An update on LCFS in the states

March 31, 2021
Today, we check in on the status of clean fuel legislation in several states, and look at new data on vaccine hesitancy. And on the last day of Women’s History Month, we have some advice from Merck’s Dr. Julie Gerberding. (1,076 words, 5 minutes, 22 seconds) Starting…
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Today, we check in on the status of clean fuel legislation in several states, and look at new data on vaccine hesitancy. And on the last day of Women’s History Month, we have some advice from Merck’s Dr. Julie Gerberding. (1,076 words, 5 minutes, 22 seconds)

Starting tomorrow, Good Day BIO is taking a quick spring break. Publication will resume on Thursday, April 8, though we'll be in touch if there's major breaking news. We encourage you all to get outdoors and enjoy some warmer weather this weekend!

 

An update on LCFS in the states

 
 

We checked in with Gene Harrington, BIO’s Director of State Government Affairs, for an update on biofuels-related legislation moving in several states.

New Mexico: A few weeks ago, New Mexico’s Senate passed the Clean Fuel Standard Act (SB 11), which would require fuel producers and importers of transportation fuels in the nation's third-largest oil-producing state to reduce carbon in their fuels by 10% by 2030 and 28% by 2040, or to purchase carbon credits. Unfortunately, the bill didn’t make it to the House floor before the legislative session ended—but it’s promising that it had widespread support ranging from oil companies to the Sierra Club to BIO. Indications are that a clean fuel standard will remain a priority for Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham and could be reintroduced in 2022—so stay tuned. 

Read BIO’s letter to Gov. Grisham and New Mexico BIO's letter to the editor of the Santa Fe New Mexican in support of a clean fuel standard 

Washington State: Gov. Jay Inslee’s clean fuel standard (H 1091) passed the Washington State House last month, and is now moving through the State Senate. It’s a priority for the Democratic caucus and this is the furthest such a bill has gone in Washington State—so we remain hopeful about the bill's prospects.

Iowa: Gov. Kim Reynolds is pushing a bill that would require all gasoline sold in Iowa to contain at least 10% ethanol (E10), with the option for the governor to increase the requirement to 15% ethanol (E15), per The Gazette (Iowa). The bill passed out of the Senate Agriculture and Transportation Committees and is making its way through the legislature. This is a priority for Iowa Bio and Iowa-based biofuels companies—stay tuned for more information on how you can support it. 

We’re also keeping an eye on biofuel legislation in Minnesotawhich is considering legislation requiring the use of gasoline blended with E15and New York, which has been considering a statewide clean fuel standard.

Gene’s Genius: It is encouraging to see so many different states seriously consider bills that will reduce the carbon intensity of transportation fuels—and, in doing so, create a more robust market for innovative products while improving public health and the environment. And while not all of this cutting-edge legislation will pass this year, the ground has been laid to do so in the coming years. – Gene Harrington, BIO’s Director of State Government Affairs

 

More Agriculture and Environment News:

Bloomberg Green: World’s top agriculture traders gear up for green diesel boom
“As President Joe Biden presses ahead with his green agenda, Cargill Inc. is investing $475 million to boost its capacity to process soybeans, key in producing the cooking oils used in renewable diesel. Rivals Archer-Daniels-Midland Co. and Bunge Ltd. are working on making plants more efficient, and Andersons Inc. set up a desk to trade feedstocks for the green fuel.”

 
 
 
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Report finds more people want a COVID vaccine

 
 

Enthusiasm for getting a COVID-19 vaccine is continuing to grow, with 32% of American adults saying they have received at least one dose and a further 30% saying they want to do so as quickly as possible, according to a report released yesterday by the KFF Vaccine Monitor.

One challenge to getting the jab appears to be information. The report found uncertainty about current eligibility for the vaccine among about 30% of respondents—including “larger shares of Hispanic adults, young adults, and those with lower incomes.” 

But a more encouraging finding: “Black adults saw the largest increase in vaccine enthusiasm (55% of them now say they have either gotten vaccinated or want to as soon as possible).” 

As we reported Monday, the challenge of achieving vaccine equity by doing better at reaching Black communities is exacerbated by hesitancy among many Black adults to take the vaccine. This was addressed in a Washington Post op-ed by BIO’s Dr. Michelle McMurry-Heath and Grapevine Health’s Lisa K. Fitzpatrick.

How do we know the COVID-19 vaccines are safe and effective? BIO’s COVID Vaccine Facts website answers. 

Meanwhile, BIO members continue to develop vaccines. TONIX is working on a COVID vaccine candidate, telling a FOX News affiliate that it was shown to protect against the virus in tests on non-human primates. In addition, Novavax is getting ready to apply for authorization in the U.K., with GSK on board to manufacture the shot.

 

More Health Care News:

Axios: The growing fight over coronavirus vaccine patents
“A growing chorus of advocates wants to weaken some of the intellectual property protections for coronavirus vaccines, which they say will quickly expand global supplies. But critics say the move wouldn't work, and would set a bad precedent.”

 
 
 
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What advice would Merck’s Dr. Julie Gerberding give to her younger self?

“Be a bridge,” she told us for a special Women’s History Month video

By reaching out to other parts of the biotechnology ecosystem, you can not only amplify your own message—but ensure others’ voices are heard, as well. 

Dr. Gerberding has long been an important voice in the industry. As chief patent officer and vice president at Merck, she oversees global public policy, strategic communications, patient engagement, population health, and corporate responsibility. 

She made history as the first woman to serve as director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). She was at the helm of the agency during the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks and subsequent anthrax bioterrorism attacks.

Dr. Gerberding is a BIO board member as well as a member of the MSD Wellcome Trust Hilleman Laboratories and the Cerner Corporation boards. She received her undergraduate and M.D. degrees from Case Western Reserve University and her M.P.H. from the University of California, Berkeley, where she is an adjunct associate professor of medicine.

 
BIO Beltway Report
BIO Beltway Report
 
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President Biden’s Wednesday: Making a speech in Pittsburgh to promote his Build Back Better plan for $2 trillion in infrastructure spending. The New York Times reports that Biden wants to fund the spending by increasing corporate taxes to 28% for 15 years. The Trump administration had cut corporate taxes to the current 21%, down from 35%, in 2017. With his cabinet mostly filled, Biden has turned his attention to judicial nominees, yesterday nominating 11 judges, including the only Black woman in the U.S. Court of Appeals in Chicago, who is profiled here by the Chicago Tribune.

What’s Happening on Capitol Hill: Recess. Tomorrow, the House Committee on House Administration will hold a hearing, “Ensuring Free and Fair Access to the Ballot.” Meanwhile, STAT News looks at “the drug pricing policy options Democrats could use for their next big legislative push."

 
 
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