Transportation Energy Partners 2020 Federal Policy Priorities
Congress should provide an extension through 2025 of the tax credits for sellers of natural gas and propane, for producers of biodiesel, for developers of alternative fuel infrastructure, and for purchasers of qualified fuel cell and for two-wheeled plug-in electric vehicles. The FY2020 spending bill extended the biodiesel credits through 2022 and other credits through 2020. However, Congress must display long term support for these incentives to encourage investment in the next generation of alternative fuels, vehicles, and infrastructure.
Congress should also increase the production cap for the Electric Vehicle tax credit to 600,000 per manufacturer as provided in the bipartisan Driving America Forward Act. This will ensure that the plug-in vehicle credit continues to advance a diverse marketplace and consumer choice since several manufacturers have already reached the current cap of 200,000 and others will reach it soon.
2. Ensure Adequate Federal Funding in FY 2021 for Key Alternative Fuels Programs:
Congress should support funding for the following federal programs, which advance the development and deployment of clean transportation technologies:
- Congress should provide $50 million for the DOE Clean Cities program, including $30 million in competitive grants for new alternative fuel and vehicle deployment strategies. Clean Cities is DOE’s only initiative focused on the deployment of alternative transportation fuels, vehicles, and infrastructure.
- Click here to see our letter to Congress supporting Clean Cities appropriations.
- Congress should provide $100 million for the EPA Clean Diesel Grants program, which has created jobs and improved air quality in hundreds of communities across the U.S.
- Click here to see our letter to Congress supporting the EPA Clean Diesel grants program.
3. Preserve the Renewable Fuels Standard (RFS):
Congress should reject efforts to undermine or eliminate the RFS, which sets annual standards for the production and use of conventional and advanced biofuels. Congress should also encourage the
Administration and the EPA to continue growing RFS volumes to ensure that we continue diversifying the transportation fuels market with clean alternatives that are creating jobs, cutting pollution, and reducing our dependence on foreign oil.
Renewable fuels have helped reduce oil imports by 25 percent since 2000 and now provide 10 percent of America’s onroad transportation needs. In addition to ethanol, the RFS is stimulating impressive growth in Renewable Natural Gas and Advanced Biofuels such as biodiesel, which last year produced about 2.5 billion gallons and is poised for significant growth under a stable RFS.
4. Ensure Timely Approval of DOT CMAQ Funding for Alternative Fuel Vehicles:
Congress should make sure the FHWA reviews Buy America compliance for alternative fuel vehicles in a timely fashion, so they can receive CMAQ funding. There are currently dozens of projects including hundreds of vehicles that have been waiting for FHWA approval for more than a year. In the past, FHWA has approved compliance for vehicles assembled in the U.S. on a quarterly basis.
5. Include Funding for Alternative Fueling Infrastructure in Federal Infrastructure Legislation:
Consumer and business adoption of alternative fuel vehicles depends on the availability of reliable and convenient fueling and charging infrastructure. Under the FAST Act, the FHWA is in the process of designating alternative fueling corridors across the country. Congress should include funding in infrastructure legislation to install the charging and fueling stations in the designated corridors and other locations.
6. Authorize the DOE Clean Cities Program:
The Clean Cities program has been one of the nation’s most effective tools in promoting the use of domestic fuel sources, improving local air quality, and deploying advanced vehicle technologies. Authorization of the Clean Cities Program would institutionalize the program and enable it to be even more effective in leveraging public-private partnerships to advance cleaner fuels and vehicles.
Stabilize Gas Prices, Reduce Foreign Oil Dependence, Create Jobs
American ingenuity and technology innovation have enabled vehicles using electricity, natural gas, propane, biodiesel, ethanol and hydrogen to take hold in the market place. According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), there are more than 1.8 million alternative fuel vehicles in use in the United States and about 87,000 alternative fueling stations. Yet this represents a small fraction of the total American fleet.
The United States must aggressively expand our use of domestically produced alternatives to petroleum fuel if we are to stabilize gasoline prices, decrease our reliance on foreign oil, and create American jobs.
Investment in Alternative Fuels Creates American Jobs
- There are now 1.2 million plug-in electric vehicles on the road in the U.S. The global market for lithium ion batteries will grow from $25 billion in 2017 to $47 billion in 2023 and annual revenue from the infrastructure charging sector is projected to grow to $5.8 billion by 2022.
- The ethanol industry contributes $46 billion a year to the U.S. economy, including over 365,000 American jobs.
- Biodiesel has grown into a 2.6 billion gallon per year industry with 125 plants across the U.S. supporting more than 60,000 jobs and providing $17 billion in economic activity.
- There are more than 200,000 propane-powered vehicles on America’s roads, including a fleet of about 20,000 propane-powered school buses that transport 1.2 million children to school each day.
- The U.S. is the number one producer of natural gas in the world, and the industry provides 4.1 million American jobs. About 175,000 natural gas vehicles operate on America’s roads today. These vehicles are supported by more than 1,800 fueling stations that are connected by 2.5 million miles of natural gas pipelines.
- Over the last five years, renewable natural gas (RNG) use as a transportation fuel has increased 577%. There are now 99 RNG facilities operating in the U.S. that have created more than 17,000 direct and indirect jobs. Another 90 new plants are under development and they will create an additional 15,500 new direct and indirect jobs.