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Statement: Idling of Iowa Plant Reflects Need for Stronger RFS Volumes

March 1, 2024

(ANKENY, Iowa) -- Chevron REG announced the company will indefinitely idle its biodiesel plant in Ralston, Iowa, citing poor market conditions as a result of weak biodiesel volumes under the federal Renewable Fuel Standard. The company owns biodiesel plants in multiple states and will also shutter its Madison, Wisconsin plant.
Grant Kimberley, Iowa Biodiesel Board executive director, made the following statement: 
“While we are disappointed to learn of the idling of the Chevron REG biodiesel plant in Ralston, we have not heard of plans for any other Iowa biodiesel plant in the state to go off-line. However, the industry warned EPA about the possibility of plant closures when it set the federal Renewable Fuel Standard volume obligations well below our overall capacity. RIN values have suffered as predicted and that hurts the bottom line of biofuel plants.
“We will continue to work with EPA to try to increase biodiesel blending requirements, which is clearly more in line with the Biden administration’s stated decarbonization goals. With improved profit margins, biodiesel producers with have healthier businesses and perhaps the Ralston plant would reopen, benefiting the Iowa economy and national decarbonization efforts alike.”
Suzanne Shirbroun, Iowa Soybean Association president and soybean farmer from Farmersburg, added the following:
“Farmers are already experiencing a profit squeeze, with rising production costs and tightening margins. Low biodiesel sales further put the farm economy at risk. A strong Iowa biodiesel market helps farmers weather difficult economic times and supports Iowa’s thriving agriculture industry. By increasing soybean oil value, biodiesel supports 13% of the price per bushel of soybeans. It also lowers the price of soybean meal, a key ingredient for livestock producers and the food supply. We thank ISA advocate-members for their continued engagement with lawmakers to help grow biofuels and better position the industry moving forward.”

For More Information:

Brock Johnson, Iowa Soybean Association 

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