National Biodiesel Day, celebrated on March 18 -- the anniversary of Rudolf Diesel's birthday – is a time to highlight the fuel's role in powering delivery vehicles, construction equipment and a variety of other uses, the National Biodiesel Board says.
"You don't have to drive a diesel vehicle to feel the impact of diesel as it moves the freight that drives the economy," said Gary Haer, National Biodiesel Board chairman. "Clean diesel technology, growing biodiesel production, and more light-duty diesels on the market today are something to celebrate."
NBB says the U.S. is moving closer to Rudolf Diesel's century-old vision. When Diesel developed the first diesel engine it ran on a biofuel, peanut oil. He envisioned a time when vegetable oils would one day be as important as petroleum.
Biodiesel production topped 1 billion gallons in 2012 for the second consecutive year. With plants in nearly every state in the country, the industry supports more than 64,000 jobs nationwide and recently announced its new 10-year vision: 10% of the on-road diesel market by 2022.
Continued growth is expected with the increasing demand for diesel vehicles in the U.S. market. More than 33 light- and medium-duty diesel passenger cars and trucks, as well as heavy-duty diesel models from nearly 20 different brands, will be available in the market this year. The Diesel Technology Forum predicts that diesel vehicle sales will increase to as much as 10% of the American market by 2020.