Senate Passes Biodiesel Tax Credit Extension

The American Soybean Association (ASA) applauds the recent Senate passage of H.R. 4213, the American Workers, State and Business Relief Act, which includes retroactive extension of the vital biodiesel tax credit. With passage of H.R. 4213, the U.S. House and U.S. Senate must now reconcile the differences between the two versions of the bill approved by the respective chambers. H.R. 4213, as approved by the U.S. House in December 2009, also provides for a one-year retroactive extension of the biodiesel tax incentive.

“Congress should move to quickly to seek agreement on a final bill that can be passed and signed into law as soon as possible,” says ASA president Rob Joslin, a soybean producer from Sidney, OH. “ASA urges Congress to enact a retroactive extension of the biodiesel tax credit as soon as possible.”

Expiration of the biodiesel tax incentive on December 31, 2009, has essentially caused the production and use of biodiesel in the U.S. to cease and has placed thousands of jobs currently supported by the domestic biodiesel industry in immediate jeopardy.

Biodiesel has provided a significant market opportunity for U.S. soybean farmers, as well as jobs and economic development for rural communities, and helps reduce our nation’s dependence on imported petroleum. Production of biodiesel supports higher prices paid to farmers for their soybeans, which provides employment opportunities in both urban and rural communities.

The biodiesel tax incentive, which is structured as a federal excise tax credit, amounts to a penny per percentage point of biodiesel blended with petroleum diesel. The incentive makes biodiesel more competitive with petroleum diesel, and lowers the cost of biodiesel to the end consumer.

"Biodiesel has the best energy balance and the best greenhouse gas reduction of any fuel that is currently in the commercial marketplace, and biodiesel is the only advanced biofuel that has reached commercialization in the United States," Joslin says. "Biodiesel is a homegrown renewable fuel and an excellent way for America’s soybean growers to boost U.S. energy security, promote economic development and improve the environment. ASA urges Congress to enact a retroactive extension of the biodiesel tax credit as soon as possible."

(Source: American Soybean Association)

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