Congress’ intent was to diversify our country’s energy portfolio, reduce our dependence on foreign oil, and strengthen the economy of rural American communities through the production of domestic biofuels. To meet these goals, the RFS requires that gasoline and diesel refiners and importers of (“obligated parties”) blend renewable fuels, like ethanol, with the liquid fuels we use for transportation.
Alternatively, these obligated parties may also buy credits, called Renewable Identification Numbers (RINs), that similarly show that a renewable fuel was blended with gasoline or used in place of it. RINs are created by a variety of parties like ethanol producers (corn and soy farmers) and are then sold on an open market to oil companies that need to meet the obligations set by EPA.
The modifications expanded the RFS program to further incent innovation in the US energy technology market by providing a level playing field for competing renewable fuel technologies (both liquid and non-liquid). The goal of the changes made in EISA was to prioritize growth in the categories of renewable fuels that achieve the highest reduction in greenhouse gas emissions relative to gasoline.
This part of the RFS is often called the “Electric Pathway” or the “e-RIN (electric-RIN) program” and was designed to provide incentives to simultaneously increase the production of electricity with biogas and the adoption of electric vehicles.
By matching and documenting a physical connection between electricity produced with biogas by independent power producers (IPPs, and electricity consumed by EVs, BTR generates e-RINs under the RFS program. The e-RINs can then be purchased and used by obligated parties to comply with RFS renewable volume obligations.
Our partners in the biodigestion and landfill industries track and then report to BTR exactly how much biogas electricity their farms or portfolios of IPPs generate and sell to the commercial grids.
BTR also works with EV manufacturers, charging station networks, electric utilities, and even fleet operators to measure and document exactly how much electricity is consumed by electric vehicles.
There are over 8,000 dairy and swine farms in the US that could support biodigesters, as well as 440 landfills that could develop electricity generation capabilities. These sites could employee as many as 18,000 Americans in rural economies across the country.
The EV industry could add up to 1.9 million jobs in the United States by 2030. Unlike internal combustion engine vehicles, electric vehicles that are sold in the U.S. are largely manufactured here.
Air pollution caused by tailpipe emissions has real health consequences. According to the American Lung Association, “a complete turnover [to electric vehicles] would reduce health and economic costs by $13 billion in 2025, preventing hundreds of premature deaths and tens of thousands of work days lost to respiratory illness” in California alone. Accelerating our transition to electric vehicles could very well save lives.
Managing biowaste is a challenge in many parts of the country, particularly for dairy and poultry farmers. “Manure lagoons” form and as the manure decomposes, causing smells and dangerous runoff that can seep into the underground water systems that often provide the local community with tap and drinking water. Helping farmers deal with waste benefits everyone.