Biodiesel Not Blending In, But Standing Out with Health Benefits

While waiting on electric vehicles, the biodiesel industry has the ability to make an immediate and swift impact with B100 on public health. As we continue to make meaningful advancements, biodiesel is not blending in, but standing out and ready now.
By The National Biodiesel Board | June 14, 2021

Biodiesel is the most sustainable fuel on the planet and is made from a broad range of feedstocks, typically blended with petroleum diesel. However, this time, biodiesel is not blending in. Our readily available solution, B100, is 100% biodiesel. With no mixers required, B100 is standing out now and for decades to come.

A landmark study, conducted by Trinity Consultants, confirmed what our industry has known for years—biodiesel has proven positive impacts on the environment. The study also shows how biodiesel can have a dramatic impact on an issue important to all Americans, especially now—their health.

We have always known that biodiesel offers a better and cleaner alternative to petroleum diesel. This study quantifies the health benefits and shows that by using renewable fuels like biodiesel and renewable diesel, we can bring major health improvements to people's lives.

The research, sponsored by the National Biodiesel Board with support from the Nebraska Soybean Board, South Dakota Soybean Research & Promotion Council, California Advanced Biofuels Alliance, Iowa Soybean Board and the Wisconsin Soybean Marketing Board, used well established EPA air dispersion modeling tools coupled with health risk assessments and benefit valuations to assess the public health benefits and resulting economic savings of converting from petroleum-based diesel to B100 in 13 communities in the U.S. exposed to high rates of petroleum diesel pollution.

Researchers found that switching to 100% biodiesel in the home heating oil and transportation sectors in just these 13 communities would:
•    Prevent 340 premature deaths annually.
•    Result in 46,000 fewer sick days.

In the transportation sector, benefits included a potential 45% reduction in cancer risk, when heavy-duty trucks such as semis use B100, and 203,000 fewer or lessened asthma attacks.

When Bioheat fuel made from 100% biodiesel is used in place of petroleum heating oil, the study found an 86% reduced cancer risk and 17,000 fewer lung problems.

The study also considered the economic cost of premature deaths, asthma cases, reduced activity due to poor health, and work impacted due to sick days. For example, researchers found the communities surrounding the Port of Los Angeles/Long Beach would avoid about $1.69 billion in health costs due to improved air quality in the form of reduced premature deaths and health care costs and increased productivity.

As these numbers represent findings from just 13 sites and communities, they are truly the tip of the iceberg. B100 can achieve these benefits by reducing pollution from markets that are hardest to decarbonize: heavy-duty transportation and residential heating.

Saving lives by reducing the health impacts of diesel pollution should be a higher priority, and biodiesel is widely available today to achieve that goal. These immediate and substantial emission reductions and associated health benefits can and should be an important consideration in any local, state, regional or national climate program as our nation moves toward decarbonization and cleaner air. It is critical that policymakers and energy providers consider the benefits they can deliver to these communities today, while states pursue electrification and other decarbonization strategies.

This means these communities, which continue to be disproportionately affected by diesel pollution, don't need to wait five, 10, or in some cases 20 years for an electrified solution to deliver cleaner air. With biodiesel, they can enjoy cleaner, healthier air today.

This breakthrough study proves and quantifies the major benefits a simple transition to biodiesel can have on communities that adopt it. Our industry has the ability to make an immediate and swift impact with B100 on public health. We continue to make meaningful advancements in this industry, and for years to come, we will share that biodiesel is not blending in, but standing out and ready now.  

Donnell Rehagen
National Biodiesel Board

Array ( [REDIRECT_REDIRECT_STATUS] => 200 [REDIRECT_STATUS] => 200 [HTTP_USER_AGENT] => CCBot/2.0 ( [HTTP_ACCEPT] => text/html,application/xhtml+xml,application/xml;q=0.9,*/*;q=0.8 [HTTP_ACCEPT_LANGUAGE] => en-US,en;q=0.5 [HTTP_ACCEPT_ENCODING] => br,gzip [HTTP_HOST] => [HTTP_CONNECTION] => Keep-Alive [PATH] => /sbin:/usr/sbin:/bin:/usr/bin [SERVER_SIGNATURE] =>
Apache/2.2.15 (CentOS) Server at Port 80
[SERVER_SOFTWARE] => Apache/2.2.15 (CentOS) [SERVER_NAME] => [SERVER_ADDR] => [SERVER_PORT] => 80 [REMOTE_ADDR] => [DOCUMENT_ROOT] => /datadrive/websites/ [SERVER_ADMIN] => [SCRIPT_FILENAME] => /datadrive/websites/ [REMOTE_PORT] => 43068 [REDIRECT_QUERY_STRING] => url=articles/2517592/biodiesel-not-blending-in-but-standing-out-with-health-benefits [REDIRECT_URL] => /app/webroot/articles/2517592/biodiesel-not-blending-in-but-standing-out-with-health-benefits [GATEWAY_INTERFACE] => CGI/1.1 [SERVER_PROTOCOL] => HTTP/1.1 [REQUEST_METHOD] => GET [QUERY_STRING] => url=articles/2517592/biodiesel-not-blending-in-but-standing-out-with-health-benefits [REQUEST_URI] => /articles/2517592/biodiesel-not-blending-in-but-standing-out-with-health-benefits [SCRIPT_NAME] => /app/webroot/index.php [PHP_SELF] => /app/webroot/index.php [REQUEST_TIME_FLOAT] => 1653712594.911 [REQUEST_TIME] => 1653712594 )