A biofuel industry group has sent a letter to the congressional leadership in the US, calling for an extension of renewable energy tax credits that are scheduled to expire at the end of the year.
In a letter sent to House Speaker Paul Ryan, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and others last week, the Biotechnology Industry Organization asked that they push their respective chambers of Congress to approve a multi-year extension of biofuel-related tax credits.
These include the biodiesel and renewable diesel fuels credit, the alternative fuel vehicle refueling property credit, and the second generation biofuel producer tax credit -- a depreciation allowance for second generation biofuel plant property,
"Ensuring further growth in the advanced biofuels industry will require additional support and greater policy certainty going forward," the Oct. 18 letter says. "Since 2009, the advanced and cellulosic biofuels industry has invested billions of dollars to build first-of-a-kind demonstration and commercial-scale biorefineries across the country.
"As a result, five commercial scale cellulosic biorefineries with a combined capacity of more than 50 million gallons within the United States are now online," it continues. "Overall, the biofuels industry creates $184.5 billion of economic output, 852,056 jobs, and $46.2 billion in wages and $14.5 billion in taxes each year in the United States.
"With the extension of the suite of advanced biofuel tax incentives, the industry will be able to access the long-term investment necessary for advanced biofuels to grow. However, without the certainty of a long term extension of these incentives, the ability to raise capital to expand advanced biofuel production will be difficult," the letter says.
The letter also points to the environmental benefits of biofuels, noting that since 2005 biofuels have reduced greenhouse gas emissions by more than 589 million metric tons while displacing nearly 1.9 billion barrels of oil.