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New York mandates biodiesel blending for heating oil

New York mandates biodiesel blending for heating oil
Photo by Andre Benz on Unsplash

New York will become the largest U.S. state to enact a biodiesel blending requirement for heating oil, after a new legislation was signed by New York Governor Kathy Hochul last week. Legislation (S.3321-A/A.7290) establishes minimum levels of biodiesel in all heating oil for use in any building in the state.

Starting in July 2022, heating oil sold in the state of New York will have to contain increasing amounts of biodiesel in order to help achieve New York’s goal of lowering greenhouse gas emissions.

All heating oil sold for use in any building in New York must contain at least 5% biodiesel by July 1, 2022, 10% by 2025 and 20% biodiesel by 2030.

Blending requirements are already in effect in Long Island and New York City. Rhode Island and Connecticut passed biodiesel blending requirements in the summer of 2021.

“Climate change and pollution are two of the most serious issues affecting New Yorkers’ health and quality of life,” Governor Hochul said. “These pieces of legislation will ensure our state remains a national leader, not only in the fight for clean air and water, but in securing a cleaner, more sustainable future for generations as well.”

Switching to bioheating fuel reduces the emissions of multiple pollutants and greenhouse gasses. These emissions cause various health issues including respiratory and cardiovascular harm. Any reduction in these emissions would benefit public and environmental health. Additionally, the mixing of bioheating fuel in heating oil will help reach the State’s goals as detailed in the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act.

State Senator Todd Kaminsky said, “Bioheat is a cleaner, more sustainable heating source than the petroleum oil currently used to warm most homes and businesses. Switching to bioheat will reduce emissions known to cause health issues as well as harm to the environment. This is a step in the right direction that will protect the health of New Yorkers and help us meet our state’s climate goals outlined in the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act. Thank you to Governor Hochul for signing this measure.”

Assemblymember Steve Englebright said, “Reduction in greenhouse gasses as a result of increased biofuel usage, as well as reducing costly and inefficient single-use plastics will massively benefit both human health and environmental sustainability. I am proud to have sponsored these critically important pieces of legislation that will go a long way to alleviating the environmental strain of harmful pollutants and wasteful plastic consumption, and I want to thank Governor Hochul for signing them into law.”

Biodiesel industry advocates estimate that the fuel will cut New York’s annual petroleum diesel consumption by approximately two hundred million gallons per year, cutting the state’s annual carbon emissions by approximately 1 million metric tons.