|Final Advocacy Push for Biodiesel Incentive in Lame Duck |
NBB has been proactively
advocating for the biodiesel tax credit since before it expired at the beginning
of the year. With Congress bogged down in partisan gridlock, there have had few
real legislative opportunities to win its reinstatement. That should change when
Congress returns to Washington for a "lame duck" session shortly after the
Nov. 4 elections. It will be incredibly important for all biodiesel supporters
to join a united push at that time to win the credit back.
Congress is scheduled to return to work
the week of Nov. 10 with plenty of unfinished business. Leaders in both the House
and Senate have called for passing a "tax extenders" package to reinstate
dozens of tax incentives that have expired or are soon to expire. In a bipartisan
vote in April, the Senate Finance Committee passed a package to extend more than
40 tax incentives, including the biodiesel incentive. The bill would reinstate
the $1 per gallon tax credit for two years – retroactively for 2014 and through the end of 2015.
This package will likely be used as a
starting point if and when Congress takes up tax extenders in the lame duck session,
but there will be significant opposition. After the election, NBB will be encouraging
stakeholders to call their members of Congress and urge them to pass tax extenders
legislation that includes biodiesel as quickly as possible.
For talking points and other information,
please visit NBB's Fueling Action advocacy website or contact members
of Congress through the Senate switchboard at (202) 224-3121. House representatives
can be contacted through the switchboard at (202) 225-3121. Stay tuned for further
Invited to Learn Beyond the Classroom with Biodiesel Conference Scholarship
The November 24 deadline
is fast approaching for students interested in applying to attend the National Biodiesel Conference & Expo, Jan.
19 – 22 in Fort Worth, Texas. Hosted by the National Biodiesel Board, students
are invited to apply for a travel scholarship as well as to present their research.
This opportunity comes through the Next Generation Scientists for Biodiesel, an NBB
program that aims to educate and collaborate with young scientists.
this premier biodiesel event, students can attend conference sessions and network
with top scientists in the field. They may also apply to present a poster on their
biodiesel-related research or outreach during a poster session. Some will be invited
to present during a breakout session.
allowed me to make contacts with NGSB members and biodiesel professionals that
I would never have made otherwise," said Colin Stewart, a student at the University
of Colorado – Boulder who attended the event in 2014. "The conference opened
my eyes to the biodiesel industry, its future, and how I can play a role in it.
year, 16 students from nine universities received scholarships to attend the conference.
The scholarships are funded by state soybean organizations and the United Soybean
Board through the soybean checkoff. Visit the NGSB scholarship program page to learn more or apply.
Retail Fuel Testing Confirms High Biodiesel Quality
Recent field testing from
more than 30 random retail stations scattered throughout the state of Minnesota
showed biodiesel blends greatly exceeding important fuel quality parameters set
by the industry. This real-world data showcases the recent trend in increasing
biodiesel quality from coast-to-coast.
Minnesota just completed their first summer of a
successful run with 10 percent biodiesel (B10) in diesel fuel statewide. Industry
experts say the quality of biodiesel in the field is a result of the increasing
awareness of quality control measures from production all the way down to the retail level.
"Biodiesel fuel quality
is at an all-time high across the industry," said Scott Fenwick, National Biodiesel
Board technical director. "The recent results from the Minnesota testing are
just another example of why consumers can feel confident about filling up with biodiesel blends."
A key indicator of fuel quality
in biodiesel blends is oxidative stability, which is a measure of degradation
caused by exposure to oxygen. Blind samples were taken in September from retailers
across three regions in Minnesota — north, metro, and south. All of the samples
taken surpassed the minimum required specification for oxidative stability and
the majority of the samples were three to four times better than the minimum.
Fenwick said, "Higher values indicate even better stability, and this new real-world
data is important as some original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) look for more
assurances that biodiesel blends are meeting specifications at the pump."
Concerned Biofuel Cuts Would Undermine Climate Targets
early October, two leading Democrats, Sen. Barbara Boxer of California and Sen.
Ed Markey of Massachusetts, wrote a letter to the White House asking President
Obama to continue growing advanced biofuels volumes under the Renewable Fuels
Standard (RFS), including biodiesel. In the letter, the lawmakers expressed their
concern over the effects of the proposed cuts in biofuel volumes on carbon pollution,
citing a study that found the proposed targets would increase net carbon pollution
by 28.2 million metric tons in 2014.
The senators argued maintaining the proposed cuts would undermine
the Administration's efforts to build a renewable fuels program, a significant
component to reducing carbon emissions in the United States. Furthermore, they
pointed out slashing RFS volumes would have far-reaching consequences combating
climate change, a priority issue for President Obama.
This letter is particularly significant because Boxer
is chairman of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, which oversees
the EPA, and Markey is well-known as a leader on energy and environment issues
in Congress. Their letter sends a clear message from leading senators to the White
House that increasing biodiesel volumes under the RFS will help their efforts
to reduce harmful carbon emissions. We encourage all biodiesel advocates to thank
the senators for supporting biodiesel by calling Sen. Boxer's office at (202)
224-3553 and Sen. Markey's office at (202) 224-2742.
Teen Cassandra Lin Honored with Nickelodeon HALO Award
R.I., teenager Cassandra Lin, founder of Turning Grease into Fuel (TGIF), was
announced as a Nickelodeon HALO (Helping and Leading Others) Award honoree Oct.
12 in New York City. TGIF collects local donations of used cooking oil to heat
the homes of families in need. Nick Cannon, the host, creator, and executive producer
of the HALO Awards, surprised Lin with a check for $10,000 for her college education.
The Nickelodeon HALO Awards
is an hour-long concert special celebrating extraordinary youth who are involved
in their communities. The star-studded musical event is held at New York's Pier
36 and premieres Sunday, Nov. 30 at 7 p.m. Eastern time. The event will air and
stream live across Nickelodeon networks.
"We're taking over New York City with the hottest
musical performers and the most awe-inspiring kids for one huge, fun night at
this year's Nickelodeon HALO Awards," said Cannon. "The HALO Awards embodies
the altruistic spirit of the holidays with its positive message, and I can't
wait to celebrate the terrific work of these young heroes."
The Nickelodeon HALO Awards show is an annual event that
recognizes kids doing extraordinary things in their communities by "Helping
and Leading Others." In addition to being awarded a grant for their organization,
and scholarship funds, each honoree is given this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity
to meet celebrities that share their same passion for service. For more information,
Francisco Highlights Biodiesel Success Stories
it comes to biodiesel, San Francisco hits a homerun. The area's many biodiesel
patrons make it one of the top cities in the nation for biodiesel use. Some of
their success stories took center stage in October, during the Bay Area Biodiesel Summit.
Marty Mellera, Sustainability
Manager for the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency, spoke about their
use of B20 in the agency's 500 hybrid-diesel buses. He noted that their transition
to B20 has proven to be highly effective at reducing carbon emissions with many
years of data supporting the fact.
The City of San Francisco also uses B20. Robert Hayden, Clean
Transportation program manager, said, "Forty percent of our greenhouse gas emissions
are generated by transportation. The more we can reduce emissions from diesel
use - that's the biggest bang for our buck. Biodiesel is a major priority for
the City of San Francisco."
The city displaces 1 million gallons of diesel every year with biodiesel.
Those attending included
regulators, fuel distributors, and fleet managers in Northern California. The
program also included a presentation by director of sustainability for the National
Biodiesel Board, Don Scott. Keith Kerman of the City of New York, a Biodiesel
Ambassador, served as the keynote lunch speaker.
NBB assisted the San Francisco Clean Cities chapter
with the planning and hosting of the event.
Carolina Lawyer Powered by Biodiesel
Asheville attorney, Lakota Denton has been powering his vehicle
with biodiesel from Blue Ridge Biofuels for the past eight years. He logs thousands
of miles across North Carolina every month as an attorney for Minick Law PC.
Today Denton drives a 2010 Volkswagen
Jetta SportWagen TDI. Previously he owned a Dodge Ram Cummins Turbo Diesel. He
uses biodiesel in an effort to support local business, reduce emissions, and utilize
an alternative energy source to Big Oil. He particularly appreciates how Blue
Ridge Biofuels partners with local businesses to use their recycled oil, as it
bolsters community involvement and a sense of ownership.
Denton says his experience
has been very positive with biodiesel over the past eight years, with no negative
effect on fuel economy. He adds that his vehicle runs great, with no issues, and
no needed maintenance as a result of using biodiesel.
Blue Ridge Biofuels
is a community-based biodiesel manufacturer committed to building the local alternative
energy economy by producing affordable clean fuels for the community of Western
North Carolina through sustainable business practices that offer opportunities
for community development, local jobs, and biofuel education.
Hawkeyes Drive it Home with Biodiesel
Iowa Soybean Association has partnered with the University of Iowa to transport
the Hawkeye football team to the field in a biodiesel-fueled bus. The bus runs
on a five percent blend of biodiesel (B5), a blend created from Iowa-grown soybeans.
"We have great respect
for the role farmers play in feeding and fueling our state and the Hawkeye nation,"
said Gary Barta, University of Iowa athletics director. "We are proud to partner
with the Iowa Soybean Association; they are a great addition to Hawkeye game day activities."
With 13 processing plants
supporting more than 7,000 jobs, Iowa is the leading biodiesel-producing state.
"Biodiesel is a win for
the state's economy and environment," said Tom Cleghorn, Iowa Soybean Association
president and farmer. "Teaming up with the Hawkeyes by using America's first
advanced biofuel is a victory for all Iowans."
Hauls Bad Guys Away with Biodiesel and E85
Ford is doing its part to clean up the streets and the environment
according to this recent Domestic Fuel article. The automaker has introduced
its new 2015 Ford Transit Prisoner Transport Vehicle (Transit PTV). The Transit
PTV is capable of hauling up to 12 prisoners at a time and can run on biodiesel or E85 ethanol.
PTV is the latest example of Ford's deep commitment to helping provide law enforcement
agencies with capable vehicles," said Jonathan Honeycutt, Ford police marketing
manager. "This concept proves Transit is upfit-ready and designed to the Built Ford Tough standards."
is available in three heights, two wheelbases, three lengths, and four body styles.
It provides a range of powertrain choices and engine options. Two gasoline engine
options include an E85-capable 3.7-liter V6 and a 3.5-liter EcoBoost®. The diesel
engine is a 3.2-liter Power Stroke®, which is able to run on B20 biodiesel.
is known for its police vehicles. The Transit PTV joins Ford's Police Interceptor
sedan and utility vehicle, Special Service Police Sedan, F-150 Special Service
Vehicle and Expedition Special Service Vehicle.
The only people who won't like
the Transit PTV will be the prisoners it hauls away.