Photo Credit: Iowa Soybean Association
March 2 advocacy event highlights Iowa biofuel legislation
February 24, 2022 | Brock Johnston
As the demand for renewable fuels continues to skyrocket, Iowa soybean farmers and biodiesel producers alike are seeking to highlight the importance of homegrown energy in the years to come.
Join fellow farmers and industry leaders on Mar. 2 for an Iowans for Biofuel Access event at the Iowa State Capitol in Des Moines to gather support for the Governor’s Biofuel Access Bill.
The Iowa Soybean Association (ISA) and Iowa Biodiesel Board, in partnership with Iowa Corn Growers and the Iowa Renewable Fuels Association, are organizing buses to take biofuel supporters to Des Moines in support of the bill.
Attendees will hear from elected champions and have the opportunity to urge their local state senators to pass critical biofuel access legislation.
Several bus routes are available, with biofuel production facilities throughout the state serving as pick up locations for interested attendees en route to Des Moines. Participants can also drive separately, but are encouraged to RSVP for the event.
View travel information, including bus schedules and pick up locations here.
To RSVP, contact Joseph Hopper at firstname.lastname@example.org before Mar. 2.
Iowa leads the nation in biodiesel production, with the state's 11 biodiesel plants producing an estimated 340 million gallons in 2021.
The legislation seeks to address biofuel tax and infrastructure provisions by:
- Updating and expanding both the Biodiesel Production Tax Credit and Biodiesel Fuel Tax Differential.
- Shifting current fuel retailer tax credit for blends of 11% biodiesel (B11) to encourage higher blends.
- Introducing new credits for blends like B20 and B30.
- Expanding the state’s Renewable Fuels Infrastructure Program (RFIP).
“We’ve gone to great lengths over the past year to help the state revise its approach to expanding biofuels access and use,” said ISA President Robb Ewoldt, a soybean farmer near Davenport who uses biodiesel to grow crops and transport freight. “It’s time to come together and get this done.”
By increasing soybean oil value, biodiesel supports 13% of the price per bushel of soybeans. This equated to $1.78 per bushel in 2021. It also lowers the price of soybean meal, a key ingredient for livestock producers and the food supply.
"Ensuring Iowa soybean farmers and state can reap the benefits is critical,” Ewoldt added.
Reaching across the aisle
Earlier this month, soy growers celebrated the passage of the Governor’s Biofuel Access Bill by the Iowa House, achieving strong bipartisan support (82-10). The bills are currently numbered House File 2128 and SBB 3084.
“I was proud to see the governor’s biofuels bill pass the Iowa House with bipartisan support,” said Iowa House Speaker Pat Grassley. “It’s past time for the state to step up and support Iowa’s biofuels industry by expanding Iowans’ access to biofuels.”
A recent study by ABF economics found that biodiesel production added $1.2 billion to Iowa’s GDP in 2021, while supporting more than 6,500 fulltime-equivalent jobs in the state.
“This bill is good for Iowa farmers, Iowa consumers, and Iowa’s biodiesel industry,” Grassley added.
House Democrats, including Minority Leader Jennifer Konfrst, have also echoed support for the state’s biodiesel production.
With support for the legislation continuing to build, Iowa soybean farmers are encouraged to contact their local state senators and express their unique support.
Grant Kimberely, ISA sr. director of market development breaks down this critical legislation below.
ISA Communications Specialist Joseph Hopper contributed to this story.