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Biodiesel Bulletin


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

NBB does not publish a February Issue due to the Biodiesel Conference.


September 2, 2014  

Uncertainty Remains as RFS Volume Delay Continues

Biofuels Tour Educates Through Immersion 

Expand Your Alt-Fuel Bandwidth: Join the Biodiesel Aliance and Backers

Driven by Bacon?  With Biodiesel, You Bet

Biodiesel Hits the Road as Students Hit the Books

2015 Biodiesel Conference: Certainty in Shifting Markets

Alt Fuel Conference to Include Diesel Tech Training

ISU Program Brings Biodiesel to Iowa Middle Schools

 

Uncertainty Remains as RFS Volume Delay Continues

The EPA took a big step recently in finalizing the 2014 Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) volumes when it sent its final proposal to the White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for interagency review on August 22. This is nine months behind EPA’s statutory deadline of November 2013 to release the final rule. OMB typically takes 30 to 90 days for interagency review, a timeframe that would push the final release date anytime from mid-September to November, possibly after the elections.
 
Uncertainty remains as EPA has not released any information regarding the final volume numbers for renewable fuels, including biodiesel.  A number of elected officials have reported recently that the EPA has made clear that the biodiesel volume will increase from the original proposal of 1.28 billion gallons. To what extent, however, is not known.
 
The National Biodiesel Board and its members will continue to press the White House and others in the Administration that an increase to at least 1.7 billion gallons is critical for the industry’s continued growth and success. Policy setbacks have taken a major toll on the biodiesel industry. A nationwide survey of producers conducted by NBB in April found that nearly 80 percent of U.S. biodiesel producers had scaled back production and more than half had idled production at a plant altogether.

 

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Biofuels Tour Educates Through Immersion 

The Iowa Renewable Fuels Association’s Biofuels: Science & Sustainability Tour brought representatives from eight states to Iowa recently to see first-hand biodiesel, ethanol, and modern production agriculture. The four-day tour was designed to educate federal and state agency officials and US Congressional staff members on the wide-ranging benefits of biofuels to the nation.

“Coming from Iowa, the benefits of biodiesel have always been clear to me,” said Evan Jurkovich, senior legislative assistant to Congressman Dave Loebsack, and tour attendee. “The biofuels tour only added emphasis to that and showed just how valuable the biodiesel industry is to our growing bioeconomy.”

The group included staff members from Senate and House of Representative offices from both sides of the isle representing Iowa, Georgia, North Carolina, Colorado, Oregon, Minnesota, South Dakota, and New Hampshire, along with a number of agencies.

“With a variety of policy makers from all over on the tour, what I thought the most important part was seeing first-hand the high skilled jobs this brings to our rural economies,” Loebsack said. “It was great to see that the biodiesel and bioeconomy industries are here and very real right now and are only going to continue to grow especially if a strong RFS is maintained.”

Attendees visited biodiesel producer Western Dubuque Biodiesel in Farley, Iowa and heard presentations on production, policy, sustainability, economics, and feedstock production from biodiesel industry representatives.

Other sponsors included the National Biodiesel Foundation, the Iowa Biodiesel Board, the Iowa Soybean Association, Iowa State University, and other biofuels groups.

 

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Expand Your Alt-Fuel Bandwidth: Join the Biodiesel Alliance and Backers

What do John Deere, Willamette Valley Vineyards and the Silicon Valley Clean Cities Coalition have in common? They support biodiesel and stay up to date through the Biodiesel Alliance.

If you want to move American-made, cleaner burning biodiesel forward, the National Biodiesel Board invites you to join the Biodiesel Alliance & Backers. You’ll receive updates relevant to biodiesel, America’s Advanced Biofuel, such as new pump openings in your area and exclusive webinars.

There are two options to choose from, or you can choose both! Your organization can join the Alliance. This is a diverse coalition of organizations, agencies and businesses from across the nation that find common ground in their support for biodiesel fuel. As an individual, you can join the Backers. NBB founded the Biodiesel Backers program in response to growing interest from people who wanted to learn about biodiesel information and opportunities. Join thousands of other Biodiesel Backers who recognize the benefits of biodiesel to energy security, the environment, human health and the U.S. economy! 

 

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Drive by Bacon? With Biodiesel, You Bet 

How on earth could someone drive a vehicle using bacon power? While it sounds far-out, Hormel Foods Corp. did just that last month by converting the grease left behind from frying up bacon into biodiesel and putting it into the tank of a custom diesel motorcycle.

The bike was built by CSE Engineering and was based on a 2011 Track T-800CDI model. Hormel Foods and marketing firm BBDO Minneapolis sponsored the biodiesel motorcycle to ride from Austin, Minnesota to San Diego for the International Bacon Film Festival. Along the way the crew filmed for a movie called, “Driven By Bacon” that was shown at the film festival August 29th.

“The journey is sort of the destination,” said Scott Schraufnagel, account director for BBDO.

Hormel representatives say the marketing push is an exciting opportunity to spread the word about Hormel’s Black Label Bacon brand and will likely be used as a promotional tool in the future.

It also brought a lot of positive attention to biodiesel along the way with stories in publications from coast-to-coast. While there likely won’t be any commercial production plants built specifically for bacon grease biodiesel production, it does highlight the wide variety of fats and oils that can be turned into biodiesel.

 

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Biodiesel Hits the Road as Students Hit the Books 

With children across the country back in school, many school districts are turning to biodiesel to help ensure the air they breathe is clean.

Anyone who has had to sit in traffic behind a diesel-fueled bus understands concerns about the more than 24 million children who ride some 440,000 buses to and from school each day. Pollution from diesel vehicles has health implications for everyone, especially children. The use of biodiesel can reduce that threat. Here are some schools that are taking action:

The Haverford, PA school district’s fleet of 70 buses traveled over 716,000 miles last year, transporting more than 4,600 students and burned nearly 700,000 gallons of biodiesel. According to their reports, the district reduced particulate emissions by 521 pounds, while reducing carbon monoxide, hydrocarbons, carbon dioxide, and sulfur oxide and saving an estimated $221,600 in health care costs.

Medford Township Public Schools, in Medford, NJ became the first school district in the country to power its buses with biodiesel back in 1997. “We transport 3,500 students a day in our buses,” said Joe Biluck, Director of Operations and Technology for Medford Township Public Schools. “This biodiesel program was started for them.”

American University and Georgetown University, both located in our nation’s capital, are two of the many universities that power their campus shuttle buses with biodiesel.

Is your school district, local college or university using biodiesel? If not, ask why and share information on why America’s Advanced Biofuel – biodiesel – makes sense.

 

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2015 Biodiesel Conference: Certainty in Shifting Markets

As we head into fall, now is the time to start planning your trip to the 12th annual National Biodiesel Conference & Expo, January 19-22, 2015 at the Fort Worth, Texas Convention Center.

“In my seventeen years in the biodiesel world the most predictable dynamic of this growing industry has been unpredictability; a constant evolution of the market and its ever-transforming challenges,” said Joe Jobe, CEO of the National Biodiesel Board. “I can't tell you today with certainty exactly what our landscape will look like when we meet in January for the conference. What I do know is that this conference will be at the center of it.” 

“As it has proven to be in years past, the conference will be a point of certainty. It is a place to come hear directly from those at the top of our field where we are and where we might be going. It is a place to see, meet and interact with those who are not only still standing but also thriving.”

The conference has a proven track record. Investment in time and money to participate will return value to you and your organization in both dollars and your role in the industry.

Conference details can be found here in the coming weeks. If you have ideas for breakout sessions or speakers, please contact Kaleb Little in the NBB office.

 

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Alt Fuel Conference to Include Diesel Tech Training 

An event bringing together fleet managers and industry experts will be hosted at the North Carolina Clean Energy Technology Center October 22-24.

The Southeast Alternative Fuel Conference will provide networking opportunities, education on fleet efficiency and hands-on experience with technology. The event will feature breakout sessions, one-on-one conversations with the nation’s leading technology providers, 50 exhibitors and 20 vehicles at the Expo Hall and Ride-and-Drive events. Attendees can hear alternative fuel success stories and discuss policies that affect the industry.

This year, the largest alternative fuels conference on the east coast will feature five free co-located events, including “Biodiesel for Diesel Technicians Training,” presented by the National Biodiesel Board. Taking place October 22, the program is designed to train diesel auto-technicians to better understand biodiesel and advise their customers.

 

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ISU Program Brings Biodiesel to Iowa Middle Schools

Biodiesel is making its way into Iowa’s middle school science classrooms thanks to a new Iowa State University program.

Teachers recently toured Renewable Energy Group, Inc. (REG)’s biorefinery in Newton, Iowa receiving an overview of the company’s biodiesel business and production process. The visit was part of the Summer Academy for Middle School Teachers, a three-week summer program at ISU that draws teachers from across the state.

The academy provides teachers with hands-on experiences, exposure to cutting-edge research, and an opportunity for collaboration with faculty. Through the academy, teachers develop classroom material related to renewable fuels and other products for their students. They also must complete a small research project and present on it.

“The focus is specifically on renewables and giving teachers a better understanding of the bioeconomy in Iowa,” said Stacy Renfro, program coordinator at ISU. “We are teaching them why they are important and giving them firsthand experience, so they can then pass it on to their students.”

Iowa’s Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCoR) and the National Science Foundation Engineering Research Center for Biorenewable Chemicals (CBiRC) sponsor the academy which is in its fourth year. Teachers are selected through an application process.

 

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Past issues are available upon request.