Biodiesel and Bioheat Forum scheduled Aug. 19 in Minnesota

By Ron Kotrba | August 06, 2015

The Minnesota Soybean Research and Promotion Council is hosting a Biodiesel and Bioheat Forum Aug. 19 in Mankato, Minnesota, where leaders from the heating oil and biodiesel industries will discuss markets, new process technologies and fuel quality.

As the drive continues for ecofriendly solutions to the nation’s energy needs, biodiesel has emerged as not just a dependable transportation fuel, but a possible critical element in the home heating oil market. Approximately 6.2 million homes rely on heating oil in the winter months, and a homeowner can use 1,000 gallons over the season. The home heating oil market is well established in 23 states, with a particularly strong market share in New England. According to a report released by the National Oilheat Research Alliance, biodiesel blends at 20 percent with ultra-low sulfur heating oil are lower in greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions than natural gas when evaluated over 100 years, while blends of 2 percent or more are lower in GHG than natural gas when evaluated over 20 years. Within the biodiesel market, soybean oil has a 50 percent share.

“Bioheat is another step in increasing the diversity of our energy supply,” said Tom Slunecka, CEO of the Minnesota Soybean Research and Promotion Council. “Minnesota soybean farmers are growing that diversity.”

Local and national biodiesel leaders will be joined at the forum by a delegation of home heating oil representatives from the New York Oil Heating Association, National Association of Oil & Energy Service Professionals, National Oilheat Research Alliance and the Massachusetts Energy Marketers Association.

Some of the panelists scheduled to appear include:

Paul Nazzaro, President of the Nazzaro Group, representing organizations pursuing commercial market acceptance for their specific fuels. Nazzaro is also founder and senior advisor of Advanced Fuel Solutions Inc., a fuel additive company serving terminals, wholesalers and fuel distributors interested in developing and implementing branded fuel optimization strategies powered by field proven chemistry.

John Huber, President of the National Oilheat Research Alliance since 2001, has been responsible for developing NORA’s activities, including the educational program that includes certification, the consumer education program and the research and development agenda. Prior to joining NORA, John served as general counsel to the Petroleum Marketers Association of America.

Michael C. Trunzo, President of Northeast Public Affairs LLC, a government affairs, lobbying and association management firm serving clients in the Northeast U.S. and Washington, D.C. Trunzo was previously president and CEO of the New England Fuel Institute and the NEFI Education Foundation.

The forum will also include a panel on new and emerging biodiesel process technologies, and how biodiesel fuel quality has improved over the years, featuring Steve Howell, president and founder of M4 Consulting and the technical advisor for the National Biodiesel Board, and Douglas Root, the senior scientist of biomass and renewable products technologies for the Agricultural Utilization Research Institute.

To learn more or to register for the forum, click here


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