Report: California’s Biggest Reduction in Transport-Related GHG Emissions Comes from Biodiesel and Renewable Diesel Fuel

According to new data gathered from the Low Carbon Fuel Standard (LCFS) program run by the California Air Resources Board, biodiesel and renewable diesel fuel deliver the state’s biggest reduction in transportation-related sources of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.

In 2018, California’s use of biodiesel and renewable diesel fuels eliminated 4.3 million tons of carbon dioxide (CO2), exceeding the reductions delivered by ethanol. Since the LCFS program began in 2011, biodiesel and renewable diesel fuel have eliminated more than 18 million tons of CO2.

According to the Diesel Technology Forum, even though battery electric technologies dominate the headlines, electric cars and trucks in California resulted in only 1.2 million tons of CO2 reductions in 2018 – one third of the emissions reductions delivered by diesel biofuels.

The newest-generation diesel engines incorporate the latest emissions control technologies, providing near-zero emission performance even when running on fossil-based diesel fuel. When paired with biodiesel or renewable diesel fuels, these clean diesel engines are capable of delivering immediate clean air and GHG reductions.

Unlike other alternative fuels, biodiesel fuels do not require expensive new fueling infrastructure or proof of concept to achieve these dramatic carbon reductions today. Both new and existing vehicles may use these fuels and leverage all the investments of existing fueling infrastructure to achieve these amazing results.

Many cities in California – Oakland, San Francisco, Sacramento, San Diego and others – now exclusively use renewable diesel fuel in city-owned heavy-duty trucks, buses and equipment. These cities are reaping the cost savings and emission reductions delivered by combining new-generation diesel engines with renewable diesel fuel. For example: the San Francisco Metropolitan Transportation Agency removed more than 10,000 tons of CO2 in a single year, just by using renewable diesel fuel in 632 transit buses. More locations in California continue to offer this fuel, making it increasingly more available to truckers and fleet drivers.


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