Eleven states in the Northeastern United States have agreed to a Low Carbon Fuel Standard, designed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from vehicles and other energy uses. Biofuels, such as biodiesel and ethanol, are part of that plan.
This press release from the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection says the key is all the states working together:
In June, Governor Deval Patrick sent a letter to the governors of all 10 RGGI states inviting them to work with Massachusetts on developing a Low Carbon Fuel Standard that would apply to the entire region, creating a larger market for cleaner fuels, reducing emissions associated with global climate change, and supporting the development of clean energy technologies. Last week, the heads of environmental protection agencies and, in some cases, energy agencies in the states of Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and Vermont signed a Letter of Intent to tackle the challenge of reducing greenhouse gases from fuels in a joint effort…[A] Low Carbon Fuel Standard is a market-based, technologically neutral policy to address the carbon content of fuels by requiring reductions in the average lifecycle greenhouse gas emissions per unit of useful energy. Such a standard is potentially applicable not only in transportation, but also for fuel used for heating buildings, for industrial processes, and for electricity generation. The state of California was the first to commit to a LCFS for motor vehicles, which it is now in the process of developing. Fuels that may have potential to reduce the carbon intensity of transportation include electricity and advanced biofuels that have lower lifecycle carbon emissions and are less likely to cause indirect effects from crop diversion and land use changes than those on the market today.
The pact is a product of Massachusetts adopting its own Clean Energy Biofuels Act, which required the state to seek out this regional agreement.