The Coalition for Renewable Natural Gas’s (RNG Coalition) Manning Feraci provided testimony on behalf of the renewable natural gas (RNG) industry at the House Environment Subcommittee hearing to discuss the future of the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) program.
At the outset of his testimony, Feraci noted that RNG currently fuels more than 25 percent of the nation’s medium and heavy-duty natural gas vehicles, and represents more than 95 percent of the renewable fuel used to meet the RFS program’s cellulosic biofuel requirements. “Renewable natural gas is an environmentally-friendly fuel that reduces lifecycle emissions by 80 percent or more compared to conventional petroleum diesel,” he said.
The House Energy and Commerce Committee’s Subcommittee on the Environment convened the hearing on a recently released Discussion Draft that proposes amendments to the RFS program.
Feraci’s testimony noted the importance of long-term certainty for advanced and cellulosic biofuels under the RFS program to our nation’s increased production of clean fuels, to domestic fuel and energy security, and to achieving decreased long-term greenhouse gas emissions. “A long-term RFS program is a vital component of a policy framework that attracts the investment and deployment of capital needed to increase the production and use of clean advanced biofuels like RNG,” he said. “RNG projects require significant capital investment…They often involve 20-year offtake agreements with feedstock providers.”
He testified that cellulosic biofuels industry entrepreneurs, business owners, financiers, and marketers have invested over a billion dollars in response to Congress enacting the RFS program. Feraci noted that since 2011 with the RFS framework, the RNG industry has developed over 45 production facilities capable of producing high-Btu gas that can be used for transportation applications, with over 50 projects under construction or consideration.
“As a result of the RFS, we have a growing, vibrant domestic industry that is converting waste into a domestically produced cellulosic biofuel that can be readily incorporated into our existing infrastructure and be utilized by natural gas vehicles. Further, this is being done in a way that reduces harmful emissions. This is a win-win scenario.”