Advanced biofuels industry leaders: Obama baits and switches on clean energy

In Washington, top executives from the advanced and cellulosic biofuels industry released a letter to President Obama on his Administration’s Renewable Fuel Standard proposal, showing how it represents a broken promise that undercuts investment in advanced biofuels, sends innovation and jobs overseas and flies in the face of the President’s statements in support of clean energy and climate change policy.

Adam Monroe, North America President of Novozymes said, “The Obama Administration’s proposal eviscerates the RFS by allowing EPA to slash renewable fuel volumes when the oil industry refuses to distribute renewable fuel. Oil companies are not going to compete with renewable fuel if they can avoid the requirement altogether by simply blocking distribution and market access.”

Dan Cummings, President, POET-DSM stated, “The new proposal has caused POET to freeze its plans to replicate Project Liberty across a majority of its 27 plant locations because of market uncertainty. As the President heads to Paris in December, the final rule on the RFS – decided just days before – will determine what President Obama has done about our nation’s most effective and only climate law on the books, and whether he is addressing our transportation sector—which is responsible for roughly half our GHG emissions.”

Vincent Chornet, President, CEO and Co-Founder of Enerkem emphasized how the Obama Administration’s decision impacts international interest in U.S. projects, stating, “This proposal forces investment out of America. Advanced biofuels are on the brink of significant growth – but the Administration’s proposal strands investment and threatens a decade of innovation and progress.”

Christopher Standlee, Executive Vice President, Global Affairs, Abengoa Bioenergy stated, “President Obama is asking for our support on his Clean Power Plan, but what is he doing to support the RFS, our country’s only law on the books directly aimed at climate and clean energy? In Las Vegas, the President recently asked investors to trust him and put their money in wind and solar. He made that same promise to investors in advanced biofuels years ago. But investors aren’t going to invest in innovation of any kind if they are worried about a political bait and switch, particularly if it can happen with a global climate champion.”

The Administration’s proposal have “been devastating for the development of advanced and cellulosic biofuels,” the group said. “Already, $13.7 billion in investments have been frozen, threatening to send American innovation and investment overseas to countries like China and Brazil.”

Signers:

Christopher Standlee, Executive Vice President, Global Affairs, Abengoa Bioenergy

Eric McAfee, Chairman and CEO, Aemetis

Dan Meagher, CEO, Agrivida

Paolo Carollo, Executive Vice President, Beta Renewables

Dr. Andre Koltermann, SVP, Head of Group Biotechnology, Clariant

Hugh Welsh, President, General Counsel, DSM North America

Jan Koninckx, Global Business Director for Biorefineries, DuPont Industrial Biosciences

Vincent Chornet, President and CEO, Enerkem

Craig Stuart-Paul, CEO, Fiberight

Jim Macias, President and CEO, Fulcrum Bioenergy

Thomas Corle, Founding Partner, Leifmark LLC, Inbicon North America Partnership

Bernardo Gradin, Founder and CEO, GranBio

Kevin Wenger, Ph.D., Executive Vice President, Mascoma

Anna Rath, CEO, Nexsteppe

Adam Monroe, President, Americas, Novozymes

Jeff Lautt, CEO, POET

Dan Cummings, President, POET-DSM

Delayne Johnson, CEO, Quad County Corn Processors

Mike Hamilton, CEO, Renmatix

Jonathan Wolfson, CEO, Solazyme

Arunas Chesonis, Chairman and CEO, Sweetwater Energy

Jack Bernens, Head of Enogen, Syngenta

Tim Eggeman, Ph.D., P.E., President and CEO, ZeaChem

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