Oregon Diesel School Buses Now Running on B5

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The Oregon Department of Energy last month implemented a new requirement for a 5 percent biodiesel blend, which means the fuel is mandated to be available at all fuel pumps.

As a result, all diesel-powered school buses are also running on B5, confirmed Steven Huillet, the state’s transportation director at the Department of Education.

Meanwhile, the National Biodiesel Board (NBB) applauded Oregon for updating its requirement from B2, which was mandated back in 2009. The increase to B5 went into effect April 1.

“Policymakers in Oregon should be congratulated for displaying national leadership on clean energy issues,” said Shelby Neal, NBB director of state governmental affairs. “As a result of the biodiesel policy, Oregon’s citizens will enjoy cleaner air, green jobs and a higher level of energy independence.”

Neal added that Minnesota was the first state to pass a B2 biodiesel requirement, which occurred in 2005. Since, the state increased to B5. Minnesota’s required volume of biodiesel is scheduled to rise to B10 by 2012, and B20 by 2015. Meanwhile, Washington and Pennsylvania both have a B2 requirement in effect. Connecticut, Louisiana, Massachusetts and New Mexico have all passed similar legislation that have yet to take effect.

NBB said Oregon’s B5 requirement was scheduled to be triggered when the in-state production capacity reached 15 million gallons annually, which the biodiesel plants in the state recently accomplished. The new statewide requirement will generate about 25 million gallons of biodiesel demand annually.