Senators introduce bill to reinstate biodiesel tax incentive

Two senators have introduced a bill that would reinstate a biodiesel tax incentive that expired on Dec. 31, 2013. The bill, introduced by Sens. Maria Cantwell, D-WA, and Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, would offer the incentive for three years.

“On behalf of biodiesel producers across the country, we want to thank Sens. Cantwell and Grassley for their leadership on this issue,” said Anne Steckel, National Biodiesel Board (NBB) vice president of federal affairs. “The biodiesel tax incentive has expired three times over the past five years, and each time it has severely disrupted production. By comparison, we know that at least $4 billion in incentives encouraging domestic petroleum production are built into the tax code. We need that same kind of stability for younger, cleaner industries like biodiesel and renewable diesel to compete.”

According to NBB, the bill would provide a $1/gal. incentive for biodiesel, renewable diesel and renewable aviation fuel. Renewable diesel is a similar diesel alternative made with a different technology.

“This incentive clearly stimulates production and creates jobs at biodiesel plants across the country, and we urge the leadership of both parties to quickly take up this bill to ensure that we can continue the momentum that the biodiesel industry built last year with record production of almost 1.8 billion gals.,” Steckel added.

First introduced in 2005, the tax incentive has expired twice previously (in 2010 and 2012) before being re-instated both times.

Biodiesel is made from a diverse mix of resources such as recycled cooking oil, soybean oil and animal fats, NBB said, adding that it is an EPA-designated Advanced Biofuel. The biodiesel industry supported more than 62,000 jobs last year.

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