New Michigan Laws Promote Renewable Fuels and Biomass Energy
Michigan Governor Jennifer Granholm approved on July 7th a package of bills to encourage the use of renewable fuels within the state. The seven-bill package includes a measure to lower taxes by 20 percent on diesel blends containing at least 5 percent biodiesel ("B5") and by 36 percent on gasoline blends containing 70 percent ethanol or more (the most common blend, E85, contains 85 percent ethanol). One law requires all state motor transport facilities to add biodiesel and E85 pumps, while another creates matching grants for adding biodiesel and E85 fuel pumps at service stations and for adding infrastructure at fuel terminals. Two laws work together to allow the establishment of up to 10 "renaissance zones" that will provide tax breaks for biomass energy facilities of all kinds and for agricultural and forest product processing facilities, including those that would serve the biomass energy industry. And a final law establishes a renewable fuels commission with the state's Department of Agriculture to help advance renewable fuels. See the governor's press release and the full text of Act 268 (PDF 35 KB), Act 269 (PDF 32 KB), Act 270 (PDF 33 KB), Act 271 (PDF 44 KB), Act 272 (PDF 33 KB), Act 273 (PDF 34 KB), and Act 274 (PDF 34 KB). Download Adobe Reader.