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




February 1, 2017  
Fueling Biodiesel's Future at the National Biodiesel Conference & Expo

Biodiesel Industry Growth Sets New Records

Automakers Fuel the US Market with More Biodiesel Capable Vehicles

Biodiesel Industry Honors Year of Achievements, Industry Growth

Biodiesel Conference Closes with Promises of Clean Air, Domestic Jobs, and Lower Carbon Emissions

General Motors Announces 20 for B20

Next Generation Scientists for Biodiesel are Causing an Effect

 

 

Fueling Biodiesel's Future at the National Biodiesel Conference & Expo

NBB CEO Donnell Rehagen presents
the State of the Industry Address at the
2017 National Biodiesel Conference & Expo

From the streets of New York City to the surf of the California Coast, big things are happening to fuel biodiesel’s future. So it’s no surprise enthusiasts of America’s Advanced Biofuel were excited to converge last month in San Diego at the industry’s largest gathering of producers, distributors and fans.

Throughout the week, attendees had an opportunity to learn more about the exciting developments for the biodiesel industry that have occurred in the past year. Sessions featured presentations from industry leaders such as NBB CEO Donnell Rehagen and NBB Chairman Kent Engelbrecht, and a keynote speech from former FBI hostage negotiator Chris Voss.

The conference also featured an expo hall with exhibitors, student research posters, and a Biodiesel Vehicle Showcase with presentations from major OEMs such as GM, Ford, Nissan, and John Deere.

Much of the discussion during the week centered on what the new Congress and Administration will mean for the biodiesel industry in general and the Renewable Fuel Standard specifically. This was the subject of one of the Spotlight Sessions featuring leading experts from Washington.

To see pictures from the conference and listen to presentations, be sure to check out the conference blog. To watch NBB CEO Donnell Rehagen and NBB Chairman Kent Engelbrecht deliver the state of the industry address head over to the NBB YouTube page.

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Biodiesel Industry Growth Sets New Records

The biodiesel industry smashed records this year as US consumers saw almost 2.9 billion gallons of biodiesel and renewable diesel in 2016, outpacing the previous record by almost 40 percent. Also for the first time ever, the monthly market topped 300 million gallons, with December’s numbers coming in at 362 million gallons.

“The market realities spotlight two important points,” says National Biodiesel Board CEO Donnell Rehagen. “First the RFS is working to deliver energy choices to consumers and promote local economic activity. Second that reforming the biodiesel tax incentive as a domestic production credit remains critical to grow these programs in America’s best interest.”

According to a study conducted by LMC International, a 2.9 billion gallon biodiesel and renewable diesel market divided between domestic and foreign supply supports about 64,000 US jobs and $11.42 billion in total impact. Economic benefits increase substantially with growing domestic production, rather than imports. For example, just 2.5 billion gallons of domestic production would support at least 81,600 US jobs and $14.7 billion in total economic benefit.

“It’s just common sense that our tax dollars should benefit American jobs and local companies instead of incentivizing imports,” Rehagen said.

The biomass-based diesel category under the RFS alone saw a record 2.6 billion gallon market, allowing the advanced biofuel program to reach over 4 billion ethanol-equivalent gallons. These numbers exceeded EPA’s estimates for 2016, and track NBB’s projections, showing the industry can deliver on the goals set by Congress.

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Automakers Fuel the US Market with More Biodiesel Capable Vehicles

U.S. auto manufacturers have introduced a record number of new biodiesel capable diesel vehicle options for consumers as the push for increased fuel efficiency, performance, and sustainability in America’s transportation sector grows.

“Biodiesel is a renewable, domestically produced fueling option that amplifies the already substantial benefits of new technology diesel vehicles,” said Steve Howell, Senior Technical Advisor for the National Biodiesel Board. “NBB and the U.S. biodiesel industry remain committed to working closely with our partners in the auto and engine manufacturing community to ensure that the high-quality biodiesel fuel of today and tomorrow will continue to provide OEMs, fleets, and consumers with a reliable, fit-for-purpose fuel that keeps pace with the nation’s increasing demands for cleaner, more efficient, and sustainable modes of transportation.”

Several automakers’ new 2017 diesel models were recently featured at the San Diego Convention Center as part of the National Biodiesel Conference & Expo. The Biodiesel Vehicle Showcase event was presented by NBB and General Motors Fleet.  Vehicles included in the showcase were the 2017 Chevrolet Silverado HD from General Motors, the 2017 F-250 Super Duty from Ford, the 2017 Nissan Titan XD from Nissan, and the John Deere 5045E which is the best-selling utility tractor in the San Diego area.

Customers from coast to coast have used B20 successfully in virtually every make and model diesel engine, and the vast majority of new diesel engines now have full OEM support for B20 with no vehicle modifications required. Follow the link to the conference blog to see pictures of the Biodiesel Vehicle Showcase and to listen in on presentations from each of the OEM’s.

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Biodiesel Industry Honors Year of Achievements, Industry Growth

Donnell Rehagen and Kent Engelbrecht present the Climate Leader Award to NY Councilman Constantinides

This year’s “Eye on Biodiesel” awards highlight those who have had a major impact on the use of biodiesel. Clean air champions, policy drivers, fleet vehicle influencers, and lifetime biodiesel advocates were all honored last month during the National Biodiesel Conference and Expo.

“We are proud to recognize these individuals and organizations for going above and beyond to advance this industry that benefits American consumers so much,” said Kent Engelbrecht, chairman of the National Biodiesel Board.

Climate Leader Award – Costa Constantinides – New York City Council Member
In September, the New York City Council voted overwhelmingly to pass INT. 642-A, led by Council Member Costa Constantinides, that creates a fuel standard for heating oil that includes increasing amounts of biodiesel from the current two percent level to five percent by October 1, 2017, and eventually to twenty percent in 2034.

National Energy Leadership Award – Gov. Terry Branstad
In 2016, Governor Branstad rallied support for, and signed legislation, that extended the Biodiesel Production Credit through 2024, extended and expanded the Biodiesel Promotion Retail Tax Credit, also through 2024, and secured another year of funding for the state’s successful biodiesel and ethanol blender pump program, the Renewable Fuels Infrastructure Program.

Industry Partnership Award – The Illinois Soybean Association Checkoff Program and the American Lung Association in Illinois for the B20 Club 
Together, the two organizations have created a unique and impactful program in Illinois called the B20 Club. The efforts of the club have provided confidence in biodiesel and a platform for showcasing successful biodiesel user stories in the media, to decision makers, and the general public.

Influence Award – Ron Flowers – Greater Washington, DC Clean Cities

Ronald “Ron” Flowers is the Executive Director of the Greater Washington, D.C. Region Clean Cities Coalition, with more than 45 years of service in the public and private sector. His knowledge of fuels and fleets was instrumental in transforming the nation’s capital region from a community of biodiesel naysayers to biodiesel believers.

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Biodiesel Conference Closes with Promises of Clean Air, Domestic Jobs, and Lower Carbon Emissions

From Left to Right: Don O'Connor, Simon Mui, Jana Gastellum, and Keith Kerman

The closing session of the National Biodiesel Conference & Expo provided an opportunity to celebrate the accomplishments of the past year while also taking a peek at how America’s Advanced Biofuel will fuel the country’s future in 2017 and beyond.

Led by Don O’Connor, a Vancouver-based international expert on greenhouse-gas emissions, the assembled panel detailed efforts that spanned from municipal victories to boost biodiesel use to the Paris Climate Agreement that aims to significantly reduce global carbon emissions.

Simon Mui, Director of California’s Fuels, Energy and Transportation Program for the Natural Resources Defense Council, praised the enactment of the state’s latest climate change law that expands on its landmark 2006 legislation which set the ambitious goal of reducing greenhouse-gas emissions to 1990 levels by 2020.

Oregon followed California’s lead in 2016 by enacting its own Low Carbon Fuel Standard. Jana Gastellum, Program Director of Climate at the Oregon Environmental Council, said the state seeks to reduce the average carbon intensity of Oregon’s transportation fuels by 10 percent over a 10-year period with biodiesel playing a leading role in the state’s efforts.

Conference attendees also heard from Keith Kerman, Deputy Commissioner and chief fleet officer for New York City’s Department of Citywide Administrative Services. Kerman discussed how the city’s entire diesel fleet – the largest municipal fleet in the country – has converted to B20. Additionally, New York City continued to demonstrate its confidence in the benefits of biodiesel by enacting legislation that will incrementally increase the amount of biodiesel that displaces petroleum in heating oil.

“Between these types of local and state efforts, combined with a strong federal Renewable Fuel Standard, we’re on our way to creating 80,000 U.S. jobs that would pay $3.2 billion in wages and create $15 billion in economic activity,” said Don Scott, NBB Director of Sustainability. “And we’re making the air we breathe healthier along the way.”

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General Motors Announces 20 for B20

John Schwegman of GM showcases the
new 2017 Chevy Silverado during
the Biodiesel Vehicle Showcase

General Motors is providing more options than ever before for customers to reap the benefits of fueling up with B20 biodiesel. With eight new diesel vehicle options hitting the roadways in 2017 – 2018, GM now offers a full line-up of twenty different diesel models, from passenger cars, to pickups and SUVs, to commercial vans and low cab forward trucks - all of which are approved for use with B20.

John Schwegman, Director of Commercial Product and Medium Duty Product for General Motors, delivered the welcome news to an enthusiastic crowd at the National Biodiesel Conference & Expo last month in San Diego.

“Diesel propulsion deserves wider consideration by fleet managers across the country,” Schwegman said.  “With biodiesel production and retail distribution expanding, and so many proven benefits, we believe more fleets will embrace the technology as part of their sustainability plans. If our diesel customers fueled exclusively with biodiesel, we estimate that consumption of petroleum-based fuels would be reduced by hundreds of million gallons annually.”

GM’s announcement, along with additional new diesel model introductions this year, sends a strong signal that diesel remains an important option for meeting the current and future needs of U.S. drivers. Including 2017 and 2018 models, Chevrolet and GMC will offer one of the largest portfolios of vehicles capable of running on B20, a blend of 20 percent biodiesel and 80 percent ultra-low sulfur diesel.

Schwegman also presented at a breakout session during the conference, discussing the road ahead and how OEMs and fleets are cutting carbon with biodiesel. Read the National Biodiesel Board’s full release on the announcement here and be sure to check out the conference blog to see pictures and listen to the all the latest news from San Diego.

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Next Generation Scientists for Biodiesel are Causing an Effect

The 2017 National Biodiesel Conference & Expo brought in hundreds of attendees from across the nation, including a unique group of college students. Fourteen young scientists joined the conference in San Diego as part of the National Biodiesel Board’s Next Generation Scientists for Biodiesel program.

During the conference the NGSB students were able to present their work and research at poster sessions in the expo hall, and six of them presented their projects in a breakout session entitled, “Cause an Effect.” To listen to their session and hear all about their research, as well as see pictures of the students and their posters, be sure to visit the conference blog.

These students were selected from a large group of applicants, and were presented with scholarships to attend the conference funded by the United Soybean Board, NBB, and the National Biodiesel Foundation. Students traveled from universities including the University of Nevada – Reno, Kansas State University, Clemson University, Southern Illinois University Carbondale, and more.

Managed by the National Biodiesel Board, the Next Generation Scientists for Biodiesel is a free student professional organization to help foster collaboration, networking, and career development for college students. The NGSB program is always looking for bright young minds interested in sustainability and biodiesel. For more information and to join please visit the website.

 

For the latest issue of Biodiesel Magazine click here.

 

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