Las Vegas’ Top Priority?

Proposed B10 mandate highlights undeniable biodiesel facts, good and bad
By Luke Geiver | March 09, 2011

Carbon reduction is only one reason why Nevada Sen. Mike Schneider, D-Las Vegas, has put forth a bill that would require a B10 mandate for all diesel-fueled vehicles in the state. The other is jobs. Apparently, Schneider, chairman of the energy committee for the city, was the right person to go to.

Led by producer members from Biodiesel of Las Vegas in collaboration with Schneider, the bill now  before the state’s natural resource commission is a reminder of one of the undeniable benefits of biodiesel production. “There is no doubt about it, we need job creation in Nevada and here in Las Vegas, in particular,” Schneider says. But, even as Schneider himself agrees that the mandate would help plants create more jobs, there is another element that usually, as this bill proves, comes with biodiesel: opposition.

Schneider says that controversy is already brewing, mainly from the trucking industry that argues a B10 mandate would void many engine warranties. “I think they just don’t like mandates so they are trying to find a glitch in the bill,” he says. Biodiesel proponents can point to other mandates already implemented throughout the country, or the ASTM D975 diesel spec that allows for up to 5 percent biodiesel without any notice, or the D7467 spec for biodiesel blends B6 to B20—at least if job creation is a real priority.

—Luke Geiver

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