New study shows biodiesel will add $24 billion to U.S. economy

By | January 10, 2007
Legend has it that nearly 200 years ago, after finding impressive apple trees in Defiance, Ohio, Johnny Appleseed established a nursery business in the rural community.

Today, he would still find apple trees, but he would also find a blooming biodiesel plant. American Ag Fuels is growing its annual biodiesel production from 3 million to 6 million gallons. By the time the plant completes the expansion in April 2007, it will have nearly 20 full-time and eight part-time employees, in addition to boosting business for the local contractors who are involved in the construction.

It's just one example of how the growing biodiesel industry is feeding the U.S. economy through job creation, tax revenues and farm income. "We decided to expand because frankly we've had trouble keeping up with demand," says American Ag Fuels President Steve Lankenau.

The National Biodiesel Board released a new economic study that shows how biodiesel plants are a boon to the U.S. economy as they sprout up across the nation. According to the economic analysis by John M. Urbanchuk of LECG LLC funded by the soybean checkoff through the United Soybean Board, the aggregate economic benefits of biodiesel include the following:

--America's biodiesel industry will add $24 billion to the U.S. economy between 2005 and 2015, assuming biodiesel growth reaches 650 million gallons of annual production by 2015

--Biodiesel production will create a projected 39,102 new jobs in all sectors of the economy

--Additional tax revenues from biodiesel production will more than pay for the federal tax incentives provided to the industry. It will keep $13.6 billion in America that would otherwise be spent on foreign oil. This total impact of biodiesel on the economy includes the temporary impacts of construction, the permanent impacts of annual production, and the direct value of biodiesel and by-products (i.e., glycerin).

"Because these plants buy local goods and local services, the second and third-round employment-generating impacts are really significant," Urbanchuk said. "You're looking at a fairly substantial employment-generating impact. Most of these jobs are going to be located in rural communities, and you can't overstate the impact of the biofuels industry on these rural economies."

A fact sheet on this study can be found at
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