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B10 State Mandate Kicks In Next July

B10 State Mandate Kicks In Next July
Minnesota soybean growers pleased with move to more biodiesel.

After meeting specific requirements in state statute, the commissioners of the Minnesota Departments of Agriculture, Commerce and the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency recently announced the state is ready to move forward on its B10 biodiesel mandate.

The B10 mandate takes effect July 1, 2014 and goes through October 2014.

Originally, implementation of the B10 mandate was supposed to take place in 2012. However, the commissioners, the Minnesota Biodiesel Task Force and other stakeholders recommended a one-year delay to address four mandatory conditions, as required by state law.

B10 State Mandate Kicks In Next July

Those four conditions, that have now been met, involve federal standards for blend specifications, the production capacity of biodiesel in Minnesota, the amount of infrastructure and regulatory protocol for biodiesel blending, and the source of feedstocks.

The Minnesota Soybean Growers Association voiced support for announcement, which appeared in the September 30, 2013 edition of the Minnesota State Register.

"Biodiesel has been used in Minnesota for more than a decade and the state leads the nation in biofuel acceptance," says George Goblish, MSGA president. "Moving to B10 means cleaner air, more jobs and greater energy diversity. Whether you drive a diesel vehicle or use mass transit, this change is good for all Minnesota."

Currently, every gallon of diesel fuel sold in Minnesota contains a blend of 5% biodiesel (B5), made primarily from soybean oil. The move to 10% (B10) is written into a statute passed in 2007, provided all necessary criteria have been met.

Minnesota has three biodiesel production facilities producing more than 60 million gallons of biodiesel each year. Overall the industry supports more than 5,000 jobs and provides substantial revenue to the state.

About 800 million gallons of diesel are used in Minnesota each year.

Minnesota's current B5 inclusion has been shown to reduce emissions equal to removing nearly 35,000 vehicles from the road, says MSGA. Use of B5 in Minnesota removes 644 million pounds of carbon dioxide annually. Expanding Minnesota's biodiesel percentage to B10 would further reduce harmful air emissions. Metro Transit buses in the Twin Cities metropolitan area have recently begun running on a blend of 20% (B20) biodiesel.

The state mandate includes language for moving to B20 in 2015.

"That is currently the schedule," said Kevin Hennessy, MDA bioenergy manager. "I would think that B10 would need to be working well before moving to B20. Also, the four requirements also need to be met for B20 implementation."

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