Industry Welcomes RFS Timeline Announcement From EPA
On April 10, the U.S. Environmental Protection
Agency (EPA) announced it has reached a consent decree in a lawsuit with petroleum
groups that legally binds the agency to meet a deadline of June 1 for proposing
2014 and 2015 Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) volumes. Additionally, it outlined
an encouraging new timeline for establishing biodiesel volumes through 2017.
Under the new timeline, the EPA is legally
obligated to propose 2015 volumes by June 1 and to finalize 2014 and 2015 RFS
volumes by November 30, 2015. The agency also stated that they hope to re-propose
2014 volumes, propose 2016 volumes for all RFS categories and to propose 2017
Biomass-Based Diesel volumes by June 1. All volumes are to be finalized by November 30, 2015.
While the real test of the Administration’s
commitment to renewable fuels will be in the actual volume numbers that are proposed
in the coming weeks. The EPA’s announcement is a positive development for the
biodiesel industry, which appears to demonstrate the agency’s commitment to
ending the delays and get the RFS back on track with the statutorily required
deadlines for biodiesel.
EPA develops its proposal, all biodiesel supporters are encouraged to speak out
on social media, in op-eds or letters to the editor, and with elected officials
in Washington directly to advocate a strong and growing biodiesel sector under the RFS.
To view EPA’s announcement and the
consent decree, which the agency agreed to voluntarily, visit EPA’s website
Let Your Voice Be Heard! Join the Biodiesel Thunderclap Campaign
The National Biodiesel
Board recently launched a unique online campaign to raise awareness for biodiesel
and with a few quick clicks, you can be a part of it.
The campaign is through
a platform called Thunderclap which will flood twitter and Facebook with an important
biodiesel message, calling on the US EPA to support a vibrant domestic biodiesel
industry by quickly releasing required volumes for annual growth under the Renewable Fuel Standard.
is Thunderclap? It’s a new platform that allows people to pledge a Tweet or
Facebook message that is concentrated and unleashed all at the same time. Think
of it as a massive flash mob on Twitter. It’s completely safe and will automatically
post exactly one message on your behalf.
Participation is simple. Click on this link and choose “Support with Facebook,”
“Support with Twitter” or “Support with Tumblr” – or click each of them
if you currently use them all. On May 20, everyone who has signed up will have
the same biodiesel message automatically posted to their social media accounts.
This will be the only message ever posted through the Thunderclap campaign. The
message includes a link to NBB’s Fueling Action Center, where supporters
can learn more about contacting the EPA to encourage growing biodiesel production
through the RFS. That’s it!
The biodiesel message is: "Hey #EPA, #getbiodieselbackontrack.
We need strong #RFS growth for America’s Advanced Biofuel in 2015 and beyond.http://thndr.it/1ODGT5c"
The biodiesel industry
depends on its supporters to spread the message and educate others about its numerous
benefits. NBB appreciates all who participate and encourage supporters to share the campaign with others.
|Earth Day Continues to Effect Change After 45 Years |
Each year Earth Day serves as a day for social and political
grassroots efforts to raise awareness about our environment worldwide. April 22nd
marks the anniversary of what many consider the birth of the modern environmental movement in 1970.
to the Earth Day Network, the idea came to Earth Day founder
Gaylord Nelson, then a U.S. Senator from Wisconsin, after witnessing the ravages
of the 1969 massive oil spill in Santa Barbara, California. Inspired by the student
anti-war movement, he realized that if he could infuse that energy with an emerging
public consciousness about air and water pollution, it would force environmental
protection onto the national political agenda.
The first Earth Day was so successful
it led to the creation of the United States Environmental Protection Agency and
the passage of the Clean Air, Clean Water, and Endangered Species Acts.
Earth Day 2015 saw
biodiesel play a major role in events from coast to coast. San Francisco’s Municipal
Transportation Agency announced the purchase of 61 new biodiesel-electric
hybrid buses that will run on B20 biodiesel blends. Students in Lexington, South
Carolina at the Center for Advanced Technical Studies’ clean
energy program showcased a new biodiesel reactor they will use to recycle local
oil. And the National Biodiesel Board and United Soybean Board partnered with
Kennedy Space Center in Florida to showcase biodiesel and other biobased products
to thousands of staff and park visitors in their annual Earth Day celebration.
efforts of organizations and individuals around the world continue to effect change,
just as the first Earth Day did more than forty years ago.
New England Clean Cities Coalitions Recognizes Green Fleets
New England fleets were recognized recently for their positive impact on the alternative
fuel industry. Malloy Energy and Newport Biodiesel were both recognized by their
local Clean Cities Coalition with the Northern Stars of New England award. The
award recognizes vehicle fleets from around the region for their commitment to
the goals of the Clean Cities program. “Malloy Energy and Newport Biodiesel
show what an amazing impact small business can have in our state. Both companies
stand out as regional leaders in the alternative fuel industry,” said Wendy
Lucht, Ocean State Clean Cities coordinator.
A deep commitment to cutting carbon
emissions and petroleum use through use of alternative fuels, alternative fuel
vehicle purchasing, and petroleum reduction practices is the leading factor to
recognition as a Northern Star.
Malloy Energy and Newport Biodiesel were selected because
100 percent of their fleets use biodiesel. Malloy’s vehicles used nearly 7,800
gallons of biodiesel instead of diesel in 2014, and Newport Biodiesel vehicles
used approximately 7,500 gallons of biodiesel.
The designation as a Northern Star
requires fleets be stakeholders in their local Clean Cities Coalitions and they
meet a list of criteria detailing their commitment to Clean Cities initiatives.
The Northern Stars of New England program was funded through a U.S. Department
of Energy grant that identified barriers to the proliferation of alternative fuels
and how to remove them. Five northern New England Clean Cities Coalitions developed
the program. The program is funded by a U.S. Department of Energy grant awarded
to Maine Clean Communities, a program of the Greater Portland Council of Governments,
and other northern New England Clean Cities Coalition grant partners.
Iowa Gov Takes Spin Around Capitol with Biodiesel
In April, Iowa Governor
Terry Branstad and Lieutenant Governor Kim Reynolds were among those who drove
the latest clean diesel vehicle offerings, fueled by biodiesel blends, around
the Capitol in Des Moines. The appearance was part of the Iowa Biodiesel Board’s annual “Biodiesel Day
on the Hill” event, where the state trade group held its first ever Ride-and-Drive.
on hand included a diesel Chevy Cruze, the only small domestic diesel car; a Ford
F-250 Superduty pickup; a Ram 3.0L EcoDiesel pickup; and a diesel Jeep Grand Cherokee.
All 2015 models are approved for 20 percent biodiesel (B20), and ran on biodiesel blends during the event.
a nation, we should continue to prioritize both a diverse fuel supply and clean,
fuel efficient vehicles,” said Grant Kimberley, IBB executive director. “With
diesel vehicles running on biodiesel blends, you get both.”
According to the
Diesel Technology Forum, conservative industry
estimates put diesel's share of the passenger vehicle market at 6 to 10 percent
by 2023, exceeding estimates for other alternative vehicle choices such as hybrids and electric vehicles.
biodiesel producers and supporters also spent the day thanking legislators for
their support. Earlier this year, the state raised the fuel tax while providing
a partial exemption for diesel blended with at least 11 percent biodiesel (B11).
Lee Brice Partners with Environmental Non-Profit
The "evocative" (New
York Times) male vocalist, Lee Brice kicks off a headlining tour in partnership
with REVERB, a non-profit organization that unites artists and colleges to affect
environmental and social change. An avid outdoorsman, Brice's Campus Consciousness
initiative focuses on outdoor preservation and water conservation, subjects close
to the South Carolina native's heart.
"We're hoping to offset the environmental
impact of the tour by supporting clean energy projects and using buses and trucks
fueled with locally produced biodiesel. I have two sons and I look at this as
investing in their future and that of kids around the world," shares Brice.
who was recently awarded the ACM Single Record of the Year started his tour with
sold-out shows in Hawaii and Australia. Lee will continue to play festivals, fairs
and arenas through the spring and summer. Tour dates and tickets are available
Founded in 2004, REVERB is a non-profit organization that brings
musicians to schools to affect environmental and social change. By employing student
volunteers, and working alongside partner artists, REVERB positively impacts college
communities, resulting in beach clean ups to trail preservation. Former REVERB
partner artists include Dave Matthews Band, Maroon 5, fun, and Jack Johnson.
Pennycress Workshop Advances Commercial Plans
In April, a workshop
focusing on advancing commercial plans to bring pennycress into biodiesel’s
diverse feedstock portfolio in the Midwest took place in Peoria, Ill. The first-of-its-kind
workshop included commercial entities and research labs from across the supply
chain that share an interest in the development of pennycress for the production
of biofuels and other valuable byproducts.
“Commercialization challenges that
exist for pennycress are not unlike those for any new crop,” said Alan Weber,
a feedstock analyst for the National Biodiesel Board who attended the event. “Areas
for additional work or research include seed dormancy issues, improving yields
with early maturing varieties, co-product evaluation, ensuring eligibility for
crop insurance, and the general learning curve for producers with a new crop.”
(Thlaspi arvense) is a winter annual plant, meaning it emerges in the fall and
produces seed the following spring. The promise for pennycress stems from the
fact that it fits into an existing Midwest corn-soy rotation without materially
affecting either of those crops. The crop would act similarly to a cover crop
in that it would scavenge nutrients, thus preventing them from being lost through
the soil profile. Planting pennycress also decreases the opportunity for soil
erosion, improves soil biology and provides an additional revenue stream for producers.
Commercial Aviation Alternative Fuels Initiative organized the workshop, hosted
at USDA’s Agricultural Research Lab. Western Illinois University will hold a
Pennycress Field Day on May 28.