Farmweek 05 09 2016 E Edition Page 1

Periodicals: Time Valued Monday, May 9, 2016 Two sections Volume 44, No. 19 Thanks to Quincy Farm Products, livestock dine on feed made from bakery products. page 4 Planting efforts remain stuck in the mud across the state with more rain in the forecast for this week. page 5 Sen. Dale Righter got a first- hand look at the challenges of farming around utility projects. page 8 BY DEANA STROISCH FarmWeek Hundreds packed into a high school gymnasium in Morris last week to learn more about a proposed three-state rail line that will run through Illinois farmland. Frank Patton, managing partner of Great Lakes Basin Trans- portation LLC (GLBT), took questions from the crowd. Partici- pants put questions in writing and a moderator from the Uni- versity of Illinois read them. Questions ranged from how farmers will be compensated for lost land and income to how hazardous spills will be handled. Several questions focused on who's investing in the project and how much money has been raised. Patton declined to answer financial questions, saying he's signed nondisclosure agreements with investors. Patton also offered few specifics, saying they still didn't know what the final route would be. The crowd shouted questions and comments at him, and sometimes laughed and booed at his answers. GLBT wants the $8 billion, privately-financed line to be mostly double tracked, accommodating up to 110 trains a day. Maximum speeds would be 70 mph. It also requests a 200-foot right of way, of which 50 feet would be for pipelines and utility lines. "Several groups have asked if the railroad would disrupt the People want answers about Great Lakes Basin railroad plan PLANTER RAIN OUT recent weeks. The national average price last week reached $45.41 per barrel due in part to a massive wildfire that forced the evacuation of Fort McMurray, Alberta, in the heart Canada's oil sands region. Increased tension in Libya also contributed to the price spike, according to some reports. "Crude oil prices are at new highs for 2016 after bot- toming around $26 (per barrel between January and Febru- ary)," Harry Cooney, GROWMARK manager of energy customer risk, told the RFD Radio Network (R) . "A lot of people became so negative to the market in January and February," he continued. "When you're in that type of environment, it's ripe for some type of turnaround." Forecasts, however, sug- gest the price spike could level off, even as the sum- mer driving season shifts into high gear. The U.S. Energy Infor- mation Administration (EIA) recently forecast reg- ular gasoline prices during the "summer driving sea- son" (April - September) could average $2.04 per gal- lon, down significantly from $2.63 during the same time a year ago. EIA projects fuel prices for the year could average $1.94 per gallon for regular gas and $2.11 per gallon for diesel (down 60 cents from last year). If realized, fuel expenditures for the average U.S. citizen this year would dip to a 12-year low. "Even with the recent rally, it (fuel) is still a great bargain," Cooney said. EIA estimates oil prices will average $34.60 per bar- rel in 2016 compared to $48.67 last year. An uptick in demand and reduced production in the U.S. could push the average price to $40.58 per barrel for 2017. "The past couple years, with all the fracking, the (oil) supply was overwhelm- ing," Cooney said. "What's happened the past year is (gas) has come down from $3 to around $2 and demand ballooned." U.S. oil production could slow from an average of 9.4 million barrels per day in 2015 to 8.6 million barrels per day this year and 8 mil- lion barrels by 2017, based on EIA estimates. Those looking to con- tract fuel for the second half of 2016 can take their time as current projections don't call for a massive run- up in prices from recent levels. "These are still good prices," Cooney added. "But I'd wait for a dip." BY DANIEL GRANT FarmWeek Oil prices shot to new highs for the year in Harry Cooney Rally in oil market expected to level off Hamilton County farmer Leslie Thierry, left, and her sister and farming partner, Jenny Thierry, discuss plans last week to return to their fields near Dahlgren. The Thierrys planted 320 acres of corn during three good days in mid-April, but rain has kept them out since then. Read how the Thierrys are honor- ing their father's legacy on page 2. (Photo by Catrina Rawson) See Great Lakes , page 3

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