The Irish Bioenergy Association (IrBEA) has welcomed the inclusion of additional renewable certificates for biodiesel produced from category one tallow in the renewable transport fuel regulations 2023. Initially, the Department of Transport’s draft regulation gave an enhanced multiplier to Hydrogenated Vegetable Oil (HVO) over Irish-produced biodiesel. This had the potential to wipe out indigenous biofuel production in favour of imported HVO. If implemented, this would have been detrimental to Irish biofuels producers, placing them at a distinct disadvantage over imported biofuels. It would also have had significant adverse impacts on the rendering and animal processing sectors, who depend on biodiesel production as a circular economy outlet for their tallows and fats.
Commenting on the issue IrBEA CEO Seán Finan said: “We are happy that the direct interventions of IrBEA, with and on behalf of our members, has resulted in the inclusion of biodiesel produced from category one tallow in the newly signed transport regulations. Direct jobs in the biofuel businesses impacted and indirect jobs in the broader supply chain were in jeopardy if the Minister for Transport, Eamon Ryan T.D. had not included biodiesel produced from category one tallow in the regulation.”
“Irish biodiesel producers use animal fats (tallow) from the meat processing sector and used cooking oil (UCO) to produce biodiesel. This sustainable biofuel production and its viability was threatened if HVO received the additional renewable energy certificate and Irish produced biodiesel did not. We would like to acknowledge and thank Minister Ryan and his officials for listening to our concerns and including indigenous biodiesel production from category one tallow in the newly signed regulations.”
The National Oil Reserves Agency Act (additional certificates for renewable transport fuel) Regulation 2023 also contains provision for additional renewable fuel certificates for biomethane and mandates the inclusion of a minimum percentage volume of ethanol in petrol.
“For many years, IrBEA with our members, have campaigned for an increased ethanol blending mandate in petrol (E10). The introduction of E10 will result in an immediate reduction in transport carbon emissions. This cumulative emissions reduction per year is equivalent to taking tens of thousands of cars off the road. The additional certificates for biomethane are another step forward for the deployment of biomethane in the transport sector and the development of a mainstream Irish biomethane sector. We strongly encourage the Government to actively promote the development of the indigenous biofuels production sector and recognise it sufficiently in policy. Indigenous biofuel production is the sleeping giant of transport decarbonisation while simultaneously boosting Irish industry”.