Ag Headlines, Wednesday January 25, 2107
2016 Biodiesel Market Skunks Previous Records
U.S. consumers saw a record of almost 2.9 billion gallons of biodiesel and renewable diesel in 2016, outpacing the previous record by nearly 40 percent. Also for the first time, the monthly market topped 300 million gallons, with December’s numbers coming in at 362 million gallons.
The National Biodiesel Board welcomed the numbers but says that success is undermined by imports. Imports provide more than a third of the U.S. biodiesel market. Figures by the Environmental Protection Agency show the 2.9 billion gallons represented an 800 million gallon increase of biodiesel and renewable diesel from 2015. At the same time, domestic production rose from about 1.4 billion gallons in 2015 to more than 1.8 billion gallons in 2016, well below available capacity, according to NBB. Imports increased by more than 50 percent from an estimated 670 million gallons in 2015 to over one billion gallons in 2016, which the Biodiesel Board says shortchanges potential economic benefits to U.S. producers.
TPP Member Nations Seek to Save Trade Agreement
Trans-Pacific Partnership member nations are hoping to salvage the trade deal after U.S. President Donald Trump withdrew the United States from the agreement by executive order. Fulfilling a campaign pledge, Trump signed the order this week, pulling the U.S. out of the massive trade deal. Both Australia and New Zealand remain hopeful the deal can be salvaged without the United States. Both nations talked with Japan on continuing the agreement, according to Reuters.
Australia’s Prime Minister said the U.S. withdrawing from the deal is “a big loss,” but added there is potential for China to join the agreement. China has proposed a counter pact, the Free Trade Area of the Asia Pacific and has championed the Southeast Asia-backed Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership. Meanwhile, TPP requires ratification by at least six countries accounting for 85 percent of the combined gross domestic product of the member nations. A meeting between the remaining TPP nations is expected in the coming months, according to a New Zealand trade official.
Source; NAFB News