Illinois Soybean Growers Urges Continued Commitment to Biodiesel and Illinois Air Quality

BLOOMINGTON, ILL. – February 17, 2021 - Illinois farmers grow sustainable and high-quality soybeans that provide feed, fuel and food for Illinois and the world. As part of the sustainable cycle of soybean production, a major byproduct is soy-based biodiesel. Biodiesel is a direct alternative to petroleum-based diesel and is cleaner burning with up to 80 percent lower carbon emissions per gallon. Illinois uses 180 million gallons of biodiesel each year, returning an estimated value of $600 million to Illinois’ family farms annually. Since 2003, Illinois has been using B11 and higher biodiesel blends, supported by the exemption of those fuels from state sales tax. This policy for a homegrown Illinois product has made our state a national leader in using cleaner burning fuels and improving air quality.

Today, Governor Pritzker proposed the elimination of the sales tax exemption that has resulted in enhanced biodiesel utilization and cleaner air. Illinois Soybean Growers (ISG) is committed to clean fuel and supports HB229 which continues Illinois’ leadership in reducing dependence on fossil fuels and instituting the statewide use of B20 and higher blends. ISG commits to continued discussion with Governor Pritzker and cleaner fuel advocates to reconcile the proposals in a way that enhances the use of biodiesel in Illinois for improved air quality outcomes.

Today, ISG Chairman, Doug Schroeder, a soybean farmer from Mahomet, Ill., releases the following statement: “As a farmer who understands that there are markets around the world for my crop, I am always reminded of the value that biodiesel has right here at home. Biodiesel adds value to my farm, my community, and my state. This last year and COVID-19 have put extra attention on air quality for all Illinoisans. Sustaining our use of B11 at a minimum and moving to B20 and higher biodiesel blends helps in promoting an Illinois product, all while reducing our dependence on fossil fuels. I look forward to continuing the conversation, and working with all partners to use more biodiesel to improve our economy and public health.”

Illinois Soybean Growers (ISG) is a membership organization serving more than 43,000 Illinois soybean producers. As part of ISA’s mission to uphold the interests of Illinois soybean producers through promotion, advocacy, and education, ISG advances the government relations interests of Illinois soybean farmers at the local, state, and national level. Voice for Soy, the ISG legislative action network, allows producers to easily connect with legislators and regulators to advocate for Illinois agriculture. For more information, visit www.ilsoygrowers.com or www.voiceforsoy.org.

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For more information, contact:

Rachel Peabody
Director of Communications
peabodyr@ilsoy.org
217-825-7654

Andrew Larson
Director of Public Policy & Market Development
larsona@ilsoy.org
815-980-1560