Largest Issue, Largest Event

FROM THE JUNE ISSUE: Editor Lisa Gibson previews the magazine, including feature articles about D3 RIN pathway approvals, a summary of ACE's April fly-in, the 2019 FEW award winners, and more.
By Lisa Gibson | May 20, 2019

While planning this issue of Ethanol Producer Magazine, focused on cellulosic ethanol, a few important questions came up: What’s going on with D3 RIN pathway approvals? How are developers moving forward while they wait for approval? And how is the D3 price decline related to frozen pathway approvals?

It’s a complicated scenario that we delve into in the feature starting on page 26. With no pathway approvals going through in at least the past 18 months, little new production, and no favorable RIN price to incentivize new production, the industry waits for EPA movement. If we had a nickel for every time …

Freelancer Susanne Retka Schill spoke to some corn fiber-to-ethanol project developers in the U.S., such as D3Max, Edeniq and ICM, who are moving forward with their plans as they wait for pathway approvals. The impressive technologies are getting attention and forging ahead, while EPA’s reported D3 RIN generation has been somewhat erratic—suggesting commercial-scale cellulosic ethanol producers have dropped out of production at times, Retka Schill reports. Read the full article to find out what developers are predicting.

Next, we take you back to the American Coalition for Ethanol’s Washington, D.C., fly-in that took place in April. I was there and (in case I haven’t talked about it enough) have more coverage to share. It was my first time lobbying and I thoroughly enjoyed it. It’s probably not a full-time gig for me, but I’ll crash a fly-in whenever the opportunity arises. Find it on page 36.

EPM is proud to profile the winners of the 2019 Ethanol Producer Awards this month. In our five categories—Workplace of the Year, Collaboration of the Year, Board of the Year, Project of the Year and Good Neighbor Award—we received outstanding nominations and had to resort to a vote count among EPM staff and our editorial board. A few categories had close totals. Turn to page 46 to see who takes each award this year.

The Q&A, starting on page 56, gets perspectives from ethanol executives who came to the industry from large corporations like BASF and Cargill. What did they bring along, what did they learn, and how did they transition? They share interesting viewpoints.

Finally, we take a look at Enerkem and its municipal solid waste plant in Alberta, Canada, producing methanol and ethanol. The gasification technology is also under development in the Netherlands, to produce methanol (maybe someday ethanol?). Find it on page 64.

And on the heels of Enerkem, we take a look at other cellulosic ethanol producers making progress. They’re in the U.S., India, China, Scandinavia, Romania and elsewhere. It’s on page 72.

With these six features and two contributions, this June issue of EPM is by far our largest of the year. That’s the case every year, as the June magazine makes a prominent appearance at the International Fuel Ethanol Workshop & Expo. This year’s show is June 10-12 in Indianapolis. Maybe you’re there as you read this. It’s the largest ethanol event in the world.

Fitting then, that for it we provide the largest issue of our magazine.

Enjoy the show.

Author: Lisa Gibson