Stillwater Policy

Trans Mountain Pipeline Expansion Set to Impact West Coast Markets

April 9, 2024 ,

April 9, 2024 By Vaughn Hulleman   Source: https://www.transmountain.com/pipeline-system After a long, and dramatic history, the Trans Mountain Pipeline expansion project (TMX) is set to enter commercial service on May 1, 2024. The project has been controversial based largely on environmental and stakeholder concerns but has been promoted based on several benefits, the most consistently cited is to provide additional access...
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California Taxes & Fees on the Rise

March 6, 2024 , ,

March 6, 2024 By: Christine Martin Stillwater has been tracking and writing about the taxes and fees that contribute to California fuel prices for nearly a decade. Several news articles this week highlighted the likelihood that California fuel prices will only continue to skyrocket over the next few years, so we thought it would be a good time to provide...
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What is displacing fossil diesel in California?

March 4, 2024 ,

March 4, 2024 By Gary Yowell   Last month we published Part 1 of this two-part series on fossil fuel displacement in California. In Part 1 we discussed the factors contributing to the displacement of fossil gasoline in the state. We conclude that the primary factors reducing petroleum gasoline demand in California are reduced driving (largely driven by higher gasoline...
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New Mexico Set to Join the Low Carbon Fuels Club

February 14, 2024 , ,

February 14, 2024 by Dr. Adam Schubert On the evening of February 13th, 2024 the New Mexico State Senate followed the lead of the State House and passed House Bill 41 (HB41) to establish the Clean Transportation Fuels Standard (CTFS). It now goes to the desk of Governor Michelle Luhan Grisham who is expected to sign it in the coming...
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The Benefits of Storing Refined Petroleum Products in Utah’s Salt Caverns

February 13, 2024 ,

February 13, 2024 By Christine Martin The state of Utah has a unique system of salt caverns which can be used to store natural gas liquids (NGLs), refined petroleum products, and feedstocks. The salt caverns are located south of Salt Lake City in Delta, UT.  The caverns are underground, so they are more protected from natural disasters, and they allow...
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What is displacing fossil gasoline in California? The answer may surprise you.

February 9, 2024 , ,

February 9, 2024 By Gary Yowell  For over two decades, Stillwater has monitored the rate of fossil fuel consumption and associated greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in California as well as the factors influencing these trends. As shown in Figure 1 below, California has reduced fossil fuel consumption in the state by 7.8 billion gallons compared to the projected trend (extrapolated...
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Oregon’s Embattled CPP: Back to the Future

February 1, 2024 , ,

February 1, 2024 By Kendra Seymour   Much has been reported around the embattled Oregon Climate Protection Program (CPP) in recent weeks. As an Oregon resident, I’m particularly interested in the status and future of this program. For others who are interested in a quick recap of the program, the status of the legal battle, and the likely future of...
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Where Will All the Diesel Go?

December 13, 2023 ,

December 13, 2023 By Jim Mladenik For those interested in the West Coast supply of transportation fuels, the ongoing and continuing growth of renewable diesel (RD) production should be of great interest.  As shown in Figure 1 below, RD production capacity in the United States is expected to increase by a factor of ten between 2019 and 2025 and more...
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A Tale of Two RINs – Digging Deeper

November 29, 2023 , ,

November 28, 2023 By Dr. Adam Schubert In our recent article, “A Tale of Two RINs,” we reviewed current conditions driving the price of D3 renewable identification numbers (RINs) upwards while the price of D4 RINs is falling. This article drew considerable interest. With respect to our analysis of the D4 RIN market, one of our readers agreed with our...
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A Tale of Two RINs

November 7, 2023 , ,

November 7, 2023 By Dr. Adam Schubert It is the best of times (for buyers of D4 RINs and sellers of D3 RINs) and the worst of times (for buyers of D3 RINs and sellers of D4 RINs). Several recent news articles have been published concerning the “RIN Cliff” – the rapid fall in D4 RIN prices which has been...
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Crops vs Solar to Produce Vehicle Miles Travelled

November 7, 2023 , ,

November 7, 2023 By Allison Bergquist One of Stillwater’s own was recently approached by a land developer to consider turning farmland in Oregon into a solar farm. The lease payment amounts proposed in the out-years would provide approximately four times the income for the land compared to farming the same acres – a significant incentive and a difficult one to...
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Cap & Invest – Allowance Price Containment Reserve Auction

November 7, 2023 , ,

November 7, 2023 (updated November 15, 2023) By Leigh Noda Tomorrow, Wednesday, November 8th, the Washington Department of Ecology will hold its second Allowance Price Containment Reserve (APCR) auction for the Cap and Invest (C&I) program. This auction was triggered when the settlement price in the August 30, 2023 auction ($63.03 per allowance), exceeded the Tier 1 price for allowances...
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Interview: Canadian Clean Fuel Regulations with Advanced Biofuels Canada

October 17, 2023 , ,

October 17, 2023 Back in May, ahead of the July implementation of the Canadian Clean Fuel Regulations (CFR), several members of Stillwater’s Carbon Crew chatted with Ian Thomson, President of Advanced Biofuels Canada about the state of biofuels production and usage in Canada. Our write-up of that conversation is available here. By way of follow-up, this month we checked in...
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Do EVs reduce NOx or PM emissions more than combustion engine vehicles? The answer may surprise you.

October 16, 2023 ,

October 16, 2023 By Gary Yowell From the 1990s to the present day, the California Air Resources Board (CARB) and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) have maintained that EVs have lower nitrogen oxide (NOx) and particulate matter (PM) emissions than internal combustion engine vehicles (ICEVs). In fact, California’s State Implementation Plan (SIP) relies heavily on EVs to produce the...
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SAF 201 – Digging a Bit Deeper into Sustainable Aviation Fuel

October 5, 2023 , ,

October 5, 2023 By Allison M. Bergquist, Ph.D. The advent of fueled flight introduced new emissions into the troposphere. Commercial aviation now accounts for roughly 2% of global CO2 emissions, and unless air travel is completely decarbonized, airplanes will continue to emit carbon dioxide into the air at elevations where emitters historically did not exist. The International Civil Aviation Organization...
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Putting the Fizz Back in the Bottle: Revenue Stream Challenges Facing Carbon Project Investors

September 20, 2023 , ,

September 20, 2023 By Mark Rigby Investor desire for certainty has been tested in the carbon markets in the last few years, particularly in the critical area of generating revenues to ensure project viability. Will the environment improve as carbon markets mature, or will investors and project developers be confronted with continued revenue uncertainty? While other challenges (including technology efficacy,...
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Lessons from 2021 Winter Storm Uri for the August 2023 Heat Wave in Texas

September 12, 2023 , ,

September 12, 2023 By John Wolff In early 2021, winter storm Uri’s cold snap caused blackouts in Texas. The natural gas market and power generation in the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT)1 region did not play well together at that time, but since then the state is slowly advancing arrangements to add new dispatchable power generation with billion-dollar annual...
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What’s up with all the news on Panama Canal delays and Gatun Lake levels?

August 31, 2023 ,

August 29, 2023 By Allison Bergquist Several news outlets published articles in July and August highlighting concerns about recent transit time trends through the Panama Canal. The Stillwater team had an internal conversation via Slack about potential impacts on West Coast fuels, which we thought might be of interest to our readers. We share that conversation below. First, though, a...
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CPP: The Freshest Noodles in the Alphabet Soup of Oregon’s Climate Programs

July 26, 2023 ,

July 26, 2023 By Allison Bergquist, Kendra Seymour, Leigh Noda, and Adam Schubert  The Oregon Climate Protection Program (CPP) sets a declining limit, or cap, on greenhouse gas emissions (GHGs) from fossil fuels used in the state’s transportation, residential, commercial, and industrial settings. The goal of the program is to reduce emissions in the state and accelerate the transition from...
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Why did the retail fuel price spread between CA and WA collapse?

July 20, 2023 , ,

July 20, 2023 Historically, California has had the highest gas prices in the country, mostly due to its unique gasoline specifications, isolated supply logistics that make it susceptible to unplanned refinery outages, high excise and sales taxes, and two climate change programs – the LCFS and Cap & Trade (C&T). California’s constant lead may be a thing of the past...
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Decarbonizing ICEVs and the Quest for Zero – A conversation with John Eichberger of the Transportation Energy Institute

July 6, 2023 ,

June 21, 2023 Several members of Stillwater’s Carbon Crew recently chatted with John Eichberger, Executive Director of the Transportation Energy Institute (formerly the Fuels Institute). The conversation covered the Institute’s mission and dove into a report they recently commissioned – authored by Stillwater – concerning the decarbonization of internal combustion engine vehicles (ICEVs). We thought our readers might find this...
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Regulations Driving the Biofuels Feedstocks Markets

June 28, 2023 , ,

June 25, 2023 by Megan Boutwell, Olivier Macé, and Adam Schubert The U.S. and Europe represent two of the largest biofuels markets globally, with policies in both regions driven to varying degrees by environment, energy security, and agricultural interests. The implementation of these policy objectives varies significantly between the regions due to differences in government structures. A practical effect of...
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Renewable Diesel 101

June 28, 2023 , ,

June 12, 2023 By Jim Mladenik Renewable diesel (RD) is the fastest-growing biofuel in America. It is also the fastest-growing way to reduce carbon emissions from transportation vehicles in California. This article is a basic introduction to RD that explains how it is used, why its use is growing so rapidly, and what to expect for its future growth. What...
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Flash Report: Joint California-Québec Public Workshop on Potential C&T Amendments

June 14, 2023 ,

June 14, 2023 Today, CARB staff held a public workshop on potential amendments to the Cap-and-Trade (C&T) regulation. The meeting was cohosted by the Québec Ministry of the Environment. This is the first workshop concerning potential C&T modifications since the adoption of the 2022 Scoping Plan. The C&T regulation needs updates for consistency with the Scoping Plan. This event kicks...
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Gasoline Market Analysis Experience

May 30, 2023 , ,

May 2023 In the course of Stillwater’s policy work, we have been retained to look at issues like fuel markets, distribution, and pricing. Stillwater routinely analyzes supply and demand outlooks for a variety of clients in both the private and public sectors.   As gasoline pricing has become a topical issue of late, below we bring together and highlight our policy...
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FLASH REPORT: Finally some detail around potential auto-acceleration & step-down mechanisms

May 24, 2023 ,

May 24, 2023 Yesterday, CARB hosted a public workshop to present its considerations around a potential auto-acceleration mechanism (AAM) for the LCFS CI-reduction schedule and a potential step change in the CI-reduction benchmark in the near term. Both proposals are being considered as a way to ensure a steady price signal for credits in the market to support ongoing investment...
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Canadian Biofuels 101: A Q&A with Ian Thomson of Advanced Biofuels Canada

May 10, 2023 , ,

May 10, 2023 Ahead of the Canadian Clean Fuel Regulation’s implementation this summer, several members of Stillwater’s Carbon Crew chatted with Ian Thomson, President of Advanced Biofuels Canada about the current state of biofuels production and usage in Canada. We thought our readers might find this conversation enlightening, so we’re publishing it here. (We’ve edited Ian’s answers for clarity and brevity.) Stillwater: Starting...
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SAF in the IRA Era – How do the incentives stack up? 

April 13, 2023 , ,

April 13, 2023 By Megan Boutwell The Inflation Reduction Act of 2022 (IRA) provides for a two-phased approach to incentivize sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) production. The first phase, 2023-2024, expands the biomass-based diesel blenders tax credit (BTC) to include a separate per-gallon incentive for SAF. In the second two-year phase, 2025-2027, the tax credit is enhanced so that renewable fuels...
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A flood of RD and a snowballing LCFS credit bank – Is a step-change in CI reduction schedule the answer?

March 20, 2023 , , ,

March 20, 2023 By Kendra Seymour The Sierra Nevada has been pummeled by severe winter storms which have delivered feet of snow in recent weeks. In the wake of these storms, Californians are left dealing with giant snowbanks, weighty snow accumulations straining roofs, and even flooding. But that’s not the only storm California is dealing with. A flood of renewable...
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Minnesota Clean Transportation Standard Act – Take Two!

March 14, 2023 , , ,

March 14, 2023 Note: This post was edited on February 12, 2024 to update and elaborate on our calculations/methodology. In the U.S., several programs aim to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions per unit of energy of fuels used in transportation. California, Oregon, and Washington all have low carbon fuel standard (LCFS) style programs, one Canadian Province (British Columbia) also has...
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As LCFS Programs Proliferate, Don’t Get Behind the 8-Ball

February 27, 2023 , ,

February 27, 2023 By Dr. Allison Bergquist A quick Google image search of “state LCFS policy maps” results in numerous versions of a U.S. map (and sometimes Europe or Canada) with different states annotated as considering a low carbon fuel standard (LCFS). Note: Program names vary, so LCFS is used throughout this article for simplicity. Though British Columbia (2010), California...
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Oregon SB 803 Assessment

February 23, 2023 , ,

February 23, 2022 Introduction In late January of 2023, Senate Bill 803 was introduced into the Oregon state Senate.(1) If the bill were to pass, it would require all diesel sold in the Portland metropolitan area (Clackamas, Washington, and Multnomah counties) to meet a carbon intensity of 60 gCO2e/MJ after January 1, 2026, and impose the same requirement in Western...
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New Mexico Clean Fuel Standard – Take Two!

February 21, 2023 , ,

February 21, 2023 Note: This post was edited on February 12, 2024 to update and elaborate on our calculations/methodology. In the U.S., several programs aim to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions per unit of energy of fuels used in transportation. California, Oregon, and Washington all have low carbon fuel standard (LCF) style programs, one Canadian Province (British Columbia) also has...
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Refinery Survivability 

February 8, 2023 , ,

February 7, 2023 By Christine Martin  With the implementation of the Advanced Clean Cars II (ACC II) and the Advanced Clean Truck regulations, California has mandated that all new sales of light-duty vehicles sold in California be 100% zero emissions vehicles (ZEVs) by 2035 and an increasing percentage of new medium-heavy-duty truck sales be ZEV by 2045. How will this...
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Just how much “reserve” does the SPR have and what’s it for?

February 8, 2023 , ,

February 4, 2023 By Allison Bergquist  You may have seen a lot of news lately about fuel prices and the Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR).   Here, we take a look at the origins of the SPR, the purpose of it and some of the potential challenges moving forward.   Another 70s Throwback  Following the 1973 oil embargo, President Ford signed the Energy...
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Low Carbon Fuel Supply in the PNW

February 8, 2023 , ,

On February 4th, Stillwater President Megan Boutwell presented at the Columbia-Willamette Clean Cities Coalition Annual Workshop on the low carbon fuel supply in the Pacific Northwest. The presentation discusses incentives and regulations, supply and demand on the west coast, and the value of low carbon fuel.

Introducing: Stillwater’s C&T Newsletter

December 5, 2022 , ,

December 5, 2022 We are excited to announce the inaugural edition of our latest publication: Stillwater’s California Cap and Trade (C&T) Newsletter. Stillwater’s C&T Newsletter will provide subscribers insight into the allowance and offset demand and price trends. We’re kicking off this publication with an abbreviated, complimentary edition of Stillwater’s C&T Quarterly Auction Summary which presents the results of the...
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FLASH REPORT: EPA Issues Proposed RFS Standards for 2023-2025 plus Requirements for eRINs

December 1, 2022 , ,

December 1, 2022 by Adam Schubert EPA today announced their proposed RFS standards (“Set Rule”) for 2023, 2024, and 2025. This proposed rule also contains substantial new provisions enabling the generation of eRINs. This proposal is the first rule concerning RFS years past 2022, the last year for which the statute contained specific annual volume requirements. As a result, EPA...
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⛴️ CARB Commercial Harbor Craft (CHC) Regulation Amendments – RD Headed Out to Sea

November 18, 2022 ,

November 18, 2022 It seems like renewable diesel (RD) is on the radar of nearly everyone in the transportation industry these days. Typically, RD discussions center on California’s Low Carbon Fuel Standard (LCFS) and other LCFS style programs elsewhere which incentivize its use. Flying under the radar, however, is an upcoming regulatory implementation which will require usage of RD in...
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So Long BTC, Hello CFPC

November 7, 2022 , ,

November 7, 2022 By Adam Schubert Background  The recently enacted federal Inflation Reduction Act (IRA)(1) includes the sunsetting of the Biomass-Based Diesel Blenders Tax Credit (BTC) at the end of 2024 and replaces it with the Section 45Z Clean Fuel Production Tax Credit (CFPC) defined in Section 13704 of the IRA. We have previously described how this new credit will work...
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As gas prices soar, Gov. Newsom could save California drivers $1 billion

September 29, 2022 , , ,

September 29, 2022 Update: On September 30, 2022, at the direction of Gov. Newsom, the California Air Resources Board (CARB) issued a regulatory advisory allowing the sale or supply of gasoline in California that exceeds the Reid Vapor Pressure (RVP) limits in CARB’s gasoline regulations, from September 30 through October 2022. When gas prices spike in California, Stillwater’s phones start...
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Inflation Reduction Act Sustainable Aviation Fuel Credit

September 7, 2022 , ,

September 7, 2022 by Megan Boutwell Among the many incentives for renewable fuel production in the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) is a new set of tax credits for sustainable aviation fuel (SAF). The IRA defines a two-phased approach to help meet the Biden administration’s goal of producing 3 billion gallons of SAF in the U.S. by 2030. The first two-year...
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How does the cost of Hydrogen stack up against gasoline?  

September 7, 2022 ,

September 6, 2022 By Gary Yowell  Hydrogen fuel cell vehicles (FCV) are zero emission vehicles (ZEVs) which comply with California’s ZEV mandate and internal combustion engine ban. One challenge facing FCVs is the high fuel cost – due to hydrogen’s unique physical properties. High gasoline prices beyond $4.00 per gallon have recently made it into headlines nationwide; meanwhile, since 2014,...
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What will it cost to move transportation energy to the grid?

August 3, 2022 , ,

by David Hackett California has big plans to reduce the use of petroleum and replace that energy with electricity. The first goal is to achieve 60% renewable energy by 2030. The next goal is to achieve 100% renewable and zero-carbon electricity while gaining carbon neutrality by 2045.  In between, in 2035 the state intends to ban the sale of new...
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What’s Up Docket? A Preview of Potential LCFS Amendments 

July 22, 2022 , ,

By Adam Schubert  CARB has been indicating for some time that the next round of revisions to the LCFS would come after the AB32 Scoping Plan was completed. With that in mind, CARB surprised many observers by holding an “informal workshop” on potential changes to the LCFS on July 7th. This session had about 700 attendees. The CARB staff presentation,...
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How to Think About Climate Change in 1500 Words

June 15, 2022 , ,

June 10, 2021 by Mike Newman, Director of Parhelion Underwriting   The effects of climate change are unpredictable, leaving businesses to scramble to adapt to new risks in a shifting new normal. How should companies think about climate change? The key characteristic of Climate Change is its unpredictability and the feeling that the natural rhythm of things has been changed. What...
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Electric Vehicles: How California is helping to reduce petroleum demand in the face of the Ukraine conflict

May 11, 2022 , ,

May 11, 2022 By Gary Yowell The Biden Administration[1] has been promoting EVs as a key federal strategy to address the current petroleum dilemma brought about by the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Using California, the most proactive EV state in the country as a guide, we can examine the effectiveness of EVs in reducing petroleum use. Analysis California’s growing gasoline and...
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E15: Silver Bullet for Gasoline Prices?

May 10, 2022 , ,

May 10, 2022 By Adam Schubert Background On April 12th, President Biden announced that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) would issue an emergency waiver of federal gasoline Reid Vapor Pressure (RVP) regulations this summer for E15—a 15% blend of ethanol with gasoline. This action was finalized on April 29th. As ethanol is typically less costly than hydrocarbon gasoline, this...
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The Convoluted Logic of the U.S. Postal Service

March 26, 2022 , ,

March 19, 2022 By Barry Schaps  Recently, the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) announced its decision to phase out the current fleet of 30-year-old Grumman postal trucks, replacing as many as 165,000 vehicles with Oshkosh Defense trucks – a contract valued at $11.3 billion over 10 years. While no one would argue the current fleet of dilapidated delivery trucks need replacing,...
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California Gas Prices Blow Through Five Dollars

March 9, 2022 , ,

March 9, 2022 By Leigh Noda While the national average for regular gasoline today, March 9th, is $4.25 per gallon, California’s average price is much higher at $5.57 per gallon according to AAA. Just last week, California’s average unleaded regular gasoline price exceed $5 per gallon for the first time ever. While a good portion of the increase in gasoline...
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What happens with a ban on Russian oil imports? 

March 8, 2022 , ,

March 8, 2022 By Dave Hackett  Oil is in the news in a big way with the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Until this week, most people didn’t know that the U.S. is an importer of Russian oil. This article will look at U.S. imports in 2021 and put the volumes into context relative to the larger market.   Crude Oil Imports ...
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Options for Reducing Transport Carbon Emissions

March 2, 2022 , , ,

On February 28, Stillwater Senior Analyst, Jim Mladenik presented at the Bioeconomy Hawaii Forum 2022. Jim’s presentation, Options for Reducing Transport Fuel Carbon Intensity, illustrates the fuel greenhouse gas lifecycle versus that of tailpipe emissions. View a PDF version of this presentation here.

What does the recent growth in the LCFS credit bank mean for credit prices in the longer term?

February 7, 2022 , , ,

February 1, 2022 Volatility in the LCFS credit market and recently released 3Q2021 data showing nearly 433,000 metric tons in net credits for the quarter have left many investors scratching their heads. What does this mean for the trajectory of the program? How should we think about credit prices going forward? Stillwater Associates’ LCFS Team answers these questions and many...
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LCFS 101 – A 2022 Refresher

February 7, 2022 , ,

NOTE: We published a more recent LCFS 101 article on June 1, 2024. You can view that 2024 update here. January 20, 2022 By Kendra Seymour It’s been nearly three years since we published an updated 101-level overview of the LCFS. It’s past time. Today, we’re delivering a refresher on the current rules and the latest status of the credit...
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2022 Hot Topics – The Transportation Energy Transition is Expanding

January 12, 2022 , ,

January 12, 2022 By Megan Boutwell Stillwater’s focus for 2022 is the transportation energy transition. Regulations in the U.S., Canada, and the European Union (EU) along with corporate commitments to lower greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions are driving investments in low-carbon alternatives to petroleum fuels. Here are some of the transportation energy transition hot topics we’ll be following for clients this...
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The Social Cost of Carbon Part 3: What Does it Cost to Reduce Carbon in California’s Jet Pool?

January 8, 2022 , ,

January 8, 2022 By Jim Mladenik  Stillwater’s first article on the social cost of carbon (SCC) defined the term and covered how the U.S. estimates the cost of climate change. The U.S. federal government has used numbers varying from $41 per metric ton (MT) under the Obama administration to near $1 per MT under President Trump, and, as of February...
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LCFS Amendment Tales: Chapter 2

January 6, 2022 , ,

January 6, 2022 By Leigh Noda  On December 7th, the California Air Resources Board (CARB) held their second workshop for the current round of potential regulatory amendments to the Low Carbon Fuel Standard (LCFS). The first workshop, Chapter 1, was held more than a year earlier over two days – October 14-15, 2020. CARB staff use these workshops with several...
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Are EVs More Fuel Efficient Than Gasoline and Diesel Cars?

January 5, 2022 , ,

January 5, 2022 By Gary Yowell  The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), California Air Resources Board (CARB), and EV promoters often claim EVs have three times higher fuel economy than their gasoline counterparts. This is like saying eggs come from grocery stores, which is true, but ignores the fact that eggs originate from laying hens before being shipped to and sold...
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CCS Incentives for Additional Fizz 

November 8, 2021 , ,

November 3, 2021 By Adam Schubert   Recent months have seen several announcements of Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) projects in various stages of development. While commercial CCS operations have limited history, deployment of this technology is seen as a feasible way to eliminate significant volumes of CO2 emissions. In this article, we will take a brief look at existing U.S. incentives for CCS applications in the transportation fuel arena.  Is...
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The California Oil Spill – What’s Next?

October 20, 2021 , ,

October 20, 2021 By Nick Griffith We here in Southern California are experiencing our first significant offshore oil spill in some time. It now appears that crude oil, estimated to be about 600 barrels (or about 25,000 gallons), escaped from a fracture in the San Pedro Bay Pipeline which connects Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) Platform Elly to Long Beach. Investigations and surveys continue during the cleanup efforts, after which we should know the range of the spill which may include the OCS.   The Bureau...
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The Social Cost of Carbon Part 2: Values Used Around the World & What it Costs to Reduce Carbon in California’s Diesel Pool

October 19, 2021 , ,

October 19, 2021 By Jim Mladenik  Stillwater’s first article on the social cost of carbon (SCC) defined the term and covered how the U.S. estimates the cost of climate change. In that article we also pointed out the fact that the U.S. federal government has used numbers varying from $41 per metric ton (MT) under the Obama administration to near $1...
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What does the recent decline in LCFS credit prices mean for the longer term?

October 19, 2021 , , ,

October 19, 2021 Recent volatility in the LCFS credit market has left many investors scratching their heads. What does this mean for the future of the program? How should we think about credit prices going forward? Stillwater Associates’ LCFS Team answers these questions and many more in our LCFS Credit Balance and Credit Price Outlook. Stillwater’s LCFS Outlook includes historical...
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The Cost of the RFS on Refiners and Crack Spread Growth

October 1, 2021 , ,

September 30, 2021 By Leigh Noda What is RVO and how is it applied?  The Renewable Volume Obligation (RVO) on suppliers (refiners and importers) is the U.S. federal Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) mechanism that creates the obligation to acquire and retire renewable identification numbers (RINs). For each calendar year, an RVO percentage (RVO%) is developed by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) through a rulemaking process. The RVO% is intended such that if the...
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Biden Administration Actions to Advance the Future of Sustainable Fuels in American Aviation

September 15, 2021 , , ,

September 10, 2021 By Leigh Noda The aviation sector produces up to 11% of U.S. transportation GHG emissions, and on September 9th, the White House announced a series of executive actions to tackle those emissions by advancing the production and use of cleaner and more sustainable fuels across American aviation, improving aircraft fuel efficiency, and reducing emissions from airports. These...
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How might a Minnesota LCFS play out?

September 14, 2021 , , ,

September 14, 2021 by Adam Schubert In the U.S., several programs aim to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions per unit of energy of fuels used in transportation. California and Oregon both have low carbon fuel standard (LCFS) programs, one Canadian Province (British Columbia) also has a transport fuels GHG-reduction program, and Canada is in the process of rolling out its...
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The Oil Industry’s Bright Green Energy Future

September 2, 2021 , , ,

September 2, 2021 by Mike Newman, Director of Parhelion Underwriting The Oil industry is under pressure on many fronts in the climate change era, not least of which is from their shareholders. First, the background, from the investors’ perspective. Over the past 15 years, the annual total returns to shareholders for the average oil and gas company has lagged the S&P...
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Where Will All of the Renewable Diesel Go?

August 11, 2021 , ,

August 1, 2021 By Jim Mladenik, Olivier Macé, and Kendra Seymour The many announcements in the past months of projects to modify refinery and existing facilities to produce renewable diesel (RD) has caused many observers to ask two questions:  Where will all the feedstocks come from?  Where will all the RD go?  The first of these questions is addressed in a series of monthly highlights in Stillwater’s LCFS Newsletter. In this article, we will address the question of...
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A Glimpse of the Near Future: Petroleum Product Landscape (2021-2023)

August 11, 2021 , , ,

On August 10th, Stillwater Vice President of Operations, Megan Boutwell, presented at the CTPMA 2021 Business Forum at the Broadmoor in Colorado. Megan’s presentation touches on the outlook for petroleum product demand, how the federal renewable fuel standard will continue to impact the transport fuels market, and what’s coming with state-level low carbon fuel standard programs. View a PDF version...
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How might a New Mexico LCFS play out?

August 10, 2021 , , ,

August 10, 2021 by Adam Schubert In the U.S., several programs aim to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions per unit of energy of fuels used in transportation. California and Oregon both have low carbon fuel standard (LCFS) programs, one Canadian Province (British Columbia) also has a transport fuels GHG-reduction program, and Canada is in the process of rolling out its...
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California’s LCFS is successfully proliferating. Is it also successfully decarbonizing transport?

July 13, 2021 , , ,

July 13, 2021 By Kendra Seymour As explained in our LCFS 101 Beginner’s Guide and LCFS 101 Update articles, California’s Low Carbon Fuel Standard (LCFS) aims to reduce emissions of greenhouse gasses (GHGs) by reducing the average carbon intensity (CI) of transportation fuels that are used in California. Overall program compliance is generally achieved through the substitution of alternative, low-CI...
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Stillwater’s Projected Costs of the Approved HB 1091 Clean Fuels Standard

June 15, 2021 , ,

June 15, 2021 The Washington Clean Fuel Standard (CFS) has been signed into law, but the details of program implementation have not yet been developed by the state’s Department of Ecology (DOE). As such, its costs can currently only be estimated by comparing the Washington CFS legislation to the three existing LCFS-type programs in California, Oregon, and British Columbia (BC)....
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