05.18 Approved Minutes







THURSDAY, MAY 18, 2006, 10:00 A.M.






TASK FORCE MEMBERS:  VOTING:  Eric Bowen, Adam Hagen, Melissa Hardy, Benjamin Jordan, Karri Ving, NON-VOTING: Richard Berman (Port), David Augustine (Treasurer/Tax Collector), Sarah Dennis (Planning Department), Kevin Drew (Department of the Environment), Marty Mellera (MTA).








The meeting was called to order at 10:05 a.m.  Present: Members Bowen, Hagen, Hardy, Jordan, Ving, Berman, Augustine (arrived at 11:15 a.m.), Dennis, Mellera (MTA).




Mr. Eric Bowen introduced himself and Mr. Hagen as the co-authors of the legislation sponsored by Supervisor Jake McGoldrick to create the Biodiesel Access Task Force and discussed the focus of the Task Force to improve public access to biodiesel.  Mr. Bowen is the President of the San Francisco BioFuels Co-op, is working on building a biodiesel production facility in San Francisco, and is involved in biofuels policy work at the city, state, and federal level.


Ms. Melissa Hardy, co-owner of Biofuel Oasis in Berkeley, a member of the Board of Directors of the San Francisco Biofuels Coop, and a member of the Berkeley Biodiesel Collective.


Ms. Karri Ving described her work in Oberlin, Ohio helping to start up a biodiesel fueling station and car conversions to use straight vegetable oil.


Mr. Hagen discussed the history of bringing the Task Force together and introduced himself as a biodiesel advocate.


Mr. Richard Berman, Port of San Francisco representative.


Mr. Benjamin Jordan, Civil Engineer, works on biofuel recycling integrating the restaurant collection and developing natural resources for future production; member of the Peoples Fuels Cooperative and member of the Board of Directors of the San Francisco Biofuels Cooperative.


Mr. Marty Mellera, representative of the Municipal Transportation Agency.


Mr. Kevin Drew, Residential Recycling Coordinator, Department of the Environment, working on recovering and remanufacturing grease in San Francisco.


Ms. Sarah Dennis, representative of the San Francisco Planning Department Long Range Division, interested in facilitating the permitting and citing process for biodiesel.


Mr. Bob Hayden, Consultant, Clean Air Vehicle Program, Department of the Environment.


Ms. Monica Fish, Task Force Secretary, Department of the Environment.


Public:  Mr. Ron Silberstein, local businessperson and restaurant owner, interested in promoting biodiesel.


3.      DISCUSSION AND ACTION:  Biodiesel Task Force Draft Bylaws.  The Task Force discussed establishing a regular meeting date, terms of office for Chair and Vice-Chair, and other administrative Bylaws matters and voted to approve a Resolution adopting Bylaws (Explanatory Documents: Biodiesel Access Task Force Resolution Adopting Bylaws and Bylaws Adopted May 18, 2006).  


A discussion was held on whether to include the Task Force mission, duties and goals in the Bylaws.  It was agreed that since the mission and goals may change over time and were stated in the Resolution, the Bylaws would not have to include this information.


Upon Motion by Member Hagen and second by Member Bowen, Resolution File No. 2006-01-BDTF adopting the Bylaws of the Biodiesel Task Force and Bylaws Draft dated May 18, 2006 was adopted and would include the third Thursday of each month at 10:00 a.m. as a meeting date and Chair and Vice-Chair terms of office to be until December 31, 2007.  Meetings would be held at City Hall and a regular meeting room would be selected based on availability of either Rooms 408, 400 or 421.  AYES:  Members Hagen, Bowen, Hardy, Jordan, and Ving.


4.      ELECTION OF OFFICERS: The Task Force nominated and elected Task Force Chair and Vice-Chair.  Member Hagen nominated Member Bowen for Chair, second by Member Jordan.  Member Bowen accepted the nomination.  Member Bowen was elected as Chair.  AYES:  Bowen, Hagen, Hardy, Jordan, and Ving.


Member Bowen nominated Member Hagen for Vice-Chair, second by Member Jordan.  Member Hagen accepted the nomination.  Member Hagen was elected Vice-Chair.  AYES:  Bowen, Hagen, Hardy, Jordan, and Ving.

5.      DISCUSSION:  Biodiesel Access Task Force goals.  Task Force members discussed the goals of the Biodiesel Access Task Force addressing short and long-term goals that included:


·         Short term--creating private-sector incentives for the distribution and sale of biodiesel;


·         Long term:


a)      Streamlining the City permitting process;


b)      Identifying a small number of retail gas station outlets through the Gas Station Dealers Association and new/used car dealerships and repair outlets through the Auto Dealers Association;


c)      Working with educational facilities such as City College or the UC system to install a demonstration center that would show examples of biodiesel (crops being grown, oil being processed) and distribution center for alternative fuels.


Additional goals discussed:


§         Expanding the Biodiesel Access Task Force website that currently includes meeting agendas, minutes, and supporting documents to include adopted bylaws and educational material. 


·         Creating educational material for gas station dealers and interested parties, e.g. handbooks, employee training material, and quality control standards.  Educate on biodiesel issues such as cold flow, B100 storage in San Francisco, material compatibility, solvent, paperwork, and compliance issues.


·         Outreach to the public and business sector--creating communication channels to educate the public and businesses through marketing and the news media.


·         Creating incentives for gas station owners to transition one of their diesel tanks to a biodiesel blend tank and incentives for new businesses, e.g. eliminating payroll tax for a period of time, federal tax credits.


·         Establishing and defining regulations.  A discussion was held on regulations established by the Department of Measures and Standards, Department of Agriculture, required variances for biodiesel blends above B20, and compliance issues.  MUNI falls under state regulations established by the Air Resources Board, which specifies the type of fuel the MUNI fleet is supposed to use. 


·         Encouraging from a permitting standpoint, pure biodiesel (B100) filling locations that are outside of the petroleum infrastructure, developing regulations, and creating a model to export to the rest of the country.


·         Encouraging participation by all City agencies.


·         Outreach to vehicle manufacturers and availability of diesel vehicles to run on environmentally friendly fuel.


·         Encouraging the San Francisco School District to use biodiesel in their school buses and identifying what blend of biodiesel would be sufficient to meet the requirements of Proposition 65.


Public Comment:  Mr. Ron Silberstein discussed the importance of education and outreach to the public through the news media.  Suggested writing articles in scientific publications, letters to the editor, and contacting car dealerships to request their sponsorship.


6.      INFORMATIONAL PRESENTATION:  Introduction to Biodiesel.

SPEAKER:  Randall von Wedel


Introduction to Biodiesel was continued to the next meeting of the Task Force.  The Task Force agreed to a one-hour presentation including a question and answer session.  Explanatory documents were handed out at the Task Force meeting.


7.      INFORMATION:  New Business.  A request was made to create a member contact list to distribute to members.  A press event at City Hall Plaza regarding creation of the Biodiesel Task Force and other City initiatives would be held at noon.


8.      DISCUSSION:  Future Agenda Items:  June 15 meeting--Introduction to Biodiesel, tax incentives for gas station owners, identify agencies that would provide input into a presentation on hypothetical permitting of a B100 station today. July 20 meeting--Propel Fuels to discuss their experience working with gas stations switching existing diesel pumps into B20 pumps and working with fleet managers to incorporate biodiesel into their vehicles.  Recommendations for additional future agenda items included: field trip to the Biofuel Oasis--pure biodiesel distribution presentation, hypothetical permitting of a B100 station today, and biodiesel spill protocols.


9.      PUBLIC COMMENTS:  Members of the public may address the Task Force on matters that are within the Task Force’s jurisdiction and are not on today’s agenda.  Mr. Marty Mellera inquired as to how MUNI would fit into the work of the Task Force.  It was advised that MUNI would be a good communication channel for public education.


10.  ADJOURNMENT.  The meeting of the Biodiesel Access Task Force adjourned at 11:30 a.m.

** Copies of explanatory documents are available at (1) the Task Force office, 11 Grove Street, San Francisco, California between the hours of 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., (2) upon request to the Task Force Secretary, at telephone number 415-355-3709 or via e-mail at [email protected], or (3) on the meeting website as attachments to the agendas or meeting minutes.


Adopted: June 13, 2006

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