Federal Laws and Incentives for Biodiesel

The list below contains summaries of all Federal laws and incentives related to Biodiesel.

Programs

Clean Ports USA

Clean Ports USA is an incentive-based program designed to reduce emissions by encouraging port authorities and terminal operators to retrofit and replace older diesel engines with new technologies and use cleaner fuels. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's National Clean Diesel Campaign offers funding to port authorities and public entities to help them overcome barriers that impede the adoption of cleaner diesel technologies and strategies. For more information, see the Clean Ports USA website.

Point of Contact
Jennifer Keller
National Clean Diesel Campaign
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Phone: (202) 343-9541
keller.jennifer@epa.gov
http://www.epa.gov/cleandiesel/

Air Pollution Control Program

The Air Pollution Control Program assists state, local, and tribal agencies in planning, developing, establishing, improving, and maintaining adequate programs for prevention and control of air pollution or implementation of national air quality standards. Plans may emphasize alternative fuels, vehicle maintenance, and transportation choices to reduce vehicle miles traveled. Eligible applicants may receive federal funding for up to 60% of project costs to implement their plans. (Reference 42 U.S. Code 7405)

Point of Contact
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Phone: (202) 272-0167
http://www.epa.gov

SmartWay Transport Partnership

The SmartWay Transport Partnership is a market-based public-private collaboration between the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the domestic freight industry. This partnership is designed to reduce greenhouse gases and air pollution by accelerating the adoption of advanced technologies and operational practices which increase fuel efficiency and reduce emissions from goods movement. EPA provides partners with performance benchmarking tools, fleet management best practices, technology verification, public recognition and awards, and use of the SmartWay Transport Partner logo to demonstrate their leadership to customers, shareholders and other stakeholders. The SmartWay Transport Partnership is working with partners to test and verify advanced technologies and operational practices that save fuel and reduce emissions. Grants are available to states, non-profits, and academic institutions to demonstrate innovative idle reduction technologies for the trucking industry. For more information, see the SmartWay Transport Partnership website.

Point of Contact
SmartWay Transport Partnership
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Phone: (734) 214-4767
Fax: (734) 214-4052
smartway_transport@epa.gov
http://www.epa.gov/smartway/contact.htm

State Energy Program (SEP) Funding

The SEP provides grants to states to assist in designing, developing, and implementing renewable energy and energy efficiency programs. Each state's energy office receives SEP funding and manages all SEP-funded projects. States may also receive project funding from technology programs in the U.S. Department of Energy's Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) for SEP Special Projects. EERE distributes the funding through an annual competitive solicitation to state energy offices. For more information, see the SEP website.

Point of Contact
U.S. Department of Energy
Phone: (202) 586-5000
Fax: (202) 586-4403
http://www.energy.gov

Clean Cities

The mission of Clean Cities is to advance the energy, economic, and environmental security of the United States by supporting local initiatives to adopt practices that reduce the use of petroleum in the transportation sector. Clean Cities carries out this mission through a network of nearly 100 volunteer coalitions, which develop public/private partnerships to promote alternative fuels and advanced vehicles, fuel blends, fuel economy, hybrid vehicles, and idle reduction. Clean Cities provides information about financial opportunities, coordinates technical assistance projects, updates and maintains databases and websites, and publishes fact sheets, newsletters, and related technical and informational materials. For more information, see the Clean Cities website.

Point of Contact
U.S. Department of Energy
Phone: (202) 586-5000
Fax: (202) 586-4403
http://www.energy.gov

National Clean Diesel Campaign (NCDC)

The NCDC was established by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to reduce pollution emitted from diesel engines through the implementation of varied control strategies and the involvement of national, state, and local partners. The NCDC includes programs for existing diesel fleets, regulations for clean diesel engines and fuels, and regional collaborations and partnerships. For information on available grants and funding opportunities, see the NCDC Grants & Funding website.

Point of Contact
Jennifer Keller
National Clean Diesel Campaign
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Phone: (202) 343-9541
keller.jennifer@epa.gov
http://www.epa.gov/cleandiesel/

Clean School Bus USA

Clean School Bus USA is a public-private partnership that focuses on reducing children's exposure to harmful diesel exhaust by limiting school bus idling, implementing pollution reduction technologies, improving route logistics, and switching to clean fuels. Clean School Bus USA is part of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's National Clean Diesel Campaign and provides funding for projects designed to retrofit and/or replace older diesel school buses. Eligible applicants are school districts, state and local government programs, federally recognized Indian tribes, and non-profit organizations. For more information, see the Clean School Bus USA website.

Point of Contact
Jennifer Keller
National Clean Diesel Campaign
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Phone: (202) 343-9541
keller.jennifer@epa.gov
http://www.epa.gov/cleandiesel/

Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality (CMAQ) Improvement Program

The CMAQ Program provides funding to state departments of transportation (DOTs), local governments, and transit agencies for projects and programs that help meet the requirements of the Clean Air Act by reducing mobile source emissions and regional congestion on transportation networks. Eligible activities include transit improvements, travel demand management strategies, congestion relief efforts (such as high occupancy vehicle lanes), diesel retrofit projects, and alternative fuel vehicles and infrastructure. Projects supported with CMAQ funds must demonstrate emissions reductions, be located in or benefit a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency-designated nonattainment or maintenance area, and be a transportation project. For more information, see the FAST Act CMAQ fact sheet and CMAQ Improvement Program website. (Reference Public Law 112-141, 23 U.S. Code 149, and 23 U.S. Code 151)

Clean Agriculture USA

Clean Agriculture USA is a voluntary program that promotes the reduction of diesel exhaust emissions from agricultural equipment and vehicles by encouraging proper operations and maintenance by farmers, ranchers, and agribusinesses, use of emissions-reducing technologies, and use of cleaner fuels. Clean Agriculture USA is part of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's National Clean Diesel Campaign, which offers funding for clean diesel agricultural equipment projects. For more information, see the Clean Agriculture USA website.

Point of Contact
Jennifer Keller
National Clean Diesel Campaign
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Phone: (202) 343-9541
keller.jennifer@epa.gov
http://www.epa.gov/cleandiesel/

Clean Construction USA

Clean Construction USA is a voluntary program that promotes the reduction of diesel exhaust emissions from construction equipment and vehicles by encouraging proper operations and maintenance, use of emissions-reducing technologies, and use of cleaner fuels. Clean Construction USA is part of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's National Clean Diesel Campaign, which offers funding for clean diesel construction equipment projects. For more information, see the Clean Construction USA website.

Point of Contact
Jennifer Keller
National Clean Diesel Campaign
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Phone: (202) 343-9541
keller.jennifer@epa.gov
http://www.epa.gov/cleandiesel/

Voluntary Airport Low Emission (VALE) Program

The goal of the VALE Program is to reduce ground level emissions at commercial service airports located in designated ozone and carbon monoxide air quality nonattainment and maintenance areas. The VALE Program provides funding through the Airport Improvement Program and the Passenger Facility Charges program for the purchase of low emission vehicles, development of fueling and recharging stations, implementing gate electrification, and other airport air quality improvements. For more information, see the VALE Program website. (Reference 49 U.S. Code 47139)

Laws and Regulations

Vehicle Incremental Cost Allocation

The U.S. General Services Administration (GSA) must allocate the incremental cost of purchasing alternative fuel vehicles (AFVs) across the entire fleet of vehicles distributed by GSA. This mandate also applies to other federal agencies that procure vehicles for federal fleets. For more information, see the GSA's AFV website. (Reference 42 U.S. Code 13212 (c))

Point of Contact
U.S. General Services Administration
Phone: (703) 605-5630

Vehicle Acquisition and Fuel Use Requirements for Private and Local Government Fleets

Under the Energy Policy Act (EPAct) of 1992, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) was directed to determine whether private and local government fleets should be mandated to acquire alternative fuel vehicles (AFVs). In January 2004, DOE published a final rule announcing its decision not to implement an AFV acquisition mandate for private and local government fleets. In response to a March 2006 ruling by a U.S. District Court, DOE issued a subsequent final rulemaking on the new Replacement Fuel Goal in March 2007, which extended the EPAct 1992 goal to 2030. The goal is to achieve a domestic production capacity for replacement fuels sufficient to replace 30% of the U.S. motor fuel consumption. In March 2008, DOE issued its determination not to implement a fleet compliance mandate for private and local government fleets, concluding that such a mandate is not necessary to achieve the Replacement Fuel Goal. For more information on the Private and Local Government Fleet Rule compliance, visit the EPAct Private and Local Government Fleet Determination website. (Reference 42 U.S. Code 13257)

Biofuel Compatibility Requirements for Underground Storage Tanks (USTs)

Fueling station owners and operators must notify the appropriate state and local implementing agencies at least 30 days before switching USTs to store ethanol blends greater than 10%, biodiesel blends greater than 20%, or any other regulated fuel the agency has identified. This notification timeframe allows agencies to request information on UST compatibility before the owner or operator stores the fuel. Owners and operators must also demonstrate UST system compatibility and maintain records of compliance from the implementing agency for as long as the UST is used to store the fuel. For more information on compatibility requirements and implementing agencies by state, see the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency UST Compatibility website and the final rule in the Federal Register. (Reference 40 CFR 280.32)

Vehicle Acquisition and Fuel Use Requirements for Federal Fleets

Under the Energy Policy Act (EPAct) of 1992, 75% of new light-duty vehicles acquired by covered federal fleets must be alternative fuel vehicles (AFVs). As amended in January 2008, Section 301 of EPAct 1992 defines AFVs to include hybrid electric vehicles, fuel cell vehicles, and advanced lean burn vehicles. Fleets that use fuel blends containing at least 20% biodiesel (B20) may earn credits toward their annual requirements. Federal fleets are also required to use alternative fuels in dual-fuel vehicles unless the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) determines an agency's vehicle requests qualify for waivers; grounds for a waiver include lack of alternative fuel availability and cost restrictions (per EPAct 2007, section 701).

Additional requirements for federal fleets were included in the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007, including fleet management plan requirements (Section 142), low greenhouse gas (GHG) emitting vehicle acquisition requirements (Section 141), and renewable fuel infrastructure installation requirements (Section 246). DOE is currently developing a rulemaking on the alternative fuel increase requirements (verified December 2015; Section 142).

Executive Order 13693, issued in March 2015, also requires federal agencies with 20 vehicles or more to improve fleet and vehicle efficiency through the elimination of non-essential vehicles and achieve a 30% reduction of fleet-wide GHGs relative to a fiscal year (FY) 2014 emissions baseline by FY 2025. Covered agencies must also install telematics systems on certain new vehicles; submit annual vehicle acquisition data; ensure that by December 31, 2020, and December 31, 2025, 20% and 50% (respectively) of light-duty vehicle acquisitions are zero emission vehicles (ZEVs) or plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs); and plan to install charging and other infrastructure to support new ZEV and PHEV acquisitions.

For more information, visit the Sustainable Federal Fleets website.

(Reference 42 U.S. Code 13212 and Executive Order 13693)

Point of Contact
Federal Energy Management Program
U.S. Department of Energy
https://federalfleets.energy.gov/fleet_management_contacts

Vehicle Acquisition and Fuel Use Requirements for State and Alternative Fuel Provider Fleets

Under the Energy Policy Act (EPAct) of 1992, as amended, certain state government and alternative fuel provider fleets are required to acquire alternative fuel vehicles (AFVs) as a portion of their annual light-duty vehicle acquisitions. Compliance is required by fleets that operate, lease, or control 50 or more light-duty vehicles within the United States. Of those 50 vehicles, at least 20 must be used primarily within a single Metropolitan Statistical Area/Consolidated Metropolitan Statistical Area, and those same 20 vehicles must also be capable of being centrally fueled for the fleet to be subject to the regulatory requirements.

Under Standard Compliance, the AFVs that covered fleets acquire help them achieve compliance, with each AFV acquired earning the fleet one AFV-acquisition credit. Covered fleets may earn additional credits for AFVs earned in excess of their requirements, and these credits may be banked for future use toward compliance or traded with other fleets. Additionally, fleets that use fuel blends containing at least 20% biodiesel (B20) in medium- and heavy-duty vehicles may earn credits toward their annual AFV-acquisition requirements. A fleet may also earn credits that may be used toward compliance or banked once the fleet achieves compliance for investments in alternative fuel infrastructure, mobile non-road equipment, and emerging technologies associated with certain electric drive vehicle technologies.

Fleets may also opt into Alternative Compliance, which allows fleets the option to choose a petroleum reduction path in lieu of acquiring AFVs under Standard Compliance. Interested fleets must obtain from DOE a waiver from Standard Compliance by submitting a plan that demonstrates a path by which they will achieve a certain level of petroleum reduction specific to their fleet composition.

For more information, visit the EPAct State and Alternative Fuel Provider Fleets website.

(Reference 42 U.S. Code 13251 and 13263a, and 10 CFR 490)

Point of Contact
EPAct Transportation Regulatory Activities
U.S. Department of Energy
epact.sfp.fleets@nrel.gov
http://www.eere.energy.gov/vehiclesandfuels/epact/contacts.html

Alternative Fuel Excise Tax

Liquefied petroleum gas (propane) and compressed natural gas are subject to a federal excise tax of $0.183 per gasoline gallon equivalent (GGE). The liquefied natural gas tax rate is $0.243 per diesel gallon equivalent (DGE). For taxation purposes, one GGE is equal to 5.75 pounds (lbs.) of propane and 5.66 lbs. of CNG. One DGE is equal to 6.06 lbs. of LNG. (Reference Public Law 114-41 and 26 U.S. Code 4041 and 4081)

Point of Contact
Excise Tax Branch
U.S. Internal Revenue Service Office of Chief Counsel
Phone: (202) 317-6855
http://www.irs.gov/

High Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) Lane Exemption

States are allowed to exempt certified alternative fuel vehicles (AFVs) and plug-in electric vehicles (PEVs) from HOV lane requirements within the state. Eligible AFVs are defined as vehicles operating solely on methanol, denatured ethanol, or other alcohols; a mixture containing at least 85% methanol, denatured ethanol, or other alcohols; natural gas, propane, hydrogen, or coal derived liquid fuels; or fuels derived from biological materials. PEVs are defined as vehicles that are recharged from an external source of electricity and have a battery capacity of at least 4 kilowatt-hours. States are also allowed to establish programs allowing low-emission and energy-efficient vehicles to pay a toll to access HOV lanes.

Vehicles must be certified by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and appropriately labeled for use in HOV lanes. The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) is responsible for planning and implementing HOV programs, including the low-emission and energy-efficient vehicle criteria EPA established. States that choose to adopt these requirements will be responsible for enforcement and vehicle labeling. The HOV exemption for AFVs and PEVs expires September 30, 2025 and low-emission and energy-efficient vehicle toll-access to HOV lanes expires September 30, 2019.

(Reference Public Law 114-94 and 23 U.S. Code 166)

Alternative Fuel Definition

The following fuels are defined as alternative fuels by the Energy Policy Act (EPAct) of 1992: pure methanol, ethanol, and other alcohols; blends of 85% or more of alcohol with gasoline; natural gas and liquid fuels domestically produced from natural gas; liquefied petroleum gas (propane); coal-derived liquid fuels; hydrogen; electricity; pure biodiesel (B100); fuels, other than alcohol, derived from biological materials; and P-Series fuels. In addition, the U.S. Department of Energy may designate other fuels as alternative fuels, provided that the fuel is substantially non-petroleum, yields substantial energy security benefits, and offers substantial environmental benefits. For more information, see the EPAct website. (Reference 42 U.S. Code 13211)

Point of Contact
U.S. Department of Energy
Phone: (202) 586-5000
Fax: (202) 586-4403
http://www.energy.gov

Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) Program

The national RFS Program was developed to increase the volume of renewable fuel that is blended into transportation fuels. As required by the Energy Policy Act of 2005, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) finalized RFS Program regulations, effective September 1, 2007. The Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 (EISA) increased and expanded this standard. By 2022, 36 billion gallons of renewable fuel must be blended into domestic transportation fuels each year. A certain percentage of this renewable fuel must be advanced biofuel, which includes fuels derived from approved renewable biomass, excluding corn starch-based ethanol. Other advanced biofuels may include sugarcane-based fuels, renewable diesel co-processed with petroleum, and other biofuels that may exist in the future. All advanced biofuels must achieve a minimum of a 50% greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions reduction compared to baseline petroleum emissions. Nested within advanced biofuels are two sub-categories: cellulosic biofuel and biomass-based diesel, both of which have their own percentage requirements. Cellulosic biofuel is defined as any renewable fuel derived from cellulose, hemicellulose, or lignin that achieves a 60% GHG emissions reduction. Biomass-based diesel is defined as a renewable transportation fuel, transportation fuel additive, heating oil, or jet fuel, such as biodiesel or non-ester renewable diesel, and achieves a 50% GHG emissions reduction. If intended for use in a motor vehicle, the fuel must also be registered with EPA as a motor vehicle fuel or fuel additive.

Each year, EPA determines the annual percentage standards by dividing the annual amount of renewable fuel (gallons) required by EISA for each renewable fuel pathway by the amount of highway and non-road gasoline and petroleum diesel estimated to be supplied that year. These percentages are then applied to obligated parties' actual fuel sales to determine their Renewable Volume Obligation (RVO). Any party that produces gasoline for use in the United States, including refiners, importers, and blenders (other than oxygenate blenders), is considered an obligated party under the RFS Program. Parties that do not produce, import, or market fuels within the 48 contiguous states are exempt from the renewable fuel tracking program.

To facilitate and track compliance with the RFS, a producer or importer of renewable fuel must generate Renewable Identification Numbers (RINs) to represent renewable fuels produced or imported by the entity on or after September 1, 2007, assigned by gallon or batch. Assigned RINs are transferred when ownership of a batch of fuel occurs, but not when fuel only changes custody. A trading program is in place to allow obligated parties to comply with their annual RVO requirements through the purchase of RINs. Obligated parties must register with EPA in order to participate in the trading program. For each calendar year, an obligated party must demonstrate that it has sufficient RINs to cover its RVO. RINs may only be used for compliance purposes in the calendar year they are generated or the following year. Obligated parties must report their ownership of RINs to EPA's Office of Transportation and Air Quality on a quarterly and annual basis.

For more information, see the RFS Program website.

(Reference 42 U.S. Code 7545(o) and 40 CFR 80.1100-80.1167)

Point of Contact
Fuels Programs
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Phone: (202) 343-9755
support@epamts-support.com
http://www.epa.gov/fuels-registration-reporting-and-compliance-help

Alternative Fuel Labeling Requirements

Alternative fuel dispensers must be labeled with information to help consumers make informed decisions about fueling a vehicle, including the name of the fuel and the minimum percentage of the main component of the fuel. Labels may also list the percentage of other fuel components. This requirement applies to, but is not limited to, the following fuel types: methanol, denatured ethanol, and/or other alcohols; mixtures containing 85% or more by volume of methanol, denatured ethanol, and/or other alcohols; natural gas; liquefied petroleum gas; hydrogen; coal derived liquid biofuel; and electricity. Fuel dispensers distributing biodiesel blends containing more than 5% biodiesel by volume must include the percentage of biodiesel included.

Effective July 14, 2016, the regulation also applies to ethanol flex fuels, which are defined as a mixture of gasoline and ethanol containing more than 10% but less than 83% ethanol by volume. For ethanol blends containing no greater than 50% ethanol by volume, retailers must post the exact percentage of ethanol concentration, rounded to the nearest multiple of 10. For ethanol blends containing more than 50% but no greater than 83% ethanol by volume, retailers must post the exact percentage of ethanol concentration, round to the nearest multiple of 10, or indicate that the fuel contains 51% to 83% ethanol.

(Reference 81 Federal Register 2054 and 16 CFR 306 and 309)

Point of Contact
Federal Trade Commission
Phone: (202) 326-2222
http://www.ftc.gov/

Incentives

Biodiesel Income Tax Credit

NOTE: This incentive was retroactively extended multiple times, most recently through December 31, 2016, by H.R. 2029.

A taxpayer that delivers pure, unblended biodiesel (B100) into the tank of a vehicle or uses B100 as an on-road fuel in their trade or business may be eligible for an incentive in the amount of $1.00 per gallon of biodiesel, agri-biodiesel, or renewable diesel. If the biodiesel was sold at retail, only the person that sold the fuel and placed it into the tank of the vehicle is eligible for the tax credit. The incentive is allowed as a credit against the taxpayer's income tax liability. Claims must include a copy of the certificate from the registered biodiesel producer or importer that: identifies the product; specifies the product's biodiesel, agri-biodiesel, and/or renewable diesel content; confirms that the product is properly registered as a fuel with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA); and confirms that the product meets the requirements of ASTM specification D6751. Renewable diesel is defined as liquid fuel derived from biomass that meets EPA's fuel registration requirements and ASTM specifications D975 or D396; the definition of renewable diesel does not include any fuel derived from co-processing biomass with a feedstock that is not biomass. This tax credit is applicable to fuel delivered between January 1, 2005, and December 31, 2016. For more information about claiming the credit, see IRS Forms 637 and 8864, which are available on the IRS Forms and Publications website. For information about registering with the EPA, see the EPA Forms for Registration and Reporting Fuels and Fuel Additives website. (Reference Public Law 114-113 and 26 U.S. Code 40A)

Point of Contact
U.S. Internal Revenue Service
Phone: (800) 829-1040
http://www.irs.gov/

Biomass Research and Development Initiative

The U.S. Department of Agriculture's National Institute of Food and Agriculture, in conjunction with U.S. Department of Energy's Office of Biomass Programs, provides grant funding for projects addressing research, development, and demonstration of biofuels and bio-based products and the methods, practices, and technologies for their production, under the Biomass Research and Development Initiative (Section 9008). The competitive award process focuses on three main technical areas: feedstock development; biofuels and bio-based products development; and biofuels development analysis. Eligible applicants are institutions of higher learning, national laboratories, federal research agencies, private sector entities, and non-profit organizations. The non-federal share of the total project cost must be at least 20% for research and development projects and 50% for demonstration projects. Renewable biomass is defined as materials, pre-commercial thinnings, or invasive species on National Forest System land that qualify as by-products of preventative treatments, are harvested in accordance with applicable laws, and would not otherwise be used for higher-value products, as well as naturally reoccurring organic matter on non-federal or non-tribal lands, including renewable plant material, feed grains, other plants and trees, algae, and vegetable and animal waste material and by-products. Funding is authorized for this program through fiscal year 2017 (verified November 2015), but is subject to congressional appropriations thereafter. For more information, see the Biomass Research & Development website. (Reference Public Law 113-79 and 7 U.S. Code 8108)

Point of Contact
Office of Rural Development, Business and Cooperative Programs
U.S. Department of Agriculture
Phone: (202) 690-4730
Fax: (202) 690-4737
http://www.rurdev.usda.gov/

Advanced Biofuel Feedstock Incentives

The Biomass Crop Assistance Program (BCAP; Section 9010) provides financial assistance to landowners and operators that establish, produce, and deliver biomass feedstock crops for advanced biofuel production facilities. Qualified feedstock producers are eligible for a reimbursement of 50% of the cost of establishing a biomass feedstock crop, as well as annual payments for up to five years for herbaceous feedstocks and up to 15 years for woody feedstocks. In addition, BCAP provides qualified biomass feedstock crop producers matching payments for the collection, harvest, storage, and transportation of their crops to advanced biofuel production facilities for up to two years. The matching payments are $1 for each $1 per dry ton paid by a qualified advanced biofuel production facility, up to $20 per dry ton. This program is funded through fiscal year 2018 (verified November 2015), but is subject to congressional appropriations thereafter.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture must submit a progress report to Congress on or before February 7, 2018, communicating best practices and other relevant information gathered from BCAP participants.

For more information, see the Biomass Crop Assistance Program website. (Reference Public Law 113-79 and 7 U.S. Code 8111)

Biodiesel Mixture Excise Tax Credit

NOTE: This incentive was retroactively extended multiple times, most recently through December 31, 2016, by H.R. 2029.

A biodiesel blender that is registered with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) may be eligible for a tax incentive in the amount of $1.00 per gallon of pure biodiesel, agri-biodiesel, or renewable diesel blended with petroleum diesel to produce a mixture containing at least 0.1% diesel fuel. Only blenders that have produced and sold or used the qualified biodiesel mixture as a fuel in their trade or business are eligible for the tax credit. The incentive must first be taken as a credit against the blender's fuel tax liability; any excess over this tax liability may be claimed as a direct payment from the IRS. Claims must include a copy of the certificate from the registered biodiesel producer or importer that: identifies the product; specifies the product's biodiesel, agri-biodiesel, and/or renewable diesel content; confirms that the product is properly registered as a fuel with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency; and confirms that the product meets the requirements of ASTM specification D6751. Renewable diesel is defined as liquid fuel derived from biomass that meets EPA's fuel registration requirements and ASTM specifications D975 or D396; the definition of renewable diesel does not include any fuel derived from co-processing biomass with a feedstock that is not biomass. This tax credit is applicable to fuel blended between January 1, 2005, and December 31, 2016. For more information about claiming the credit, see IRS Publication 510 and IRS Forms 637, 720, 4136, 8849, and 8864, which are available on the IRS Forms and Publications website. For information about registering with the EPA, see the EPA Forms for Registration and Reporting Fuels and Fuel Additives website. (Reference Public Law 114-113 and 26 U.S. Code 6426)

Point of Contact
Excise Tax Branch
U.S. Internal Revenue Service Office of Chief Counsel
Phone: (202) 317-6855
http://www.irs.gov/

Second Generation Biofuel Producer Tax Credit

NOTE: This incentive was retroactively extended multiple times, most recently through December 31, 2016, by H.R. 2029.

A second generation biofuel producer that is registered with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) may be eligible for a tax incentive in the amount of up to $1.01 per gallon of second generation biofuel that is: sold and used by the purchaser in the purchaser's trade or business to produce a second generation biofuel mixture; sold and used by the purchaser as a fuel in a trade or business; sold at retail for use as a motor vehicle fuel; used by the producer in a trade or business to produce a second generation biofuel mixture; or used by the producer as a fuel in a trade or business. If the second generation biofuel also qualifies for alcohol fuel tax credits, the credit amount is reduced to $0.46 per gallon for biofuel that is ethanol and $0.41 per gallon if the biofuel is not ethanol. Second generation biofuel is defined as liquid fuel produced from any lignocellulosic or hemicellulosic matter that is available on a renewable basis or any cultivated algae, cyanobacteria, or lemna. To qualify, fuel must also meet the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency fuel and fuel additive registration requirements. Alcohol with a proof of less than 150, fuel with a water or sediment content of more than 4%, and fuel with an ash content of more than 1% are not considered second generation biofuels. The incentive is allowed as a credit against the producer's income tax liability. Under current law, only qualified fuel produced in the United States between January 1, 2015, and December 31, 2016, for use in the United States may be eligible. For more information about claiming the credit, see IRS Forms 637 and 6478, which are available on the IRS Forms and Publications website. (Reference Public Law 114-113 and 26 U.S. Code 40)

Point of Contact
Excise Tax Branch
U.S. Internal Revenue Service Office of Chief Counsel
Phone: (202) 317-6855
http://www.irs.gov/

Biodiesel Education Grants

Competitive grants are available through the Biodiesel Fuel Education Program (Section 9006) to educate governmental and private entities that operate vehicle fleets, the public, and other interested entities about the benefits of biodiesel use. Eligible applicants are non-profit organizations or institutes of higher education that have demonstrated knowledge of biodiesel fuel production, use, or distribution; and have demonstrated the ability to conduct educational and technical support programs. This program is funded through fiscal year 2018 (verified November 2015), but is subject to congressional appropriations thereafter. (Reference Public Laws 113-79 and 112-240, and 7 U.S. Code 8106)

Point of Contact
Office of Rural Development, Business and Cooperative Programs
U.S. Department of Agriculture
Phone: (202) 690-4730
Fax: (202) 690-4737
http://www.rurdev.usda.gov/

Advanced Biofuel Production Grants and Loan Guarantees

The Biorefinery Assistance Program (Section 9003) provides loan guarantees for the development, construction, and retrofitting of commercial-scale biorefineries that produce advanced biofuels. Grants for demonstration scale biorefineries are also available. Advanced biofuel is defined as fuel derived from renewable biomass other than corn kernel starch. Eligible applicants include, but are not limited to, individuals, state or local governments, farm cooperatives, national laboratories, institutions of higher education, and rural electric cooperatives. The maximum loan guarantee is $250 million and the maximum grant funding is 50% of project costs. For more information, including current funding application deadlines, see the Biorefinery Assistance Program website. (Reference Public Law 112-240 and 7 U.S. Code 8103)

Point of Contact
Office of Rural Development, Business and Cooperative Programs
U.S. Department of Agriculture
Phone: (202) 690-4730
Fax: (202) 690-4737
http://www.rurdev.usda.gov/

Alternative Fuel and Advanced Vehicle Technology Research and Demonstration Bonds

Qualified state, tribal, and local governments may issue Qualified Energy Conservation Bonds subsidized by the U.S. Department of Treasury at competitive rates to fund capital expenditures on qualified energy conservation projects. Eligible activities include research and demonstration projects related to cellulosic ethanol and other non-fossil fuels, as well as advanced battery manufacturing technologies. Government entities may choose to issue tax credit bonds or direct payment bonds to subsidize the borrowing costs. For information on eligibility, processes, and limitations, see IRS Notices 2009-29, 2010-35, and 2012-44 or contact local issuing agencies. (Reference 26 U.S. Code 54D)

Alternative Fuel Infrastructure Tax Credit

NOTE: This incentive originally expired on December 31, 2013, but was retroactively extended through December 31, 2016, by H.R. 2029.

Fueling equipment for natural gas, liquefied petroleum gas (propane), liquefied hydrogen, electricity, E85, or diesel fuel blends containing a minimum of 20% biodiesel installed between January 1, 2015, and December 31, 2016, is eligible for a tax credit of 30% of the cost, not to exceed $30,000. Permitting and inspection fees are not included in covered expenses. Fueling station owners who install qualified equipment at multiple sites are allowed to use the credit towards each location. Consumers who purchased qualified residential fueling equipment prior to December 31, 2016, may receive a tax credit of up to $1,000. Unused credits that qualify as general business tax credits, as defined by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), may be carried backward one year and carried forward 20 years. For more information about claiming the credit, see IRS Form 8911, which is available on the IRS Forms and Publications website. (Reference Public Law 114-113; 26 U.S. Code 30C and 38; and IRS Notice 2007-43)

Point of Contact
U.S. Internal Revenue Service
Phone: (800) 829-1040
http://www.irs.gov/

Value-Added Producer Grants (VAPG)

Value-Added Producer Grants (VAPG) are available to help independent agricultural producers enter into or expand value-added activities, including innovative uses of agricultural projects, such as biofuels production. Eligible applicants include independent producers, farmer and rancher cooperatives, agricultural producer groups, and majority-controlled producer-based business ventures. Participants may apply for either a planning grant or a working capital grant, but not both. In addition, no more than 10% of program funds may be awarded to majority-controlled producer-based business ventures. Grants are awarded to projects determined to be economically viable and sustainable. For more information about grant eligibility, see the VAPG website and contact the appropriate State Rural Development Office. This program is funded through fiscal year 2018 (verified November 2015), but is subject to congressional appropriations thereafter. (Reference Public Law 113-79, Section 6203; and 7 U.S. Code 1632a)

Improved Energy Technology Loans

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) provides loan guarantees through the Loan Guarantee Program to eligible projects that reduce air pollution and greenhouse gases, and support early commercial use of advanced technologies, including biofuels and alternative fuel vehicles. The program is not intended for research and development projects. DOE may issue loan guarantees for up to 100% of the amount of the loan for an eligible project. Eligible projects may include electric vehicle supply equipment, including associated hardware and software. For loan guarantees of over 80%, the loan must be issued and funded by the Treasury Department's Federal Financing Bank. For more information, see the Loan Guarantee Program website. (Reference 42 U.S. Code 16513)

Point of Contact
Loan Guarantee Program
U.S. Department of Energy
Phone: (202) 586-8336
Fax: (202) 586-7366
lgprogram@hq.doe.gov
http://www.energy.gov/lpo/loan-programs-office

Low and Zero Emission Public Transportation Research, Demonstration, and Deployment Funding

Financial assistance is available to local, state, and federal government entities; public transportation providers; private and non-profit organizations; and higher education institutions for research, demonstration, and deployment projects involving low or zero emission public transportation vehicles. Funding may cover up to 85% of project costs, with a required 15% non-federal cost share requirement. Eligible vehicles must be designated for public transportation use and significantly reduce energy consumption or harmful emissions compared to a comparable standard vehicle. For more information, see the FAST Act Section 5312 fact sheet and the MAP-21 website. (Reference Public Law 113-159, Public Law 114-94, 49 U.S. Code 5312, and 49 U.S. Code 5339(c))

Point of Contact
Federal Transit Administration, Office of Program Management
U.S. Department of Transportation
Phone: (202) 366-2053
http://www.fta.dot.gov

Advanced Biofuel Production Payments

Through the Bioenergy Program for Advanced Biofuels (Section 9005), eligible producers of advanced biofuels, or fuels derived from renewable biomass other than corn kernel starch, may receive payments to support expanded production of advanced biofuels. Payment amounts will depend on the quantity and duration of production by the eligible producer; the net nonrenewable energy content of the advanced biofuel, if sufficient data is available; the number of producers participating in the program; and the amount of funds available. No more than 5% of the funds will be made available to eligible producers with an annual refining capacity of more than 150 million gallons of advanced biofuel. This program is funded through fiscal year 2018 (verified November 2015), but is subject to congressional appropriations thereafter. For more information, contact the appropriate State Rural Development Office. (Reference Public Laws 113-79 and 112-240, and 7 U.S. Code 8105)

Point of Contact
Office of Rural Development, Business and Cooperative Programs
U.S. Department of Agriculture
Phone: (202) 690-4730
Fax: (202) 690-4737
http://www.rurdev.usda.gov/

Advanced Energy Research Project Grants

The Advanced Research Projects Agency - Energy (ARPA-E) was established within the U.S. Department of Energy with the mission to fund projects that will develop transformational technologies that reduce the nation's dependence on foreign energy imports; reduce U.S. energy related emissions, including greenhouse gases; improve energy efficiency across all sectors of the economy; and ensure that the United States maintains its leadership in developing and deploying advanced energy technologies. The ARPA-E focuses on various concepts in multiple program areas including, but not limited to, vehicle technologies, biomass energy, and energy storage. For more information, visit the ARPA-E website.

Point of Contact
U.S. Department of Energy
Phone: (202) 586-5000
Fax: (202) 586-4403
http://www.energy.gov

  

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