California Biodiesel Alliance News
California's Biodiesel Industry Trade Association
We begin with an announcement of CBA's n
ewly elected officers, who will start their 2-year terms at the beginning of the year:
Jennifer Case of New Leaf Biofuel -
Chair; Harry Simpson of Crimson Renewable Energy - Vice Chair; Russ Teall of Biodico - President; Joe Gershen of Altitude Fuel - Vice President; Curtis Wright of IWP - Treasurer; Doug Smith of Baker Commodities - Secretary. Jennifer Case was also recently elected to serve as Vice Chair of
the National Biodiesel Board. Also, congratulation to Biodico on the ribbon cutting for their groundbreaking new plant!
We just learned on December 10th that ARB plans to issue a FAQ document on the ADF regulation, which has reporting (for some) and recordkeeping (for all) that begin January 1st, 2016, though the in-use requirements of the regulation don't start until 2018. Also, the agency will issue an updated FAQ on the new LCFS, which has a key deadline of January 31st, 2016 -- the date that new and recertification pathway applications must be received by ARB for them to guarantee processing by the end of 2016, when all existing pathways will expire.
The article on AB 1032's (Salas) implementation has details from BOE that you can share with diesel fuel suppliers on how to get reimbursed for tax already paid on dyed biodiesel removed from the terminal rack. This is a huge success story for CBA, which sponsored and shepherded this bill!
We include a story on the good news of higher RFS volumes for biodiesel. Also, we were happy that on December 18th President Obama signed the tax and spending bill containing the two-year extension of the biodiesel incentive covering 2015 and 2016, though somewhat subdued as it is under the same structure as in the past -- a blender's credit. To better understand some of the potential issues going forward as our industry continues to work to make this a producer's credit instead, a story
is included that discusses how this year's process differed from that of recent years.
CBA would like to end the year by thanking you for your efforts on behalf of the biodiesel industry. Because of
biodiesel's disproportionately high generation of LCFS credits, our industry has played an important role in the great success of that program.
California brought its recognized achievements as an incubator and exporter of climate solutions to the UN talks in Paris. We can share in that victory and in the profound satisfaction of knowing that we are part of an ongoing solution fueling progress toward the goals of the agreement!
To view back issues of this newsletter and CBA Email Alerts
click on the "View CBA Email Newsletter Archive" button on our Home page.
The California Biodiesel Alliance Presents the 2016
CBA's 5th annual conference will focus on the new era of regulatory stability for biodiesel in California created by the re-adoption of the Low Carbon Fuel Standard (LCFS) and the adoption of the Alternative Diesel Fuel Regulation (ADF).
The conference will also highlight our coalition efforts with other biofuels to secure funding from Cap and Trade auction proceeds for the low carbon biofuels that are available here and now to help the state reach its climate goals.
We are excited to bring experts to share how our recent legislative success will boost the market; what strategic alliances - here and in the region - mean for biodiesel's future possibilities; the latest on federal regulations, feedstocks, and much more!
An absolute must
for anyone doing or wanting to do business in California!
Join Us to receive a member discount!
Biodiesel Expert Explains ADF Regulation at OPIS Conference
Announces that ARB will Issue FAQ Document
On December 10th, participants in the OPIS LCFS Conference in San Francisco learned about California's newly adopted Alternative Diesel Fuel (ADF) Regulation from Lisa Mortenson, CEO of Community Fuels. As part of a presentation on biodiesel in California, Lisa discussed the ADF Regulation after first letting everyone know that she was sharing her personal views and that they should read the regulation to understand the requirements for their business operations. She announced that the California Air Resources Board (ARB) will be issuing a FAQ document soon for this regulation, which provides a framework for regulatory certainty for biodiesel going forward.
Lisa explained that ARB cannot simply take a global view of biodiesel's many significant emissions reductions, but must regulate the one pollutant they found to have slight increases. While the regulation's "In-use" requirements for NOx control don't become effective until January 1st, 2018, all those who touch biodiesel will be affected beginning January 1st, 2016, Lisa clarified. This is when quarterly reporting begins for
biodiesel producers, importers, and blenders, and recordkeeping requirements begin for those entities, as well as for biodiesel distributors and retailers.
Importantly, Lisa, who is well known among her colleagues for her knowledge of and excellence in complying with the state's biodiesel regulations, said that reporting will be simple because it's easy to collect the data. She called recordkeeping "no big deal," saying that businesses subject to California's Board of Equalization (BOE) and their auditing likely already have all the information needed.
Adding that beginning January 1st 2018, additional new reporting and recordkeeping requirements kick in that will require customized wording that discloses the method of NOx control on invoices down to the retail level, she said she believes our industry can come up with "smart wording" to use as a routine statement to comply with the regulation. She anticipates working with ARB staff to craft such language.
Again referring the audience to the text of the regulation, Lisa's slide presentation charted the NOx control levels put forth in the regulation, which she simplified as blend caps of B5 in summer and B10 in winter. B10 year-round will be allowed for provable dedicated and separate supplies of high cetane (56 or greater) biodiesel.
Lisa's presentation covered other key elements of the regulation, including retail and fleet exemptions, and the expected sunset date at the end of 2022. She talked about a number of questions that she had clarified with ARB staff, which will be included in the agency's FAQ document.
Ending her talk with a bang, Lisa declared that the next two years are a great time for obligated parties to blend biodiesel, and summed up by saying that the reason biodiesel is being regulated is because so much biodiesel is being used and the biodiesel industry is such a success in California.
AB 1032 Goes Into Effect Jan 1st 2016
Tax Refunds Now Available for Dyed Blended Biodiesel
CBA was the proud sponsor of AB 1032, which passed the state legislature and was signed into law by Governor Brown this year and will be Implemented January 1st 2016. This very important new law corrects a long-standing tax problem affecting our industry, and we look forward to increased biodiesel sales now that this obstacle has been removed.
Below is the text of a Special Notice, dated November 2015, from the California State Board of Equalization:
"Refund of Diesel Fuel Tax Paid Available to Suppliers of Dyed Blended Biodiesel
Removed from the Rack"
"Effective January 1, 2016, licensed diesel fuel suppliers may claim a refund or credit for the excise tax they paid on the biodiesel portion of dyed blended biodiesel fuel removed from a terminal rack by the same supplier. Suppliers must be able to show that they paid the excise tax on the biodiesel fuel portion of the blended biodiesel. For more information on the legislation creating the change to allow a refund of the diesel fuel tax, download Assembly Bill 1032 (Stats. 2015, Ch. 481) at www.leginfo.ca.gov/bilinfo.html.
Current Diesel Fuel Tax Law does not provide for reimbursement of the excise tax-paid portion of the biodiesel fuel removed from the rack as dyed blended biodiesel. Therefore, suppliers who blend tax-paid biodiesel fuel with ex-tax diesel fuel that is removed as a dyed blended biodiesel, are unable to recover the excise tax from the customer and unable to seek reimbursement for the tax from the Board of Equalization.
Effective January 1, 2016, Revenue and Taxation Code section 60501(b) will allow a supplier to claim a refund or credit for the excise tax that was paid on the biodiesel portion of dyed blended biodiesel fuel. Suppliers may file a claim for refund using BOE-101, Claim for Refund or Credit.
How to Claim a Credit on Your Supplier Return
Instead of filing a refund claim, licensed diesel fuel suppliers may claim a credit on BOE-501-DD, Supplier of Diesel Fuel Tax Return, for tax-paid biodiesel blended with diesel fuel and removed as dyed blended biodiesel fuel. Suppliers may claim a credit only to the extent of the excise tax-paid biodiesel portion of the dyed blended biodiesel removed. For further information, see BOE-810-FTE, Instructions for Preparing Motor Fuels Schedules, or our Diesel Fuel Tax program webpage FAQs.
If you have any questions regarding dyed biodiesel fuel blends, you may contact the BOE through our website at www.boe.ca.gov/info/email.html. You can also call our Customer Service Center at 1-800-400-7115 (TTY:711). Customer service representatives are available to assist you weekdays from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., (Pacific time), except state holidays."
Biodiesel a Big Winner in Stronger RFS Final Rule
The U.S. EPA released its final rule for renewable volume obligations (RVO) under the renewable fuel standard (RFS) Nov. 30, and the figures for biomass-based diesel are higher than the proposal released in May. The agency issued its biomass-based diesel RVO for years 2014-'17, while RVOs for all other categories-renewable fuel, advanced biofuels and cellulosic biofuels-were issued for 2014-'16.
The final RVOs for biomass-based diesel are 1.63 billion gallons for 2014, 1.73 billion gallons for 2015, 1.9 billion gallons for 2016, and 2 billion gallons for 2017. The proposal issued May 29 called for 1.63 billion gallons of biomass-based diesel for 2014, 1.7 billion gallons for 2015, 1.8 billion gallons for 2016 and 1.9 billion gallons for 2017.
Another important category for biodiesel, the advanced biofuel bucket, also increased slightly for 2015 and 2016 years compared to the May proposal. The final rule for advanced biofuels issued Nov. 30 requires 2.67 billion ethanol-equivalent gallons for 2014, 2.88 billion gallons for 2015 and 3.61 billion gallons for 2016. The proposal for advanced biofuels issued in May called for 2.68 billion ethanol-equivalent gallons for 2014, 2.9 billion gallons for 2015 and 3.4 billion for 2016.
Biodiesel producers are excited and encouraged by the higher biomass-based diesel volumes in the final RFS rule after the industry has suffered considerably for the past two years operating without a federal mandate.
Ron Marr, director of regulatory affairs for Minnesota Soybean Processors, which owns and operates a 30 MMgy biodiesel plant in Brewster, Minnesota, told Biodiesel Magazine that the EPA's final RFS rule is good and solid. "When you look at where we were in 2013 when the EPA issued its proposal that flat-lined biodiesel at 1.28 billion gallons, and now we're up to 2 billion gallons in the RFS for 2017, that is fireworks," he said. "The increased volumes really show all the hard work and dedication of the D.C. [National Biodiesel Board] lobbying efforts, supported by Jefferson City, along with all the member involvement from the comments they submitted on the proposed rule. Overall, this is very good news."
Marr also said that U.S. biodiesel producers manufactured 1 billion gallons in 2012, and with the new final rule, the industry will be producing twice that in 2017. "To double production volumes in just five years is truly amazing," he said.
NBB CEO Joe Jobe and his organization applauded the Obama administration for boosting the volumes from the proposal and recommitting to biodiesel. "It is a good rule," Jobe said. "It may not be all we had hoped for but it will go a long way toward getting the U.S. biodiesel industry growing again ... I want to thank President Obama, Administrator McCarthy and Secretary Vilsack for supporting growth in the program and for their commitment to biodiesel. We have seen three years of damaging delays, but the administration took a strong step forward today that should put biodiesel and the RFS on a more stable course in the years to come."
Jobe said NBB will continue working with the administration toward stronger standards, and noted that the advanced biofuel standards "could and should have been higher," he said. "The production capacity is there, and we have surplus fats and oils that can be put to good use."
The nation's largest biodiesel producer, Renewable Energy Group Inc., is also pleased with the final rule. "This increased final RVO provides a solid foundation for REG to continue growth," said Daniel J. Oh, president and CEO of REG. "We asked EPA for two things in this process-longer-term certainty and growth for biomass-based diesel-and this final rule provides both. This supports a solid, positive growth trajectory for biomass-based diesel over the next two years, particularly when you consider that this was a 1 billion gallon industry less than four years ago."
Michael Doyle, president of Agron Bioenergy, a 15 MMgy biodiesel plant in Redwood City, California, told Biodiesel Magazine that the news is "really encouraging."
"It's really positive that these volumes are going up," Doyle said, adding that he's also hopeful that Congress will renew the biodiesel tax credit as a producer's incentive before year's end.
The Iowa Biodiesel Board indicates that while the final RFS rule is better than the proposal, it is not perfect. "While we are thankful for the improved numbers from EPA and the White House, they still fall a little short of what the industry had asked for and what the industry is capable of," said Grant Kimberley, executive director of the IBB.
"This is especially true in light of the imports of subsidized foreign-produced biodiesel we've seen from places like Argentina and Southeast Asia. Yet, overall, we are still pleased with the modest increase and grateful to have more market certainty. In future years, we hope implementation of this policy will have clearer direction for our producers well in advance, and reflect actual production capabilities."
R. Delbert LeTang, president and CEO of SG Preston, a company with plans to construct five renewable diesel production facilities in North America, told Biodiesel Magazine that the EPA's final RFS rule is an "exciting piece of news."
"These figures show a lot of progress," he said. "It tells us there is a growing acceptance for the ability of our industries to attain these kinds of volumes."
Total renewable fuel volumes are also up in the final rule vs. the proposal. For 2014, the total renewable fuel RVO is 16.28 billion gallons, 16.93 billion gallons for 2015, and 18.11 billion for 2016.
Total renewable fuel volume proposals issued in May were at 15.93 billion gallons for 2014, 16.3 billion gallons for 2015, and 17.4 billion gallons for 2016. In addition, the cellulosic requirements are also higher. The final rule calls for 33 million gallons in 2014, 123 million in 2015, and jumping to 230 million gallons in 2016. This is compared to the proposed numbers that were 33 million gallons for 2014, 106 million gallons for 2015 and 206 million gallons for 2016.
Click here to see the original article and graphic in Biodiesel Magazine.
Tax Bill Could Leave Biofuel Subsidies More Vulnerable
WASHINGTON, Dec. 17, 2015 - Biofuel producers are breathing a sigh of relief that valuable tax subsidies are safe for another year, but they could face a tougher battle to keep them after that.
The $622 billion tax bill, which the House approved 318-109 on Thursday, will change the political calculus for a variety of tax incentives, including the biofuel measures, in future years and potentially set the stage for broad tax reform that could do away with them entirely. A key House tax writer tells Agri-Pulse he'll be scrutinizing those tax incentives to see if they should be continued.
The biofuel incentives, which include the $1-a-gallon tax credit for biodiesel, are among dozens of tax measures, known as extenders, that have been renewed every one to two years. This time, however, Congress is making some of the most popular provisions permanent or giving them long-term extensions.
An enhanced Section 179 small business expensing allowance, for example, that is widely used by farmers to buy tractors, combines and other equipment would be made permanent under the bill. A bonus depreciation provision would be extended through 2019. Tax credits that subsidize wind and solar power would be extended through 2022 under separate legislation.
The biofuel incentives, however, and some other measures would be extended only through 2016, which means they won't be up for renewal at the same time as other tax breaks with broader bases of political support.
"It puts the others out there to be fully vetted now," said Rep. Charles Boustany, who chairs the House Ways and Means subcommittee that handles tax policy, referring to the tax measures that received extensions only through 2016.
He includes the biofuel incentives among the tax measures that will get greater scrutiny now. "We'll have to look at them, yeah."
In 2014. all of the tax incentives, including Section 179 and the wind tax credit, were allowed to lapse for nearly the entire year before being retroactively restored in December.
"One of the problems we had is that this was an end-of-year exercise and everything just got shoved down and down into temporary extensions. Now, it forces us to take a full, hard look at all these provisions and get everybody to the table to make a case" for continuing them, said Boustany, R-La.
The biofuel measures that would be extended through 2016 also include the $1.01 tax credit for next-generation, cellulosic ethanol; and the 30 percent investment tax credit for ethanol blender pumps and other alternative fueling infrastructure. Cellulosic ethanol is produced from corn cobs and stalks, wheat straw and other forms of plant cellulose.
A small agri-biodiesel producer credit of 10 cents per gallon also would be extended through 2016 under the bill.
The tax credits that subsidize installation of solar panels and wind farms would separately receive longer-term extensions under the 2016 omnibus spending bill. They would be continued through 2022, but phased down, when carbon controls on electric utilities begin to kick in under the Obama administration's Clean Power Plan.
In an analysis of the tax package and omnibus, ClearViewPartners noted concerns that extending the wind and solar extensions through 2022 could make it harder for the biofuel credits to get extensions after 2016.
"We would not discount the risk, but we think it could cut two ways. Although a smaller extenders package could be too narrow to garner broad support, fiscal conservatives may be willing to support a smaller package during next year's 'lame duck' session," the analysts said.
James Lucier, managing director with Capital Alpha Partners, which advises financial institutions on federal policy, said the biggest threat to the biofuel producers is that the permanent tax extensions would make it easier for Congress to do broad tax reform. Under congressional budget rules, making measures such as Section 179 permanent means the cost doesn't have to be accounted for when Congress rewrites the tax code, a top priority of House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wis.
"We are inching closer to a complete overhaul of the tax code that may not happen in 2017, but the pressure is building to do it eventually," Lucier said. The biofuel subsidies may receive "another extension or two before then, but the end is near."
If Boustany does hold hearings, the National Biodiesel Board plans to renew its effort to have its incentive converted from a blenders credit to a producers credit that would be limited to domestically produced biodiesel.
The Senate Finance Committee approved the change in a tax package the panel approved this summer, but biodiesel marketers successfully lobbied to keep it out of the agreement that the House approved Thursday.
"With Congress taking a look at our tax credit as well as others they'll see the benefit of taking it to producers tax credit," said Anne Steckel, vice president of federal affairs for the biodiesel group.
An estimated 650 million to 750 million gallons of biodiesel have been imported this year from Argentina and Asia. "We have so much underutilized capacity here," she said "There's absolutely no need to seek fuel elsewhere."
The Senate is expected to vote on the tax bill on Friday, and both the House and Senate are scheduled to consider the omnibus.
The Section 179 provision would permanently allow a business to expense up to $500,000, up from a limit of $25,000. The $500,000 limit is reduced dollar for dollar after expenditures reach $2 million. The provision also would index both the $500,000 and $2 million limits for inflation beginning in 2016.
Meanwhile, the bonus depreciation percentage would be extended at 50 percent for property placed in service during 2015, 2016 and 2017 and then lowered to 40 percent in 2018 and 30 percent in 2019.
California Welcomes World's First
Fully Sustainable Biofuel Facility
-- Congressman Jim Costa and California Energy Commissioner Janea Scott say Biodico Facility Exemplifies Economically Sound, Environmentally Conscious,
and Secure Solution to Address Energy Needs --
-- Biodico's Collaboration with Private Enterprise, U.S. Military, and Academia Generates Sustainable Synergies that Support Local Communities --
|(From Right to Left)
JJ Rothgery, Chairman of the Board of Biodico;
Russ Teall, President and Founder of Biodico;
Janea Scott, California Energy Commissioner;
John Diener, President and CEO, Red Rock Ranch;
Jim Costa, U.S. Congressman;
Jim Houston, Undersecretary of the California Department of Food and Agriculture;
Dr. Frank Gornick, Chancellor of the West Hills Community College District; and
Captain Monty Ashliman, Commanding Officer,
Naval Air Station Lemoore -- at Biodico
Westside Facility Ribbon Cutting Ceremony
at Red Rock Ranch in Five Points, Calif.
Fresno County and Ventura County, Calf. - December 6, 2015
California is welcoming the world's first fully sustainable liquid biofuel facility to help address energy needs and climate goals with an economically viable solution.
The new San Joaquin Valley-based facility, which is owned and operated by sustainable biofuel and bioenergy company Biodico Westside, will produce up to 20 million gallons of biodiesel per year, and create 45 direct jobs in partnership with West Hills Community College.
"Biodico Westside Facility is a result of years of research and development to produce biofuels that make good environmental, social and business sense," said Biodico President and Founder Russ Teall. "Today, we are forging a new path in biofuel production by utilizing sustainable solutions to convert diverse feedstocks into renewable sources of fuel and energy."
Biodico Westside is located at Red Rock Ranch in Five Points, Calif., which is in one of the world's most productive agricultural regions. The facility operates entirely on renewable heat and power and incorporates advanced real-time and remote monitoring leading to complete system automation. In addition to processing multi-feedstocks, including used cooking oil, vegetable oil, and animal fats to name a few, the facility also utilizes anaerobic digestion, gasification and an advanced utility scale solar cogeneration system.
"We developed proprietary technology to greatly enhance the economics of producing high-quality biodiesel, as well as create a modular system that is easy to deploy on a global scale," said JJ Rothgery, Chairman of the Board at Biodico. "The facility is uniquely designed to meet the practical needs of regional transportation companies, and at the same time, provide a solution to address energy security and sustainable farming practices."
Biodico's facility went online last week, attracting attention of federal legislators, state energy officials, the agricultural industry, private enterprise and academia. California Governor Jerry Brown has established a greenhouse gas reduction target of 40 percent below 1990 levels by 2030 - the most aggressive benchmark enacted by any government in North America to reduce carbon emissions as reflected in the Paris greenhouse gas reduction summit this week.
"Biodico's new facility fits perfectly into the country's energy toolbox and serves as a template for a sustainable fuel source throughout the nation and worldwide," said Congressman Jim Costa. "When the community comes together, as demonstrated by this facility, great things can happen that benefit the local economy and the global environment."
The development of Biodico Westside was supported, in part, by grants from the California Energy Commission and in collaboration with the U.S. Navy, UC Davis, UCSB and Cal Poly San Luis Obispo.
"California has some of the most ambitious clean air and climate goals in the world, and Biodico exemplifies the kind of technological and entrepreneurial leadership that is needed to bring advanced low carbon biofuels to the region's transportation fuels market," said California Energy Commissioner Janea Scott. "This facility is especially important here in the San Joaquin Valley because the region continues to have some of the unhealthiest air in the state."
Biodico's new facility also addresses energy security with its modular construction and ease of deployment. These characteristics are particularly relevant to the U.S. Navy, which Captain Monty Ashliman, Commanding Officer, Naval Air Station Lemoore, noted during Biodico Westside's opening ceremony. At the event, Captain Ashliman shared the following thoughts from Assistant Secretary of the Navy Dennis McGinn:
"The Navy is one of the largest consumers of diesel fuel in the world. It fuels many of our ships, aircraft, vehicles and generators. Without it our readiness would be compromised, which is why Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus has set a goal of reducing the Navy's petroleum consumption by 50% by 2020, through energy efficiency and the use of petroleum alternatives. I visited the Biodico Westside project in August during construction. This sustainable technology was developed as a collaboration among Biodico, the California Energy Commission and the Naval Facilities Engineering Command Expeditionary Warfare Center, and showcases cutting edge biofuel and bioenergy technology. My thoughts and best wishes are with you today as you celebrate the achievement of this significant milestone. Congratulations to a great team and strong partnership for a job well-done. I look forward to seeing future accomplishments both at Westside and at Naval Base Ventura County in 2016."
Many of the jobs at Biodico Westside are created in partnership with West Hills Community College, which is located in a region with a soaring unemployment rate. Biodico developed an internship program specifically for West Hills and hires graduates of their two-year Industrial Technology Program, which gives many farm laborers higher skills and more lucrative employment.
"What excites me about my job over the last 20 years is the mindset in California and the mindset in the Valley. There is not a hurdle that we can't overcome, and this kind of approach at Biodico Westside is a perfect example of how the community can work together to achieve sustainable results that benefit everyone," said Dr. Frank Gornick, Chancellor of the West Hills Community College District.
Agricultural sustainability is another focal point for Biodico's facility, which is helping farmers dispose of wood prunings, converting them into sources of renewable heat and power. Utilities are renewing contracts with fewer biomass power plants in California, leaving farmers in a lurch for processing orchard and vineyard waste.
"I think about the narrative of agriculture and my kids - I have a three-year-old son and five-year-old daughter - and when they're 25 what will agriculture look like in the Valley and state of California? And seeing federal, state, local, private, and academic entities come together with Biodico to create this infrastructure with long-lasting, great jobs, is very exciting," said Jim Houston, Undersecretary of the California Department of Food and Agriculture.
About Biodico: Biodico is a privately held company headquartered in Ventura, Calif. that (1) builds, owns and operates sustainable biofuel and bioenergy facilities, (2) conducts research, development, and validation studies with the U.S. Navy, and (3) collaborates with strategic joint venture partners to commercialize new technology and initiatives. The company and its management have been pioneers in the industry for the past 23 years, with an emphasis on using advanced, patented and proprietary technologies for the sustainable multi-feedstock modular production of next generation biofuels and bioenergy. Additional information about Biodico can be found on the company's website at http://www.biodico.com.
(National Biodiesel Board)
Oregon Joins Calif., BC in Climate Fight with Clean Fuels Program
Posted December 10, 2015
On Dec. 9 the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality Commission voted unanimously to finalize the state's clean fuels program (CFP). Oregon becomes the third jurisdiction on the West Coast-following California and British Columbia-to implement a comprehensive low carbon fuels policy for transportation. The policy is modeled closely after the California low carbon fuel standard and will reduce greenhouse gas emissions 10 percent by 2025.
"Biodiesel is the most sustainable fuel on the planet," said Don Scott, National Biodiesel Board director of sustainability. "We expect to play a major role in the Oregon program, just like we have in California and British Columbia."
Oregon's announcement leaves Washington as the only state on the West Coast without a program to reduce GHG emissions.
Rather than conducting its own lifecycle analysis, Oregon will generally use the values created in California, which have concluded that biodiesel decreases GHG emissions by 50 to 80 percent.
"We are pleased that a regional carbon market has developed on the West Coast and that Oregon will primarily be using California values," Scott said. "This should improve the efficiency and liquidity of the programs."
NOTE: Oregon's Clean Fuels Program is now open for registration. F
or more information contact the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality Clean Fuels Program: 811 SW 6th Ave Portland, OR 97204. Telephone: (503) 229-5388, Email: OregonCleanFuels@deq.state.or.us.
CALIFORNIA INDUSTRY NEWS
(UCLA and UC Berkeley Schools of Law) New Report: How CA Can Boost Biofuel Production to Cut Pollution and Benefit Economy
Wednesday, December 2, 2015
December 2, 2015 - California has not taken full advantage of opportunities to increase its in-state biofuel production, despite state policies that encourage biofuel consumption as a way to switch from high- to low-carbon petroleum fuels, according to a new report.
Coming on the heels of the Environmental Protection Agency's
new final rules
on national biofuels requirements, the report underscores the importance of local production of low-carbon biofuel. It can reduce emissions by avoiding the shipping of feedstocks from out-of-state or overseas, spur development of carbon-reducing byproducts like biochar compost, and reduce wildfire risk. At the same time, local production can provide jobs and revenue in economically challenged parts of the state by harvesting biofuel feedstocks from renewable sources such as corn, sugarcane and food waste.
"California's environmental laws and policies have created an effective framework for cutting down our use of petroleum fuels. These high-carbon emitting fuels power our cars, trucks and airplanes, but pollute the air, pose widespread health risks, and threaten the stability of the earth's climate," said Ethan N. Elkind, report co-author and associate director of the climate change initiative at Berkeley Law's Center for Law, Energy & the Environment and UCLA School of Law's Emmett Institute on Climate Change and the Environment.
"We have the potential in California to produce a significant amount of low-carbon fuel to meet our transportation needs over the coming decades, but the state has not yet taken full advantage of its own agricultural opportunities to increase biofuel production," Elkind said.
California will need more federal and state action to achieve the greater economic and environmental payoff that can come from in-state biofuel production, according to the report.
identifies key barriers that currently exist for in-state biofuel production and outlines numerous solutions to overcome them. Top barriers include:
- policy uncertainty at multiple levels of government, primarily related to incentive programs that hinder private investment in biofuels;
- restricted market access to existing fuel infrastructure and gas stations due to incumbent industry resistance from automakers, gas stations, and petroleum fuel refiners;
- policy misalignment among various levels of government that may inadvertently limit biofuels deployment; and
- lack of feedstock access to some of the most promising in-state resources that could result in significant environmental and economic co-benefits.
To overcome those barriers, the report calls for greater state and federal engagement, including:
- increased state support, such as utilizing cap-and-trade auction revenue, to drive in-state biofuel production that accurately accounts for total carbon emissions reduction;
- financial incentives for automakers and gas stations to allow them to sell greater amounts of low-carbon biofuels and higher blend rates;
- a state-launched process to study the optimal reduction of nitrogen oxides, greenhouse gases, and petroleum fuels; and
- improved access to, and financial support for, in-state feedstock production, particularly on idled farmland and forest lands to reduce wildfire risks.
is the 16th in a series of policy papers by the Climate Change and Business Research Initiative, a partnership between UCLA School of Law's Emmett Institute on Climate Change and the Environment and UC Berkeley School of Law's Center for Law, Energy and the Environment. Funded by Bank of America, the series connects leaders from business, government, nonprofit organizations, and academia to address pressing environmental needs and inform decision-makers on policies necessary for businesses to succeed in the era of climate change.
* * * *
About UCLA School of Law
Founded in 1949,
UCLA School of Law
is the youngest major law school in the nation and has established a tradition of innovation in its approach to teaching, research and scholarship. With approximately 100 faculty and 970 students, the school pioneered clinical teaching, is a leader in interdisciplinary research and training and is at the forefront of efforts to link research to meaningful change in society and the legal profession. Follow us on
About University of California, Berkeley, School of Law
For over a century,
has prepared lawyers to be skilled and ethical problem-solvers. The law school's curriculum-one of the most comprehensive and innovative in the nation- offers its J.D. and advanced degree candidates a broad array of nearly 200 courses. Students collaborate with leading scholars and practitioners working on legal issues at more than a dozen interdisciplinary centers, institutes, and clinical programs within its Boalt Hall complex. Follow us on
NOTE: A live
on the report findings was held on Monday, Dec. 14th, from 11 am to 12 noon. Speakers included:
- Tim Olsen, energy and fuels program manager at the California Energy Commission;
- Lisa Mortenson, chief executive officer at Community Fuels; and
- Mary Solecki, western states advocate for Environmental Entrepreneurs.
(Biofuels Digest) West Coast Cities Pledge to Use More Biodiesel and Electric Vehicles
Posted December 16, 2015 by Meghan Sapp
In Oregon, the mayors of Seattle, Portland, San Francisco, Los Angeles and Eugene, Oregon pledged at the first West Coast Alliance summit held last week in Portland to reduce carbon emissions by 80 percent by 2050 within their cities through the introduction of biodiesel-powered public vehicles and electric vehicles along with boosting investment of federal funds into public transportation. The commitment was made during the COP21 negotiations in Paris and the results will be taken to the U.S. Conference of Mayors in January 2016.