Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad received an award Jan. 17 from the National Biodiesel Board for his national leadership on renewable fuels and unwavering support of the biodiesel industry. NBB acknowledges an advocate of biodiesel with the organization’s annual National Energy Leadership Award, which the governor accepted via video recording at the National Biodiesel Conference & Expo in San Diego.
“I am truly honored to accept the National Energy Leadership Award,” he said. “I am proud that Lt. Gov. Kim Reynolds and I have been strong advocates for biofuels, and at the national level for the Renewable Fuel Standard.”
Iowa renewable fuel leader
Grant Kimberley, executive director of the Iowa Biodiesel Board, and other members of the IBB attended the conference and praised Branstad’s steadfast support of biodiesel, which has helped put Iowa in the national spotlight. Iowa is the nation’s leader in biodiesel and ethanol production.
“The state of Iowa leads the way in clean-energy production, and is the No. 1 biodiesel-producing state,” Kimberley noted. “As he leaves office, Gov. Branstad leaves behind an unmatched legacy of biofuel leadership that will last well beyond his years in service to our state. Our industry can never fully thank him for his work that will continue to keep Iowa’s economy strong today and into the future.”
Early supporter of biodiesel
Branstad is the longest-serving governor in American history and has been an active proponent of biodiesel from the start.
In 2016 the Iowa governor worked for passage of the Iowa Biodiesel Production Tax Credit, the Biodiesel Promotion Retail Tax Credit and the Renewable Fuels Infrastructure Program (RFIP). Monte Shaw, executive director of the Iowa Renewable Fuels Association, said, “In presenting Gov. Branstad this award, the National Biodiesel Board affirmed what Iowans already know: That he is a champion for our Iowa-grown renewable fuels especially biodiesel. We are grateful of what the governor helped accomplish last year. But he is not one to rest on his laurels, and he included another year of funding for the RFIP in his 2017 budget proposal. As his time as governor comes to an end, it is clear his commitment to biofuels remains strong. Few governors will go to the lengths Gov. Branstad has to support the growth of renewable fuels in his state and no one is more deserving of this honor.”
Over 90 Iowans conference
More than 90 Iowans including farmers, representatives of biodiesel plants and others attended the annual conference last week. Chad Gilmer, a chemistry student at the University of Iowa, is attending on a scholarship through the Next Generation Scientists for Biodiesel program.
Biodiesel — made from a variety of resources including soybean oil, recycled cooking oil and animal fats — is the first EPA-designated Advanced Biofuel to reach commercial-scale production nationwide.
For more information, visit iowabiodiesel.org.