issues still unresolved but USTR Michael Froman says they remain optimistic. One of the biggest remaining issues to resolve is in dairy, according to New Zealand’s Trade Minister Tim Groser. “In every negotiation where I have been involved over …

Comment Deadline for RFS Proposal is Monday

The deadline for submitting comments to the Environmental Protection Agency on the proposed Renewable Fuel Standards for 2014, 2015, and 2016 is Monday, July 27. Here are comments from EPA, National Corn Growers Association (NCGA), and the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) encouraging stakeholders to submit comments on the proposal. Comment Deadline for RFS Proposal is Monday – Comments can be …

2015 Southern Peanut Growers Conference

The location is new this year but the 17th annual Southern Peanut Growers Conference has the same great line up of information and entertainment for peanut farmers and industry partners from Alabama, Florida, Georgia and Mississippi. For the first time in 17 years, Georgia is the host state for the event that has always been held in Panama City Beach, …

RFA Statement on Senate Finance Markup

Renewable Fuels Association president and CEO Bob Dinneen commented on the markup Tuesday by the Senate Finance Committee of a tax extenders bill that contains several provisions of importance to the biofuels industry. The bill contains a two-year extension of the Second Generation Biofuel Producer Tax Credit, the Special Depreciation Allowance for Seond Generation Biofuel Plant Property, and the Alternative …

EPA Administrator Talks to Corn Growers

Speaking to members of the National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) meeting in Washington DC this week, Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Gina McCarthy talked about recent agency actions, including the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) and Waters of the U.S. (WOTUS). More than 300 farmers and staffers were on hand to hear McCarthy’s explanation of the RFS and WOTUS decisions, as well …

Corn Congress and RFS Rally

Members of the National Corn Growers Association were on Capitol Hill this week talking about issues important to them, especially the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS). More than 300 corn farmers joined members of Congress and ethanol industry leaders at a rally Wednesday calling attention to the proposed cutting of the RFS` for corn ethanol. In addition, corn growers were talking …

Priority Issues for GROWMARK

GROWMARK Executive Director for Corporate and Government Relations Chuck Spencer is keeping an eye on many legislative and regulatory issues on both the state and national level that could impact grower members of the cooperative. In this interview, Spencer comments on EPA’s Waters of the United States regulation and proposed volume obligations under the Renewable Fuel Standard, food labeling, and …

2015 Bioenergy Conference

On June 23–24, the U.S. Department of Energy hosted the eighth annual Bioenergy Conference: Opportunities in a Changing Energy Landscape. Co-hosted with the Clean Energy Research and Education Foundation (CEREF), this year’s conference focused on opportunities and challenges in our current highly dynamic energy ecosystem. View the 2015 BioEnergy 2015 photo album Sen Klobuchar: Time to Govern by Opportunity – …

#RFSWorks Hearing and Rally

Hundreds of ethanol supporters showed up in Kansas City, Kansas on June 25, 2015 for a public hearing on the EPA’s proposed volume obligations under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) and a Rally for Rural America. The hearing heard testimony from over 200 stakeholders, including corn farmers, ethanol and biodiesel producers. The rally featured comments from the governors and agriculture …

GROWMARK Testifies for Food Labeling Bill

The U.S. House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Health held a hearing Thursday that demonstrated an urgent need to pass the Safe and Accurate Food Labeling Act this year to create a uniform national food labeling standard for products made with genetically modified organisms. Among those testifying at the hearing in support of the bill for agriculture was GROWMARK president …

2015 ASTA Annual Meeting

The 132nd annual meeting of the American Seed Trade Association (ASTA) was held June 17-20, 2015 in Washington DC. With a focus on advocacy, seed industry representatives met with their elected officials in Congress to talk about important issues such as trade, pollinator health and labeling. Participants heard from Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack, elected new officers for the coming year, …