Minnesota On Target to Meet Biodiesel Mandate Goals

John Davis

Earlier this week, we told you how Washington state was going to fall short on its goal using 20 percent biofuels in all state vehicles. But there’s better news from the Midwest.

mn_map1According to the Redwood Falls (MN) Gazette, Minnesota is on target of meeting its own lofty goal of having all diesel sold in the state to be a 20 percent blend by the year 2015. At the beginning of this month, the state jumped from a 2 percent to a 5 percent biodiesel blend. And the biodiesel industry in the state seems to be ready for the next two steps: a 10 percent blend in 2012 and 20 percent in 2015:

“We will easily be able to meet the demands on the in-creased production for this step up to five percent,” said Chuck Neece of Farmers Union Industries. “In 2012, that will increase to 10 percent biodiesel, which means there will need to be about 80 million gallons of bio-diesel to blend.

“Half of that, 40 million gallons, would have to come from in-state production.”

Between the biodiesel plant in Brewster and the plant near Redwood Falls operated via Farmers Union Industries, state production is currently at 33-35 million gallons.

So, the need would only have to increase another five million gallons to ensure the demands for 2012, ex-plained Neece.

There are some “safety valves” built into the targets, such as a flexible approval process, involving the legislature, biodiesel producers and other stakeholders, for each step along the way to make sure the state is not committed to something it can’t meet due to unforeseen circumstances down the road. But, for now, it looks likes everything so far is so good.