Top US biofuel advocates endorse Biden’s CO2 reduction target

Author: Janet Miranda


HOUSTON (ICIS)--Top US biofuel advocates reacted positively to President Joe Biden’s announcement on Thursday to reduce CO2 emissions in the US by 50-52% below their 2005 levels by 2030.

“The administration’s commitment reflects the ambition we need to restore US leadership in the battle against climate change,” said Brooke Coleman, executive director of the Advanced Biofuels Business Council (ABBC).

“The data shows we can’t reach those goals without a major influx of renewable fuels, both in terms traditional low-carbon biofuels, as well as the cellulosic and advanced sources that have spent years waiting in line for approval at the EPA,” he added.

The ABBC supports the use of the Renewable Fuel Standard, a federal program, to jump-start the progress of biofuels without needing any new action by Congress.

Companies globally have been increasing investments in biofuels and other more environmentally friendly fuels.

Biofuels can be made up of ethanol and biomass-based diesel fuels.

These fuels are are made from biomass materials, which comes from plants and animals, such as wood chips, agricultural crops, and municipal solid waste, according to the US Energy Information Agency.

“Plant-based biofuels, like ethanol, have long been a key part of the nation’s strategy to reduce carbon emissions. Since 2007, ethanol has been responsible for cumulative CO2 savings of 600m tonnes in the US,” said CEO of Growth Energy, Emily Skor.

The use of ethanol as a biofuel could push rural areas in the US forward economically, with the addition of new green jobs.

The biofuels industry employs more than 360,000 Americans, with a significant number of those employees residing in rural America, according to Growth Energy.

The Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) emphasised the role of biofuels not just to reduce emissions in aviation and transportation markets, but also to support the adoption of new technologies.

Technologies like carbon capture and sequestration could be used to achieve a carbon neutral fuel by the end of the decade, the trade group said.

“As recognised by President Biden, achieving a 50% green house gas (GHG) reduction economy-wide by 2030 will take a portfolio approach that capitalises on a broad and diverse array of low-carbon technologies, and that should include ethanol and other biofuels,” said Geoff Cooper, President and CEO of RFA.