Already the nation’s leader in biodiesel production, production of the green fuel in Iowa hit record levels in 2015. This news release from the Iowa Renewable Fuels Association (IRFA) says despite policy uncertainty for nearly all of 2015, Iowa biodiesel production set a new annual record of 242 million gallons, topping 2013’s record of 230 million gallons.
“It must be said that Iowa’s record biodiesel production in 2015 is a testament to the efficiency of Iowa’s plants and to the effectiveness of Iowa’s state level policies promoting the production and use of biodiesel,” stated IRFA Executive Director Monte Shaw. “Considering neither the federal Renewable Fuel Standard nor the federal biodiesel blenders’ tax credit were in effect for the vast majority of 2015, the resiliency of Iowa biodiesel producers really shone through in 2015. With the federal RFS and tax credit in place for 2016, we are hopeful for big things.”
The amount of Iowa biodiesel produced from soybean oil decreased in 2015, but remains the largest feedstock in Iowa, accounting for 66 percent of production. Animal fats held steady at 19 percent of biodiesel feedstocks. With changes to some biodiesel plants’ technology, distillers’ corn oil made a big jump to 10 percent of production, up from just 2 percent last year. Used cooking oil and canola oil accounted for the remaining 5 percent.
IRFA says Iowa has 12 biodiesel facilities with the capacity to produce nearly 315 million gallons annually.