Biodiesel Giant Fuels Biggest Game of the Year

REG LogoThis weekend a Midwest biodiesel giant will fuel the biggest game of the year – the Super Bowl. Iowa-based Renewable Energy Group, Inc. says it will provide up to 15,000 gallons of biodiesel blends from B5 to B20 at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey during Super Bowl XLVIII on Sunday, as well as powering more than 18 generators for events along Super Bowl Boulevard in New York City leading up to the big game.

“All of us at REG are excited and honored to help ‘green’ the Super Bowl with our high-quality, American made biodiesel,” said Daniel J. Oh, Renewable Energy Group, Inc. President and CEO. “We are proud to be working with the NFL to help in their environmental efforts and to promote biodiesel’s other benefits of energy security, energy diversity, and job creation to one of the largest sports audiences in the world.”

Biodiesel is a renewable, clean-burning diesel replacement that is enhancing the American energy complex and increasing energy and food security. Made from a diverse mix of feedstocks including recycled cooking oil, animal fats, waste greases and refined vegetable oils, biodiesel reduces greenhouse gas emissions between 57 and 95 percent when compared to petroleum diesel.

“The NFL has been working on the ‘greening’ of the Super Bowl for 20 years and adding biofuels to our mix is one more step in that process,” said Jack Groh, NFL Environmental Program Director. “We have a comprehensive program that includes solid waste recycling, food recovery, repurposing of decor and construction materials, collection of books and sports equipment for children in need, urban forestry projects and renewable energy use. Integrating biodiesel is another way we can address the environmental impact of our activities at the Super Bowl.”

REG, the Nation’s biggest biodiesel maker, will partner with local heating oil distributors Hart Energy for delivery to Times Square and Majka and Son’s for delivery to Metlife Stadium.

REG Biodiesel Conference Video Series

REG Biodiesel TrendsThe Renewable Energy Group (REG) has produced a series of videos from the 2014 National Biodiesel Conference called Biodiesel Trends.

Biodiesel Trends is a video news series that will recap the conference. You can watch short video interviews with key presenters as they discuss industry trends and topics, meet some of the industry’s up-and-coming researchers, learn about federal and state policy updates; and take a virtual ride in the latest diesel-powered vehicles.

Here is one of them:

REG Expands in NJ as Biodiesel Mandate Debated

reg-logoThe country’s leader in biodiesel production is expanding its presence in New Jersey, as lawmakers in that state look to enact a biodiesel heating oil mandate. This news release from Renewable Energy Group (REG) says it entered into an agreement with Dutch Hill Terminals, a leading heating oil terminal in New Jersey, to market biodiesel and biodiesel blended heating oil at its Clifton, New Jersey location.

“This terminal position will give us additional capacity to serve the existing markets in the Northeast and prepare for potential growth moving into 2014,” said Gary Haer, REG Vice President, Sales and Marketing. “As the region increases its consumption of biodiesel in transportation fuel and Bioheat® (heating oil blended with biodiesel) REG will continue to provide a reliable source of high quality, clean burning, advanced biofuel.”

REG Clifton is located at 568 Paulison and now has REG biodiesel blended heating oil available. The company will offer other high quality biodiesel blends for transportation fuel during seasonal periods from the Clifton terminal as well. REG has five other terminal locations in the Northeast, including Whippany and Bayonne, New Jersey and New York locations in New Hyde Park, Port Chester, Ontario and Brookhaven.

The New Jersey State Legislature is currently considering legislation which would require heating oil to contain a three percent biodiesel blend (B3), then increasing to five percent (B5). New York City has already implemented a city-wide requirement of B2 in heating oil and the New York State Legislature passed a bill which would phase in a B2 requirement state wide over two years beginning with the 2014-2015 heating oil season. As data presented by the City of New York shows, cleaner heating oil has had a profound impact on the air quality and health of the residents of the city.

REG officials see the addition of the facility as key to expand the company’s role in an area where the biodiesel market will continue to grow.

REG Opens Biodiesel Barge Berth at Seneca, Illinois

REGsenecabargeribboncut1Renewable Energy Group has opened a new biodiesel loading facility on the Illinois River. This REG news release says it will help move the green fuel from REG’s 60-million gallon biorefinery in Seneca, Ill.

The barge loading facility will be supported by the addition of 2.5 million gallons of new terminal storage. REG’s total investment in these upgrades is about $4.5 million.

“The barge berth at REG Seneca further enhances our lower-cost, efficient business model,” said Daniel J. Oh, President and CEO of Renewable Energy Group, Inc. “Adding more barge capabilities to our network of biorefineries and terminals across the country gives REG another capability for providing high quality biodiesel to our existing and future customers.”

“Every full barge that leaves Seneca equates to about 65 truckloads of biodiesel,” said Brad Albin, REG Vice President, Manufacturing. “This not only increases efficiencies, but expands the geography and customer base we can cover through the inland waterways system.”

Biodiesel is also leaves Seneca by truck and rail, and the company has barge and deepwater ship loading capability In Houston and the New York City area. REG owns and operates eight biodiesel refineries in four states able to produce up to 257 million gallons a year.

Biodiesel Industry Responds to EPA 2014 RVOs

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced its proposed volume requirements under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) today and the biomass-based diesel category was proposed for 1.28 billion gallons, less than what the industry is currently able to produce. Biodiesel production is on track to set a production record exceeding 1.7 billion gallons this year, using an increasingly diverse mix of feedstocks including recycled cooking oil, agricultural oils and animal fats.

In response, the National Biodiesel Board (NBB) warned that the EPA’s 2014 proposal would cause plant closures and layoffs in the U.S. biodiesel industry and called on the Obama Administration to recommit to developing American-made Advanced Biofuels.

nbb-logo“The growth in domestic biodiesel production dovetails exactly with President Obama’s statement in July of this year that ‘biofuels are already reducing our dependence on oil, cutting pollution and creating jobs around the country,’” said Anne Steckel, NBB’s vice president of federal affairs. “This is why EPA’s action today is so surprising and disappointing.”

Steckel continued, “This proposal, if it becomes final, would create a shrinking market, eliminate thousands of jobs and likely cause biodiesel plants to close across the country. It also sends a terrible signal to investors and entrepreneurs that jeopardizes the future development of biodiesel and other Advanced Biofuels in the United States.”

“This Administration has for years supported strong renewable fuels policies and encouraged investment in this industry,” Steckel added. “The private sector has responded to these policies by meeting or exceeding the Advanced Biofuels requirements in every year of the RFS. The Administration should be celebrating that success and continuing the momentum, not retreating.”

Amanda Cunningham of Veros Energy, a biodiesel producer in Moundville, Alabama, is among those in the industry whose job is at risk under the proposal. Cunningham and her husband both work at the company, supporting a family of six children.

“If biodiesel volumes are decreased, it has a hard, hard trickle down impact,” Cunningham said. “We would surely have layoffs; layoffs reduce production; reduced production drops the bottom line; and at that point the plant might as well shut down.” Continue reading

REG Boast Big 3rd Quarter for Biodiesel

REG LogoBiodiesel producing giant Renewable Energy Group (REG) is boasting a big third quarter for its biodiesel operation. The Iowa-based company reports 77.6 million gallons of biodiesel sold in the third quarter 2013, an increase of 26 percent compared to the third quarter of 2012. In addition, revenues are up more than 40 percent compared to the same time a year ago for a total of $458.4 million. REG also achieved Adjusted EBITDA of $48.9 million during the third quarter 2013.

“We are pleased to report excellent performance in EBITDA, gallons produced, gallons sold, and revenues, driven by expanded nameplate production capacity and strong market demand,” said Daniel J. Oh, President and Chief Executive Officer.

“By July, we had upgraded Albert Lea and commenced operations at the New Boston biorefinery. During the quarter, we focused on increasing production at these new facilities. We now have eight biorefineries in production, including the recent addition of our Mason City, Iowa plant, with an annual nameplate capacity of 257 million gallons. In addition, network expansion enabled us to increase the gallons of biodiesel we market and sell from other biodiesel plants,” Oh added.

The 77.6 million gallons of biodiesel sold is a record for REG. Recently, the company increased and enhanced its production capabilities with the purchase of a 30 million gallon per year nameplate capacity biorefinery in Mason City, Iowa and REG’s New Boston, Texas plant coming on line this summer. This past quarter was also the first full quarter of a lower cost feedstock being used at the Albert Lea, Minn. facility.

REG Opens Mason City Biodiesel Plant

reg-ribbonRenewable Energy Group today formally opened the company’s recently acquired biodiesel refinery in Mason City, Iowa. The biodiesel company also announced the start of a $20 million project to upgrade the plant to a multi-feedstock facility.

REG completed the acquisition of the former Soy Energy, LLC refinery on July 31, 2013. REG immediately began efforts to repair and re-start the plant and began producing biodiesel on October 1.

“REG Mason City fits into our existing network of biodiesel plants very well and is an ideal location to bring in raw materials for biodiesel production, is a good distribution point, and is sited well to serve our customers and terminals,” said Daniel J. Oh, President and CEO of Renewable Energy Group, Inc. “As we continue to grow as a company and an industry, we are dedicated to our communities like Mason City, and providing America with advanced biofuel.”

Brad Albin, REG Vice President, Manufacturing told the crowd about the upgrades the company will make. “With these upgrades, we will be able to utilize lower cost raw materials like inedible corn oil from ethanol production, used cooking oil and animal fats, with the majority coming from a close proximity to Mason City,” Albin said. “This will give REG Mason City the ability to deliver the highest quality product available, in line with the REG quality standards.”

REG now has eight active biorefineries in four states, with Mason City being the company’s third Iowa facility, joining the company’s first refinery in Ralston and a plant in Newton. The company also has a multi-feedstock biorefinery in nearby Albert Lea, Minnesota, where a $21 million multi-feedstock upgrade was just recently completed. REG also has two refineries in both Illinois and Texas respectively. The REG-owned biodiesel production fleet has an annual production capacity of 257 million gallons.

REG’s Haer: Biodiesel Helps Break Big Oil Monopoly

irfa11-haerAs we recently recognized the 40th anniversary of the Arab Oil Embargo, which back then, showed how vulnerable the U.S. was working under foreign petroleum, one of the leaders at the nation’s biodiesel leader says his industry’s green fuel is a pathway to break the Big Oil monopoly. In this piece for the political blog, The Hill.com, Renewable Energy Group (REG) Vice president Gary Haer says biodiesel has grown from just a small, novelty fuel to a billion-gallon-a-year viable alternative to petroleum, foreign and domestic.

Following the aggressive act by Arab members of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) to terminate exports to the West, Americans saw their gasoline prices soar fourfold setting off a decade-long recession. U.S. military involvement in Middle Eastern conflicts escalated consistently over the four decades that followed. These include the Iran Hostage Crisis, three full-scale wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, the current showdown with Syria over chemical weapons and nuclear weapons showdown with Iran.

Today the aforementioned national security experts and their supporters lead the U.S. Energy Security Council (USESC), an organization that is scathing in their conclusions of how the combination of current U.S. oil dependency and a lack of diversity in transportation fuels choices are affecting both our economy and our national security: Continue reading

REG Chief: Biodiesel Set to Meet RFS Obligations

OhEETVAs the government considers the 2014 volume obligation for biodiesel under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS), the man in charge of the nation’s largest biodiesel producer says his green fuel is ready to meet the mandates. On the E&ETV show OnPoint, Dan Oh, CEO of the Renewable Energy Group (REG) said biodiesel can be relied upon to provide advanced biofuels.

“We’ve commercialized over 15 years. We have a large installed base. We now are able to produce from a wide variety of raw material. And that really matters when you are thinking about keeping costs down and having broad choices in terms of how you can produce. So the study on your production has been result of innovation.”

Oh just recently met with Office of Management and Budget officials on the RFS2 on the 2014 volume obligation for biodiesel and says the attitude toward biodiesel is very good in Washington, D.C.

I think the tone is favorable and supportive. You can look at the 13 final rule on the RVO that came out with EPA. They certainly highlighted in there how strong biodiesel is, and what a good position it’s in right now. It’s very much not part of the blend wall discussion because we don’t have a blend wall. You know, we can blend it at high levels in varying ways around the country, and it is such a good carbon intensity count that people really like it.

Oh says his industry is asking for a “robust increase” in biodiesel’s obligations, and biodiesel is ready to step in if other advanced biofuels can’t meet their obligations.

Biodiesel Maker REG Posts Strongest Quarter Ever

reg-logoThings are looking up for biodiesel producer Renewable Energy Group. The Iowa-based company says it sold 69.2 million gallons of biodiesel during the second quarter this year, up 28 percent from the same time a year ago. Revenues also increased 42 percent from a year ago, hitting $387.1 million and an adjusted EBITDA of $41.6 million during the second quarter 2013.

“This was our strongest quarter ever for production and gallons sold,” said Daniel J. Oh, President and Chief Executive Officer. “Market demand for biodiesel remained strong due, in part, to demand for biomass-based diesel RINs. REG’s substantial revenue growth this quarter can also be attributed to manufacturing and operational improvement at our biorefineries and gallons produced via a tolling agreement.”

REG officials also announced that the company’s acquisition of a 30-million gallon per year nameplate capacity biodiesel plant from Soy Energy, LLC in Mason City, Iowa, was approved by Soy Energy unit holders, and they intend to repair the refinery and start cranking out soybean-based biodiesel soon.

REG also reported major multifeedstock upgrades at the Albert Lea, Minn., biorefinery and repairs, upgrades and start-up at the company’s New Boston, Texas, biorefinery in the second quarter. Finally, construction on an Illinois River barge load-out at REG’s Seneca, Ill., location is underway.

REG to Offer Biodiesel at New York Harbor

REG LogoBiodiesel giant Renewable Energy Group (REG) will soon offer the green fuel in New York Harbor. The deal was struck for the International-Matex Tank Terminals (IMTT) in Bayonne, N.J., one of the world’s largest petroleum trading hubs.

“The Northeast has an active biodiesel market and this terminal position allows us to provide more high quality REG-9000® biodiesel to better serve this growing market,” said Gary Haer, REG Vice President, Sales and Marketing. “In conjunction with our five other terminal locations in New York and New Jersey, we will be able to provide a reliable and consistent supply of biodiesel to serve existing transportation fuel applications and barge business as well as the growing Bioheat® (heating oil blended with biodiesel) market in and around New York Harbor.”

The New York State Legislature recently passed a B2 biodiesel requirement in home heating oil. Once signed into law by the Governor, it will require all heating oil for use in any building within Nassau, Rockland, Suffolk and Westchester counties to contain at least two percent biodiesel, effective October 1, 2014. On July 1, 2015, all heating oil sold for use in any building statewide will meet this standard. New York City already has a B2 biodiesel requirement for home heating oil in place.

REG officials say the deep water port able to cater to many ships and barges matches well with the company’s marketing capabilities.

REG Upgrades Biodiesel Plant to Take Fats, WVO

REGalbertlea2Biodiesel giant Renewable Energy Group (REG) recently finished a $21 million upgrade to one of its biodiesel plants in Minnesota that allows the refinery to also use locally-sourced agricultural byproducts, such as animal fats, used cooking oils, inedible corn oils and yellow grease as well as vegetable oils. This REG news release says the Albert Lea plant is already cranking out a high-quality fuel.

REG LogoWithin days of start-up, all biodiesel produced met the company’s REG-9000® quality specifications, which exceed the industry’s ASTM B100 standard. The multiple feedstock product has been available since June 19, 2013 and enhances biodiesel product availability options as the State of Minnesota prepares to increase its diesel blending requirement from B5 to B10.

The company will hold a formal ribbon-cutting ceremony later this summer. REG has more than 225 million gallons per year of owned/operated production capacity at its network of refineries nationwide.

REG Restarts Texas Biodiesel Plant

REG New Boston1Biodiesel-producing giant Renewable Energy Group (REG) restarted an idled biodiesel plant in Texas. According to Biodiesel Magazine, the Iowa-based green energy producer re-opened the former North Texas Bio Energy, a commercial scale biodiesel production facility near New Boston, Texas, acquired by REG in October 2012:

[N]ow named REG New Boston, [the plant] employs 25 people and can produce 15 MMgy of biodiesel from recycled fats, oils and greases. The company scheduled a ribbon-cutting ceremony for June 28.

REG says the facility was idle for about four years and underwent some repairs and minor upgrades before the new start-up. The company also points out that besides the 25 workers at the plant, there will be indirect jobs, including truck drivers for the hundreds of inbound and outbound trucks that will channel through the plant each month.

REG Signs Agreement with Iowa Biodiesel Plant

reg-logoIt appears biodiesel giant Renewable Energy Group (REG) has inked a contract manufacturing agreement with an Iowa biodiesel maker. Biodiesel Magazine reports REG signed the 12-month contract with Iowa Renewable Energy LLC to purchase raw materials for the 30 MMgy multifeedstock plant and market biodiesel produced at IRE’s refinery.

“We are pleased REG has chosen to work with Iowa Renewable Energy,” said Ron Lutovsky, IRE’s chief operations officer and chief financial officer. “Our focus on fuel specifications and our BQ-9000 processes are aligned with REG’s commitment to biodiesel quality.”

Biodiesel from the IRE facility will be used to meet growing national and regional demand according to Gary Haer, REG’s vice president of sales and marketing. “We are working closely with the IRE team to include their gallons with biodiesel from our existing REG plant network to fulfill new and existing contracts.”

“IRE’s processing technology allows REG to expand our diverse raw material procurement strategy as well as our transportation and logistics programs to meet our growing customer demand,” said Dave Elsenbast, REG’s vice president of supply chain management.

REG was the actual general contractor and technology provider for the construction of the IRE facility back in 2007.

REG Plans to Buy Soy Energy 30 MGPY Biodiesel Plant

reg-logoThe nation’s largest biodiesel maker is going to get a bit bigger. Ames, Iowa-based Renewable Energy Group (REG) announced it is buying Mason City, Iowa’s Soy Energy and its 30-million gallon per year capacity biodiesel plant for $11 million in cash and the issuance of a $5.6 million promissory note to Soy Energy. This company news release says the plant was originally built in 2006, bought by Soy Energy and upgraded in 2010 to use more raw materials, such as animal fats and used cooking oil, but was shuttered last year.

“Renewable Energy Group’s offer provides the best value for Soy Energy unit holders while helping unit holders achieve their mission for promoting economic development in the area,” said Jeff Oestmann, Soy Energy’s President and CEO. “In addition, REG’s procurement know-how and proven business model of using lower cost raw materials makes them a reliable operator for this plant.”

REG plans to repair then restart the refinery and further upgrade the plant in the future. The acquisition would increase REG’s biodiesel production capacity to 257 million gallons annually. REG currently owns seven active biodiesel refineries in five states, including nearby plants in Newton and Ralston and Albert Lea, Minn.

“We are committed to the people of Mason City, Midwestern farmers and livestock producers and those who supply the fats, oils and greases we will buy,” said Daniel J. Oh, REG president and CEO.

The re-opening of the plant will put 30 full-time wage earners back on the payrolls.