NATSO, the national association representing truckstops and travel plazas, denounced The American Renewable Fuel and Job Creation Act of 2017 introduced by Senator Chuck Grassley, which seeks to extend the $1.00 per gallon biodiesel tax credit but transfer it upstream to a producers’ credit.
“In previous years, NATSO has worked together with biodiesel producers and the entire renewable fuels community to protect the biodiesel blenders’ tax credit and to support a robust Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS),” said NATSO President and CEO Lisa Mullings. “NATSO supported these policies because it was in the interest of our members’ customers. In recent months, however, domestic biodiesel producers have changed their approach, prioritizing their own bottom line as opposed to those who purchase and consume their product. If these efforts continue, NATSO and the entire fuels marketing community will need to reevaluate its position on the biodiesel tax credit and the entire RFS.
“Moving the biodiesel tax credit to the producer level would force retailers to pay more for fuel. Those costs inevitably will be passed down to consumers in the form of higher prices at the pump,” Mullings continued. “When fuel prices increase by just 1 or 2 cents per gallon, customers begin to shop for a better deal. This will lead to less biodiesel consumption and thwart government efforts to expand U.S. consumption of cleaner burning fuels. The blenders’ credit for biodiesel is a proven and sound policy that is successfully creating a market for biodiesel and renewable diesel and building consumer acceptance.”
Since 2005, the $1.00 per gallon biodiesel blenders’ tax credit has helped fuel retailers to sell biodiesel at a price that is cost competitive with diesel, thereby incentivizing consumer consumption. Converting the tax credit from a blenders’ credit to a producers’ credit would drive up biodiesel prices to a degree that would diminish consumer interest in the product, ultimately hindering U.S. efforts to advance the utilization of cleaner burning fuels.