First-term U.S. Rep. Finkenauer Steps up to the Plate on Biodiesel Tax Credit
April 4, 2019
(ANEKENY, Iowa) – Iowa’s biodiesel producers, soybean farmers and fuel distributors today praised U.S. Rep. Abby Finkenauer (D-IA) for introducing a House bill that would extend a biodiesel tax incentive for 2019, as well as retroactively for 2018. Congress allowed the biodiesel and renewable diesel tax credit to lapse since 2017, upsetting market dynamics and stymying future growth for a promising American energy industry.
The bill, introduced with 14 bipartisan sponsors, demonstrates a broad base of support for the energy policy in the U.S. House of Representatives. Iowa Biodiesel Board Executive Director Grant Kimberley issued the following statement:
“We are grateful that Rep. Finkenauer has stepped up to the plate for biodiesel so early in her Congressional career, showing she grasps the benefits biodiesel delivers to Iowa’s economy, farmers and all citizens. Her leadership couldn’t come at a more critical time, as the future of the U.S. biodiesel industry depends greatly upon reinstatement of the tax incentive, which Congress last addressed in February 2018, retroactively extending it for 2017 but leaving it expired for 2018 and beyond.
“Both the biodiesel and agriculture industries currently face some of the most challenging economic conditions we’ve seen in the last 10 years. The uncertainty of the biodiesel tax credit’s return has left jobs of real Iowans on the line, while discouraging new investments and expansions for this important economic driver in our state. Our biodiesel producers also find themselves in a difficult business position of trying to remain competitive in a market that still operates as if the tax credit will return – often selling their fuel at a loss. The entire U.S. biodiesel industry’s continued ability to thrive is now at risk, with the thousands of workers and manufacturers whose jobs depend on biodiesel—as well as the millions of Americans who benefit from cleaner air and water—are depending on Congress to act now.”
IBB also thanked Rep. Dave Loebsack (D-IA) for his longstanding leadership on biodiesel, as well as first-term Rep. Cindy Axne (D-IA). Each signed on as co-sponsors to Finkenauer’s bill.
The U.S. biodiesel and renewable diesel market grew from about 100 million gallons in 2005, when the incentive was first implemented, to more than 2.6 billion gallons annually since 2016.
Biodiesel is an advanced biofuel made from agricultural byproducts and co-products, such as soybean oil. The Iowa Biodiesel Board is a state trade association representing the biodiesel industry. For more, visit Iowabiodiesel.org.