Play All Our Cards on Climate, Including Biodiesel
by former Sen. Byron Dorgan (The Hill) … Like a smart poker player, we have to capitalize on the good cards we have. One of those is biodiesel, a renewable fuel made from recycled cooking grease, plant oils, and animal fats that packs an unusually powerful punch in cutting pollution. According to the EPA, every gallon of biodiesel we burn instead of petroleum diesel reduces carbon emissions by 57 percent to 86 percent. Biodiesel can be used in any diesel engine, and particularly when used with new advanced diesel technologies, the environmental performance is unparalleled.
It is precisely the kind of tool we need to make a difference in our effort to reduce carbon in a practical, cost-effective way. And the Administration can do much more to fully take advantage of biodiesel’s promise.
But it is particularly critical for our climate fight because the transportation sector accounts for more than one-fourth of the nation’s greenhouse gas emissions – second only to electricity.
To truly address climate change, we need much more progress with the cars and trucks we drive, and the RFS is the best policy we have to clean up our fuels. In addition, it is a solution that doesn’t need approval from a gridlocked Congress. The RFS was created 10 years ago with overwhelming bipartisan support from Congress, and the administration has broad discretion to maximize its effectiveness now with the stroke of a pen. For biodiesel, the law gives the EPA wide authority to increase standards to require significantly more biodiesel to be blended into our diesel supplies.
While biodiesel was and is often overshadowed by corn ethanol in the renewable fuels debate, its growth from a niche fuel just a decade ago to a commercial-scale industry with a U.S market of nearly 2 billion gallons should be celebrated and supported. READ MORE