“Iowa Biodiesel Day on the Hill” recently took place hosted by the Iowa Biodiesel Board (IBB). During the event, members called on state legislators to extend and expand biodiesel incentives that are set to expire. IBB notes these incentives help Iowa’s 13 biodiesel producers make the state the top in the country for production. In 2015, 12 of these biodiesel facilities produced a record 242 million gallons of biodiesel. There is also a retailers credit that encourages fuel retailers to carry biodiesel blends, and according to the Iowa Department of Revenue, biodiesel-blended gasoline accounted for 48.9 percent of diesel gallons sold in 2014.
The event included pubic education and a luncheon where IBB members met with legislators to discuss 2016 legislative priorities. These include:
- Extending the Biodiesel Production Credit, set to expire at the end of next year. The credit is 2 cents per gallon on the first 25 million gallons of production per biodiesel plant, and helps keep biodiesel production and economic activity in Iowa.
- Extending the Biodiesel Promotion Retail Tax Credit, which provides petroleum retailers 4.5 cents a gallon on blends of at least 5 percent biodiesel (B5), set to expire at the end of next year. Market competition encourages this savings to be passed on to motorists.
- Enhancing the Retail Tax Credit by adding a 2.5 cent credit (7 cents total) for blends of B11 and higher. This will encourage higher blends of biodiesel to be distributed in the state.
- Supporting Governor Terry Branstad’s recommended appropriation to continue the successful Renewable Fuels Infrastructure Program, which helps fuel distributors and retailers update equipment to include biofuels.
- Supporting the Biochemical Tax Credit legislation, which would stimulate more demand for biochemical production.
The state biodiesel policies in place have been effective in increasing production and consumption in Iowa, said Grant Kimberley, Iowa Biodiesel Board executive director.
“It makes sense that the majority of Iowa’s diesel fuel should contain at least some biodiesel, and we’re very interested in encouraging higher blends. Common sense would say we use our own fuel product rather than foreign oil. Expanding the retail tax credit for blends of B11 and higher would resoundingly help us accomplish that.”