La Salle seniors take leadership mantle in Fajardo’s absence

first_imgFor the better part of her five-year stay in La Salle, Kim Fajardo was one of the team’s undisputed leaders not only on the matted floor but also off of it.ADVERTISEMENT And now that the wily setter has left the Lady Spikers’ camp, it’s up to the remaining seniors to fill in the void Fajardo left.Season 79 MVP Mary Joy Baron is aware of Fajardo’s importance in the team, but she’s confident that, together with Kim Kianna Dy and Dawn Macandili, the team’s senior players are capable of guiding the team in Season 80.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSTim Cone, Ginebra set their sights on elusive All-Filipino crownSPORTSGinebra beats Meralco again to capture PBA Governors’ Cup titleSPORTSAfter winning title, time for LA Tenorio to give back to Batangas folk“Of course this will be a big adjustment for us since Ate Kim is no longer with us,” said Baron in Filipino. “Although I think we can still compensate for her absence.”“I think the leadership role will fall to me, Kianna [Dy], Dawn [Macandili] and Des [Cheng] because we’re the seniors in the team.” Michael Porter Jr. stays patient as playing time increases Newsome sets focus on helping Bolts open new PBA season on right track OSG plea to revoke ABS-CBN franchise ’a duplicitous move’ – Lacson Nonito Donaire vs Naoya Inoue is BWAA 2019 Fight of the Year MOST READ Lights inside SMX hall flicker as Duterte rants vs Ayala, Pangilinan anew Almazan vows to comeback stronger after finals heartbreak Steam emission over Taal’s main crater ‘steady’ for past 24 hours View comments OSG plea to revoke ABS-CBN franchise ’a duplicitous move’ – Lacson Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard PLAY LIST 02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite03:23Negosyo sa Tagaytay City, bagsak sa pag-aalboroto ng Bulkang Taal01:13Christian Standhardinger wins PBA Best Player award Amid Ginebra’s injury woes, Cone expects more from Ferrer, Mariano “It’s not just a setter that was gone, but a leader,” said Macandili in Filipino. “So us seniors we’re trying to be as good as a leader as Ate Kim. Right now we’re all helping each other out to guide our younger teammates.”Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Jiro Manio arrested for stabbing man in Marikina Fajardo was an integral part of La Salle’s three championships from Seasons 75 through 79, a span of time when they faced Ateneo for five straight years.Dy, who was the Season 78 Finals MVP, echoed Baron’s statements that filling in for the role Fajardo left will require not just one person.“We handle things differently, let’s say this person is more vocal, and this one leads by example,” said Dy in Filipino. “I think that’s something good that we’re not all the same. We have our own strengths, and we have different ways to lead.”“And now that we’re the seniors, when we’re on the court we should be the last ones to give up especially now that a lot of the players on the team are young,” added Dy.Macandili, La Salle’s defensive dynamo, added that Fajardo’s departure isn’t just a positional vacancy.ADVERTISEMENT LATEST STORIES Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. last_img read more

Divisional Crime Chief under close arrest

first_imgA Superintendent of Police stationed in D Division (West Coast Demerara) has been arrested following theDead: Anmarie Deonarinefatal accident at Vreed-en-Hoop, which claimed the life of a 65-year-old woman.Anmarie Deonarine, of Lot 144 New Road, Vreed-en-Hoop, WCD, was killed sometime around 11:30h on Tuesday by motor vehicle PRR 4446, which was being driven by the Divisional Crime Chief.In a statement issued on Tuesday evening, the Police said that a breathalyser test was conducted on the senior officer by the Traffic Chief himself and no trace of blood alcohol was recorded.However, acting Divisional Commander, Leslie James, told Guyana Times on Wednesday that the senior officer involved in the incident has stepped down from duties to “facilitate an impartial investigation.”According to reports, the elderly woman was heading to a relative’s house a short distance away when she was hit by the vehicle which was heading in the western direction.Deonarine’s eldest daughter, Geeta, related to this newspaper that she was told that her mother was walking on the road when a speeding car struck her. Geeta denied claims reportedly made by the driver that her mother was walking onto the road when she was struck.“She was in the corner because when we go to the hospital, we find dried grass in her head. If she was in the middle of the road, how did she get grass in her head,” she explained.Meanwhile, Guyana Times spoke with an elderly villager who witnessed the entire incident, confirming that the vehicle was indeed speeding before coming into contact with the woman.The pedal cyclist explained that he was riding towards the East when he observed the speeding car hitting the woman, and then dragging her about 20 feet before she was released from under the car.“After the car pull she down and drive ‘way with she, it throw she off by the pave and continue driving onto the road and then stop a little further up the road,” the man recalled.He continued that the senior officer exited the vehicle and stopped a Police car that was passing the same time and they rushed with the injured woman to the West Demerara Regional Hospital.The man, who also assisted in transporting the woman to the hospital, explained that Deonarine was breathing when they picked her up but she succumbed on the way to the medical facility.The mother of three was described as a very loving and cheerful person who would go out of her way to assist anyone in need.last_img read more

Salah to hang around to make history at Liverpool – Henderson

first_imgAn incredible return of 41 goals in 46 appearances saw Salah crowned the Premier League Players’ Player of the Year on Sunday.However, unlike Liverpool stars of recent seasons such as Luis Suarez and Philippe Coutinho, who were attracted by the glamour of a move to Barcelona, Henderson hopes Salah is convinced to stay by the growing momentum at Liverpool and the belief they can compete for major trophies under Jurgen Klopp.“He’s a fantastic player, obviously he’s up there with the world’s best and there will be other clubs that want to take him away,” said Henderson.“But he’s in a great place with a great set of lads, great team, with a great manager, going in the right direction. We want to create our own history here and I’m sure Mo will want to be part of that for many years to come.”Roma co-owner James Pallotta recognised this week that Liverpool didn’t even have to beat off much competition to Salah’s signature, as he had only shown inconsistent flashes of his full potential in two years in the Italian capital.– Klopp’s ‘privileged’ players –Klopp is credited with finding the system to bring the best out of Salah.And having led Liverpool back to the last four of the Champions League for the first time in a decade, Henderson said his team-mates feel “privileged” to work with the German.“He’s one of the best managers in the world. First and foremost tactically it goes without question how knowledgeable he is within the game, you can see that in the performances, the style of play and how we play football,” he added.“Off the field he’s a fantastic human. Very genuine, has a great passion for football and that transcends throughout the team.“He always keeps you on your toes, always looking for more, he never wants the standards to drop no matter who we are playing. He’s an amazing manager and everybody in the squad feels privileged to be working with him.”Roma have had to wait even longer for a European Cup semi-final with their last appearance coming 34 years ago when they beat Dundee United but went on to lose to Liverpool in the final.The manner in which they reached the semi-finals even outshone Liverpool’s 5-1 quarter-final thrashing of Premier League champions Manchester City as Roma came back from a 4-1 first leg deficit against Barcelona thanks to a 3-0 second leg victory masterminded by Roma’s own impressive coach in Eusebio Di Francesco.But apart from their physical similarities, Di Francesco — who is making his debut as a coach in the Champions League this season — believes he has a long way to go to earn comparisons with Klopp.“As Klopp mentioned there are similarities in that we both wear glasses and have a beard,” he joked. “But I very much like his outlook.“I am concerned we play a team coached by such a great manager. Klopp has proved himself, has won already titles, but I have great ambitions.”0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today) 0Shares0000Mohamed Salah has been voted player of the year by his fellow Premier League professionals for his goal-scoring exploits © AFP/File / Lindsey PARNABYLIVERPOOL, United Kingdom, Apr 24 – Liverpool captain Jordan Henderson is confident Mohamed Salah will not be lured away from Anfield in the same manner the Egyptian was tempted from Roma last year.Salah has surpassed all expectations since his then-club record 42 million-euro (£37 million, $52 million) move back to the Premier League last June and will face his old club in the first leg of Liverpool’s Champions League semi-final on Tuesday.last_img read more

U.S. imposes sanctions on top officials

first_imgWASHINGTON – The Bush administration imposed economic sanctions against more than a dozen senior officials of Myanmar on Thursday, condemning the military-run government’s crackdown on protesters. President George W. Bush also urged China to use its influence in the region to find a peaceful end to the standoff. “The world is watching the people of Burma take to the streets to demand their freedom, and the American people stand in solidarity with these brave individuals,” Bush said as the Treasury Department announced the sanctions against officials of Myanmar, also known as Burma. “We feel admiration and compassion for the monks and peaceful protesters calling for democracy,” Bush said. “Every civilized nation has a responsibility to stand up for people suffering under a brutal military regime like the one that has ruled Burma for too long.” National Security Adviser Stephen Hadley met at the White House on Thursday with Chinese Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi. During their meeting, Bush invited Yang to the Oval Office to thank him for helping facilitate U.N. special envoy Ibrahim Gambari’s visit to Myanmar. “President Bush expressed his concern for the people of Burma and asked Minister Yang that China use its influence in the region to help bring a peaceful transition to democracy in Burma,” said Gordon Johndroe, a spokesman for the National Security Council. The White House called on the junta to allow the U.N. special envoy full access to all relevant parties, including those jailed by the junta and religious leaders, while he is in Myanmar, beginning today. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice talked with officials from Myanmar while in New York attending a meeting of Southeast Asian nations. “The U.S. is determined to keep an international focus on the travesty in Burma,” Rice told reporters. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more

This course could be your ticket to ride the waves of success in a dream career

first_imgIs surfing your passion? Do you wish to make a career as a Surf Instructor & Beach Lifeguard?If the answer is yes, then Donegal ETB can provide you with the relevant training and qualifications needed. Donegal ETB are currently offering a full-time training course due to commence on the 16th of October 2017.This Letterkenny-based course is FREE, in fact you may even be entitled to a Training Allowance! The Surf and Beach Lifeguard Course is certified by industry bodies such as the ISA (Irish Surf Association), Royal Life Saving Society UK and the PHECC (Pre-Hospital Emergency Care Council) to name a few. This is a full-time programme of 27 weeks.The beach could be your workplace after completing this courseWhat would I learn?Areas of study include Surf Skills, Surf Instructor Skills, Lifeguarding skills, Aquatic First Aid & Emergency Response, National Vocational Beach Lifeguard qualification, Adventure Activities along with career planning and work experience.What type of job can I apply for? This qualification will allow learners to gain employment as a Surf Instructor or Beach Lifeguard, often learners will progress to further study in Outdoor Activity Instructorship or secure employment in Adventure Centres.Many past learners travel abroad to work in off season and return home to Ireland when the season returns, allowing them fantastic opportunities to work and travel and explore some very exotic and exciting destinations.Why should I study with Donegal ETB?Donegal ETB was one of the first ETB’s to run a Surf and Beach Lifeguard qualification and has enjoyed success with many learners progressing directly into employment or further education.This 27 week course includes a work placement which will allow the learner the opportunity to put their new skills into practice with good opportunity to secure employment. There is an expert team of multidisciplinary tutors with Donegal ETB who will be available to support students at every step of their course.Am I eligible to apply?The course is open to jobseekers and job changers. Applicants should have a QQI level 3 qualification or equivalent.Competent IT skills are essential and you must have an interest and an aptitude for water based sport.Candidates are required to complete a swim test before been invited for interview and must be able to swim 400m in less than 9 minutes.Swim Tests are currently booked for Thursday 28th of September 2017. If you want to be in with a chance to secure a place on this exciting course you need to contact us today to secure a swim test! There are limited spaces, so don’t delay contact us today!How much does it cost?The programme is free to all job seekers and job changers. A Training Allowance will be paid to participants who have an entitlement to a Department of Social Protection payment. Travel and accommodation expenses are payable (Conditions apply).Childcare places are also available through the new Childcare Employment and Training Support (CETS) Scheme.How can I apply, and when can I start?The course will begin 16th of October and run for 27 weeks, including 4 weeks work placement. To find out more, call 074 91 20500 or email coursesdonegaltc@donegaletb.ieWould you like more information?Visit for more detailsContact: Donegal Education and Training BoardLetterkenny Training CentreBallyraine Industrial EstateLetterkennyCo DonegalTel: 074 91 20500E-mail: coursesdonegaltc@donegaletb.ieThis course could be your ticket to ride the waves of success in a dream career was last modified: September 18th, 2017 by Rachel McLaughlinShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Tags:beachcareersDonegal ETBeducationEmploymentlifeguardsurfingtrainingwaterlast_img read more

Joel Campbell is on the verge of completing a permanent move away from Arsenal

first_imgArsenal forward Joel Campbell has agreed personal terms with Frosinone.The newly-promoted Serie A side are looking to bolster their squad this summer as they prepare for life in Italy’s top flight. Where every Premier League club needs to strengthen in January LATEST targets The biggest market value losers in 2019, including Bale and ex-Liverpool star Tony Cascarino backs Everton to sign two strikers for Carlo Ancelotti RANKED Latest Transfer News Top nine Premier League free transfers of the decade IN DEMAND 1 Campbell’s Arsenal career never quite got going despite showing some promise for Costa Rica in the 2014 World Cup Arsenal transfer news LIVE: Ndidi bid, targets named, Ozil is ‘skiving little git’ Man United joined by three other clubs in race for Erling Haaland targets Kevin De Bruyne ‘loves Man City and wants to keep winning’, reveals father Campbell has been on their radar for around two months after they learned he was up for sale.The 26-year-old has struggled to make the grade at Arsenal and new boss Unai Emery is willing to let him go.And, according to Football Italia, Campbell has agreed personal terms with Frosinone ahead of a permanent move.The Costa Rica international is now waiting for the two clubs to agree a fee so he can undergo a medical. LIVING THE DREAM REVEALED moving on Cavani ‘agrees’ to join new club and will complete free transfer next summerlast_img read more

Dodgers: Dodgers dismiss three in front office

first_imgThe Dodgers staged another internal housecleaning Friday, firing vice president of public relations John Olguin, public relations staffer Chris Gutierrez and broadcasting and publications supervisor Paul Gomez. One source with knowledge of the situation, speaking on the condition of anonymity, said the decision to dismiss the three was made by team president Jamie McCourt. McCourt was not made available for comment. Kelly Mullens, a consultant for the crisis public relations firm of Sitrick and Company that the Dodgers have employed since March, spoke on behalf of McCourt. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREWalnut’s Malik Khouzam voted Southern California Boys Athlete of the Week Johnston also held various other key roles in the Clinton-Gore administration during its eight-year run, including as Midwest communications director for the 1996 campaign. Olguin was given the title of vice president when Miereanu was dismissed, but had been with the organization for all but one year since 1991. “I grew up a Dodgers fan, and I will always be a Dodgers fan,” he said. “I wish (owner) Frank (McCourt) and the whole Dodgers organization nothing but the best.” Mullens had served as the club’s de facto communications director since Miereanu’s ouster, but she was told Friday that her services and those of Sitrick won’t be needed much longer. Johnston, who since leaving the White House had been working as vice president of corporate communications for the Rodale, Inc., publishing firm, takes over Oct. 24. Mullens will stay on long enough to help with the transition. Roster moves: The Dodgers cleared three 40-man roster spots, losing catcher Mike Rose when he was claimed off waivers by Tampa Bay and designating minor-league pitchers Ryan Ketchner and Derek Thompson for assignment. What that means for Ketchner and Thompson is that the club has 10 days to either trade them, release them or outright them to the minors if they clear waivers. Rose batted .209 in 15 games for the big club this season, hitting his first major-league home run in the Dodgers’ final game Oct. 2 at San Diego. Tony Jackson,(818) 713-3675 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!center_img “As a matter of policy, the Dodgers do not comment on personnel matters, but I can confirm they are no longer with the organization,” Mullens said. “They made valuable contributions to the organization during their tenures, and we wish them all the best in their future endeavors.” The Dodgers also announced the hiring of UCLA graduate Camille Johnston, a senior White House aide to then-Vice President Al Gore and communications director for Gore’s wife Tipper from 1999-2001, as the club’s new senior vice president of communications. That position had been vacant since March, when Gary Miereanu was fired along with chief marketing officer Lon Rosen. last_img read more

Man who mugged retired Letterkenny postmaster is jailed for four years

first_imgA retired postmaster has told how he cannot go out at night after he was viciously assaulted while walking back to his home on St Patrick’s Day.Ed Margey was punched from behind and repeatedly battered just yards from his home in Letterkenny, on March 17th, 2016. Mr Margey had been at a soccer game with his son, had enjoyed a couple of drinks afterwards and was walking to his home at College Farm around 10.40pm.However, he was jumped on by a man who demanded money from him after being punched in the back of the head.Mr Margey fell forward and his attacker jumped on him and repeatedly punched him while demanding cash.The victim also twisted his ankle and fell to the ground in pain.Mr Margey threw some coins out he had in his pocket but the attacker continued to demand more cash.The victim, who didn’t have his wallet on him, then threw away a €50 note he had in his pocket and his atatcker fled wiht it.He managed to call Gardai and a search was launched for the attacker.From CCTV footage, 2o year old Paddy Sweeney, of Castlerea Prison, was identified and later arrested.While in custody at Letterkenny Garda station, Sweeney was found to have a €50 note in his underwear.Although Mr Margey did not wish to address the court, he was present in court.Detective Garda Joe Kealy said Mr Margey was a retired postmaster who lived near the town who loved to walk in and out of his work on the town’s Main Street.However, since this attack he no longer walked the streets of his town at night.Sweeney also faced another charge of assault causing harm, robbery and making threats to kill from a previous incident.The court heard how on August 4th, 2015, Sweeney called to the home of neighbour Michael Boyce at Meadowbank Park in Letterkenny looking for money.He asked to use the toilet and was allowed into the house but then asked for drink from Mr Boyce.When he was refused, Sweeney jumped on him and, using a kitchen knife he grabbed from the house, stabbed his victim three times.Gardai received an anonymous call and when they arrived at the house, Sweeney had fled over a back wall but was later apprehended.Before he left the home of his victim, Sweeney shouted “I’ll kill you stone dead if you tell them it was me who did this to you.”When arrested he was covered in blood as were the sleeves of his tracksuit.Although Mr Boyce was not in court, he told Gardai how he now suffered from panic attacks, was very nervous and had been forced to move to a different town since the attack.Sweeney took to the witness stand and told his victims that he was deeply sorry for what he had done.Barrister Peter Nolan said Sweeney, who currently has no previous convictions, had a troubled background and he would have witnessed a lot of violence during his upbringing.He pleaded with Judge John Aylmer to give his client some light at the end of the tunnel.Judge Aylmer said he appreciated that these charges were very serious and that he had caused a lot of hurt to his victims.However, he added that Sweeney must get rehabilitation for his drink and drugs addiction.On the charges of assault causing harm, robbery and threats to kill Mr Boyce, he sentenced him to a total of three and half years.On charges of robbery and assault of Mr Margey, Sweeney was sentenced to two years with the last 18 months suspended.Both sentences are to run concurrently meaning that Sweeney will servea total of four years in prison.Man who mugged retired Letterkenny postmaster is jailed for four years was last modified: December 14th, 2017 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:assaultdonegalEd MargeyletterkennyPatrick Sweeneypostmasterlast_img read more

DD Gardening: Filling the garden with scent and perfume

first_imgGardens full of flowers are beautiful but if you get some which kick out wonderful sweet perfumes then you’re onto a winner.Scent can come from the foliage of plants or the flowers themselves. For foliage perfumes think of the common herbs, such as Rosemary, Wormwood, Lavender and Mint.When these are brushed against or bruised they release an attractive aroma which fills the air. For flower perfume think of wonderful Sweet peas, Roses and Jasmines which fill the air with perfume. Advertisement Sweet Peas in SummerBut you should be aiming more clever with your ‘scent creators’, having plants which produce perfume under the midday sun is great but for most of us it’s the evening time when we kick-back and relax in the garden, so why not add in some plants which deliberately release their perfume in the evening time, for this choose the heavenly scented Night Scented Stock and the wonderful Evening Primroses.Night Scented stock don’t waste their time producing perfume when you’re at work….the release it all when you’re there!All these plants are suitable for growing in both pots and in the garden, and are all low maintenance plants. Just plant in good compost and then apply a handful of chicken pellets in the spring and summer or give regular feeds of Tomato food to the ones growing in pots.Many of these aromatic plants bring another benefit to the garden, in the case of Lavender they’re helpful in keeping midges away and for others like Wormwood they help to keep Wasps away.Aromatic Lavender in potsFor plants such as Lavender, Rosemary and other herbs now’s the time to get to your local garden centre and pick up some of these aromatic plants, and plant them into pots or borders in the garden. Advertisement For the Night Scented Stock and Evening Primrose now’s the time to start sowing these into small pots to get them growing for planting out later into the garden, you’ll get 200 plants in a pack for £2, amazing value to fill a garden with wonderful evening perfumes for all the summer drinks in the garden you’re looking forward to.DD Gardening: Filling the garden with scent and perfume was last modified: March 28th, 2018 by Gareth AustinShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:flowersGardeningGareth AustinSCENTspringsummerlast_img read more

Biofuel Reallocation Possible

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest By Todd Neeley DTN Staff Reporter and By Chris Clayton DTN Ag Policy EditorOMAHA (DTN) — Recent media reports outlining a possible agreement on the Renewable Fuel Standard may sound promising for the biofuels industry and agriculture, but Sen. Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, told agriculture journalists on Tuesday that he’ll hold off celebrating just yet.Reuters and Bloomberg recently reported details of a tentative agreement between biofuel and agriculture interests and President Donald Trump following a meeting at the White House.Under the agreement, if true, EPA would account for biofuel gallons waived from the RFS through small-refinery exemptions, in addition to other concessions.However, the agreement could look much different after senators from oil-producing states meet at the White House, perhaps sometime this week.“Before I would say the president’s delivered, and since EPA is writing it, putting it on paper, I’m going to wait and see what EPA does,” Grassley said.“You know what I’ve said about EPA being a tool of big oil. I would speculate that the president’s tired of dealing with this. He’s more or less said so many times. Even back when we were in the White House talking about E15, it just seemed like he could never get to the bottom of the ethanol issue, or he couldn’t satisfy both big oil and the farmers, and he was trying to do that. Maybe that’s where he has some shortcomings trying to satisfy everybody.”Grassley said the administration presented a 13-point plan on the biofuels issue during a recent White House meeting he attended along with other lawmakers.“We went in with a simpler plan that, if it comes out on paper the way that the White House seemed to agree with us, then I would say we have a win, win situation,” Grassley said.“A win for maybe even small refineries legitimately getting a waiver. It’s something that ought to make sure that any waived gallons are put back in. So when the government says we’re going to be allowed to use 15 billion gallons mixed with petroleum, it’s going to be 15 billion gallons. Instead of like with these waivers it would have ended up being 13.6 [billion gallons]. The small refineries have a victory. They can get as many refineries waived that they want to get waived.”The agriculture and biofuels industries were enraged when the Trump administration approved 31 additional small-refinery exemptions on Aug. 9. At the time, many industry representatives began to question Trump’s support for agriculture and biofuels.BIODIESEL SHUT OUTAmong the industries waiting for RFS resolution and relief is biodiesel. To this point the biodiesel industry has been largely shut out of the negotiations but is waiting to see what the White House will eventually propose.“We’re pleased the president has heard the outcry, primarily from the Midwest, both from biofuels producers and those in the ag industry, and is responding to that,” said Kurt Kovarik, vice president of federal affairs for the National Biodiesel Board.NBB leaders and farmer leaders on the American Soybean Association met with reporters Tuesday in Washington, D.C., to talk about the RFS negotiations.The biodiesel board wants to “return integrity to the RFS” blend volumes in the law and set by EPA, as well as ensure biodiesel volumes will continue to grow. The small-refinery exemptions granted have set the biodiesel industry backward.“We are uniquely harmed as a result of those small-refinery exemptions, and we need a specific remedy that makes our industry whole,” Kovarik said.The biodiesel industry grew from less than 100 million gallons produced in 2005 to a peak of 2.9 billion gallons in 2016, Kovarik said. The industry now finds itself spending most of its efforts “fighting an entrenched oil industry” rather than focusing on growing more volume and increasing markets, he said.“We fight every day to maintain the viability of the industry through the policies that are in place now,” Kovarik said. “If they were implemented as Congress intended, we would be growing volumes and fighting less.”TRADE SITUATIONThe trade situation has focused the American Soybean Association directors even more on the small-refinery exemptions for biodiesel because there are significantly more soybean stocks in the country as a result. ASA leaders also are turning more attention to state policies, looking for ways to mimic what Minnesota has done by raising its state mandate to 20% biodiesel blends.“In Iowa, I think this latest round with the SREs and the volume being very negligible, there’s getting more traction from our local representatives and state senators to look at what Minnesota is doing and add on to our tax policy and maybe do a program similar to Minnesota,” said Morey Hill, an Iowa farmer and director for the American Soybean Association.Biodiesel volume set for 2020 is 2.43 billion gallons. If EPA grants another 30 SREs without reallocation, the volume of biodiesel mandated under the RFS would be lower in 2020 than it is now. Under the waivers granted in August, the biodiesel industry lost 250 million gallons of volume.Currently, the biodiesel industry domestic capacity is about 2.6 billion gallons, and the industry is producing at a shade above 70% of capacity. So there is room to increase capacity by nearly 800 million gallons just by existing plants increasing production.Tim Keaveney, executive vice president for Hero Bx, which owns biodiesel plants in Alabama, Iowa, Illinois, New Hampshire and Pennsylvania, said the company invested heavily in biodiesel facilities as a direct result of the RFS. When volumes are lost, “That puts a serious threat on our investment,” Keaveney said.Biodiesel industry leaders also pushed back on the argument by petroleum refiners that any increase in biodiesel volumes would have to be met by imports.“That case simply isn’t the truth,” Keaveney said. “Investments are going forward in the United States and will go forward in the United States as long as there is a policy going forward and investors know what that is. We have the raw materials in the United States to continue to be a growing marketplace.”The petroleum industry and its backers on Capitol Hill have criticized USDA’s involvement in negotiations, particularly USDA Deputy Secretary Steve Censky, who was the long-time CEO of the American Soybean Association before being nominated to his current post. Yet, former lobbyists and attorneys for the refining industry have found their way into EPA posts to influence the direction of the RFS.“USDA has a role in agriculture, right? It’s in the name,” said Donnell Rehagen, CEO of the National Biodiesel Board. “It makes all the sense in the world that the president would rely on USDA to come to the conclusion that he should on policy decisions that affect agriculture and biodiesel.”Rehagen later said the biodiesel industry has been trying to have a conversation with EPA for several years about small-refinery exemptions and implementation of the RFS, but that hasn’t happened.REPORTED AGREEMENTTrump reportedly has tentatively agreed to reallocating biofuel gallons lost to small-refinery exemptions to the RFS over a three-year period, starting in 2020.A report by Bloomberg citing anonymous sources said Trump tentatively agreed to the action as part of a big package for the agriculture and ethanol industries, following a meeting last Thursday with Grassley and fellow Iowa Sen. Joni Ernst, as well as Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds.Reuters reported on Monday the plan would require the EPA to calculate a three-year rolling average of the total biofuels exempted since 2016 via small-refinery exemptions. The agency would then add the average to annual renewable volume obligations in the RFS.In addition, the agreement also would include increasing 2020 RFS volumes by about 1 billion gallons. That would include 500 million for corn-based ethanol and 500 million gallons for biodiesel and other advanced biofuels. In 2016, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit ruled the EPA illegally cut RFS volumes by 500 million gallons.In a letter to Trump last Thursday, a group of eight senators from oil-producing states said they remain opposed to reallocation.“Any reallocation of volumes from statutory small-refinery exemptions or increase in renewable volume obligations for the 2020 compliance year would have a costly impact on consumers, the American refining sector, and thousands of well-paying, blue-collar jobs in our home states,” the senators wrote.The letter was signed by Sens. Ted Cruz, James Inhofe, Pat Toomey, James Risch, John Barrasso, Michael Enzi, Shelley Moore Capito and John Kennedy.Frank Maisano, senior principal at Bracewell LLP in Washington, which represents refining interests, told DTN the senators are on tap to meet with Trump sometime this week.PRESIDENT SURPRISEDGrassley said that, based on his conversations with the administration, he believes Trump was surprised at rural America’s reaction to the latest 31 waivers.“So then he asked people close to agriculture and close to ethanol to respond to what he thought was a legitimate complaint, that he was hearing one thing from soybean people, another thing from corn people, another thing from ethanol, and ethanol industry has two or three different points of view, and with biodiesel,” Grassley said.“So you got different people pounding the president. He said, ‘I need to know what the industry wants. So can you get the industry together?’”All sides were brought to the table and within 48 hours came up with something that was presented to the president, Grassley said.Todd Neeley can be reached at todd.neeley@dtn.comFollow him on Twitter @toddneeleyDTNChris Clayton can be reached at Chris.Clayton@dtn.comFollow him on Twitter @ChrisClaytonDTN(AG)© Copyright 2019 DTN/The Progressive Farmer. All rights reserved.last_img read more