New York City submits strong comments to EPA supporting biodiesel

By NYC Department of Citywide Administrative Services | October 19, 2017

New York City submitted comments to the U.S. EPA Oct. 19, protesting any rollback of the Renewable Fuel Standard, which calls for minimal use levels for renewable fuels like biodiesel. Biodiesel has proven a reliable and effective fuel for NYC fleet and buildings and has helped reduce air pollution in the city while lowering greenhouse gas emissions. NYC continues to grow its implementation of biofuels in buildings and fleet and calls on Washington to do the same nationally.

Biofuels can be produced in many ways including recycling of used grease from restaurants and the use of farm products such as soybean oil.

Already a leader in biodiesel use, NYC is set to expand the use of biofuels:

-Mayor de Blasio signed Local Law 119 of 2016, one of the most ambitious biofuels laws in the country. This law will transition all fuel oil used in heating to B20 by 2034. The first stage of the expansion is happening now with all NYC public and private buildings transitioning from B2 to B5 effective Oct. 1.

-NYC-owned government buildings will meet this goal eight years before the law requires, going from B5 to B10, effective the winter of 2017-’18.  

-NYC will also introduce the use of renewable diesel for the first time with a 1 million-gallon purchase scheduled for use by city agency fleets in spring 2018. Like biodiesel, RD uses renewable and natural feedstock’s to replace fossil fuels.

These efforts require a healthy and growing national biodiesel industry and set of suppliers. We object to any effort to rollback the RFS on the part of the EPA and call on them to go even further, expanding biodiesel and renewable fuel requirements.

“Through DCAS, NYC uses biodiesel in every gallon of fuel that heats our buildings and powers our trucks,” said DCAS Commissioner Lisette Camilo. “Mayor de Blasio has challenged city government to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in city operations by 50 percent by 2025 and we need a vibrant biofuels industry to support this goal.”

“Since 2005, NYC fleet has used biodiesel, starting at parks then sanitation, and now at all agencies including police, fire and correction,” said NYC Chief Fleet Officer Keith Kerman. “Biodiesel has been successfully used across over 160 types of fleet units, proving itself a reliable fuel and key part of our sustainability program.”

Council Member Costa Constantinides, chair of the council’s Environmental Protection Committee, said, “Our nation must move forward in our renewable fuels standards. Clean heating fuel like biodiesel reduces pollution while creating green jobs. We know that these stringent fuel standards are doable in our city since the Council passed my bill to increase biodiesel use in buildings citywide. The EPA must not stop the progress we’ve made in our renewable energy use.”

NYC operates the largest municipal fleet in North America with over 30,000 vehicles. Through Mayor de Blasio’s NYC Clean Fleet sustainability efforts, this fleet is also one of the largest alternative fuel fleets in the world, with 1,030 on-road electric vehicles, 5,700 hybrid vehicles, and over 17,000 units that use alternative fuels, including biodiesel, natural gas, electric and solar.

Click here to read comments submitted to EPA by NYC’s DCAS. 

 

 
 
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