Hurricanes have devastated whole swaths of our country, in areas that host a majority of the country’s critical energy infrastructure. The need to solidify our energy infrastructure and increase domestic energy supplies will only continue to grow as we face an alarming increase in extreme weather events. Biodiesel is a solution to this and to many of our nation’s biggest challenges, such as the need for creating more jobs in rural America, enhancing U.S. energy security from supply disruptions and keeping our air and waters clean.
Biodiesel is a homegrown, renewable fuel that is produced from many different sources, from soybeans to animal fats to recycled cooking grease that is often discarded by restaurants. Instead of remaining a waste without a purpose, biodiesel has spurred new technologies to convert these products into clean, sustainable fuels to power vehicles and heat homes across the country.
Missouri is the second highest biodiesel-producing state, behind only Iowa. We produced roughly 200 million gallons in 2016, and we owe nearly 6,400 jobs in the state to biodiesel.
The primary driver of the domestic biodiesel industry in the United States is a policy known as the Renewable Fuel Standard or RFS. The RFS was designed to drive growth in the American supply of biofuels, including biodiesel. The law requires higher volumes of biofuels to be blended into the nation’s transportation fuel supply.
An overwhelming majority of lawmakers created this bipartisan policy more than a decade ago in response to the threats to U.S. energy security and supplies. It is also an economic driver for job creation in rural America. Each year, the Environmental Protection Agency sets the volumes to be blended into the U.S. fuel stream. The program was intended to…