THE ESSENTIAL PERSPECTIVE Winter 2018
Excess Grain, Falling Prices Experts Predict Long-term Economic Problems Ahead; Higher Biofuels Blends Needed to Use Large Carryover
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STILL NEVER SATISFIED
P O E T. C O M
Ethan Harsh has seen how increased carryouts have impacted farming over the past several years. At his family’s farm in central Ohio, they have switched some acreage from corn to soybeans.
photo by Wes Mosley Photography
FEATURES 12 The RFS Works Today
24 Project LIBERTY Achieves Cellulosic Biofuel Breakthrough
Excess Grain, Falling Prices Experts Predict Long-term Economic Problems Ahead; Higher Biofuels Blends Needed to Use Large Carryover
42 POET’s CO2 Group Focuses on Transportation Efficiency, Customer Service to Deliver Quality Product
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Subscribe to and read a digital edition of Vital. On cover: Corn is harvested on Nov. 15, 2017, in Emmetsburg, Iowa. Photo by Greg Latza
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2017: A Big Year for Biofuels by Jeff Broin, Executive Chairman and CEO of POET This past year, despite fierce opposition from Big Oil, the
ensure more consumers have access to E15 across the U.S.
biofuels industry had some mighty wins.
These assurances are a victory for our industry and for
Thanks to the tireless work of our bipartisan group of biofuels
agriculture. They come at a pivotal time when family farms
champions in Congress, along with grassroots efforts across our
are struggling with commodity prices that are below the cost
industry, we secured several sweeping victories.
of production. We need to continue to work together to create
The Trump administration ruled in our favor and against the
markets for higher blends that will create more demand for ag
refining industry in key decisions in 2017. The Environmental
commodities and help stabilize rural America.
Protection Agency (EPA) maintained the Renewable Fuel
We wouldn’t be where we are today without the efforts of so
Standard (RFS) Point of Obligation and increased the 2018
many of you. Here’s a snapshot of the impact you made in 2017:
biofuel volumes over its original proposal.
More than 7,100 hand-written comments were submitted to the
With these decisions, President Trump has followed through
EPA from POET team members during the RVO comment period.
on his campaign promise to support biofuels and the RFS,
Growth Energy also had several campaigns over the past year.
reaffirming to millions of voters across the heartland that this
During the RVO comment period, 706 individuals — including
administration values the importance of renewable fuels to our
many of you — sent 815 comments. For point of obligation, 528
economy and our energy independence.
individuals sent 2,234 comments. Thanks to your comments and letters on key issues, our voices
A statement from the White House proclaimed: “President Donald J. Trump promised rural America that he would protect the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS), and has never wavered from that promise. The Trump administration will protect the RFS and ensure that our nation’s hardworking farmers continue to fuel America.” And in an October 2017 letter to Senate biofuels champions, EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt rejected several oil industry proposals that would have halted our progress. In that letter, he also set forth an agenda to work with the industry moving
are being heard in Washington. But it’s clear that our fight isn’t over. While we have the passion and perseverance — and the truth — on our side, the oil and gas industry continues to make headwinds. We need to stay engaged and ensure our elected officials in Washington stand up to those who seek to undermine American-made biofuels. We need to stay focused and keep up our efforts to stay in this important battle with our opponent. Our policy priorities in 2018 include securing a year-round fix for RVP that will expand E15 markets. We also want to ensure the path to increased 2019 biofuel volumes remains clear, including cellulosic biofuel. We need to work to help the EPA understand the importance of a viable starch-based industry and aggressive targets for cellulosic and advanced biofuels to stabilize the Midwest economy and to enhance public health and national security. Many of you have been part of this battle for years, and I want to thank you for being involved. You are the reason we have these victories to celebrate, and with your continued hard work and support we will have even more victories in 2018!
forward. He committed to working with Congress on exploring a Reid Vapor Pressure (RVP) waiver for E15. This waiver is critical to create a more stable environment for mid-level blends and to
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2017 has been a year full of wins for the biofuels industry Thanks to collective industry voices
our efforts to bring mid-level biofuel
this commitment during a recent
and to our U.S. Senate champions
blends to consumers.
town hall event with local producers
— particularly Senators Joni Ernst (R-Iowa), Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), Deb Fischer (R-Neb.) and John Thune (R-S.D.) — we have made great progress. These
alongside POET to secure a stronger and more influential position with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Trump Administration. Having strong Senate leaders has also enabled our industry to foster and grow new relationships with other members of Congress on both sides of the aisle. Look no further than the EPA’s recent action that officially denied the petition to shift the Point of Obligation to see how the work of these
efforts have made a difference. This petition would have moved the Point of Obligation from oil refiners to fuel retailers, potentially derailing
in Nevada, Iowa. He also said the
This is a crucial
EPA will not take any formal action
victory in our effort
(Renewable Identification Number).
to bring more biofuel
to tie exported ethanol with a RIN
options to consumers
While we still have work to do, Pruitt’s
show the traction we have gained so far, thanks to the collective work of our
and to give farmers
Senate champions and stakeholders.
a solution to the
farmers across the nation look to
growing ag crisis.
amidst depressed grain prices, our
tighten their pocketbooks even more industry and our Senate champions
Furthermore, EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt has outlined several additional commitments related to the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) and the biofuels industry. In an October letter sent to Senate biofuels champions,
This momentum is important. As
noted the EPA is open to working with Congress to see if E15 could be sold year-round. Pruitt reiterated
importance of using more biofuels to solve this ag crisis. Increasing the public awareness of biofuels has not been easy and has required the industry to come together in an organized and collaborative way. Fuels America, Growth Energy and POET PAC — the industry’s largest political action committee — jointly defeated Big Oil in its attempts to gain traction with this Administration. Our industry’s efforts give our advocates on Capitol Hill ammunition to fight back against an industry that is too used to having its way in Washington, D.C. Thanks again to Senators Grassley, Ernst, Fischer and Thune for your leadership and continued support. We look forward to building upon the success of 2017 throughout the upcoming year!
2018 EPA RENEWABLE VOLUME OBLIGATIONS The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released
its final rule for the 2018 Renewable Volume Obligation
“Biofuels are a critical component of the U.S. fuel supply,
(RVO). This number determines the minimum amount of
and President Trump and the EPA confirmed that fact.
renewable fuel to be blended into the U.S. fuel supply for a
With starch-based biofuels remaining at full volumes,
Americans will continue to benefit from cleaner air by
The final numbers brought mixed reaction from
replacing harmful cancer causing chemicals in gasoline,
industry leaders. While industry officials and lawmakers
and stronger energy security by offering homegrown fuels
were pleased with the 15 billion gallon requirement for
that cost less,” said Broin.
starch-based biofuels, they expressed disappointment that
“Unfortunately, this final rule fails to recognize the
advanced biofuel amounts remain relatively flat.
enormous opportunity before us to harness our nation’s
Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) said the final rule “does
vast cellulosic resources for higher-performing and lower-
little to encourage investment and growth in advanced
cost fuels. POET remains committed to seeing the U.S. lead
the world in cellulosic biofuel production. All groups that
Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds said, “This announcement shows
support cleaner-burning, renewable fuels should work
that EPA Administrator Pruitt is listening to our concerns
together to help the EPA understand why a viable starch
and taking them into consideration. But it also shows that
industry and aggressive targets for cellulosic and advanced
we have more work to do.”
biofuels are essential to safeguarding public health and
Thanks to our grassroots efforts and our bipartisan
improving the health of our planet,” Broin said.
coalition of lawmakers, the EPA did increase the total
number of cellulosic biofuel gallons from the proposed
understanding of cellulose in advance of the proposed 2019
amount for 2018. But there is still a need to push for higher
volumes. Where others have seen challenges in cellulosic
biodiesel and cellulosic amounts.
biofuels, POET sees opportunity.
POET CEO Jeff Broin also expressed concern about the
The total number of renewable fuels is also higher than it
signal the final numbers for cellulosic biofuels sends to the
was last year. Here’s a look at the final numbers:
2018 FINAL RULE
15 BILLION GALLONS
15 BILLION GALLONS
4.29 BILLION GALLONS
4.24 BILLION GALLONS
(including 288 million gallons of cellulosic)
(including 238 million gallons of cellulosic)
2.1 BILLION GALLONS
2.1 BILLION GALLONS
19.29 BILLION GALLONS
19.24 BILLION GALLONS
of renewable fuel
of renewable fuel
POET PAC It’s more than a contribution – it’s an investment in the future of biofuels. The fight continues for the biofuels
never been a more important time
supported and worked with this
industry in Washington and around
to reinforce rural America’s role in
industry – to make an investment so
the country. Our old adversary, Big
producing clean, renewable energy.
that we can boldly spread the truth
Oil, is not just playing to win; it is
The only way to avoid the pending
about the benefits of biofuels and
also trying to decimate agriculture as
ag crisis is to come together and let
crush the lies pushed forward by Big
we know it. We can’t and won’t back
Washington know we need a larger
share of the fuel market.
How can you invest in the future of biofuels? By joining POET PAC today.
Rural America has a powerful
voice when we decide to use it. This
incomes and land values, there has
is why we need you – those who have
What is POET PAC? POET PAC is a non-restricted Federal Political Action Committee (PAC) formed to give our industry a voice in the fight.
The PAC educates and pushes policy leaders to be champions for our industry and for the future of biofuels.
POET PAC is consistently recognized as one of the most well-organized and effective advocacy tools in Washington.
POET PAC provides strategic support to federal political candidates who: Serve on Congressional committees that oversee agriculture, energy and financial issues that may impact our industry. Endorse issues important to the biofuel industry.
YOU BET THEY DO.
Do PAC dollars work?
We have been able to grow political support for renewable fuels and push back on many attempts to kill the 5 billion bushels of corn we draw on as an industry.
Here are a few of our recent successes: Shut down the attempt by New York billionaire Carl Icahn to change the Renewable Fuel Standardâ€™s (RFS) Point of Obligation, which would have derailed our efforts to engage fuel retailers and bring mid-level biofuel blends to consumers. Equipped industry and political champions to fight against proposed changes to the RFS that would have otherwise limited or even stopped any roll out of E15. Maintained 15 billion gallons of starch-based biofuels and increased the amount of cellulosic biofuel from the Environmental Protection Agencyâ€™s original proposal in 2017. Thirty-eight senators supported us and a strong 2018 Renewable Volume Obligation.
How do I join? www.poetpac.com
Contributions to POET PAC are not tax-deductible for federal income tax purposes. Contributions to POET PAC will be used in connection with federal elections and are subject to the limits and prohibitions of federal law. The maximum an individual may contribute to POET PAC is $5,000 per year ($10,000 per couple). Corporate and foreign national contributions are not permitted under federal law. Please make checks payable to POET PAC. Federal law requires us to use our best efforts to obtain and report the name, mailing address, occupation and name of employer for each individual whose contributions aggregate in excess of $200 per calendar year. Your contribution to POET PAC is strictly voluntary.
PAID FOR BY POET PAC
THE ESSENTIAL PERSPECTIVE
Reduce Reduce Reduce Reuse Reuse Reuse Recycle Recycle Recycle
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POETâ€™s patented raw starch hydrolysis process converts starch to sugar with a proprietary blend of enzymes and eliminates the need to heat the corn. Other biofuel producers use a POETâ€™s patented raw starch hydrolysis process converts starch to sugar with a proprietary jet cooker, which breaks down starch with heat. The BPX process reduces energy use in blend of enzymes andpercent, eliminates the need to heat the corn. Other biofueland producers use a each plant by 8-15 resulting in less natural gas consumption greenhouse POETâ€™s patented raw starch hydrolysis process converts starch to sugar with a proprietary jetgas cooker, which breaks down starch with heat. The BPX process reduces energy use in emissions. blend of enzymes and eliminates the need to heat the corn. Other biofuel producers use a each plant by 8-15 percent, resulting in less natural gas consumption and greenhouse jet cooker, which breaks down starch with heat. The BPX process reduces energy use in LOCATIONS: gas emissions. All each plant by 8-15 percent, resulting in less natural gas consumption and greenhouse gas emissions. LOCATIONS: All LOCATIONS: All
This energy generation system reduces greenhouse gas emissions and reliance on the electrical energy grid. The process uses steam in a This energy generation system reduces greenhouse emissions and turbine to generate electricity to run the plant andgas recovers waste reliance on thethe electrical energy grid. The process uses steam in in the a energy from turbine to meet additional energy demands This energy generation system reduces greenhouse gas emissions and turbine toproduction generate electricity to run the plant and recovers waste biofuel process. reliance on the electrical energy grid. The process uses steam in a energy from the turbine to meet additional energy demands in the turbine to generate electricity to run the plant and recovers waste LOCATIONS: Alexandria, biofuel production process. Caro (currently constructing), Chancellor (currently energy from the turbine to meetMarion, additional energy demandsand in the constructing), Fostoria, Leipsic, North Manchester Portland biofuel production process. LOCATIONS: Alexandria, Caro (currently constructing), Chancellor (currently constructing), Fostoria, Leipsic, Marion, North Manchester and Portland LOCATIONS: Alexandria, Caro (currently constructing), Chancellor (currently constructing), Fostoria, Leipsic, Marion, North Manchester and Portland
During fermentation, yeast consumes simple sugars found in the corn, producing carbon dioxide and ethanol. For each pound of simple sugars consumed, During yeast simple sugars found in the corn, produced. POET captures the CO2, about fermentation, a half-pound each ofconsumes ethanol and CO2 are producing carbon dioxide and ethanol. Forthe each pound of simple sugars consumed, which otherwise would be released into atmosphere, and liquefies During fermentation, yeast consumes simple sugars found in the corn,it for about a half-pound of ethanol and CO2 are produced. POET captures the CO2, transportation to each market. producing carbon dioxide and ethanol. For each pound of simple sugars consumed, which otherwise would be released into the atmosphere, and liquefies it for captures about a half-pound each of ethanol and CO2 are produced. LOCATIONS: Bingham Lake, Fostoria, Glenville, Laddonia, POET Macon, Marion,the CO2, transportation to market. whichResearch otherwise wouldand be released POET Center Preston into the atmosphere, and liquefies it for transportation to market. LOCATIONS: Bingham Lake, Fostoria, Glenville, Laddonia, Macon, Marion, POET Research Center and Preston LOCATIONS: Bingham Lake, Fostoria, Glenville, Laddonia, Macon, Marion, POET Research Center and Preston
POETâ€™s Total Water Recovery technology continuously recycles water used in the plant, eliminating liquid discharge from all our bioprocessing centers. POETâ€™s Total Water Recovery technology continuously water used per As a result, POET plants require on average less thanrecycles 2.5 gallons of water in gallon the plant, eliminating liquid discharge from all our bioprocessing centers. ethanol. Other biofuel producerscontinuously discard the wastewater. POETâ€™sof Total Water Recovery technology recycles water used As a result, POET plants require on average less than 2.5 gallons of water per in the plant, eliminating liquid discharge from all our bioprocessing centers. LOCATIONS: All gallon of ethanol. Other biofuel producers discard the wastewater. As a result, POET plants require on average less than 2.5 gallons of water per gallon of ethanol. Other biofuel producers discard the wastewater. LOCATIONS: All LOCATIONS: All
The Works Today RFS Is ‘Absolutely Necessary’ to Support Growth of Renewable Fuels, Pathway to Higher Blends by Peter Harriman
Everything changed. But nothing changed.
At the time it was created, the RFS
refiners to blend biofuel with gasoline
was considered necessary to break
and demonstrate compliance with
up the long-held monopoly at the
Renewable Identification Numbers
pump. The plan was to force reluctant
(RINs) is an economic hardship on
partners — oil refiners who saw
refiners that also brought into being
every gallon of biofuel as reducing
a new commodity market in RINs, a
the market for a gallon of gasoline
market that is subject to manipulation.
— to join with the biofuels industry
Almost all gasoline now contains 10
and hit targets for expanding the
percent biofuels, E10. But for the use of
use of renewable fuels and to spur
renewable fuels to continue to expand
the development of biofuel produced
and reach RFS goals, renewable fuels
producers need higher percentages
Today, the results of the policy are
of E15 and more to counter sluggish
benefited from a federal policy that
widespread and include movement
growth in the overall demand for
unleashed the industry to expand
gasoline that one oil producer, Shell,
to more than 19 billion gallons and
prosperity for rural America.
and finance giant Goldman Sachs
create nearly 400,000 jobs, according
Ten years on, the RFS is attacked
expect to peak within the next decade.
as being well intentioned but based
Association (NCGA), the fundamental
on faulty fuel demand projections.
dragging its heels again. It is throwing
situation that led to the policy being
Critics say its goals of a cleaner
up roadblocks to the growth of
environment have been accomplished
through other means, specifically a
it seems, is to freeze the biofuels
and the renewable fuels industry
new reliance on an abundant supply
industry like a bee in amber at E10.
continues to be held together by the
of natural gas made possible by the
As it seeks to limit the expansion
Renewable Fuels Standard, or RFS.
development of hydraulic fracturing
of renewable fuels, the structural
Congress established the RFS in
and horizontal drilling, and that the
advantages built over more than
2005 and expanded it two years later
goal of energy independence has
a century that give the petroleum
to achieve a reduction in greenhouse
come close to being realized with an
industry a virtual monopoly as the
gases from the use of cleaner-burning
increase in domestic oil production,
primary purveyor of fuel will never
biofuels as a component of motor fuel
rather than a greater use of renewable
and to lessen reliance on imported oil
adherence to the RFS.
by increasing the supply of domestic
architecture of the RFS that requires
THE ESSENTIAL PERSPECTIVE
biofuels would power every vehicle
we have,” says Bob Casper, President
from sale in as many as two-thirds
fuels will be major contributors to our
of POET Ethanol Products.
of markets during summer months
lower-carbon future,” says Kyle Gilley,
It is cleaner burning; the supply is
Senior Vice President of External
reliable; and it offers consumers the
Pressure (RVP) measures the rate at
Affairs & Communications, POET.
lowest cost octane on the market. It
which emissions from evaporated
allows fuel to be sold at three cents
gasoline add to ground-level ozone.
restrictions, E15 has faced headwinds.
to 10 cents less per gallon, according
The EPA created a waiver for E10 fuel
Casper cites the example of Dallas,
to Chris Bliley, Vice President for
because its cleaner tailpipe emissions
Regulatory Affairs for Growth Energy.
offset any higher evaporation rate.
reformulated gasoline so it has no
However, the RFS is still needed to
But it has not yet extended the
issues with RVP emissions. E15 was
thought that until they didn’t,” says Casper. Retailers were slow to invest in the infrastructure to sell E15. “They
We need to actively educate policy makers on the benefits realized by consumers and rural America by upholding the RFS. A lower-carbon future creates a sustainable environmental and economic future for our country.
want to put it off until the last possible moment.” The RFS is also necessary to give biofuel companies and fuel retailers assurance there will be a market for cellulosic and advanced biofuels if they make the major investment to produce them and sell them, according to Casper. “Nobody would take that on without the RFS.” The RFS, though, is currently caught in an unfavorable cycle where the
offset petroleum’s edge.
waiver to E15. A bill that would have
factors slowing the rate of renewable
“If there wasn’t an RFS, the market
rescinded the regulation prohibiting
fuels’ growth are an incentive to
would be controlled by oil companies,”
E15 sales in summer failed to get out
the EPA to roll back the RFS annual
of the Senate Environment and Public
Works committee in 2017.
While “in the past year and this year
Agency (EPA) in 2012 approved E15 for
we are seeing record consumption of
use in vehicles built in 2001 and after,
RFS targets, however, may prompt
gasoline,” according to Bliley, the EPA
following years of testing. Growth
Congress to act on the measure.
2018 targets for the use of biofuels are
Energy’s Bliley says E15 is sold in
“We need to actively educate policy
virtually flat. The EPA set the 2018
1,200 locations in 29 states. “Now we
goal for all renewable fuels at 19.29
are starting to see the takeoff of E15.”
by consumers and rural America
billion gallons, a barely detectable
But for the momentum to continue,
by upholding the RFS. A lower-
increase from the 19.28 BG level in
the EPA needs to strike provisions
carbon future creates a sustainable
2017. Advanced biofuel saw a similar
that limit the sale of E15 by retail gas
environmental and economic future
incremental bump, to 4.29 BG from
stations year round. E15 is banned
for our country. Starch and cellulosic
4.24. The target for cellulosic biofuel
What is the RFS? The Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) is Americaâ€™s most successful domestic energy policy that is working to lower our dependence on foreign oil, keep our air clean and provide consumers with more affordable fuel options that are also good for engine performance. Since its authorization under the Energy Policy Act of 2005 and expansion under the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007, the RFS has given homegrown biofuels a chance to compete at the pump, allowing consumers to select from a range of options at the gas station, including blends containing clean, homegrown biofuels. Any effort to repeal, change or modify the administration of the RFS would hinder progress already made and slow future growth.
THE ESSENTIAL PERSPECTIVE
Benefits of the RFS Create jobs and grow the U.S. economy
Protect the environment and our air
Increase Americaâ€™s energy security
Expand fuel options for U.S. drivers
Drive investment in research and development in starch and cellulosic biofuels SOURCE: GROWTH ENERGY
There is a way to counter this,
the RFS today, from saving consumers
million gallons in 2017 to 288 MG in
however. If refiners would blend
money to driving rural growth and
2018, reflecting the slow development
more E15 they would have sufficient
protecting the environment, and it’s
of commercial production of cellulosic
RINs to meet their EPA goals without
clear that this is a successful energy
having to purchase any, according to
policy. In order to ensure these
But the RFS enjoyed a big win when
Casper. “For $750 million you couldn’t
benefits continue, we need to maintain
Congress denied a refiner’s request
put more fuel in the system to solve
the RFS with the goal of continuing
that?” he asks.
to stimulate growth in cellulosic and
The RFS remains a sound way to
advanced biofuels,” Gilley says.
Obligation (RVO) lifted from them and instead imposed on retailers. “The EPA came in and said that’s not happening. There was absolutely a backlash from retailers,” according to Mike O’Brien, Vice President of Market Development for Growth Energy. To
compliance with EPA targets for using renewable fuels, a RIN is attached to every gallon of biofuel. RINs can be carried over for a year but are eventually retired when the biofuel is used. Retailers, not bound by the RVO, can separate RINs from the biofuel they purchase to sell to consumers
Just look at the extensive benefits of the RFS today, from saving consumers money to driving rural growth and protecting the environment, and it’s clear that this is a successful energy policy. In order to ensure these benefits continue, we need to maintain the RFS with the goal of continuing to stimulate growth in cellulosic and advanced biofuels
and enjoy a windfall profit by selling those RINs to refiners that have not met their RVO. O’Brien explains how it works. “The RIN is discounted from the E85 price.
achieve the policy goals of a cleaner
The RFS, says O’Brien, “is absolutely
The retailer has a price advantage and
environment and energy security that
necessary. It is our route to the market
an opportunity to tuck that margin in
Congress sought when it established
through our competition. … Every
his pocket. A lot of E85 gets blended as
the RFS, and the RFS continues to be
step of the way they fight us.
essential to allow renewable fuels
“Five or six years from now, there
Refiners say they have to pass
to combat petroleum’s monopoly. It
might be a different fuel, E25 or
through to consumers the cost of
supports the continued development
E30. Starting at E15 today lays the
purchasing RINs, a cost estimated
of advanced and cellulosic fuels
groundwork to pull the trigger when
at $750 million. They also worry
and the growth of renewable fuels
E30 comes into the marketplace.”
speculators can corner the RINs
market and drive up the price.
“Just look at the extensive benefits of
THE ESSENTIAL PERSPECTIVE
GET GROUNDED IN THE FACTS
ENVIRONMENTAL AND HEALTH BENEFITS OF BIOFUELS A BETTER FUEL FOR A BRIGHTER FUTURE
REDUCES GREENHOUSE GAS EMISSIONS According to the United States Department of Agriculture, starch-based biofuel reduces greenhouse gas emissions by 43 percent compared to conventional gasoline, would further reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 50 percent by 2022 and has the potential to reduce emissions by as much as 76 percent. Cellulosic biofuel has a greenhouse gas reduction of 85-95 percent over 2005 gasoline baseline.
14.7 - 4.9 kgCO2e/mmBtu
*kilograms of carbon dioxide-equivalent emissions per million british thermal units of finished fuel
GET GROUNDED IN THE FACTS
COUNTERACTS DAMAGE FROM FOSSIL FUELS The University of Montana found that the extraction and production of fossil fuels was responsible for destroying 7.4 million acres of vegetation from 2000-2013.
DECREASES GROUND LEVEL OZONE Independent environmental research indicates that replacing E10 with E15 will cause a decrease in emissions of ozoneforming compounds and carbon monoxide, and no change in nitrogen oxides (NOx) emissions.
CUTS TAILPIPE EMISSIONS According to the Biotechnology Innovation Organization, during the summer months alone E15 can reduce greenhouse gas emissions equivalent to taking 2.1 million vehicles oﬀ the road.
LOWERS PUBLIC HEALTH RISKS In addition to the environmental beneﬁts, the Energy and Environmental Studies Institute states that E15 can lower the public health impacts from transportation emissions, including reducing risks associated with cancer and asthma.
THE ESSENTIAL PERSPECTIVE
PRIME THE PUMP
E15: ‘A real paradigm shift for the fuel industry’
by Janna Farley If there’s one word to describe
But one thing hadn’t changed in
Sheetz, it’s choice.
decades: the gasoline. Sheetz offered
Since Sheetz, a chain of family-
the same kind of gasoline as other
provide E15 access and assists early
owned convenience stores based in
retail adopters of higher-level biofuel
Altoona, Pa., was founded in 1952,
blends by awarding grants to help
choice has always been central to the
“We have an amazing selection
with their initial investments in
of made-to-order food, ready-to-eat
infrastructure. The biofuels industry
In the 1950s, Sheetz was the first
food, snacks and beverages to choose
has invested nearly $70 million in this
convenience store to be open on
from inside the store, so we thought
Sundays in Pennsylvania and, later
it was time we improved our offers
“We’re always looking for ways to
on, stay open 24/7. In the 1970s,
on the forecourt as well,” says Mike
give our customers the best product
Lorenz, Executive Vice President of
available on the market,” Lorenz says.
gasoline. In the 1980s, Sheetz took
Petroleum Supply for Sheetz.
“E15 is another way for us to give
consumer choice up a notch with
the introduction of its made-to-order
Sheetz started offering its customers
menu. Today, Sheetz customers can
E15, which Sheetz has branded as
Offering E15 isn’t just about choice
choose what they want – and how
– it’s also about offering a good value
they want it – on a variety of menu
The Prime the Pump initiative was
items from sandwiches to appetizers
instrumental in the decision to offer
“We like that we can sell it for less
E15 to Sheetz customers, Lorenz says.
than 87 gas,” Lorenz says. “Consumers
our customers a new alternative fuel
are very attentive to fuel price, and we thought that would be a driver to getting their attention to E15. Saving even just a few cents a gallon can change their buying behavior, so we’re currently selling it for 5 cents less than 87.” E15 has really grabbed the attention of consumers, and the spectacular growth of E15 is fueled by consumer demand for quality, cost effective and environmentally friendly solutions, says Growth Energy CEO Emily Skor. “The 21st century consumer is always on the lookout for products that can power their routines while also making the world just a little bit
PRIME THE PUMP
Sheetz Fast Facts Headquartered in Altoona, Pa., the family owned and operated company has 564 stores in six states (Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Virginia, Maryland, Ohio and North Carolina) and 18,000 employees. Serves 1.5 million customers per day 40 new and rebuilt stores in 2017
We’re always looking for ways to give our customers the best product available on the market. E15 is another way for us to give our customers a new alternative fuel option.
better,” Skor says. “E15 provides a prime opportunity for fuel retailers and convenience stores to turn this important segment of the population from pass-through consumers to loyal customers.” With 211 of its 564 stores offering E15, Sheetz is currently the largest retailer of E15 fuel. “Consumers who buy it, like it,” Lorenz says. “It’s cheaper, it’s cleaner burning, it’s higher octane, which is
Total yearly sales of nearly $6 billion Ranked No. 56 on Forbes list of America’s largest private companies Listed in 2016 as a Fortune Best Workplace for Women (Top 12) Selected by Fortune in 2016 as a Best Workplace for Millennials (Top 35)
better performing,” he says. “It’s a real paradigm shift for the fuel industry.”
Named by Fortune in 2016 as one of the Best Workplaces in Retail (Top 10) Named one of the Best Places to Work in Pennsylvania, Maryland, Virginia, Ohio and North Carolina
Mike Lorenz, Executive Vice President of Petroleum Supply for Sheetz
Convenience Store Decisions named Sheetz the 2017 Convenience Store Chain of the Year, the second time Sheetz was honored with the award
THE ESSENTIAL PERSPECTIVE
How Can Satellites Improve Crops? by Brian Hefty
Recently, an ag tech company called Farmers Edge made an
yields as they harvested. Once harvest is completed, this data
announcement that as part of their services, they would be able
gets thrown into a map, so a farmer can now see grain yield in
to provide as frequent as daily satellite imagery to farmers. For
each area of every field.
the first time, a farmer will be able to look at a satellite image of each field almost every 24 hours.
This is usually when I start getting phone calls. “Brian, why do you think this area of my field yielded so poorly?” The problem
Before I explain its potential benefits, picture the size you think
is once the crop is off the field, it’s pretty difficult to figure out
a satellite should be. When I ask people how big they think these
what went wrong earlier in the season. That’s where satellite
satellites are, I typically get responses anywhere from one to
imagery comes in. If you can see poor spots in fields mid-season,
three times as big as a car. The interesting thing to me is these
you now have the ability to go to that area and investigate what’s
satellites are extremely small, measuring roughly 12 inches
long by 4 inches high by 4 inches wide, plus some very small “wings” that stick out on each side. Just like how computers have
Technology is coming soon that will allow this imagery to be
shrunk in size, so have satellites. The cost has also come down
refined even further. For example, I talked to a company who
dramatically, so now it is economical for a farmer to get satellite
said they are able to detect certain weeds in a pasture using
satellite imagery. At some point, farmers may be able to get reports along with their imagery telling them if the poor spots
The big question is, how can a farmer use this technology
are the result of low fertility, disease, insects or something else.
to improve crop yields? As I see it right now, it’s kind of like
But for now, scouting those problem areas is the only way to
getting your harvest maps in-season. Here’s what I mean:
start narrowing down issues.
Approximately 20 years ago, yield monitors became available for combines. These monitors allowed farmers to see live grain
Many types of satellites serve various purposes, but for me, the thought of daily satellite imagery is exciting. Going forward, it will lead to higher yields, lower costs (since imagery may allow farmers to treat certain areas of fields rather than whole fields), better use of resources and increased net farm income.
IS MADE HERE.
For years, we’ve been told that cellulosic biofuel is a “fantasy fuel.” And it is.
And now it’s going to change the world. For real.
So we’ve spent a decade planning, researching, and working hard to make that fantasy a reality. ®
PROJECT LIBERTY ACHIEVES CELLULOSIC BIOFUEL BREAKTHROUGH 24
Having overcome the pretreatment hurdle, the Project LIBERTY team is focused on ramping up all operations by Susanne Retka Schill | photos by Greg Latza
THE ESSENTIAL PERSPECTIVE
biofuels facility –– is picking up steam. The critical pretreatment challenge has been solved, a new on-site
The potential for the starch industry was realized because it was a priority for policy makers. We need that same level of support for cellulose.
facility is under construction and with sustained runs at the site today, crews are devoting energy to downstream processes with an eye toward high-capacity operation. While 140 miles to the southeast, DuPont Industrial Biosciences is putting its cellulosic plant up for sale, in Emmetsburg, Iowa, the community is noticing the increased
and advanced biofuels are so pivotal to supporting rural economic development, mitigating climate change and promoting U.S. energy independence.”
pace of progress for POET-DSM’s Project LIBERTY. “When
CLEARING THE PRETREATMENT HURDLE
I talk at meetings these days, people say they’re noticing the trucks rolling,” said Jason Martin, General Manager at Project LIBERTY. “When we have a nice day of operations you can see us chew through a row of bales.” A new pretreatment technology has been installed and is progressing well, according to Martin. “We’ve achieved 80 percent uptime, and the availability is actually higher.”
Getting the pretreatment system working properly has
He described the new system as an “elegant solution that
been a big hurdle. Sustained runs were limited on the old
literally allowed us to shut down a whole building’s worth
system but now Pierson says they have moved on.
of mechanical equipment.” Project LIBERTY — a joint
Pretreatment is a critical part of the cellulosic biofuels
venture between POET and the Dutch biotechnology and
process. Pretreatment is the first stage in production,
life sciences company DSM — is located next to POET -
where the feedstock (corn cobs, leaves, husk) is processed
Emmetsburg, a 55-million gallon per year starch plant. This
so that enzymes and yeast can access the cellulosic sugars
model allows for operational and cost efficiencies.
and ferment them into biofuel.
Rod Pierson is pleased with the increased pace of progress
For Martin and his team at the plant, getting the
at Project LIBERTY. As Senior Vice President & General
pretreatment system up and running has opened up a
Manager at POET Design & Construction, he’s led the team
degree of freedom for operations.
that’s worked through the challenges of commissioning the
“We’re finding new opportunities now,” he said. With all
first 20 million-gallon-per-year cellulosic biofuels facility.
unit operations functioning, he explained, they can now see
But while POET-DSM is making progress on the technical
where one may be outrunning another. While fermentation
side of cellulosic production, the industry still faces hurdles
and distillation are familiar operations to starch plants, not
on the policy front. The Environmental Protection Agency
only is biomass pretreatment totally new, but so are the
(EPA)’s 2018 Renewable Volume Obligations (RVOs) for
systems to handle the different byproduct streams.
cellulosic and advanced biofuels came in lower than expected. Industry leaders expressed concerns that stagnant final RVOs will stall advances in technology and limit investor confidence. “Having a consistent policy environment to incubate the industry is a big concern,” noted Jeff Lautt, President and Chief Operating Officer for POET. “The potential for the starch industry was realized because it was a priority for policy makers. We need that same level of support for cellulose. Industry groups need to work together to help the EPA understand why aggressive targets for cellulosic
ON-SITE ENZYME PRODUCTION FACILITY WILL BRING BENEFITS At the same time as the commissioning process gains momentum, the Project LIBERTY team is implementing improved enzymes from DSM.
Biomass is processed in this piece of equipment by North Carolina-based Vecoplan.
Mike Carpenter, Project Engineer, and Jason Martin, General Manager at Project LIBERTY, discuss updates at the facility.
THE ESSENTIAL PERSPECTIVE
“We drove down the cost of enzyme production, which in
An on-site enzyme production facility is expected to bring
turn also drives down the overall cost of cellulosic biofuels,”
several benefits. Using local feedstocks for the substrate
said Hans van der Sluijs, Business Director North America,
(the substance from which the enzyme is produced) has
DSM Bio-Based Products & Services. “Other benefits in
inherent efficiencies, as does being able to optimize mass
application have been observed and will be quantified
balances and utilities through integration with the parent
when they are used at full scale in Project LIBERTY.”
biofuel plant. Transportation and logistics are minimized,
Enzyme breakthroughs have brought major benefits, he
while producing and using the enzymes in a whole broth
added. “The unique properties of our enzyme breaks down
eliminates processing steps. The target completion date for
the pretreated stover more quickly.”
the enzyme production facility is late 2018.
It took a long time to get a little way. But now thereâ€™s less time between improvements and every improvement is bigger, because we have so much more base knowledge. Rod Pierson, Senior Vice President & General Manager at POET Design & Construction
Jason Martin takes samples during the pre-treatment stage.
The net-wrap remover at Project LIBERTY is where the process begins.
Other benefits in application have been observed and will be quantified when they are used at full scale in Project LIBERTY. Hans van der Sluijs, Business Director North America, DSM Bio-Based Products & Services
POET team members meet for the daily operations meeting at Project LIBERTY.
“It took a long time to get a little way,” Pierson said. “But now there’s less time between improvements and every improvement is bigger, because we have so much more base knowledge.” Ideas for modification come quickly, but implementing them takes time and money, he said. “The positive thing is for the majority of our changes when successful, it means a simpler, lower-cost facility.” Both Martin and Pierson speak highly of the team working on Project LIBERTY. “The team is tough and nimble,” Martin said. “We’re able to manage change on a dime, which is required in order to move fast.” Building a team of pioneer-minded people has been a big part of the equation, he said. Pierson praised the perseverance of the team “and the leadership team’s support to continue to drive it forward — everyone’s been working toward the same goal of making it successful.” While engineers are sometimes accused of creating solutions that are unnecessarily complicated, Pierson said the opposite is true for Project LIBERTY. “Our focus as we make changes is to create something more sustainable and easier to operate.”
Jason Martin works at the facility.
‘And That, My Friend, is Innovation’ A Lesson in Success by Ryan Welsh It was a sticky yet bright summer morning at Pocono Raceway in late July. The “Tricky Triangle” is tucked in the mountains of northeast Pennsylvania, about an hour from the closest airline hub. One of the most impressive solar fields in the United States sits adjacent to the superspeedway. This project provides electricity to the track and more than 300 area houses, making Pocono Raceway one of sport’s greenest venues. It also makes it a major league stage to showcase our American-made biofuel and its benefits to two influencers, which was my mission that day. The
focused on embracing engine experts and consumer influencers. My job was to get our two guests in front of the engine and fuel experts in NASCAR® and make them advocates of biofuels. Our plan was to teach the teachers. We met with Daniel Gray, an influential and well-known auto blogger, and Chris Filo, better known as Chris Fix from YouTube. This wasn’t Daniel’s first NASCAR® race, and his blogs have always been friendly to us. Hailing from New Jersey, Chris was excited for his first NASCAR® race. Chris has over two and a half million subscribers to his YouTube channel that instructs people how to make repairs and service their own vehicles. He attested to be agnostic about biofuels. We were going to change that. The first stop was the American Ethanol #3 team hauler, the semi-trailer that hauls the cars and equipment to the track. There we would meet with our longtime advocate and team owner Richard Childress, our driver Austin Dillon and Richard Childress Racing’s (RCR) Chief Technology Officer Dr. Eric Warren. We arrived at the #3 hauler with a warm welcome from Richard and Austin. We talked about how the car and the team looked this weekend and the season so far. When we got into the hauler, Dr. Warren explained each area’s purpose. It’s an extraordinary combination of auto parts store, garage and command center on wheels.
every aspect of the race: the car, the engine, the driver, the track and pit stops. “Right now, we are looking at 12-13 seconds for four tires and fuel,” Dr. Warren said, answering Daniel’s question on how long it takes to pit. As they started to discuss the logistics of a pit stop, Richard leaned over to me and said, “Back when I was in the car it took just over a minute — that is if you had a guy that was skillful with a star wrench and a floor jack.” How did they get from over 60 seconds to 12 seconds for a full pit stop? I was so curious that I decided my secondary goal that day was to find out how. We were winding up the tour with NASCAR® Green partner Safety-Kleen, and I got the ear of Director of Motor Sports, Drew Patey. These guys have been recycling the oil used in NASCAR® since the mid-1980s. Drew is a legend in the garage, and a character you would only find in the NASCAR® family, so I subtly asked, “Drew, how did NASCAR® teams get a pit stop down from over a minute to 12 or 13 seconds?” He said, “Rohn (that’s how he pronounced my name), let me
The tour’s culmination came at the front of the hauler. Three
walls of computer monitors showed the data gathered from
tell ya something. How does anything get better? Huh? New
The pit stop of today has evolved into a well-choreographed event. things! It’s called innovation, my friend.”
to see how POET continues to innovate.
“Example?” I asked.
It’s like as Drew says, “That, my friend, is innovation.”
“Well, around 1970 they started gluing lug nuts on the wheels. You wouldn’t have to hold on to them or put them in your mouth or pocket. That saved a lot of time. Then the innovation in the 1980s was huge with jack, tools and air gun technology. Heck, now the pit crews got cameras on their helmets and they study every move to find efficiencies! And that, my friend, is innovation,” Drew said.
Around 1970 they started gluing lug nuts on the wheels. You wouldn’t have to hold on to them or put them in your mouth or pocket. That saved a lot of time.
I achieved my two goals for that day. Daniel and Chris
of using a clean, green renewable biofuel made in America. They also talked with experts who were skeptics-turned-advocates, and they joined the team. Drew also taught me about success: It can only come through innovation. POET to
innovators are considered heroes in the POET culture.
Herb Nab waits to change tires with lug nuts in mouth circa 1960s.
You don’t need to look any further than the work POET has done in areas from BPX technology to Dakota Gold
THE ESSENTIAL PERSPECTIVE
ENERGY FOR LIFE
NEW YEAR, NEW YOU Embrace Change in 2018 by Melissa Fletcher, Spiritual Care Advisor As the New Year takes its rightful place, we may be reminded of things that we wanted to accomplish in 2017 that did not come to fruition. At this point, we have two choices: dwell on the “would have,” “could have” or “should have,” or let it go and move on.
1. EMOTIONALLY Redefine failure. Set small goals and reward yourself for making small strides, which will eventually get you to where you want to go.
2018 is here! Let this be the year that you truly let it go! This means that it is time for an emotional, physical and spiritual detox. It’s time for a cleanse that will help you take on 2018 with vigor and strength.
media, emails, texting, too much TV or movies. Recommendation: Start with a 24-hour digital fast and gradually work your way up. Amazingly, life does go
New Year’s resolutions are for the birds. Why? Because, although they seem helpful, in the end, they can lead to frustration, anxiety/depression and negative self-talk. We tend to set the resolution, but when a little setback happens, we give up. We have to develop a mindset of goal setting and rewarding. This year, resolve to not just “try harder,” but instead commit daily to make small changes to become a better you!
on even if we are unplugged from the digital world. Instead, plug in to a good book, spend time with friends and family, or take a nap to catch up on much needed rest. Allow these unplugged activities to renew your mind. Be mindful of the negativity that surrounds you. Examine yourself to see if you are contributing to the negative atmosphere. Commit to saying positive words.
If we want to mature emotionally, become more physically fit or grow in our spiritual journey, one thing is for certain: We must change. If we don’t embrace change, we will never reach our destination. Change
Say no to “judging.” This includes judging yourself and others. Judgment breeds negativity, and negativity can quickly create an unhealthy environment.
is happening all around us, whether we recognize it or not. Our bodies age, despite our efforts to seize the fountain of youth; our communities grow; our jobs have new responsibilities; our families multiply; and our world changes through the advancement of technology. Change doesn’t need to be something we fear or loath. Instead, we can embrace it. Change can bring about renewal, which in turn leads to new life. And remember, change is a process. You can’t reap a harvest overnight, but you can begin by planting the seed. Small changes are better than none. Here are some practical ways to apply these lessons in three key areas of our lives:
2. PHYSICALLY Detox. Begin with a two-week cleanse of certain foods to allow your body to reset. Try eliminating sugar,
gluten, dairy, alcohol, caffeine, soy, peanuts and allergy-
do you want to be? A better spouse? A better parent?
causing foods. This will allow your body to clean out
A better friend? A better listener? Think about it and
the “bad” bacteria and allow the “good” bacteria time
write out a “to be” list. Put this list somewhere as a
to reestablish itself.
daily reminder and strive each day to fulfill it.
Nourish your body with healthy, organic foods
Spend time reading the Bible, praying, doing devotions
that offer a good source of vitamins, minerals and
and meditating to that will help you declutter your
protein. Commit to trying new foods every week and
mind from the barrage of worldly influences. Be
incorporate foods of many colors to draw on their
intentional about this sacred time that you will spend
antioxidant benefits. Finally, don’t forget to stay
renewing your mind and satisfying your soul.
hydrated. Water is an important element to staying healthy, so drink up!
Make it a habit to work on developing the Fruits of the Spirit in your life: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness,
Set regular meal and snack patterns to minimize
goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.
overeating and to regulate your blood sugar levels.
Having a basket full of this kind of fruit in your life will promote overall health and wellness for the mind,
Exercise every day. These don’t have to be hard-core
body and spirit. It also promotes healthy relationships
workouts, especially if you currently do not have an
exercise regime. Instead, commit to 20-30 minutes of brisk cardiovascular activity, such as walking or
It has been said that insanity is doing the same
jogging every day. Every part of your body benefits
thing over and over again and expecting
from a daily exercise program. Always check with
a different result. Perhaps you didn’t
your physician before you start any nutrition or fitness
accomplish everything you wanted to
do last year. Maybe you are stuck in the rut of insanity.
Do not give up. Make this new year an opportunity to make a new you!
Slow down. We often fail to take the needed time to
Simple steps can lead to renewal
just “be still.” Psalm 46:10 in the Bible says, “Be still and
and new life. Let those things
know that I am God.” If we are on the go too much, we
will fail to see the beauty in the creation around us and miss the small blessings in our lives. Get rid of the “to do” lists and create a “to be” list. Who
THE ESSENTIAL PERSPECTIVE
Excess Grain, Falling Prices Experts Predict Long-term Economic Problems Ahead; Higher Biofuels Blends Needed to Use Large Carryover by Steve Lange | photos by Wes Mosley Photography
THE ESSENTIAL PERSPECTIVE
Over the last few harvests, the status
figure out a way to make ends meet.”
has to change. He stresses that more of
quo for corn producers has meant a
Watson would know. POET Grain
the same means long-term problems
“slow bleed”: four straight seasons of
buys 650 million bushels of grain
a steady drop in prices (from $6.89
— nearly 5 percent of the U.S. corn
“If we continue going as we’ve gone
to $3.36 per bushel) and increased
crop — per year. With that grain, the
the last four years, financial conditions
carryouts, or “ending stocks,” the
company uses the starch to produce
will worsen,” says Irwin. “Lots of crop
amount left over after the immediate
1.8 billion gallons of biofuels, and the
operations have pretty much used up
need for a grain has been met (from
protein, fat and fiber is converted to
all their working capital. We’ll be at a
821 million to 2.3 billion bushels).
distillers grains, corn oil and other
real inflection point in another year or two. Farms will close.” Irwin’s lifelong fascination with commodity markets started as a young boy on his family’s Iowa farm, tagging along with his dad to the local grain elevator to check the latest prices. Today, he studies those variables that can affect future markets. Irwin does believe that one variable — weather — could play a role in reducing that corn crop in coming years. But he also stresses that it’s not something we can plan for, or rely on, in order to cut down on carryout. “Essentially, the U.S. has had only one really poor crop in the last 22 years,” says Irwin. “It’s the most remarkable run of 20-plus years of favorable Midwest weather for growing corn since the start of weather records in the U.S. going back to 1895. We would need to knock a billion bushels off next year’s corn
The United States Department of
crop somehow before you would
Agriculture (USDA) projections for
“The producers are holding on
really put a dent in the price. That’s a
the current 2017-18 corn harvest?
to corn as long as they can,” says
lot. We can’t count on bad weather to
Another price drop, to $3.20 per
Watson. “The problem with holding
change this. We have to count on the
bushel. And another uptick in corn
on as long as you can is that the world
things we can control.”
carryout, to 2.5 billion bushels.
knows there’s 2.5 billion bushels of
Unfortunately for farmers, that’s
corn inventory at the end of the year.
communication, according to Anne
more status quo. It’s more of what
About the time you get to July or
Dean Watson, the President of POET
August there’s still 2.5 billion bushels
National Farmers Union (NFU). And
Grain, calls a “slow bleed.”
out there and the world knows you’re
then that communication needs to
“It’s the worst of all worlds right
going to have to move it. That’s why
be converted into public education,
now,” says Watson. “It’s a slow bleed,
things won’t get better unless we
which can eventually help drive
and that’s the most painful, because
make some changes.”
it’s not so dramatic as to get national
Scott Irwin, the Laurence J. Norton
“The amount of education and
or world attention. So you’ve got
Chair of Agricultural Marketing at
advocacy that’s being done on behalf
these corn producers out there just
the University of Illinois at Urbana-
of the renewable fuels industry is
scrapping and fighting and trying to
Champaign, agrees that something
starting to pay off,” says Steckel,
who works directly with legislators
on E15 sales during summer months
from her Washington, D.C. office.
— as quick fixes to help soak up that
“I’m starting to see more members
as we’ve gone the
of Congress really understand the
“We know there’s a lot of available
benefits of ethanol, especially after
corn out there,” Steckel says. “That’s
last four years,
we got past the whole food and fuel
part of the reason the NFU has
discussion, and after people saw that
doubled down on their efforts to
that was nothing but a red herring.
advance biofuels. We see ethanol as a
will worsen. Lots of
The challenge is to continue to educate
very viable way to use our corn to help
crop operations have
the consumer about the price at the
ensure that prices are where farmers
pump, and what’s in their gasoline
want them to be. That could, and
pretty much used
and why ethanol is good for all of us.”
should, happen right now if Congress
Steckel, whose dad worked for John
really wants to make a difference. We
capital. We’ll be at a
Deere in Moline, Ill., has turned those
have the opportunity to move corn,
agricultural ties into a desire to drive
and instead it’s sitting.”
real inflection point
pro-agriculture — and pro-biofuels —
Jay Schutte, a farmer in Benton
in another year or
City, Mo., is also the chairman of
She points to two of those policies
National Corn Growers Association’s
two. Farms will close.
— the continued support of the
(NCGA) Ethanol Action Team. He and
Renewable Fuel Standard, or RFS,
the NCGA also believe that a strong
the federal program requiring that
RFS and the removal of the RVP will
increasing amounts of renewable
support a market-based solution for
fuels be blended into the nation’s
improving the agriculture economy.
transportation fuel, and an expansion
In order for biofuel production to
of the Reid Vapor Pressure (RVP)
use additional starch, Schutte says,
waiver, which currently places limits
“We must maintain a strong RFS,
If we continue going
up all their working
remove the outdated and unnecessary RVP barrier, and continue to look for ways to getting midlevel
Corn ending stocks 2.5 billion
3 BILLIONS OF BUSHELS
stringent emissions and efficiency requirements. Importantly, a growing global help
and draw down the corn
automakers meet more
2.5 821 million
into the market to help
Like the NFU, the
NCGA also points to trade troubles when it comes to
markets that punish our
products with tariffs.
“The United States
leads 2012/13 2013/14 2014/15 2015/16 2016/17 2017/18 (projected)
ethanol production and exports, and is currently
responsible for 60 percent of global
to soybeans, that could happen. They
production and 45 percent of exports,”
“Many farmers can’t afford to keep
then could see price drops in both
corn and soybeans.”
leads on biofuel exports because our
Planted corn, meanwhile, has fallen
ethanol wins on price, we have a
from nearly 98 million acres in 2012
stable supply, and global demand for
acreage, which has grown every year
to a projected 90 million acres this
renewable fuels is rising. NCGA will back efforts to develop new markets
and work with our partners such as
If we can overcome
the U.S. Grains Council to effectively
this challenge of
address barriers that other countries
Ethan Harsh’s family has been farming the central Ohio area since the 1800s. Ethan, 24, is back on the
communication — if
family’s 2,500-acre corn and soybean
Darrin Ihnen, who has a corn and
we can spread our
As a next-generation farmer, Harsh
soybean farm in Hurley, S.D., is one
message and get the
says he finds the farming life “very
“Everything for now went to the bin,”
American public to
every day. One day I’m inside working
he says. “We hope prices will turn
erect to our exports.”
farmer who is sitting on excess yields.
around, but I don’t expect prices to move a lot unless we see weather
the importance of
issues next spring. There is corn
farm after another year of college.
fulfilling. You do something different on some IT thing and the next I’m outside the entire day.” Harsh has already seen firsthand how the corn carryover has affected
ethanol and the
farming over the past few years.
a long way since he helped his
economy — it can be
acreage from corn to soybeans.
grandfather collect corn cobs to burn
a beautiful future for
“It’s hard to plant a lot of corn when
says. “We have to continue to plant
Biofuels, says Ihnen, have come
in the cookstove. “The simplest and quickest thing
His family has switched some of its
that can use up this large carryover
corn to keep our soil healthy, but it
is higher biofuels blends through
doesn’t make economic sense.”
E15,” says Ihnen, the Past President
of the NCGA and current Board Chair
you’re basically doing it at a loss,” he
challenges facing the ag industry, he
at POET — Chancellor. “The biofuels
since 2012, from 77 million acres (and
believes communication and telling
industry can expand plants to grind
3 billion bushels) to a projected 90
farming’s story to non-farmers is key
more corn within a year. If we could
million acres (and 4.4 billion bushels)
in reshaping the future.
get those higher blends, we could turn
the ag industry around right now.”
This year’s soybean production,
That continued drop in corn prices,
according to the USDA, will be the
in fact, has led more farmers to switch
largest on record, and twice the
communication — if we can spread
acreage to soybeans, a crop that has
our message and get the American
recently seen a price rebound after
Chinese soybean imports, according
five straight years of decreases (from
to Irwin, are currently soaking up
$14.40/bushel in 2013-14 to $8.95
what would be a record soybean
ethanol and the economy — it can
two years ago). This year’s harvest
be a beautiful future for farming. All
is projected to average in the $9.40
But more supply won’t necessarily
we need is a little help — just some
equate to more demand.
simple policy changes to push ethanol
“Here in the heart of the Midwest
“All else equal, [the shift to soybeans]
forward — to go from this status quo
we’re definitely going to see an
will drive soybean prices down,” says
to that beautiful future.”
increase in soybean acreage over
Irwin. “Soybeans are still not in as
corn, that’s what the market is telling
burdensome of a surplus situation
us,” says Scott Irwin, of the University
as corn. But if farmers simply shift
its we of
POET’s CO2 Group Focuses on Transportation Efficiency, Customer Service to Deliver Quality Product by Codi Vallery-Mills Imagine being a business that turns
over its inventory two or three times
Many of POET’S CO2 customers are
daily. It can be stressful, chaotic and a
food and beverage companies that
and need numerous “just-in-time”
downright logistics nightmare. That’s
Brad Jones, CO2 Marketing Manager,
deliveries before supply runs out.
where POET Ethanol Products’ carbon
POET Ethanol Products, describes as
“just-in-time” businesses. Because of
requires a great deal of communication
located in Wichita, Kan., steps in to
the lack of storage, these companies
Ethanol Products’ team. A scheduler physically manages the customers’ inventory. A fleet of trucks load CO2 at the production sites and deliver the product on time, on spec and hasslefree to customers’ inventory wherever that may be, Jones notes. “And that is a fairly complex scenario. Although it sounds simplistic, it’s not,” he says. POET Ethanol Products aims to offer the most efficient, consistent and reliable CO2 product to customers. Jones says POET’S CO2 division is the fastest growing CO2 producer in the United States. In the last five years, it has added six new CO2capturing facilities, bringing its total to 11, which cover five percent of the nation’s CO2 demand. Eight of those facilities are located adjacent to POET
POET, through our CO2 business, utilizes this clean stream of gas to supply customers ranging from local municipalities to the top food and beverage producers in the U.S. with highquality liquid CO2.
accomplish a sustainability intention
CO2 is a natural byproduct of the
that POET and customers can be proud
biofuels production process. Yeast
of,” says Christian McIlvain, Vice
consumes simple sugars found in the
President — Denaturant & Carbon
corn and creates CO2. POET captures
Dioxide, POET Ethanol Products.
the CO2 and processes it into liquid
Throughout the CO2 industry, exact
form, which can be utilized a variety
of ways. Food companies like Tyson,
to be met, no matter the starting
for example, use it to prevent bacterial
growth and for chilling.
From 2007 to 2016, around 26
feedstock byproduct is cleaner than
percent of the liquid CO2 for the U.S.
other feedstocks in the industry and
market was produced from deposits of
requires less processing.
CO2 found beneath the earth’s surface,
“POET, through our CO2 business,
according to Intelligas Consulting.
utilizes this clean stream of gas to
This CO2 is in a sequestered state
supply customers ranging from local
and is extracted by drilling wells to
municipalities to the top food and
access it. In contrast, POET captures
beverage producers in the U.S. with
CO2 naturally since it’s a byproduct
high-quality liquid CO2,” McIlvain
of the biofuel production process. No
drilling is required.
POET has put in place a vertically
“When POET is able to provide
integrated system with multiple mini-
consumers with its biorefined CO2,
skid liquid C02 production operations
it reduces the need for CO2 from
located adjacent to its bioprocessing
other sources — such as the earth’s
facilities to minimize freight and offer
a better value to its customers with a
CO2 production locations
THE ESSENTIAL PERSPECTIVE
consistent and reliable supply.
and the entire CO2 team, continue to
The mini-skid strategy calls for
prove the business is award-worthy.
CO2 to be piped from the nearby
bioprocessing facility to a liquefaction
amount of what we were producing
facility where the gas is compressed
five years ago,” McIlvain says.
and then cooled before being sent
to high-pressure storage tanks that
bioprocessing facilities to capture
house the CO2 until trucks and trailers
the CO2 and the use of the mini-skid
fill and deliver the finished product to
CO2 production facilities have further
enhanced the company’s competitive
“What that allows us to do … if we
have maintenance-related downtime
“Our ability to work hand-in-hand
at one CO2 facility, the customer doesn’t
with the production side and be part
see that production interruption. We
of the decision making that transpires
are able to continually keep them
supplied with CO2, which is among
our competitors don’t enjoy that
our top priorities,” McIlvain says.
advantage. We are the only one out
POET’s ability to manage the demand
there that has a vertically integrated
and provide a consistent supply
supply system,” Jones says.
through its mini-skid operations has
POET Ethanol Products’ focus will
garnered awards in the food industry.
likely continue to be on food and
Tyson Foods recognized POET’s CO2
group as a supplier of the year in 2016.
“Our future I think is going to
It was confirmation of the work they
be more heavily weighted towards
had been putting into a new business
developing larger-scale partnerships
and customer service strategy.
with mega food and or beverage
companies. I would even go so far
like Tyson, one of the largest CO2-
as to say our future growth will be
consuming businesses in the United
States, our pace of growth with them
consolidated large food processing
and the recognition we received as a
companies. I think that’s where a lot
Supplier of the Year, the magnitude
of forward momentum is in the CO2
of that is enormous. For them to
business,” Jones says.
recognize us in such a way was again
A variety of disciplines goes into
reaffirming that the systems we have
making, marketing and delivering
put in place are working,” Jones says.
Today, Jones, along with McIlvain
at POET Ethanol Products has in
Our ability to work hand-in-hand with the production side and be part of the decision making that transpires is extremely important because our competitors don’t enjoy that advantage. We are the only one out there that has a vertically integrated supply system.
common — from the quality control and quality analysis team to the truck drivers — is the desire to create and maintain excellent customer service. “POET Ethanol Products is a very relationship-oriented organization. If you look beyond POET, into the CO2 manufacturing and supply industry, it looks to be a very transactional industry,
relationships and customer service is something that consumers of CO2 very much seem to value. We continue to see the benefits of this approach as business and relationships with our customers grow and develop through time,” McIlvain says. McIlvain notes it’s a good economic business model that he expects will sustain the company for years to come.
POET Ethanol Products team members accept the award from Tyson Foods as the 2016 Supplier of the Year.
POET Wins Workplace Excellence Award POET received an award in October 2017 for Workplace Excellence from the Sioux Empire Society for Human Resource Management. This award recognizes POET for its effective communication with team members, employeefocused and family-friendly practices, as well as its notable opportunities
Students Learn About Biofuels Production
for personal growth and
Sixteen seventh grade students
from the Chatfield Schools science class went on a tour at POET â€“ Preston in October 2017. They went through a unit on measurements and learned that every single position at a bioprocessing plant is dependent on measurements. POET â€“ Ashton held a tour for a group of science students from Northwest Iowa Community College that included an Ethanol 101 presentation.
POET – Corning Takes Part in Corning Elementary School ‘Trunk’ or Treat POET – Corning participated in the Corning Elementary School Trunk or Treat. They decorated the trunks of their vehicles for Halloween and handed out candy to Corning Elementary School students. POET – Corning handed out trick-or-treat buckets filled with candy and surprises to each student.
State Legislators Visit In October 2017 the Agriculture Task Force from
Michael Haig, Iowa Deputy
the National Conference of
Secretary of Agriculture;
State Legislators traveled
U.S. Representative David
to Sioux Falls, S.D., for their
Young; Greg Olsen, General
annual conference. As
Manager of POET – Corning;
part of their time in South
Bill Northey, Iowa Secretary
Dakota, the group toured
of Agriculture; and Tom
POET - Chancellor and
Shipley, State Senator from
had a great discussion on
Iowa’s 11th District.
how they could use their
the country. Following
Representative Young Visits POET — Corning
the tour at Chancellor, the
U.S. Representative David
group stopped by Kum
Young of Iowa visited
& Go to hear from Kum &
POET – Corning in October
Go’s Sioux Falls District
2017 as part of his Ag
Supervisor Blaine Corlett
Tour through the Third
and Growth Energy’s Vice
District of Iowa. The group
President of Development
discussed the biofuels
Kelly Manning about E15
industry, the Renewable
infrastructure and roll-out.
Volume Obligations (RVOs)
roles as state legislators to promote biofuel use across
under the Renewable Fuel Standard and Reid Vapor Pressure and went on a tour.
THE ESSENTIAL PERSPECTIVE
RENEW POET Celebrates 30th Anniversary POET celebrated our 30th anniversary and had several special events planned for a week of celebration from Oct. 30 to Nov. 3, 2017. Events included a special quarterly meeting with a 30th Anniversary Panel. Team members heard from those who helped form the company we know today. It was energizing for team members to hear these stories as we move forward into the next 30 years of changing the world.
Jeff and Tammie Broin; Nancy and Lowell Broin; Miranda, Alyssa and Austin Broin
POET Never Satisfied Community Grants As part of POETâ€™s Never Satisfied campaign, several POET bioprocessing facilities are providing community
Never Satisfied Scholarships
grants in 2018 to improve their local communities. Nine
POET is awarding 10 scholarships
plants will partner with local
of up to $5,000 for the 2018-2019
groups or individuals and
academic year! Applicants must
invest in projects that better
be enrolled full-time in the fall
their local communities.
of 2018 at any two-year or fouryear college or university in the
United States. One scholarship
are POET â€“ Coon Rapids,
is reserved for a student who is
Corning, Groton, Hanlontown,
related to a POET team member
Hudson, Laddonia, Macon,
(includes children, grandchildren,
Mitchell and Preston. The
siblings and nieces/nephews).
application deadline is
All applications must be
Feb. 16. To learn more
submitted by Feb. 2, 2018. Visit
and apply, visit Poet.com/
Growing a future Get involved. seedsofchange.org
PEOPLE OF POET
As Head of POET Research, Dave Bushong Focuses on Research Endeavors That Add Direct Value to POET by BryAnn Becker Knecht | photos by Greg Latza
good to say and easily bursts into
Wednesday and Dave Bushong, Senior
that happy laughter, which causes
“It’s hard to imagine a better fuel
Vice President of Research for POET,
a contagious smile and laughter in
when you think about it. You take
has already met with scientists from
those around him.”
all these waste materials that are
global biosciences company DSM and
decaying on the surface or going to
had a meeting with representatives
Bushong worked on notable projects
landfills, and you use those to make a
from the Environmental Protection
including Project BELL, POET’s first
fuel. It’s such a terrific opportunity.”
Steve Bly, Biochemical Manager,
It’s just a typical day for the head of POET’s Research division. Bushong provides strategic direction to POET’s research team. The team develops innovation from the lab bench through pilot plant trials and on to commercialization. What drives Bushong, who started at POET in 2006, is the potential for even further innovation at POET. “Every
challenges and new opportunities. I
company has before it far exceed the opportunities we saw five years ago because we’ve had so much success,” he says. “From the research side, we get approached by companies that want to collaborate with us and do business with us or bring opportunities to us. It’s exciting to see
Every week there are new challenges and new opportunities. I think the opportunities this company has before it far exceed the opportunities we saw five years ago because we’ve had so much success.
has worked for Bushong for most of his career at POET. He remembers that Bushong took time to send him a welcome letter prior to starting as a Process Development Engineer for Project BELL in December 2008. “I felt welcomed even before I started.” Bly says that Bushong continues to take time to recognize POET team members for their efforts. “It was common for him to recognize anybody on the team, from maintenance to operations.” Bly recalls working long days at Project BELL and how Bushong led by example both there and at PRC. “He would be part of the oncall schedule with the engineers and managers — he shared in that responsibility. If the plant wasn’t running and we were trying to get it
all those opportunities, let alone what
started up, he’d stay late with us and
we come up with ourselves.”
we’d all work to get it running,” Bly
POET team members commend Bushong
says. cellulosic pilot plant. Project BELL
approach to guiding the company’s
research endeavors, while making
sure that the projects they do sink
Biofuels’ commercial-scale cellulosic
their teeth into are worth their merit.
biofuels facility that opened in 2014 in
Deb Roth, Plant Manager at POET
Research Center (PRC) in Scotland,
Despite the challenges of building
S.D., first met Bushong in 2006 when
Project BELL — they had to tear it apart
he started there as General Manager.
and build it again — Bushong says
“It didn’t take long to get to know
what kept him and others committed
Dave with his super-friendly nature.
to the project was believing in the
He always has a smile, something
opportunity and global potential for
THE ESSENTIAL PERSPECTIVE
Beginning at POET: ‘It took a little persistence’ Bushong
chemical engineering at Michiganbased Dow Chemical. He worked in
Dave Bushong discusses recent projects with Michelle Harmon, POET Research Scientist.
inorganic chemicals, and then moved
persistence, but I was willing to wait it
out,” he says.
Quantity, Quality of Research at POET has Changed
consumer product chemicals. It was
As General Manager at Scotland,
after leaving Dow Chemicals, when
Bushong focused on innovation and
he worked at Fujifilm, that Bushong
creating new research opportunities.
knew the renewable energy sector
Bushong saw early on that the
needed to be his next step.
promise of the Scotland plant wasn’t
That realization came from “just
solely in its production capacity — it
looking at the price of oil at the time and
was too small and had too many years
how leveraged the U.S. was in foreign
on it, he says — but in the research
While a lot has changed since those
oil. It was a good thing for this country
that could be developed there.
early days, the mindset of innovation
to work on energy independence, and
Early on, the research team drew on
has been a constant thread through
especially renewable energy,” he says.
POET’s research, Bushong says.
After moving back to South Dakota
“Research is expensive, so we always
Bushong has seen the quantity
with his family in 2001 — his
try to do things as cheap as possible,”
and quality of research at POET
hometown is Tulare, in Spink County
Bushong says. “We were always trying
transform. The capital investments
— he set his sights on POET, which
to find ways to save money. At one
also have increased. “We’ve done a lot
was then Broin Companies. After
point in time, we needed a mixer and
of research investment. That’s really a
applying and getting initially turned
found out that there was one on the
credit to Jeff Broin’s vision.”
down for a position in Sioux Falls,
Broin farm. We actually went to the
“When I look at it, we have a much
he applied for and was hired for the
Broin farm [in Wanamingo, Minn.] to
more cohesive approach — more
Scotland opportunity. “It took a little
cooperation on what we want to be
Dave is also a visionary in driving the change in POET Research’s structure, focusing the team on shorter-term goals. This work has also shown his dedication and passion for the company.
we generate value for POET? He’s
done a good job of trimming away the
In his work, Bushong emphasizes
extra projects that don’t add as much
the importance of teamwork within
immediate direct value for POET,”
not only POET Research but also
POET’s other business divisions.
Roth says Bushong has a strong
work ethic in leading POET Research.
continued to make the team successful,
“Dave is also a visionary in driving the
change in POET Research’s structure,
“If you look at tenacity from a POET
focusing the team on shorter-term
standpoint, the research team has
goals. This work has also shown
a lot of tenacity. PRC certainly does
his dedication and passion for the
in embracing change. You look at
LIBERTY and the team there — you
Bly commented that Bushong takes
can’t get a more tenacious team. The
a practical approach in his work. “I
plants with the new yeast product
always found that you can relate to
we’ve rolled out and some of the
him. Having that hard work ethic
from growing up on a farm, and that
to fight through this. We’re just a
common sense approach to problem
tenacious organization. It’s served us
solving fits well with POET’s origins
and how we continue to operate.” Bushong likes that POET Research’s work
can be realized at the commercial level, not working on. Not only has the quantity
confined to the pages
of our research grown, but I think
of a textbook.
the quality has, too, as we’ve gained
“What I like about
Bushong moved from his role as
that it’s very applied.
General Manager at PRC to head
EDUCATION Bachelor of Science, Chemical engineering, South Dakota School of Mines & Technology
has been on making sure the team’s
research projects add value. This
technology to license
direction comes across clearly to team
or write papers on.
members like Dave Carlson, Principal
Engineer for POET Research. Carlson
has worked at POET since 2004 and
has worked for Bushong since 2007.
“A tagline he’s used a lot since he
That’s a good fit, and
took over POET Research Institute is
I find it exciting and
HOMETOWN Tulare, S.D.
at take and
FAMILY Wife Diane; daughter Lauren, son-in-law Tanner and granddaughter Natalie; son Brad and daughter-in-law Katie HOBBIES Hunting, physical fitness
all about generating value. How do
THE ESSENTIAL PERSPECTIVE
ACROSS 1. Davis Cup org. 5. Mickey Mouse adversary __ Eagle 9. Outbuildings 14. Name for a Dalmatian 15. Nil 16. Carefully reads, with “over” 17. Screen 18. Outer layer 19. One way to stand 20. What ethanol stoves provide 23. South American dance 24. Dame Hess at a piano 25. Auto insurer with roadside service 28. Word of warning 30. Deviate 32. “___ to Billy Joe” 35. Great Lakes fish 38. Grain disease 39. Ohio politician who praised
POET for leading the way for
the future use of biofuels in the
43. Don’t forget yours truly! 1. Letters at Camp Lejeune
34. Diary bit
44. Enough, for some
2. Breadmaker’s wheat
36. Coffee pot
45. Org. based in Fort Meade,
3. Put ___ (sail away)
37. Florida city, informally
40. “... or ___ thought!”
5. Settle snugly
41. Looming over
48. Yearn (for)
6. Dangerous shark
42. Hardly chic
51. Napoleonic marshal
7. Peculiar expression
47. Heart of a hurricane
52. Got a good look at
8. Spare and tall
49. Temporary beach residence
55. Pulmonary pair
9. Create a home, as a spider
50. Ill will
58. POET recently made a major
10. Half a Chinese territory
advance in this aspect of
11. Time segment
54. ___ Malfoy, Harry Potter
cellulosic biofuels production
12. Drops on blades
61. Subject of cooking competitions
13. Google Maps dir.
56. Funk or punk
64. Hems’ partners
21. International Red Cross,
65. Barge ___
58. Course of action
66. Red Sea republic
22. Org. that gets a lot of returns
59. Ornate pitcher
67. Frozen treats
25. Vacuum tube filler
60. Demolition compounds
68. Move briskly
61. Winter hours in Minn.
69. Beach footwear
27. Prudential rival
62. ‘Wha’d’ja say?’
70. Reactor part
29. Via, for short
63. Promising words
71. Slangy assents
31. Goof up 32. Turkish Empire founder 33. Farm-machine giant
FOR ANSWERS, VISIT vitalmagazineonline.com/answers VITALBYPOET.COM
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Seeds of Change
OUT OF LEFT FIELD
The Quest to Find the Perfect Fuzzy Friend by Scott Johnson, Data Systems Administrator, POET Man’s best friend. That phrase paints a picture of a regal,
Labradoodles, Yorkipoos and the nearly incomprehensible Saint
sturdy dog whose loyalty and commitment dwarf any human
Berdoodle, poodles can crossbreed with anything, except for
capability. Everyone can recall tales of canine heroism offering
other poodles apparently. I’m not passing judgment, just making
boundless love for their masters, regardless of emotional
an observation. I found no relevant internet search results for
reciprocity: Lassie, Rin Tin Tin, Old Yeller. Even Scooby Doo
“Hippopodadoodle,” so perhaps there is at least some biological
epitomized the selfless characteristics we admire and often
attempt but fail to emulate.
Zoyla is our other swanky dog
I’ve had the honor to befriend and care for many dogs. Our
— a Havanese. She is a cross
family’s first “child” was a classically handsome black lab
between a cat and Walter Matthau
named Nike. We added another lab, Numa, to our family a year
from “Grumpy Old Men” — often
later. These beautiful dogs fit the stereotypical movie characters
disgruntled, but both ooze an
I knew from my childhood. Our time together was short, but
endearing, loveable quality that’s
their lives impacted ours in immeasurable ways.
difficult to particularize.
You can never “replace” these family members, but when
Maizy and Zoyla combined
our (human) children got older, we attempted to fill this void
with some new fuzzy friends. My 11-year-old daughter led
computer, but that doesn’t stop
a university-level puppy research project to find the perfect
them from trying to protect our
breeds for our family (I wasn’t invited to participate other than
family. They viciously bark at all
to provide necessary funding):
threats: murderers, thieves, squirrels, butterflies, gentle spring
Pugs. Did you know Pugs have a natural tendency for their
breezes, the spin cycle on the washing machine. You know,
eyes to pop out of their heads? That’s a real thing. Pugs are the
dangerous stuff. Old Yeller would be proud.
equivalent of those cheap assemble-yourself bookshelves with
As frustrating and questionably well assembled these
confusing instructions and missing parts. We weren’t into a
creatures are, we still love our dogs. We know the day they set
fixer-upper project. Pugs were out.
paw inside our homes, they are family. We are also painfully
English Mastiffs are known to drool, slobber, snore and be
aware that our time together will be short-lived.
“gassy.” They can weigh more than 200 pounds. Gee, can we get
Dogs are wiser than their human counterparts in this regard.
three of them? Too big. No to the English Mastiff.
They recognize the brevity of life and filter out unimportant
Italian Greyhound? They look hungry. Too skinny.
Shih Tzu? I can’t even type that with a straight face.
Dogs don’t hold grudges. Dogs don’t care if you wear a brown
Chow chow? No no.
belt with black pants. Dogs don’t make fun of your sophomore
After an exhaustive vetting
school picture taken at the peak of your “awkward phase.” Dogs
process devoid of input from
welcome you back to the house after a 30-second trip to the
the theoretical head of the
mailbox. Dogs insist on showing their love by uncontrollably
bounding into your arms for an (often sloppy) embrace. We
two designer dogs, fit for the
would be well-served to apply this same sense of urgency to our
human relationships, face-licking aside.
Maizy is a Poochon (Poodle and
Whether tough hunting companion, hand-bag-sized accessory
Bichon Frize mix). The Poodle in
or anywhere in between, man’s best friend is here to teach us
her provides the hypoallergenic,
life’s most important lesson: Life is short. We only have enough
shed-free qualities often sought
time to love each other.
after in a pet. Similar with
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Published on Jan 29, 2018