TSB testimony to NYC City Council regarding the benefits of requiring biodiesel to be used to power ships in the NYC Harbor, in response to push-back from city agency representatives with little knowledge of product/ industry citing non-issues as reasons for not adopting this easily implemented and proven mechanism for reducing harmful emissions; Biodiesel
Testimony from Tri State Biodiesel (Dehran Duckworth, Managing Member) RE: Int. 54, A Local Law to amend the administrative code of the city of New York, in relation to the use of biodiesel fuel in the city ferry fleet, and Int. 451, a Local Law to amend the administrative code of the city of New York, in relation to the use of biodiesel fuel in marine craft owned or operated by the department of environmental protection.
Tri State Biodiesel has been on the forefront of the environmental movement in NYC for ten years operating from the conviction that implementation of “Biodiesel”, the only renewable alternative fuel to achieve the designation of an “Advanced Biofuel” by the EPA (requiring 50% or more emissions reduction compared to it’s fossil fuel equivalent for this designation), is the most viable and effective means we have immediately available to our community to reduce
harmful emissions from diesel powered equipment here in NYC, which have been directly attributed to causing the highest rates of asthma among children in the United States here in our city as well as a host of other pressing health and economic issues that accompany our unnecessary addiction to fossil fuels.
Biodiesel emissions reduction compared to petroleum diesel;
Total Unburned Hydrocarbons 67% reduction 20% reduction
Carbon Monoxide 48% reduction 12% reduction
Life Cycle Carbon Dioxide 78% reduction 16% reduction
Particulate Matter 47% reduction 12% reduction
Nitrous Oxides 10% increase -2% decrease 2% increase
Biodiesel has a solid track record of seamless functionality in a host of legacy equipment ranging from the most complicated diesel engines powering ships, generators and heavy duty diesel trucks and equipment, to the most basic boiler systems that heat everything from single family homes up to the largest buildings in the city. At this time the biodiesel industry has matured to the point where it is able to supply a major portion of the City’s diesel fueling needs
with this domestically produced renewable diesel fuel, which includes maritime applications and where again, Biodiesel has a very strong record of solid performance in legacy engines.
A note on maritime diesel engines;
Diesel-powered marine vessels emit high levels of ozone precursors, particulate matter, and other hazardous air pollutants associated with long-term and acute public health effects, and much of the marine activity occurs in close proximity to densely populated areas. Although more stringent federal standards have gone into effect for newly manufactured engines over the last decade, nationwide tens of thousands of in-use commercial diesel engines and millions of pleasure craft diesel engines will continue to emit large amounts of pollution for the foreseeable future, absent further control measures. In addition, marine vessels are under-regulated relative to other mobile sources of air pollution. Consequently, a variety of cost-effective emissions control measures could achieve significant reductions in this sector, biodiesel being the lowest cost and most available option for emissions reductions from maritime vessels in
the City of New York and beyond.
*USDA, US Navy unveil Farm to Fleet program: Navy “open for business” as shift to biofuels blends begins.
In Washington, US Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack and Navy Secretary Ray Mabus unveiled the “Farm to Fleet” program, through which the Navy will begin to add biofuels into its regular domestic purchases of approximately 77 million gallons of jet fuel (JP-5) and marine diesel (F-76) each year. Initial fuel contracts will be awarded in 2015, with initial RFPs commencing in spring 2014 and first deliveries scheduled for mid-year 2015. The fuels will contain biofuels blends of between 10 and 50 percent. “The Navy is open for business,” said Assistant Secretary of the Navy for Energy, Installations and Environment, Vice Admiral Dennis McGinn (USN, Ret.). “The Navy’s intensifying efforts to use advanced, homegrown fuels to power our military benefits both America’s national security and our rural communities,” said Vilsack. “Not only will production of these fuels create jobs in rural America, they’re cost effective for our military, which is the biggest consumer of petroleum in the nation.” Farm-to- Fleet builds on the USDA / U.S. Navy partnership inaugurated in 2010, when President Barack Obama challenged his Secretaries of Agriculture, Energy and Navy to investigate how they could work together to speed the development of
domestic, competitively-priced “drop-in” diesel and jet fuel substitutes. “A secure, domestically-produced energy source is very important to our national security,” said Navy Secretary Mabus. “Energy is how our naval forces are able to provide presence around the world. Energy is what gets them there
and keeps them there. The Farm-to-Fleet initiative we are announcing today is important to advancing a commercial market for advanced biofuel, which will give us an alternative fuel source and help lessen our dependence on foreign oil. The Navy began testing aviation biofuels and marine biofuels on a ship-by-ship and jet-by-jet basis several years ago. Last summer, the Navy demonstrated a Green Strike Group operating on biofuels during the 2012 RIMPAC exercises.[RIMPAC is the world’s largest international maritime warfare exercise, held every two years out of Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, hosted by the US Pacific Fleet and featuring 22 nations and 42 ships in 2012, enhancing interoperability between Pacific Rim armed forces].
“It was at RIMPAC,” McGinn observed, “that we really got an end-to-end view on all the supply chain issues. Now, we are ready to deploy quickly. Now, it’s down to business. The intention now is to alert industry that we are open for business and that we are starting this program in a very realistic way.”
More Biodiesel benefits;
1. A 1998 study sponsored by the U.S. Departments of Energy and Agriculture concluded
that biodiesel reduces life cycle carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions by 78 percent compared to diesel. Carbon dioxide is a
greenhouse gas associated with global climate change.
2. Using oil from soybeans to make biodiesel generates more energy than producing the biodiesel itself. In other words, the energy
output outweighs the energy input — for every unit of energy it takes to produce a gallon of biodiesel, over three units of energy
are gained. Biodiesel can be made from any vegetable oil or animal fat and new feedstocks are being developed for plentiful
3. As school districts, municipalities, and fleet owners debate the many factors involved in transportation decisions, biodiesel
emerges as the leading alternative choice to petroleum diesel. Biodiesel promotes positive changes in the health, equipment,
economy, and environment of its users and is the fastest growing alternative fuel in the United States today.
4. One of the easiest and best options for school districts, municipalities, and fleet owners to implement to protect student,
employee, and community health is to switch to biodiesel, a cleaner transportation fuel made from renewable resources. It is
recognized by EPA as one of the Clean Fuel/Clean Technology options under the Clean School Bus program. It can be used in
existing equipment and stored in existing facilities without modification, in any blend from one to 20 percent. In some
applications and warm climates, even higher blends may be used year-round.
5. Biodiesel is a good option economically, because it is not necessary to invest in costly new vehicles or retrofit current vehicles.
Any fleet can immediately become an alternative fuel fleet. Due to federal fuel blenders and local state tax incentives, the cost to
the end user has become more competitive with diesel prices in recent years and many end users have reported decreased
fleet maintenance costs.
6. Other cost benefits to consider besides fuel; Currently, the United States imports more than half of the petroleum we consume. If
the dollars we currently send overseas were spent on domestic fuel, the U.S. economy would be strengthened. A recent study
shows that $13.6 billion will be kept in the U.S. – as opposed to spending on foreign oil – with the predicted growth of biodiesel
by 2015. Using biodiesel also supports American farmers, since the major biodiesel feedstock is soybeans, with other oilseeds
crops also serving as feedstocks. Finally, using biodiesel promotes U.S. energy security.
7. Biodiesel has a proven track record. In terms of horsepower, fuel economy, and torque, biodiesel is equivalent to diesel.
Biodiesel increases the lubricity of the fuel, which can lead to longer engine life, lower maintenance costs, less equipment
downtime, and protection against fuel injector failure. Biodiesel exceeds diesel in cetane number, resulting in superior ignition.
Biodiesel is nontoxic, biodegradable, and has a higher flash point than diesel, making it more versatile where safety is
All statistics and studies were retrieved from the Alternative Fuels Data Center, www.eere.energy.gov/afdc, the U.S. Environmental
Protection Agency, www.epa.gov, the National Biodiesel Board, www.biodiesel.org, and LECG, Inc. For more information about biodiesel,
go to those web- sites and to the Clean Cities web site at www1.eere.energy. gov/cleancities.This document was supported in whole or in
part, by a U.S. Department of Energy award (DE-FG-36-04 GO14240). This support does not constitute an endorsement by DOE of the
views expressed in the article. Other partners include the Missouri School Boards’ Association and the NBB. *December 11, 2013 Biofuels