Ethanol Blog

Federal Lawmakers Push House Leaders to Extend Biodiesel tax Credit

Todd Neeley
By  Todd Neeley , DTN Staff Reporter
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Biodiesel producers have been operating without the blenders tax credit since early in 2018. (Photo courtesy of REGI)

A group of 22 members of the U.S. House of Representatives are calling on House leadership for an "immediate extension" of the biodiesel tax credit for 2018 and 2019, in a letter sent to leadership on Friday.

The letter is signed by Reps. Rosa DeLauro, D-Conn.; Cheri Bustos, D-Ill.; Dave Loebsack, D-Iowa; T.J. Cox, D-Calif.; Cindy Axne, D-Iowa; Angie Craig, D-Minn.; Vicky Hartzler, R-Mo.; Ann McLane Kuster, D-N.H.; Jeff Fortenberry, R-Neb.; John Larson, D-Conn.; Jahanna Hayes, D-Conn.; David Cicilline, D-R.I.; Jim Langevin, D-R.I.; Jim Himes, D-Conn.; Don Bacon, R-Neb.; Sean Casten, D-Ill.; Jared Golden, D-Maine; Chellie Pingree, D-Maine; Chris Pappas, D-N.H.; Joe Courtney, D-Conn.; Dusty Johnson, R-S.D.; and Tulsi Gabbard, D-Hawaii.

"Biodiesel and renewable diesel represent a sustainable and alternative fuel source that reduces greenhouse gas emissions and supports thousands of green jobs across the country," the representatives write in the letter.

"Despite its recent growth, the biodiesel sector is still very much a nascent part of the broader biofuels industry and thus is vulnerable to changes in public policies and market conditions. Along with 15 months of uncertainty surrounding tax incentives, the sector has also been significantly impacted by the Environmental Protection Agency's radical increase in small refinery exemptions under the Renewable Fuel Standard.

"SREs over the last three years have resulted in demand destruction for biodiesel and renewable diesel totaling $7.7 billion. This policy of granting unprecedented amounts of SREs has only further undermined the biodiesel and renewable diesel sectors."

The lawmakers said not extending the tax credit would jeopardize "environmental and public health benefits, as well as the future of the industry."

Kurt Kovarik, vice president of Federal Affairs for the National Biodiesel Board, said in a statement that biodiesel producers are "looking for an immediate resolution to the uncertainty" they've faced since the start of 2018. "The industry needs policy certainty to meet the nation's goals for low-carbon fuels, green jobs, and cleaner air."

Read the letter here: https://delauro.house.gov/…

Todd Neeley can be reached at todd.neeley@dtn.com

Follow me on Twitter @toddneeleyDTN

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