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State celebrates new renewable fuels standards

A newly required 10 percent biodiesel blend, known as B10, will now be sold annually and nationally from April 1 through September 30. A 5 percent mixture that is more efficient in Minnesota’s winter weather, called B5, will be used between October and late March each year.

“This new law puts Minnesota at the forefront of promoting cleaner, home-grown fuels,” said Governor Mark Dayton.

Minnesota biodiesel is a local product, mostly supplied by homegrown soybeans, which are one of the state’s leading cash crops. Biodiesel contributes more than $900 million annually to the Minnesota economy.

“Growing our own renewable energy from our farming community strengthens our energy future moving forward,” said Commerce Commissioner Mike Rothman.

Minnesota has three biodiesel plants in Glenville, Brewster and Isanti. They produce a combined 63 million gallons of biodiesel annually.

The Minnesota Soybean Growers Association estimates B10 will create an additional demand of 20 million gallons of biodiesel each year, bringing total demand to 60 million gallons annually.

Although only diesel drivers can burn the B10 blend, the effects of this new requirement are felt in rural economies, urban air quality and around the state’s workforce.