New York City has passed legislation to increase the use of biodiesel, in the form of Bioheat, and decrease the use of heating oil. The bill, which passed today by a 47-3 vote, increases the amount of biodiesel in heating oil from the current 2 percent level to five percent by October 1, 2017 then to 10 percent in 2025, 15 percent in 2030 and ultimately 20 percent in 2034.
“New York City is once again setting an example for the rest of the Northeast to follow by ensuring consumers are provided with the nation’s cleanest heating oil,” said Donnell Rehagen, chief operating officer of the National Biodiesel Board (NBB). “Not only does biodiesel dramatically reduce carbon emissions, it reduces other harmful pollutants as well as smog, making New York’s air healthier to breathe.”
The New York City legislation was supported by a wide variety of organizations including the heating oil industry, labor organizations and environmental stakeholders.
“The New York Oil Heating Association has played a vital and vocal role in advocating for the increased use of Bioheat® fuel,” said Rocco Lacertosa, CEO of the New York Heating Oil Association (NYOHA). “We applaud the City Council for passing legislation that will reduce carbon emissions and improve air quality in New York City and we commend our partners in the environmental and labor community for their dedication to this issue. Heating oil in New York City is already, by far, the cleanest heating oil sold anywhere in the United States. The new Bioheat requirement, starting at B5 and eventually going up to B20, is a necessary next step to promote a more sustainable fuel that will reduce our contribution to climate change while enhancing green job creation, encouraging energy independence and supporting local businesses.”
It is estimated that the increase from a two percent biodiesel blend to a five percent blend in New York City would reduce the emissions equivalent to taking 45,000 cars off the road with the increase to 20 percent the equivalent of removing more than a quarter of a million cars.