California Biodiesel Alliance News
California's Biodiesel Industry Trade Association
This issue brings positive stories from CBA member company SeQuential, California biodiesel pioneer Disneyland, the National Biodiesel Board (NBB) and more. Because a number of important developments will happen in the next few weeks, CBA will bring you updates in a special June edition of this newsletter.
As our industry awaits the release of the EPA's RFS RVO numbers for 2014-2017, due on June 1st, CBA is participating with NBB in a national strategy that will include sending members to Capitol Hill for visits June 15-17th.
Importantly, in California, we are expecting a 15-day amendment package momentarily on both the LCFS readoption and the adoption of the Alternative Diesel Fuel regulation (ADF), which will provide an opportunity for comments before the final vote of the board of the Air Resources Board (ARB) in late July. On the legislative and funding fronts, key negotiations are underway, and the next few weeks will be an important time for many of the efforts CBA is engaged in.
With the effects of climate change expected to be of Biblical proportions without a concerted global effort, it's not surprising that the next few weeks will also see the release of Pope Francis' encyclical letter on the environment. This follows the Vatican's co-hosting of an environmental summit with the U.N. last month, and precedes the U.N.'s climate change meeting in Paris this December. A sneak peak of what's possible was revealed in recent reports that the Pope's closest aid strongly criticized the profit motivations of climate-change skeptics.
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CBA Joins Clean Transportation Fuels Sector in Support of State's GHG Reduction Legislation
Focuses on Bringing Biofuels to the Task
Governor Jerry Brown recently announced an executive order to establish an aggressive statewide greenhouse gas (GHG) reduction target of 40 percent below 1990 levels by 2030 as part of his effort to provide a framework for the state to achieve its 80 percent reduction target by 2050. The announcement ramped up the excitement of a legislative season already underway with much high-level discussion, some of which will be clarified in the next few weeks, some of which promises to continue well into the year.
There is broad support within the clean transportation fuels sector for several bills that support the Governor's goals. CBA is happy to join with CALSTART and others in supporting SB 32 and SB 350. SB 32 would direct the Air Resources Board (ARB) to enforce GHG reduction targets for 2030, 2040, and 2050 and to do so with a concern for jobs, health, disadvantaged communities, innovation, and policy collaboration beyond our state's borders. SB 350 would create enforceable state standards for clean energy and greenhouse gas reductions, instituting a 50% reduction in petroleum use, including in buildings, and increasing the state's successful renewable portfolio standard from 33% by 2020 to 50% by 2030.
A key focus for CBA is the Biofuel Initiative, an effort we instituted along with other in-state biofuel producers. This collaboration seeks to obtain funding from Cap and Trade auction proceeds under ARB's Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund (GGRF) for both production and infrastructure -- a very highly competitive process. The effort is supported by Senator Fran Pavley's bill SB 706, which would authorize the use of moneys from the GGRF to encourage in-state production of low carbon alternative fuels.
CBA is supporting other related bills, including AB 692, AB 33, and SB 513, but has prioritized AB 1032, a very important bill for our industry. This bill would correct a tax problem that is very damaging to our industry because it effectively prevents biodiesel from being blended into 15-30% of the diesel volume. AB 1032 would allow a claim for refund for amounts of tax paid on the biodiesel fuel portion of dyed blended biodiesel fuel removed from an approved terminal at the terminal rack if a supplier can show that the tax on that biodiesel fuel has been paid by the same supplier.
CBA's board will conduct meetings late this month for two days in Sacramento as part of a lobby event targeting legislators and key state agency staff. We look forward to being in touch to let you know how you can help going forward.
Senators Show Support for Biodiesel Industry
By Cindy Zimmerman
Senator Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND) led a number of her Democratic colleagues in calling on Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to stop the continued delays of the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) rule and set strong renewable volume obligations (RVOs) through 2017.
"We stand together as Democratic Senators who care about this industry, care about energy independence, care about farm country, and care about the diversity of our energy sources to plead with the President of the United States to participate in this discussion," said Sen. Heitkamp. "If you really are serious about a diverse energy mix, why do what we're doing to the biodiesel industry?"
Joining Sen. Heitkamp were Sens. Dick Durbin (D-IL), Maria Cantwell (D-WA), Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) and Al Franken (D-MN), as well as biodiesel producers, who also stressed how the uncertainty caused by EPA's misguided 2013 rule and delays on farmers and biodiesel workers.
Kent Engelbrecht, the manager of the biodiesel division at ADM, which has a biodiesel plant in Velva, North Dakota and is headquartered in Illinois, as well as Todd Ellis, vice president at Imperium Renewables near Seattle, Washington, discussed how the delays have impacted their own operations and others.
"2014 was poised to be a breakout year for biodiesel, until the 2014 RVO proposal intervened," said Engelbrecht. "With the subsequent expiration of the biodiesel tax credit, we were forced to cease or slow production at all of our facilities."
Comments from Senators and Biodiesel Industry on RFS Delays
The senators' press conference was held as word came out Thursday that EPA has sent its new RFS volume obligation proposal, which is due to be released on June 1, on to the Office of Management and Budget for review.
National Biodiesel Board Vice President of Federal Affairs Anne Steckel thanked the senators for their support and was optimistic about news that EPA may be getting the RFS back on track.
"What's most important, however, is that we see volume growth in this pending proposal," said Steckel. "The Obama Administration says regularly that it supports renewable fuels and wants America to lead, particularly in the development of Advanced Biofuels like biodiesel. This proposal will show if that's true. The proof will be in the numbers."
Disneyland's Zero-Waste Efforts Earn EPA Award
April 30, 2015
Disneyland Resort has diverted more than 7 million pounds of food scraps from entering landfills since 2013 and is the first theme park in the US to receive zero waste certification at one facility - achievements that helped the theme park win an EPA 2014 Food Recovery Challenge award.
Disneyland also achieved the highest percent increase in food recovery of any theme park in the nation, the agency says.
The EPA's Food Recovery Challenge partners with organizations and businesses to prevent and reduce wasted food.
The participants include groups such as grocers, educational institutions, sports and entertainment venues, restaurants and hotels.
Since 2013, as part of its efforts under the Food Recovery Challenge, the Disneyland Resort:
* Had more than 1,200 tons of on-site used cooking oil from resort restaurants converted to biodiesel, which fuels the Disneyland Railroad and Mark Twain Riverboat and has reduced the resort's consumption of petroleum-based diesel by about 150,000 gallons per year.
* Was recognized by the US Zero Waste Business Council for achieving a 99.8 percent diversion rate at Circle D Corral, the first location in The Walt Disney Company or any theme park to receive a zero-waste certification. Circle D Corral, a working ranch that is home to the animals of the Disneyland Resort, collects animal waste, hay scraps, and wood shavings, as well as coffee grounds from resort restaurants, and laundry lint from hotel clothes dryers, producing 600,000 pounds of compost per year.
In addition, in December 2014, Disneyland Resort began a surplus food donation program. To date, it has donated more than 110,000 pounds of packaged food, valued at $360,000.
In 2012, Americans threw away nearly 35 million tons of food, more than any other type of material being landfilled, according to the EPA. As wasted food decomposes in a landfill, it generates methane, a greenhouse gas 25 times more potent than carbon dioxide.
SeQuential Prepares for Increased Biodiesel Demand
Thanks to Oregon Clean Fuels Program
Eugene, ORE, - May 12th, 2015 - Local biodiesel manufacturer SeQuential today announced it has ramp
ed up operations in anticipation of growing demand for cleaner burning fuel. The company has upgraded equipment and added operators to enable its plant to produc
e more biodiesel each month. With these changes, SeQuential expects it can grow production by as much as 20% in 2015. The company has also installed a blending rack to allow customers using biodiesel blends to mix their product onsite. These developments come on the heels of Governor Kate Brown's signing of SB 324, which fully implements the Oregon Clean Fuels Program.
"We've said all along we believed the Clean Fuels Program would positively impact the Oregon biodiesel market," said Tyson Keever, SeQuential president and co-founder. "With the passing of the bill we felt it was time to make sure we're ready to handle increased production when the program begins to take off."
Founded in 2005, SeQuential is the longest running commercial biodiesel producer in the Pacific Northwest, and the only large-scale biodiesel manufacturer in Oregon. The company makes its biodiesel entirely from used cooking oil collected from thousands of restaurants, businesses, hospitals and schools throughout the region. The oil is refined at the SeQuential plant in Salem and turned into high quality biodiesel that is sold through an extensive network of wholesale and retail channels up and down the West Coast. Biodiesel can be used in nearly any diesel engine and offers many benefits over petroleum fuels, including better engine wear and significantly fewer emissions of carbon dioxide and other harmful gasses.
Today's announcement is just one in a series of moves SeQuential has recently made to enable increased production. In late 2014, the company expanded its oil collection operations into northern California, adding the San Francisco Bay area to its service territories anchored in Portland, Salem, Seattle, and Spokane. SeQuential also significantly increased its retail channels in 2014. The company's biodiesel blends are now available at nearly 80 different retailers across Oregon, Washington and California, including the SeQuential branded stations in Eugene.
"Our mission is to build a better energy model, and part of how we do that is by taking something that might otherwise be considered waste material and refining it into a lower carbon fuel," Keever said. "Initiatives like Oregon's Clean Fuels Program reinforce the value of this approach by encouraging people to really consider the carbon footprint of the fuel they use. We're really excited to see the program roll out."
As the longest-running commercial biodiesel producer in the Pacific Northwest, SeQuential is deeply committed to improving the environment and invigorating the local economy by providing a clean-burning, renewable fuel that is sustainably produced from regionally sourced feedstocks. SeQuential makes its biodiesel from recycled cooking oil collected from thousands of restaurants and businesses throughout the region. Every drop of oil the company collects is turned into biodiesel that is then distributed back into the local community. To date, SeQuential has produced more than 25 million gallons of fuel. More information on SeQuential is available at www.choosesq.com.
(National Biodiesel Board)
Biodiesel is Getting Us Where We Need to Go
National Biodiesel Board launches new ad campaign showcasing biodiesel success from Coast to Coast
May 18, 2015
JEFFERSON CITY - America's advanced biofuel, biodiesel, is an alternative energy success story. It's powering vehicles from coast to coast and replacing more than 1 billion gallons of petroleum every year. And to celebrate biodiesel's benefits that touch cities and towns, fields and farms, water and air, a new advertising campaign demonstrates how it is fueling America as a low-carbon, renewable energy source.
"Biodiesel shows that forward-looking energy initiatives work to promote new ideas and innovation that deliver results," said Joe Jobe, National Biodiesel Board CEO. "We have a lot to be proud of and want to showcase to leaders in Washington and around the nation the environmental, economic, and energy benefits biodiesel brings right to their communities."
The National Biodiesel Board unveiled the advertising campaign today. The 30-second commercial will air on national television networks, as well as on select local broadcast outlets and cable news programs throughout the summer.
The digital campaign includes banner advertising and a 15 second version of the television commercial presented as a pre-roll to programming on news platforms and as openers to videos on YouTube. Radio and print focused on target areas will round out the comprehensive campaign, anchored by a re-launched website (www.americasadvancedbiofuel.com) that provides videos featuring how biodiesel is making a difference in from coast to coast.
Produced by Northern Virginia-based PCI, a leading provider of creative communications services for Fortune 500 corporations, national associations, and federal agencies, the campaign recognizes biodiesel's role as an important transportation fuel - an advanced biofuel impacting people in every walk of life, throughout the country.
The television ads focus on biodiesel in motion, fueling various vehicles in a wide range of settings across the nation. The online and radio ads echo the theme of biodiesel at work today from coast-to-coast. The print ads showcase several personal success stories with biodiesel. In addition to offering basic biodiesel information, the microsite dives in to feature unique stories in video form from biodiesel users, suppliers and distributors. It lets them tell their unique biodiesel story and shows biodiesel is an effective, renewable alternative.
Though the ad campaign is solely focused on providing information about biodiesel, it complements NBB's extensive efforts to support biodiesel growth through the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS). After years of delays, the EPA has announced it will propose new RFS volumes by June 1.
Funding for the campaign is provided by the United Soybean Board, State Soybean Checkoff Boards, U.S. Canola Association, and the National Biodiesel Board.
CALIFORNIA INDUSTRY NEWS
(BIOFUELS DIGEST): Extreme Biodiesel designing hemp oil extractor for launch by year's end
April 28, 2015 | Meghan Sapp
In California, Extreme Biodiesel announced the company's wholly owned subsidiary XTRM Cannabis Ventures is designing a plant and seed oil extractor with its first version of the residential Hemp and Cannabis Oil extractor by the last quarter of 2015. Oils derived from hemp and/or medical marijuana are in huge demand, but current methods being used can be very dangerous, yield non-consistent results, or are priced far beyond the reach of 99% of consumers.
Research being conducted by Dr. Rainer Busch is being used to develop methods that XTRM believes will achieve consistent results in a safe cost-effective manner. The unit being developed by XTRM does not use liquid butane or other methods currently under scrutiny.
(DOMESTIC FUEL) Aemetis Starts India Biodiesel Manufacturers Assoc.
Posted on May 5, 2015 by John Davis
India is getting a biodiesel makers association. With a little help from California-based Aemetis (which also runs a biodiesel plant on the east coast of India), the Biodiesel Manufacturers Association (BEMA) has been launched with
Sanjeev Gupta, President of Aemetis International, as the new group's chairman and president.
The BEMA group was launched as an eight-member association with a focus on expanding the biodiesel market in India, decreasing air pollution and reducing India's dependence on foreign oil. The organization will serve to further the interests of biodiesel manufacturers by removing regulatory hurdles while educating India corporate and retail consumers about the environmental and cost benefits of biodiesel.
"With the deregulation of the diesel market in India and ending of diesel subsidies last October, India is a new frontier for Aemetis to grow in a large 25 billion gallon diesel market," said Sanjeev Gupta, President of Aemetis International. "With the recent approval of direct sales to bulk customers, we have launched direct delivery of biodiesel to customers and are moving rapidly to expand production at our 50 million gallon per year capacity East Coast plant in Kakinada to supply the domestic India market," added Gupta.
"Sanjeev's chairmanship of the newly formed organization for biodiesel producers in India recognizes the leadership position held by our Univeral Biofuels subsidiary in one of the fastest growing biofuels markets in the world," said Eric McAfee, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Aemetis. "Biodiesel is now a less expensive fuel than diesel in India, with the removal of the large diesel subsidy that had blocked sales of biodiesel in India until recently. The formation of BEMA is an important milestone expanding the biodiesel market in India to replace diesel with a healthier and lower cost alternative," added McAfee.
(Pacific Ethanol) Pacific Ethanol Begins Production of Corn Oil at Madera Plant
SACRAMENTO, Calif., May 7, 2015 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Pacific Ethanol, Inc. (Nasdaq:PEIX), the leading producer and marketer of low-carbon renewable fuels in the Western United States, has begun commercial production of corn oil utilizing Valicor's proprietary VFRAC? corn oil recovery system at its Madera, California plant.
Neil Koehler, the company's president and CEO, stated: "We are pleased to be producing corn oil at our Madera plant, which further diversifies our plant revenue streams and significantly improves operating income. In addition, plans are underway for corn oil production to begin at our Boardman, Oregon plant in the second quarter, at which time all four of Pacific Ethanol's ethanol production facilities will be producing and benefiting from this high-value co-product."