Reports indicate that the Senate could begin debate as early as Thursday on its energy tax extenders package. The package, introduced by Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus, D-Mont., and ranking member Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, includes a one-year extension of the $1/gal biodiesel tax credit which was set to expire at the end of the year. An agreement reached between the sponsors and the Republican and Democratic leadership scaled back the originally proposed three-year extension. How to pay for the $17 billion price tag stalled the bill since this spring.
On the issue of biodiesel tax incentives, a provision would eliminate "current-law disparity" by allowing second-use biodiesel (which currently receives 50cts/gal) to receive the same, full $1/gal tax credit as other biodiesel, and eliminates the requirement that renewable diesel must be produced using a thermal depolymerization process. Additionally, the package caps the $1/gal production credit for renewable diesel for facilities that co-process with petroleum to the first 60 million gallons per facility. Meanwhile, the biodiesel tax credit would close up the so-called "splash and dash" loophole. The cost of these biodiesel-related provisions is estimated at $451 million over ten years, reports indicate.