SacBee Op-Ed On Boosting Low-Carbon Biofuels In California

On Sunday the Sacramento Bee published my op-ed on how California can boost in-state production of low-carbon biofuels — not the wasteful Midwestern corn kind of biofuels. Here’s an excerpt:

[T]he state has not yet taken full advantage of the the ndiverse opportunities for low-carbon biofuel production from in-state biomass. While policies such as the state’s recently revised low-carbon fuel standard have put California on a leadership path in incorporating low-carbon biofuels into our transportation fuel mix, more federal and state action could ensure that California maximizes the environmental and economic potential of in-state innovation and production.

Federal and state leaders could:

  • Provide greater support for in-state biofuel production, taking into account the full range of local biofuel carbon benefits and co-products, like biochar compost that can sequester carbon, and thin-film plastic to bed strawberries and tomatoes.
  • Offer financial incentives for automakers and gas stations to allow and sell greater amounts of low-carbon biofuels and higher blend rates.
  • Improve access to and financial support for in-state feedstock production, particularly on idled farmland and forestland to reduce wildfire risks.

Ultimately, California should set a goal of providing at least half of its low-carbon biofuel from in-state sources. Locally produced, low-carbon biofuel is an important bridge fuel to meet the state’s long-term climate goals, and it will benefit California’s environment and economy in the process.

You can read our new UC Berkeley / UCLA report on the subject here.


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