Newly published research from the University of Idaho and USDA shows that for every unit of fossil energy needed to produce biodiesel, the return is 4.5 units of energy. The report says this energy-in, energy-out ratio is energy balance. The report says that biodiesel made from soybean oil has a high energy balance because the main energy source used to grow soybeans is solar.
"This gives Americans even more reason to put their faith in the environmental and societal benefits of biodiesel," said Joe Jobe, CEO of the National Biodiesel Board. "The Environmental Protection Agency should take this into account when considering biodiesel's greenhouse gas reductions."
Jobe says EPA should recognize that biodiesel production is growing more efficient, while oil exploration and drilling becomes more intensive each day. Biodiesel is also a source of valuable co-products, like glycerin, for which EPA did not credit biodiesel. The Idaho/USDA study cites key drivers that continue to make biodiesel an efficient fuel choice.