Header Image




Regulatory Matters 


Join Us 


California Biodiesel Alliance News

California's Biodiesel Industry Trade Association  


July 2016     

In This Issue
Welcome to the first issue of our new members-only newsletter. Last month, we announced this change as part of the restructuring of our member dues and an exciting new Partner Sponsor program (see details in the article on our Home page). We are now working to develop a webpage to showcase our new Partner Sponsors and a Members Only webpage that will provide the latest updates on policy issues and key information for those doing business in California. You will receive an email with details on how to access that page when it goes live.
You are receiving this newsletter because your company/organization or individual membership is current. As such, you will continue to enjoy member benefits until January of 2017, when new rates kick in (see details on our Join Us page).
Our industry is pushing back hard against oil company efforts to undermine the LCFS. This issue begins with a fact-filled rebuttal from Simon Mui at NRDC of false oil industry arguments, followed by an article about the CALSTART-led letter to policymakers that CBA has signed. We hope you'll join CBA and board member companies who are reaching out to state representatives with letters and meetings asking them to strongly defend the LCFS. 

CBA heads to Sacramento again in August for a Lobby Day focusing on LCFS defense and the California Biofuels Cap & Trade Initiative, our coalition effort to secure funding from auction proceeds for in-state low carbon biofuels production. 
This issue presents important news, including articles on RFS and the domestic producers' tax credit. The policy section has links to the July 29th LCFS workshop presentation, a call to action from the NBB on the tax credit, and, as always, much more.


CBA's Sixth Annual California Biodiesel Conference 
February 22nd, 2017  --  Capitol Ballroom, Sacramento

Please follow us on Twitter @cabiodieselorg and like us on Facebook.

Back Issues of this newsletter are available on our Archives page here
Big Oil's Claims About CA Climate Policies Were Wrong

July 12, 2016

The Western States Petroleum Association (WSPA), an oil industry lobbying group representing companies like Chevron, is breaking records with lobbying expenditures as it attempts to block efforts to extend California clean energy and climate programs beyond 2020, according to  recent news  reports. Now, WSPA and their members are trying  to force government officials and lawmakers into a no-win Sophie's choice: either hobble the state's low-carbon fuel standard (LCFS) or the oil industry will try to kill proposed legislation to establish a statewide limit on carbon pollution for 2030 (Pavley,  SB32).

But is what Big Oil is claiming about the LCFS program, which requires the industry to cut carbon pollution from fuels, true? A bit of fact-checking shows their claims are far from the truth.

Unfortunately, some state Assembly Members, many of whom represent districts most burdened by air pollution, aligned themselves last year with WSPA by opposing extension of climate programs while also stripping petroleum reduction goals out of another major clean energy bill (De León, SB350). This was contrary to the interests of the constituents they were elected to serve.

Lawmakers were inundated with the oil lobby's doomsday claims against the state's LCFS as well as the state's cap-and-trade program that sets an economy-wide limit on carbon pollution. The oil industry's claims - that the state would run out of fuel supply, consumer costs would go up, and jobs would be lost - ran counter to studies and evidence showing the enormous benefits of these clean energy policies, including helping to make California home to the  most clean energy  jobs in the country. These policies also are also  saving all Californians, including low-income households, on their energy and transportation fuel bills, while helping avoid hundreds of thousands of  illnesses each year caused by air pollution.  Businessweek, which uncovered documents showing WSPA had created 16 fake front groups to serve as messengers to lawmakers, called Big Oil's strategy a "conspiracy to kill off California's climate law," designed "to confuse people about an important law."

Three big myths perpetuated upon lawmakers
With the 24/7 news cycle, it's easy to forget the major calamities the oil industry claimed would happen if the state's LCFS and cap-and-trade programs were allowed to continue. Here's what the oil industry said and what actually happened.

Doomsday Myth #1: The LCFS will lead to a "Fuels Cliff" in 2015 where "bad things" would happen, including "price spikes, fuel shortages and more." Tupper Hull, Western States Petroleum Association, 2013 

Fact check: False. In a sadly ironic twist, an explosion on February 18, 2015 at the ExxonMobil refinery in Torrance, California was the only "bad thing" happening. The explosion led to four injured workers and 14 months of reduced fuel supply to the state as major units at the refinery remained offline. A government commissioned  study by RAND, a major think tank, estimated the oil industry made $2.4 billion in additional windfall profits in the first several months alone as gasoline prices increased by an average of 40 cents per gallon due to reduced supplies to the state.
(Image of ExxonMobil, Torrance refinery after 2015 explosion: ABC News)
Using the same RAND methodology, I extended the analysis and found the oil industry windfall profits exceeded $6 billion over the entire 14-month incidence, costing the average household nearly $500 in additional fuel payments. In the aftermath, the state's Attorney General has now  issued subpoenas to several oil refineries on how they set gasoline prices.
(Chart of NRDC estimate of oil industry's windfall profits due to single refinery outage, compared to investments in alternative fuels resulting from LCFS.)
Fortunately, thanks to the LCFS program, a record amount of alternative, clean fuel supplies was made  available to the state in 2015, helping to partly offset the shortage after the explosion.  Rather than causing fuel shortages, over the past five years the LCFS has helped displace the need for over 6.6 billion gallons of gasoline and diesel, equivalent to the amount of fuel energy consumed in Southern California for more than a year. The clean fuels industry has also helped the oil industry outperform and exceed the LCFS requirements by an average of 80 percent thus far. As economists reported in a NRDC-commissioned study  in 2014, the LCFS is helping protect consumers as a result of increased diversification and competition in the marketplace by new alternative fuel suppliers.

Lawmakers now have a chance, by supporting extension under SB32 and continuing a strong LCFS program, to help ensure the oil industry starts putting some of that $6 billion in windfall profits to further increase low-carbon fuel supplies while also investing in cleaner technologies and safety at their refineries.

Doomsday Myth 2: "There is a 'likely' scenario where the cost of compliance requires refiners to recover in excess of $2.50 per gallon of fuel and refiners are forced to reduce supply to the California market ...this could happen in the 2015-2016 timeframe if LCFS regulations are not modified." WSPA's Understanding the Impact of AB32 Factsheet 

Based on the  recent market data on the LCFS program, the petroleum refineries' costs to comply with the LCFS was about 80 times lower than WSPA's 'likely' scenario. That LCFS value (seen as the small green bar in the graph above) went directly to companies producing alternative, lower-carbon fuel products. Californians in turn were provided with a record amount of alternatives, including renewable diesel, biogas, lower-carbon ethanol and clean electricity.

Even accounting for the oil industry's compliance costs, a  study commissioned by Consumers Union - the research and policy arm of Consumer Reports - concluded that California's clean transportation programs would result in up to $1,530 in fuel savings per household, $350 in avoided congestion costs per worker, and up to $4.8 billion in avoided societal harms by 2030. California's clean transportation programs are proving to be highly cost-effective.  

Doomsday Myth 3: The LCFS will "produce a steep decline in demand for refined products, particularly gasoline, resulting in the loss of 20 to 30 percent of the state's refining capacity by 2017..."  Western Petroleum Association Factsheet 

Over the past several years, WSPA continued  to report to legislators the LCFS would result in dramatic declines in the state's refining capacity. But five years into the program, the state's refining capacity remains virtually unchanged. In fact, as the economy recovered, gasoline and diesel demand has even increased slightly.
(Chart of California's operable refining capacity remains virtually unchanged. Source: U.S. Energy Information Administration)
Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.
Despite all this, WSPA continues its campaign against the LCFS by now arguing California doesn't need the standard to hit climate targets.  Most technical experts, however, have shown significant amounts of clean, low-carbon fuels are needed to meet current and future goals - precisely what the LCFS is helping deliver ( here and  here and  here).  Fighting climate change will require both a strong clean energy 'offense' - embodied by the LCFS - as well as a strong pollution 'defense' - like the statewide cap-and-trade provides.  

Lawmakers shouldn't let themselves be distracted by another round of doomsday claims by WSPA. Instead, they should stay focused on the many  benefits to their constituents from California's climate policies and be part of the state's climate leadership. California has shown, time after time, that it can move forward on both environmental and economic progress. It's time for the oil industry to conform to the needs of the state and Californians, and not the other way around.
CA GDP Emissions Graph

NOTE: See the article with all graphics and embedded links here

The New Fuel Industry Says California Should Stay the Course On Low Carbon Fuel Standard

57 Producers and Related Business Associations Say Policy is Working and Generating Jobs
Pasadena, CA - Nearly 60 producers and providers of clean fuels - ranging from electricity to renewable diesel - signed a joint letter urging state policymakers to sustain the state's low carbon fuel policy. The industry leaders say the tool is a "critical" part of the plan to reduce California's greenhouse gases and that it is already driving in-state investment.
The companies backing the state's Low Carbon Fuel Standard (LCFS) and signing the letter range from the state's largest natural gas utility to a company providing electric vehicle chargers to companies producing biodiesel in California. All of these businesses and fuel providers indicate that the LCFS is working as planned and encouraging the production of cost-effective, cleaner, lower carbon fuels.
The LCFS calls for reducing the carbon intensity of transportation fuels 10 percent by 2020. The measure was developed and enacted as a result of an Executive Order issued by former California Governor Schwarzenegger. A legal challenge resulted in a significant delay in the implementation of the policy, but since the Air Resources Board re-adopted the policy in 2015, it has been driving investment and innovation. 
A wide array of firms and companies are responding to the LCFS and producing enough fuels to meet the regulation's requirements. The LCFS has helped encourage the growth of the California biofuel industry, and is also providing real monetary value for fleets using electricity and natural gas. Thus far, since being implemented, the LCFS has helped encouraged more than $650 million in investment in clean fuel production in California. 
"The more than 50 fuel producers and providers that signed this letter strongly back this policy because they know it is driving innovation and investment, and will lead California to a better transportation future," said CALSTART President and CEO, John Boesel.

"The LCFS program is driving investment and innovation in our industry. Incentives to generate renewable fuels enable us to develop new low carbon fuel projects in California - which is good for the economy and good for theenvironment," said George Minter, Vice President for External Affairs and Environmental Strategy at the Southern California Gas Company.
The letter states that the LCFS is a good public policy because it sets a target but it does not pick technologies. The marketplace is responding with a number of different approaches.
According to Lisa Mortensen, CEO of Community Fuels, "The LCFS is well-crafted and it is working as intended.  More low carbon fuels are being integrated into the state's fuel supply than ever before.  If policymakers support the LCFS and provide clear indications that it will be stable, the marketplace will provide more than enough low carbon fuels to meet LCFS targets." 
A copy of the letter can be found here.


CALSTART, a national non-profit organization with 160 member companies is dedicated to expanding and supporting the clean transportation technology industry. CALSTART's member companies represent a broad range of clean transportation technologies, and include fleets, vehicle manufacturers, suppliers, Fortune 500 companies, and start-ups. CALSTART has 5 offices that are located in New York, Colorado, and California. For further information visit www.calstart.org.

  New LCFS Biodiesel Carbon Intensity Scores Released by ARB
Cal/EPa Building
Meeting its expected deadline of June 30th, the California Air Resources Board (ARB) released the new carbon intensity (CI) scores for biodiesel and renewable diesel pathways to the companies that had applied for certification of new or recertification of legacy pathways, as required by the readoption of the Low Carbon Fuel Standard (LCFS). 

The CI scores of the newly certified pathways are eligible for credit reporting purposes beginning the first day of the quarter released.  All approved pathways to-date are available here: http://www.arb.ca.gov/fuels/lcfs/fuelpathways/pathwaytable.htm.
No comments were submitted in response to Tier 2 pathways applications from New Leaf Biofuel and Crimson Renewable Energy. Both were posted by ARB for a 10-day public comments period
at: http://www.arb.ca.gov/fuels/lcfs/fuelpathways/comments/tier2_comments.htm
Noting that 43 new biodiesel and renewable diesel CI scores were made official by ARB, Don Scott, Director of Sustainability at the National Biodiesel Board (NBB), said, "The average CI for these new pathways is 31.58 g/MJ or a 69% reduction in emissions compared to current California diesel fuel. These new CIs encompass many changes, including more detailed data from individual producers and specifics for transportation of finished fuels and feedstocks. Overall, biodiesel benefits from reduced penalties for indirect land use change (ILUC) of 33 and 30 g/MJ for soy and canola, respectively. NBB is continuing this pattern of success. NBB and the National Biodiesel Foundation will be convening a meeting of experts in September to identify next steps in furthering the reduction in ILUC penalties based on the best available scientific data."

Forty Senators Call for Higher Biodiesel Targets in RFS

Lawmakers Ask EPA to Boost Volumes in Pending Proposal

July 21, 2016

WASHINGTON - Forty U.S. senators from across the country Thursday called on the EPA to strengthen biodiesel volumes in the pending Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) proposal.

The senators emphasized that biodiesel and renewable diesel are leading the way in delivering Advanced Biofuels under the RFS and said the EPA should do more to encourage their growth.

"The biodiesel industry has met RFS criteria for growth, exceeding the goals that Congress envisioned when it created the RFS with bipartisan support in 2005 and supporting over 47,000 jobs," the letter states. "To date, biodiesel and renewable diesel have delivered the majority of the advanced biofuels under the RFS. We believe it is clear that these fuels offer the best opportunity for growth in the near future."

The letter, which can be found here, was led by Sens. Roy Blunt, R-Mo., Patty Murray, D-Wash., Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, and Heidi Heitkamp, D-N.D. It was signed by a bipartisan group of additional senators from California to Minnesota to Maine.

Biodiesel - made from a diverse mix of resources such as recycled cooking oil, soybean oil and animal fats - is the first and only EPA-designated Advanced Biofuel to reach commercial-scale production nationwide. It has made up the vast majority of Advanced Biofuel production under the RFS to date. According to the EPA, it reduces greenhouse gas emissions by 57 percent to 86 percent compared with petroleum diesel.

"I think this letter reflects a growing consensus on Capitol Hill that biodiesel and renewable diesel are successfully delivering the economic and environmental benefits that Congress had in mind when it created the RFS," said Anne Steckel, vice president of federal affairs at the National Biodiesel Board (NBB). "This is a success story, and hopefully this letter helps show the Obama administration and the 
EPA that we need to do more. We need to embrace growth in our cleanest fuels, and the EPA proposal as it stands falls short of that."

"On behalf of biodiesel producers around the country we want to thank all the senators who signed this letter, particularly Sens. Blunt, Murray, Grassley and Heitkamp for their leadership in organizing the effort," Steckel added.

The RFS - a bipartisan policy passed in 2005 and signed into law by President George W. Bush - requires increasing volumes of renewable fuels in the U.S. fuel stream, and specifically calls for increasing volumes of Advanced Biofuels in the coming years.

Biodiesel and renewable diesel - a similar diesel alternative - fall under the Biomass-based Diesel category of the RFS, which is an Advanced Biofuel category intended to ensure that the policy also addresses the diesel fuel market, not just gasoline. Under the law, Advanced Biofuels must reduce lifecycle greenhouse gas emissions by at least 50 percent compared to petroleum fuels.

The EPA proposal would establish a 2.1-billion-gallon Biomass-based Diesel requirement in 2018, up only slightly from the already established 2-billion-gallon requirement for 2017. Citing unused industry capacity and data showing that Biomass-based Diesel consumption is already exceeding 2.1 billion gallons annually, the senators called for at least 2.5 billion gallons for 2018.

The additional senators signing the letter were Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.), Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.), Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.), Bob Casey (D-Pa.), Susan Collins (R-Maine), Joe Donnelly (D-Ind.), Richard Durbin (D-Ill.), Joni Ernst (R-Iowa), Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), Al Franken (D-Minn.), Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.), Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii), John Hoeven (R-N.D.), Angus King (D-Maine), Mark Kirk (R-Ill.), Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Ed Markey (D-Mass.), Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.), Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.), Jerry Moran (R-Kan.), Gary Peters (D-Mich.), Jack Reed (D-R.I), Pat Roberts (R-Kan.), Mike Rounds (R-S.D.), Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H), Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich.), Jon Tester (D-Mont.), John Thune (R-S.D.), Tom Udall (D-N.M.), Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.), and Ron Wyden (D-Ore.).

With nearly 200 member companies, NBB is the leading U.S. trade association representing the biodiesel and renewable diesel industries.

# # #
For more details visit www.americasadvancedbiofuel.com or www.biodiesel.org, and follow us on Twitter @Biodiesel_Media and @annesteckel.
Renewable Fuels Groups Applaud Biodiesel Tax Credit Extension

By Jodi Delapaz

WASHINGTON, July 21, 2016 - Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, and 13 co-sponsors have introduced a  bill that would modify the $1 per gallon biodiesel blenders' tax credit to a domestic producers' credit and extend it for three years.

After being reinstated in late 2015, the federal biodiesel tax incentive is set to expire again on Dec. 31. Under the current "blender's" structure, foreign biodiesel imported to the U.S. and blended with petroleum diesel in the U.S. is eligible for the tax incentive. The  Biodiesel Tax Incentive Reform and Extension Act of 2016 would extend the new policy for three years, starting Jan. 1, 2017.

The Iowa Renewable Fuels Association (IRFA)  says the extension and modification is crucial to energy security and protecting American jobs.

Iowa's renewable fuels industry accounts for more than $4.6 billion of the state's GDP, generates $2.3 billion in income for Iowa households and supports more than 43,000 jobs throughout all sectors of the Iowa economy, says the IRFA.

IRFA notes that Iowa is the nation's leader in renewable fuels production, having 12 biodiesel facilities that together can produce more than 315 million gallons annually. In addition, IRFA says that Iowa has 43 ethanol refineries capable of producing 4 billion gallons a year, including nearly 55 million gallons of cellulosic ethanol.

Monte Shaw, IRFA executive director, applauded supporters of the bill. He also expressed concern about the possibility that U.S. biodiesel production could decrease this year, citing the latest Department of Commerce report showing a surge in biodiesel imports. Those imports reached a two-and-a-half-year high in May and currently make up about one-third of the U.S. biodiesel market.
Shaw says that these soaring imports, coupled with the EPA's "lackluster" Renewable Fuel Standard proposal, demonstrate the need to modify the credit to a domestic producers' incentive to provide some longer-term certainty for the U.S. biodiesel industry.

"We applaud Sen. Grassley for leading the charge, and his colleagues, like Sen. Joni Ernst (R-Iowa), for working on this common-sense modification and extension that will support American jobs and energy security," says Shaw.

The National Biodiesel Board (NBB) also  applauded the bill, saying the legislation would fix the loophole that incentivizes foreign fuel. The NBB says that, increasingly, foreign biodiesel producers are taking advantage of the incentive by shipping their product here. By applying the tax incentive only to domestic biodiesel production, NBB says that the growing practice of foreign producers taking advantage of the U.S. tax system will end.

NBB urged Congress to take up the bill and pass it as quickly as possible to give domestic producers the certainty they need to hire and expand in the coming years. The group says the bill would bolster the diversification of the diesel market, reduce U.S. dependence on petroleum and help cut carbon emissions.

"Biodiesel and renewable diesel producers around the country are yet again facing what effectively amounts to a tax increase in less than six months," says NBB. "Congress can keep that from happening by passing this bill. It will give producers the certainty they need to hire and grow in the coming years."


California Biodiesel Alliance members
save 15%
Use code CBA15


Argus California Carbon & LCFS Summit
October 26-28, 2016
Napa Valley, California

Join Argus, the California Biodiesel Alliance and over 200 senior level risk managers, traders and compliance and regulatory executives to discuss the impact of changing federal and regional carbon and emissions programs on North America's carbon and fuels market.

As a member of the California Biodiesel Alliance, you get 15% off the registration price. Register today using code CBA15 to receive your discount. 

Have your most pressing questions answered, including:
  • How will proposed amendments to California's LCFS impact the fuels market?
  • What role will the transportation sector play in meeting California's GHG emission reduction goals?
  • Is California hitting a biodiesel blend wall?
  • What are the EPA's requirements for biodiesel blending and how will this impact pricing for biodiesel, cellulosic ethanol, and advanced biofuel RINs?

Download the brochure to view the full program or register now using code CBA15 to save.



Glasspoint 170  PFL sponsor logo Cali  Low Carbon Fuels Coalition

Supporting partner:

As a supporting partner, California Biodiesel Alliance members receive a special 15% discount. Register today and use code CBA15 at check out.

2016 Advisory Board
  • Derek Regal, Senior Manager Fuels & Regulatory Issues, Tesoro
  • Xantha Bruso, Manager, Long-term Energy Policy for Energy Procurement, PG&E
  • JP Brisson, Partner, Latham & Watkins
  • Bill Peters, Deputy Editor, Argus Air Daily 

NEW Venue
The Silverado Resort & Spa

Silverado Resort & Spa
1600 Atlas Peak Road
Napa Valley, CA 94558


Events White_Emissions.jpg


French fries Vials of Biodiesel French fries
US DOE awards $15M to advance algae-based biofuels, bioproducts

By DOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy | July 14, 2016
The U.S. DOE announced up to $15 million for three projects aimed at reducing the production costs of algae-based biofuels and bioproducts through improvements in algal biomass yields. These projects will develop highly productive algal cultivation systems and couple those systems with effective, energy-efficient, and low-cost harvest and processing technologies. This funding will advance the research and development of advanced biofuel technologies to speed the commercialization of renewable, domestically produced, and affordable fossil-fuel replacements.
The three projects selected, located in California and Florida, will include multidisciplinary partners to coordinate improvements from algal strain advancements through preprocessing technologies (harvesting, dewatering, and downstream processing) to biofuel intermediate in order to reduce the production costs of algal biofuels and bioproducts.

Global Algae Innovations Inc. (San Diego, California)-Global Algae Innovations, in collaboration with the University of California-San Diego, TSD Management Associates, Texas A&M University, General Electric, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory and the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, will accelerate the commercialization of algal biofuels through development of an integrated, photosynthetic, open raceway pond system to produce algal oil. Their approach is to combine best-in-class cultivation and preprocessing technologies with some of the world's leading strain development laboratories.

Algenol Biotech LLC (Ft. Myers, Florida)-Algenol Biotech, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Georgia Institute of Technology and Reliance Industries Ltd. have formed a team to advance the state-of-the-art in algal production and biofuel processing with the end goal of a sustainable, economically viable biofuel intermediate through enhanced productivity of cyanobacteria, the conversion of the biomass to a biofuel intermediate, and the cost-sensitive operation of a photo-bioreactor system. 

MicroBio Engineering Inc. (San Luis Obispo, California)-MicroBio Engineering, in partnership with Cal Poly University, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Sandia National Laboratories and Heliae, will deliver integrated technologies that achieve high yields of biofuels, combined with treatment of wastewater, higher value coproducts, and carbon dioxide mitigation.


Bakersfield News (Op-ed): It won't help oil, but biodiesel can help state hit air quality goals

By Anne Steckel

Tuesday, Jul 5, 2016 9:30 AM

Over the summer, the American people have the opportunity to weigh in on our nation's commitment to ensuring a cleaner environment and increased energy security. At stake is a proposal by the Environmental Protection Agency that will determine whether we are fully capitalizing on the biodiesel industry's capacity to dramatically reduce greenhouse gas emissions across California and the entire nation.

Biodiesel is an alternative to diesel fuel that is made from renewable sources like recycled cooking oil, animal fats and soybean oil. Because it's made with renewable resources, there is no need for risky and environmentally harmful oil drilling or fracking, and it burns significantly cleaner than diesel made from oil. Across the state of California, biodiesel production has also provided a valuable market for waste cooking oil - helping to keep it from being dumped into landfills and clogging sewers. This helps protect the state's infrastructure and reduce waste and pollution.

How much better is biodiesel for the environment, rather than traditional diesel made from petroleum? The California's Air Resources Board recently determined that biodiesel reduces greenhouse gas emissions by at least 50 percent and often by as much as 81 percent versus petroleum. CARB made this determination when setting statewide fuels standards designed to cut carbon emissions drastically in the state.

CARB's findings echo what the EPA determined under the national low-carbon fuel program - the Renewable Fuel Standard - that biodiesel reduces carbon emissions from 57 percent to 86 percent. In fact, in the last decade, biodiesel has reduced carbon emissions in this country by almost 94 million metric tons, the same as removing 19.7 million passenger vehicles from our roadways.

Yet, despite the clear environmental advantages of biodiesel over traditional diesel, the EPA is not taking full advantage of biodiesel's capacity for growth under the RFS. When we know that biodiesel creates fewer greenhouse gas emissions than traditional diesel made from oil, doesn't it make sense to produce as much of this fuel as we can in the United States?

California's economy would also benefit from EPA boosting biodiesel volumes under the RFS. While most people think of the Midwest when they hear the word biofuels, biodiesel is a renewable fuel that is made in nearly every state in the nation, including California. Across the Golden State, there are eight biodiesel plants and two others under construction, along with numerous other businesses associated with the industry.

The EPA is set to finalize the number of gallons of biodiesel required under the RFS in 2018 by November. In the next few months, I encourage everyone who cares about the quality of the air they breathe and is concerned about our continued dependence on fossil fuels to urge the EPA to truly capitalize on biodiesel's benefits by finalizing a strong policy. There is no doubt that the American biodiesel industry could easily produce at least 2.5 billion gallons by in 2018.

Failing to raise biodiesel's numbers will be a win for the oil industry, but a loss for the environment and everyone who cares about it.

Anne Steckel is the Vice President for Federal Affairs at the National Biodiesel Board, a trade association which represents biodiesel producers across the nation and in California.


CBA logo

Watch this space as we showcase our 
new members and Partner Sponsors!



CBA board members are heading to Sacramento on August 10th for a Lobby Day focusing on LCFS defense and securing funding for an in-state biofuels production incentive from the Green House Gas Reduction Fund (GGRF). Last month's article on this issue, available on our Home page, gives some background on the GGRF.


The ADF regulation, which became effective January 1, 2016, includes reporting and recordkeeping requirements applicable to entities in the biodiesel industry. Biodiesel producers, importers and blenders must submit their first quarter reports by June 30, 2016.  Biodiesel producers, importers and blenders are required to report and keep records concerning biodiesel production, sales, and blending. Biodiesel distributors and retailers are only required to keep records. 
Find the new FAQ and Reporting Forms at: 

The presentation for the 
May 23rd 
meeting, which has helpful diagrams, is here: 

NOTE: Most in-state biodiesel fuel businesses are required to register under the Air Resources Board's Motor Vehicle Fuel Distributor program (MVDP). See the article on our Home page.


See article above on the release of new CI scores for biodiesel. 

Monitoring and Verification Rulemaking:
Our industry will participate in the next workshop, which was tentatively scheduled for July 14th, but has been moved to July 29th. Per ARB's notice: "At this workshop, staff will discuss potential regulation revisions to improve data quality and reporting methods in the Program, including the addition of third-party verification provisions. Staff will also provide an update on the status of pathway application processing." Find the presentation and details on the ARB's LCFS Meetings page: http://www.arb.ca.gov/fuels/lcfs/lcfs_meetings/lcfs_meetings.htm#06022016

Last month's issue discussed the CBA/NBB joint comments, which called for mirroring of EPA's RFS QAP. See the complete letter among the public comments posted for June 2nd here: 


On July 15th, the CEC released Grant Funding Opportunity GFO-15-606 - Community-Scale and Commercial-Scale Advanced Biofuels Production Facilities. The agency announced a Pre-Application Workshop on July 26th in Sacramento along with these deadlines: To submit Pre-Application Abstract - August 15, 2016; to submit Full Application - October 31, 2016. 

An additional $20-$25 million in the Governor's budget proposal for 2016-2017 in biofuel program grants under the CEC's ARFVTP will be the subject of a special workshop, if approved.


DMS is in the pre-rulemaking stages regarding specifications, standards, advertising, labeling and method of sale requirements for fuels, lubricants, and automotive products made by AB 808. The key rulemaking document, the Initial Statement of Reason (ISOR), has not yet been issued. At this time there are no biodiesel-related changes. 

There is no update this month. See our website for information on compliance issues.   



SB 1402  (Pavley):  SB 1402, which would have outlined the process for spending in-state biofuels incentive funding, was held by the Senate Appropriations Committee last month. The Biofuels Initiative Coalition has been working with ARB to get the concepts of SB 1402 incorporated into the guidelines it is developing for the allocation of the GGRF funds.

AB 2323 (Ridley-Thomas):   AB 2323 would have  require d investor-owned electric utilities to provide a discount rate program to the state's producers of biofuels, hydrogen, and natural gas similar to that offered for electric vehicles. The bill was held by the Assembly Appropriations Committee.

AB 1103 (Dodd):  CBA is satisfied that recent amendments have removed the problematic issues in this bill. We had been concerned about previous language that would have prohibited anyone but waste haulers "duly authorized" by the local jurisdiction from collecting, removing or transporting solid waste. 

SB 20 (Pavley):  The senator has amended SB 20 to establish a Low Carbon Fuels Council. The five-member council would be the coordinating body for state agencies' work related to the acceleration and development of the in-state production of low carbon fuels.

SB 32 (Pavley):   This bill has been amended to give the California Air Resources Board (ARB) blanket authority to reduce 1990 GHG levels by 40% by 2030. CBA has signed on to a letter  of support 
from partners and affiliates of Environmental Entrepreneurs (E2) to state Assembly Members.

NBB Fueling Action Logo
Please contact the Washington office of the National Biodiesel Board (NBB) at 202-737-8801 for questions on federal policy issues. Click on the NBB Fueling Action logo for detailed information.   

Thanks to those of you who reached out to your senators on RFS volumes!
We'd like to join NBB in thanking those who took the time to contact your representatives. CBA participated in the effort to get our California senators to join the 38 who signed the letter calling for the EPA to strengthen biodiesel volumes in the RFS proposal. Because 36 senators signed a similar letter last year, this is a record show of support and sends a strong, bipartisan signal! See the article above.

Need Co-sponsors for House & Senate Biodiesel Tax Bills

NBB is calling on its members to reach out to their Senators and Representatives to ask them to co-sponsor companion legislation for reinstatement of the biodiesel tax credit. The Senate bill recently introduced by Sens. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, and Maria Cantwell, D-Wash. is  S. 3188, and the House bill introduced by Reps. Kristi Noem, R-S.D. and Bill Pascrell, D-N.J. is H.R. 5240. Both biodiesel tax bills seek to extend the biodiesel tax incentive through 2019 and reform it as a domestic production credit.

With an extended election-year break this year, there is little time left on the legislative calendar before the tax incentive expires on Dec. 31. It appears likely that the earliest Congress could address tax extenders is in the lame-duck session after the election, and depending on how the elections pan out Congress may not act on tax extenders at all this year. But we must remain focused in the coming weeks on garnering support for the tax bill, and getting additional cosponsors on the bill is the best way to show that it has strong support and deserves to be passed this year.

The current sponsors are listed below. If your senators and/or representatives are not already cosponsoring the bills, please contact them and ask them to. To reach your lawmakers' offices, visit the Senate website here and the House website here, or call the Senate switchboard at 202- 224-3121 or the House at 202-225-3121.

Cosponsors of Senate bill (S. 3188): Sens. Roy Blunt (R-Mo.), Joe Donnelly (D-Ind.), Joni Ernst (R-Iowa), Al Franken (D-Minn.), Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.), Heidi Heitkamp (D-N.D.), Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii), Mark Kirk (R-Ill.), Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), Patty Murray (D-Wash.), Pat Roberts (R-Kan.), John Thune (R-S.D.) and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.).

Cosponsors of House bill (H.R. 5240): Introduced by Reps. Kristi Noem, R-S.D. and Bill Pascrell, D-N.J. and cosponsored by Reps. Collin Peterson (D-MN), David Loebsack (D-IA), Adrian Smith (R-NE), Rod Blum (R-IA), Jason Smith (R-MO), Mark Takai (D-HI), Sanford Bishop (D-GA), Ann Kuster (D-NH), Steve King (R-IA), David Young (R-IA), Brett Guthrie (R-KY).

Thank you for your membership in CBA and for your time and effort on behalf of our industry. I look forward to continuing to work with you.



Celia DuBose

Executive Director

California Biodiesel Alliance (CBA)