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Biodiesel Bulletin


The Biodiesel Bulletin is published monthly by the National Biodiesel Board (NBB).




February 1, 2016  

Biodiesel Delivers in 2015; Higher Production to Feed Consumer Demand

NBB CEO Joe Jobe Looks Forward to Industry Growth in 2016

Sandra Franco, Renewable Fuels Expert Hired

Highlights from the 2016 National Biodiesel Conference

Biodiesel industry honors climate champions, career long-achievements

American’s Still Unaware of the Benefits of Bioheat

Biodiesel Conference Draws in Next-Gen Scientists

Biodiesel Keeps Running During Coldest Winter of the Decade

Foundation Auction Raises Funds for Biodiesel Advancement

Biodiesel Delivers in 2015; Higher Production to Feed Consumer Demand

US consumers used a record of nearly 2.1 billion gallons of biodiesel in 2015, reducing America’s carbon emissions by at least 18.2 million metric tons, according to new EPA data released this month.

Year-end figures demonstrate biodiesel’s rising popularity and its continued success as America’s first and only EPA-designated Advanced Biofuel to reach commercial-scale production nationwide.

“We’re seeing it take hold across the country. Consumers are seeking out cleaner alternatives to fossil fuels and they see biodiesel as a high-performing, cost-competitive alternative to petroleum diesel,” said Joe Jobe, CEO of the National Biodiesel Board (NBB), the industry’s US trade association. “These numbers also show without question that the Renewable Fuel Standard is delivering significant volumes of Advanced Biofuel to the American people. They prove that the RFS is absolutely working.”

“Biodiesel is still a young industry, but it is becoming a mainstream American fuel that’s having a real impact in helping us cut pollution, create jobs and diversify the fuels market.”

According to the data, fuel companies reported producing 2.09 billion gallons of biodiesel in 2015, up from about 1.97 billion gallons in 2014.

The figures, however, continue to show a troubling trend in which imports are increasingly flooding the US market and undercutting US production. NBB has urged Congress to reform the $1-per-gallon biodiesel tax incentive from a blender’s credit to a producer’s credit. A producer’s credit would help to level the playing field by enabling US biodiesel producers to compete with already incentivized foreign fuel.

The reported volumes show that the US biodiesel industry can successfully grow year to year, continuing to deliver under the RFS. The data can be found here on EPA's website.

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NBB CEO Joe Jobe Looks Forward to Industry Growth in 2016

 Joe Jobe gave a rousing speech at the opening General Session of the National Biodiesel Conference & Expo, touting the industry’s achievements in 2015 and gearing up for what could be the industry’s best year yet.

Jobe spoke about how the biodiesel industry is often overshadowed and underrated, likening the industry to famous American baseball player and coach Yogi Berra. Although the industry has been underestimated, that should change this year as biodiesel continues to grow as America’s most successful Advanced Biofuel.

“Last year the biodiesel industry demonstrated more than ever that no matter how beat up we are, no matter how outgunned we are, we don’t back down,” said National Biodiesel Board CEO Joe Jobe. “We came together like never before.  We stayed true to our principles in the face of deceitful attacks and we achieved the success necessary to put us back on track.”

The industry marked several major achievements in 2015. First, the Renewable Fuel Standard, the federal law governing renewable fuel blending, is back on track and on schedule for the first time with volumes defined for biodiesel through 2017. Second, the industry secured an extension of an important tax incentive that helps make the fuel more cost competitive with petroleum.  These two programs together provide biodiesel producers, investors and suppliers a strong roadmap for the marketplace. This is a big victory for biodiesel, carbon reduction strategies and for the environment.

In 2016, the industry will continue to face challenges from opponents spreading misinformation on renewable fuels but will continue to push-back with credible, objective data that supports growth of the biodiesel industry, Jobe told the crowd. With the backing of science and economic studies, Jobe spoke encouragingly about continued growth of biodiesel under the RFS in the future.

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Highlights from the 2016 National Biodiesel Conference

The 2016 National Biodiesel Conference and Expo kicked off on January 25th, bringing in over one thousand guests from coast to coast. Conference guests attended sessions, listened to speakers, visited the expo hall, and met and networked with other biodiesel industry leaders from around the country.

There were many highlights from the conference including the announcement of the 2015 biodiesel volume use, NBB CEO Joe Jobe’s state of the industry address, and the “Eye On Biodiesel Awards.” One of the biggest surprises however, came during the vehicle showcase when Peterbilt and Kenworth manufacturer, PACCAR Inc, announced that it now approves of blends of B20 biodiesel in one hundred percent of its vehicles, old and new. This announcement means that over 100,000 new trucks are joining the biodiesel ranks.

In addition to announcements and awards, conference guests were able to hear from a variety of outstanding speakers, including former Republican Congressman Bob Inglis who presented the keynote address. A former climate disputer, Inglis now advocates for free enterprise solutions to energy and climate challenges. “It's fabulous when an important industry group like the National Biodiesel Board calls for an objective consideration of climate science and an apples-to-apples comparison between the competing fuels” said Inglis. “With that kind of clarity, free enterprise can fix climate change."

To hear speeches and see all that happened at the conference, check out the conference blog, and view all the photos here.

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Sandra Franco, Renewable Fuels Expert Hired

In January, NBB hired Sandra Franco a Washington based attorney as general council. Franco became an expert in renewable fuels and the Clean Air Act while a partner at international law firm’s environmental group.

“There isn’t an attorney in the country who knows renewable fuels law better than Sandra Franco, and we are thrilled to have her join our team,” said NBB CEO Joe Jobe.

Franco is one of the nation’s leading legal authorities with regards to the Renewable Fuel Standards. Franco has participated in litigation before the U.S. Supreme Court, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, and the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, as well as other federal district courts and courts of appeal.

Before being hired as general council, Franco worked with the organization on a variety of legal matters. Franco worked on regulatory proceedings affecting the biodiesel industry and litigation defending the RFS. Franco led her team to a successful, full implementation of the program.

 

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Biodiesel industry honors climate champions, career long-achievements

Biodiesel has many benefits, but its ability to reduce emissions was a main theme of this year’s National Biodiesel Board industry awards. Landmark climate efforts, heavy duty vehicle market dominance, and lifetime careers dedicated to the advancement of biodiesel were all honored during the National Biodiesel Conference and Expo. The honorees NBB recognized with the 2016 “Eye on Biodiesel” awards were:

Climate Leader:

Environmental Defense Fund (EDF); Environmental Entrepreneurs (E2); and the American Lung Association in California for their environmental leadership to promote all clean fuels, including biodiesel, along the West Coast. These three organizations, along with other NGOs, bolstered and defended Low Carbon Fuel policies in California and Oregon. These organizations and others were on the ground creating reports and other materials that highlighted the rapid growth of the alternative fuels industry and how policies would further greater investment into advanced biofuels, such as biodiesel.

Impact:

Beth Calabotta. Beth’s experience in the field of agricultural yield technology and the markets that drive demand for protein give her a rare and valuable knowledge base that she has put 100 percent into her work to advance biodiesel. She has contributed greatly to the sustainability efforts at NBB and projects to analyze the real world indirect effects of biodiesel production.

Initiative:

PACCAR Inc. More than 100 thousand trucks join renewable fuel ranks as PACCAR Inc. embraces biodiesel blends in its engines, old and new. Considering average mileage, these trucks alone have the potential to run 12 billion miles annually, and they are just the tip of the biodiesel vehicle population. PACCAR diesel engines are sold in heavy duty trucks under the Kenworth and Peterbilt nameplates in North America. 

Pioneer Award:

John Maniscalco. For more than twenty years John Maniscalco has served as the head of the New York Oil Heating Association. Maniscalco has been at the forefront of leadership in the heating oil industry and was instrumental in the industry’s move to Bioheat®, biodiesel in home heating. New York City continues to be a Bioheat® leader in the Northeast on both policy and public perception when it comes to cleaning up heating oil.

Lifetime Achievement:

Mike Livergood, ADM. Mike Livergood is retiring this year from ADM after nearly four decades with the industry leader. Mike serves as Vice President, Global Oleo Chemicals but held many positions throughout his time with the company. Mike has been at the forefront of helping develop the biodiesel industry even before there was a commercial biodiesel industry in the US.

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American’s Still Unaware of the Benefits of Bioheat

Bioheat is a renewable, economical alternative to traditional home heating oil that is better for homes and the environment. Unfortunately, a large percentage of American’s aren’t taking advantage of bioheat because they are unaware of it’s benefits and availability.

“Bioheat fuel is domestically produced, renewable, burns cleaner and more efficiently, and can be used in your existing heating system,” said NBB board member Greg Anderson. “Most consumers have no idea that a simple phone call to their local oil heat dealer can benefit the environment, their health, their wallet—not to mention our national economy and energy security. It’s about time we spread the word.”

Bioheat recently launched a new website attempting to do just that. Mybioheat.com, is a great resource for learning what bioheat is, how to get it, and why consumers should consider making the switch.

Bioheat is biodiesel used for heating purposes. Biodiesel is produced from a variety of renewable resources, such as plant oils, animal fats, recycled grease, and even algae. Suppliers nationwide offer Bioheat blends between two and five percent biofuel. Some distributors offer blends as high as 20 percent.

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Biodiesel Conference Draws in Next-Gen Scientists

Joining over one thousand biodiesel supporters and industry leaders at this year’s 2016 National Biodiesel Conference and Expo were many young faces, eager to step into the industry. Around 20 students from the Next Generation Scientists for Biodiesel traveled to Tampa, FL to participate in the conference, as well as present their research at the expo and during a session.

Students came from schools all around the country, from USF in Tampa, to the University of Illinois, all the way to the University of Nevada, Reno. Each student was excited to attend and share their work.

Co-chair Jesse Mayer remarked on his time at the conference saying, “It’s a really great opportunity to understand all the different aspects of biofuels. Like the students here you’ve got a lot of different fields… So finding a student organization like NBB, joining them, and getting an idea of what those other aspects are, talking to people in the industry really helps diversify you as a student and really helps going on to grad school or into the workforce.

The students had a chance to host a session where conference attendees heard about their research and asked questions. They also held an area of the expo hall where they displayed their work and networked with other attendees.

To hear interviews and see photos of the students, visit the conference blog.

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Biodiesel Keeps Running During Coldest Winter of the Decade 

 Biodiesel, America’s Advanced Biofuel has no problem taking on the coldest winters. Last year, Harvard University stayed functional by having a fuel management plan when nearly 10 feet of snow hit the campus.

David E. Harris Jr., Harvard’s Director Transit and Fleet Management, reports they had no problems even on the most frigid days. “After the snowiest and coldest winter since we started using biodiesel 11 years ago, we were up and running providing transit service and keeping campus operations running smoothly,” Harris said. “Biodiesel is the fuel that helped us do that.”

Harris Jr. understands that there are general practices that keep biodiesel performing in cold temperatures. He also understands these guidelines aren’t any different than the ones he would take with a petroleum diesel vehicle. The most important decision in maintaining performance in cold temperatures is fuel quality. Using ASTM approved fuel from a reputable supplier is essential.

After locating a quality fuel source and reputable supplier developing a fuel management plan will help get your fleet through the winter. Discuss fuel additives and testing practices with your supplier to ensure your fleet won’t miss a beat. Harris manages 75 vehicles and over 100,000 gallons of biodiesel a year by having a solid fuel management plan that includes the proper additives and handling.

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Foundation Auction Raises Funds for Biodiesel Advancement

 During the 2016 National Biodiesel Conference and Expo, conference attendees had the opportunity to raise money for the National Biodiesel Foundation by once again participating in a successful silent auction. With over 40 items to bid on, the auction raised nearly $18,000 that will go toward accomplishing outreach, education, research and demonstration activities for the advancement of biodiesel. Items included a Led Zeppelin guitar signed by the band, a limited edition boxing champions glove signed by five boxing legends, a Star Wars poster signed by cast members of Episodes I - VI, and more. You can view a full list of items on the Foundation website.

Organized in 1994, the National Biodiesel Foundation works closely with the National Biodiesel Board to address national issues affecting us all — cleaner air, greater economic development for rural communities, and enhanced national security through energy independence.

There are many other ways to support the foundation, such as going online and making a donation.

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For the latest issue of Biodiesel Magazine click here.

 

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