Biofuel groups welcome key provisions of Build Back Better Act

By Erin Voegele | November 23, 2021

Growth Energy, the National Biodiesel Board, National Corn Growers Association, National Farmers Union and the Renewable Fuels Association sent a letter to leaders of the House and Senate ag committees on Nov. 22 expressing support for provisions of the Build Back Better Act that will benefit biofuel producers and the ag industry.

The U.S. House of Representatives on Nov. 19 voted 220 to 213 to approve the Build Back Better Act, a $1.9 trillion legislative package that includes nearly $1 billion to expand biofuel infrastructure. The bill also proves a four-year extension of the biodiesel and renewable diesel tax credit, as well as a production tax credit and other incentives aimed at expanding production and use of sustainable aviation fuel (SAF), along with provisions that aim to help lower the carbon intensity of agriculture. The U.S. Senate is currently expected to take action on the bill before the end of the year.

The letter, addressed to Debbie Stabenow, chair of the Senate Committee on Agriculture,  Nutrition and Forestry, and David Scott, chairman of the House Committee on Agriculture, applauds the agriculture provisions of the Build Back Better Act that aim to build new markets for farmers and biofuel producers and help lower the carbon intensity of agriculture.

“One of the most pressing challenges facing biofuel producers is ensuring that consumers have consistent access to higher-level ethanol and biodiesel blends, which are lower carbon and lower cost than petroleum fuels,” the groups wrote. “The Biofuel Infrastructure and Agriculture Product Market Expansion provision in the BBB Act helps address this issue and contains much needed funding to ensure consumers have access to these fuels. This provision contains nearly $1 billion in funding to provide grants to retail fuel stations and fuel terminal operators to upgrade refueling infrastructure and to upgrade distribution systems. Most importantly, this provision looks to improve past U.S. Department of Agriculture efforts to provide these refueling infrastructure incentives by allocating grants where they will drive the most market growth for low carbon biofuels.”

The letter also points out that farming practices account for approximately 50 to 65 percent of the carbon emissions associated with the life cycle analyses of fuels like ethanol and biodiesel. “Farmers have already responded to the call for sustainability, using fewer inputs and increasing efficiencies in their farming practices,” the groups wrote. “These improved practices have already helped reduce the carbon intensity of farming, and therefore the overall carbon intensity of biofuels.

“The BBB Act provides further voluntary incentives like cover crops, nutrient management, buffers, and incentives for locally-led conservation efforts that will help reduce the carbon intensity of agriculture even further, helping biofuel producers provide an even lower carbon liquid fuel at a time when demand for low carbon fuels is rising,” they continued. “As biofuel producers capture the value of low carbon farming practices, farmers would also have the opportunity to benefit in the form of premium prices for their commodities. These further reductions are important to ensure a long-term future for biofuels as policymakers and the public look to lower the carbon intensity of transportation.”

A full copy of the letter can be downloaded from the Growth Energy website



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