US biomass diesel imports up 65%

US imports of biomass-based diesel, which include biodiesel and renewable diesel, rose by 65% last year. They reached a record level of 916 million gallons, according to new figures from […]

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By Priyanka Shrestha

US imports of biomass-based diesel, which include biodiesel and renewable diesel, rose by 65% last year.

They reached a record level of 916 million gallons, according to new figures from the Energy Information Administration (EIA).

On a monthly basis, biodiesel imports exceeded 100 million gallons for the first time last December.

Both biodiesel and renewable diesel fuels are produced from refining vegetable oils or animal fats.

Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) targets and the biodiesel blender’s tax credit were said to be strong drivers of biomass-based diesel demand, “incentivising increased levels of imports of both biodiesel and renewable diesel”.

The EIA states biomass-based diesel fuels have additional advantages over other renewable fuels such as ethanol because of their relatively high energy content and low carbon intensity.

More than half of US imports of biodiesel originated from Argentina (64%), with much of the rest coming from Indonesia and Canada.

Imports of renewable diesel rose 9% to reach 223 million gallons last year, with Singapore being the only source of imported renewable diesel.