All you need to know about biodiesel in Vermont is now in a new report, “On-Farm Biodiesel Production in Vermont: Legal and Regulatory Overview.” The report was conducted by the Institute for Energy and the Environment (IEE) at Vermont Law School and reviews all Vermont state and federal regulations related to on-farm biodiesel production. The goal of the report is to inform farmers about the potential laws and regulations surrounding on-farm biodiesel production.
“As statewide partners begin to find new ways to achieve the goals of Vermont’s Comprehensive Energy Plan, which identified biodiesel as a fuel that will help Vermont meet the 10-percent renewable transportation goal for 2025, the On-Farm Biodiesel Production in Vermont report provides a timely review of the regulations that pertain to homegrown biodiesel production,” said Ellen Kahler, executive director of the Vermont Sustainable Jobs Fund who commissioned the report.
According to the report’s findings, “while several of the federal regulations are only triggered by high levels of production, there are a number of state laws and regulations that may be triggered by small-scale biodiesel production, such as state air emission provisions that establish lower thresholds when compared to the federal Clean Air Act (CAA). In addition, it is critical to understand the role biodiesel production plays in the definition of ‘farm’ and ‘farming activities’ for the purpose of states laws, such as Act 250 and the Current Use Program.”
IEE researchers applied the legal review to three potential scenarios in the report that concludes with a list of “do’s and don’ts” for farmers to use as a legal checklist as they move forward with producing biofuel in on-farm operations.
VLS Professor Kevin B. Jones, deputy director of the Institute for Energy and the Environment, added, “Our institute’s research should help Vermont farmers understand the regulatory hurdles to producing biodiesel on the farm and help them convert a locally grown resource into economic and environmental benefits for Vermont.”