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National Biodiesel Board Changes Name to Clean Fuels
Indiana Ag Connection - 01/20/2022

The National Biodiesel Board, Jefferson City, Mo., earlier this week announced its transition to a new name, Clean Fuels Alliance America, reflecting the organization's progressive vision and the diversity of clean fuels its members produce - including biodiesel, renewable diesel and sustainable aviation fuel.

Meanwhile, an expert panel of diesel equipment manufacturers and fleets at the National Biodiesel Conference acknowledged that these clean fuels are a key part of their product development plans on the path to a low-carbon transportation future.

When considering options to help reduce carbon dioxide (CO2) and other greenhouse gas emissions from vehicles and equipment, Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) and fleets are looking beyond fossil fuels. They're considering a variety of technologies such as biofuels, electric vehicles and other alternatives to help slow climate change.

However, while electric solutions are still under development, clean advanced biofuels such as biodiesel and renewable diesel are readily available now for use in existing diesel engines without modification, helping fleets achieve substantial emissions reductions.

Speaking on the Vehicle Technology Showcase panel, James Hopkins, executive director of Engine Business Strategy for Cummins, Inc., Columbus, Ind., said, "Increasing the utilization of low-carbon fuels, including biodiesel, can make a meaningful impact in reducing CO2 emissions from vehicles already in use. Cummins is committed to supporting the use of biodiesel, and it is an important part of our plans to reduce CO2 in commercial vehicle markets. In fact, almost all our products are able to use B20 biodiesel blends today, and we are working to support increasing blends in the future."

Danan Dou, manager of Advanced Technology and Innovation for John Deere, Moline, Ill., said, " We are committed to innovation for a sustainable future, and we consider low-carbon fuels such as biodiesel an important avenue to reduce CO2 while also maintaining our commitment to our customers. John Deere fully supports the use of B20 biodiesel blends in all of our diesel equipment."

The vast majority of OEMs, such as Ford, General Motors, Stellantis and FPT Industrial, currently support the use of B20 biodiesel blends in their equipment. B20 contains 20% biodiesel and 80% ultra-low sulfur diesel. However, forward-looking fleets from coast to coast -- including California; New York City; Chicago; Madison, Wis.; and Washington, D.C. -- are looking up to even B100 to lower carbon footprints.

While today's OEM support for biodiesel is impressive, even more notable to Steve Howell, chair of the ASTM Biodiesel Task Force since 1994, is the level of biodiesel research that is being conducted by equipment manufacturers in partnership with Clean Fuels Alliance America and research institutions such as the National Renewable Energy Lab. OEMs are already doing cooperative testing on B20 and higher blends in future Ultra-Low Emissions Diesel Engine (ULEDE) platforms, as well as in equipment for other markets desiring low-carbon fuels, such as ocean-going vessels, railroads, and on-ground gas turbines. ULEDE tailpipe emissions will be near zero and will be required by the California Air Resources Board and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency starting in 2024 to 2030.

Chris Walters, head of institutional relations-North America for IVECO Group (formerly part of CNH Industrial), said, "The research conducted in these types of partnerships is essential for OEMs like us to better understand the impacts of different fuel properties on our products. Manufacturers have an exciting path forward to deliver cleaner solutions that can achieve sustainability goals while meeting the needs of our customers. We are very pleased that biodiesel blends can help meet this important challenge."

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