EPA Opens Door for Canadian Canola

The oilseed grown north of the U.S. border now qualifies for RFS2
By Luke Geiver | November 21, 2011

There are 15 to 20 commercial biodiesel facilities within 165 miles of the U.S./Canadian border, and, for the first time, those plants that want to use Canadian-based canola as a feedstock and generate renewable identification number (RIN) credits through RFS2 can do so. It took the U.S. EPA nearly seven months to review and decide that the feedstock from Canada qualifies for the RFS2, a review process that included aerial photography, agricultural land surveys and other methods to prove that the 123 million acres that will qualify for canola will not alter the growing patterns or agricultural practices already in place in Canada.

The inclusion of canola might sound like a classic case of using what we already have to solve a problem—in this case feedstock acquisition—instead of searching for new answers, but the approval by the EPA might have many more implications. “We are thrilled that we have this opportunity to increase our exports of canola into the U.S. for use in biodiesel production,” says JoAnne Buth, president of the Canola Council of Canada.

—Luke Geiver

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