New York Biodiesel Goes to Europe

John Davis

It wasn’t a huge amount, but it could be seen as an important first step for the biodiesel industry in New York.

This story from Reuters says an American biodiesel producer is sending the green fuel to a port in Europe… the first time biodiesel has gone from New York to our friends across the pond:

The 15,000 barrel cargo of biodiesel produced by Innovation Fuels in New York is bound for Rotterdam.

Europe has been a large market for biodiesel because of its large number of diesel-fueled cars EU mandates for alternative fuels. Traditionally U.S. supplies of biodiesel have been sent from the West Coast.

Innovation CEO John Fox said the company’s biodiesel is made from multiple feedstocks, including vegetable oils, oils from rendering and food processing facilities, and used restaurant grease.

U.S. biodiesel capacity has risen as the government offered incentives to help wean the country off foreign oil. But the industry has suffered as producers lost money on surging prices for soy oil, one of the industry’s main feedstocks.

Fox said Innovation’s margins are strong because its mix of feedstocks. “Our ability to process lower priced feedstocks helps us to make margins significantly above 20 cents per gallon,” he said.

The real significance of this shipment might be the fact that it could help establish the Northeast United States as another hub for biodiesel to go to Europe. That, along with increasing number of mandates in that region, would help cement the green fuel in that part of the U.S.