02.13 Approved Minutes






TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 13, 2007, 11:00 A.M.







TASK FORCE MEMBERS:  VOTING:  Eric Bowen (Chair), Karri Ving, Richard Berman, Two At Large Members-Vacant





1.      CALL TO ORDER AND ROLL CALL.  The Biodiesel Marine Committee meeting convened at 11:05 a.m.  Present:  Members Bowen, Berman, and Ving. 


2.      DISCUSSION AND ACTION:  Approval of the December 12, 2006 Marine Committee Draft Regular Meeting Minutes.  Upon Motion by Chair Bowen and second by Member Ving, the December 12, 2006 Marine Committee Meeting Minutes were approved without objection. (Explanatory Document:  December 12, 2006 Approved Meeting Minutes).


3.      INFORMATIONAL REPORT:  California Air Resources Board Biodiesel Meeting on 2007 Biodiesel Standards.


Chair Bowen reported on key elements of the meeting as follows.  The Air Resources Board (ARB) has published a Draft Biodiesel Policy (available on the ARB website) that allows B20 use without restrictions in California for a period of time while additional studies on NOx emissions are completed.  In order to get a better understanding of the true NOx picture, they will continue to allow blends above B20 to be used with the Department of Measurement Standards variance program.  It was stated that this meeting was the second public meeting where the draft policy was discussed, and a final policy has not yet been adopted. 


Chair Bowen advised that historically, the Air Resources Board has not been receptive to biodiesel due to concerns with NOx implications.  For approximately the last 1 ½ to 2 years, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory and the Navy have been doing tests to determine whether the original data from the late 1990s that showed that NOx was increased as a result of biodiesel use was accurate.  It turns out that the data was not the complete picture of how the NOx emission profile really is, and new data seems to show that in most cases in at least in blends of B20 and down, there is no increase in NOx emissions.   


The main complaint from the public came from British Petroleum who stated that California should adopt a biodiesel standard rather than accept the ASTM standard and had voiced their concern with quality standards.  ARB responded that their job is to regulate emissions, not fuel.  Chair Bowen reported that ARB wants to push this forward as a result of new data and pressure from the Governor, but they are getting a lot of pressure from the petroleum industry that wants to slow biodiesel’s penetration into the fuel market. 


Member Ving reported that the Automobile Manufacturers Association made a comment at the meeting that the use of biodiesel does not necessarily void warranties.


Public Comment:  Mr. Joe Burgard, Red and White Fleet asked whether the ARB would be regulating biodiesel or developing quality standards for B20 blends.  Chair Bowen stated that the ARB would be giving tentative support for B20 blends and down.  It was advised that the ARB regulates biodiesel blends of 50% or down to meet ARB diesel regulations, but if the fuel is above 50% then they do not have regulatory authority.  It was advised that ARB regulates fuel from an emissions standpoint, but is not charged with consumer protection regulation.  The Department of Measurement Standards regulates consumer protection in that it makes sure that fuel is compatible with engines.  Chair Bowen advised that there is a bill in Sacramento proposed by Senator Florez to clarify what California standards for biodiesel should be.  It was stated that the industry would like California to adopt ASTM D6751 and prefers that the State of California work with the ASTM Committee to improve that standard rather than adopt a separate California specific standard. 


Member Berman inquired about the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) report findings.  Chair Bowen discussed the EPA draft report published in 1998 that showed that B100 had a 10% NOx increase based on research by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, universities, and others.  The National Renewable Energy Laboratory and the US Navy have conducted new studies running different blends of biodiesel, and it showed that in some cases depending on the engine cycle and type of biodiesel used, NOx stayed the same, went up 10% or down by 10%.  On average if you ran a B20 blend, the increase or decrease was NOx neutral.  Studies should be available on the National Renewable Energy Laboratory and the Navy’s websites.


Public Comment:  Mr. Michael Gersick, Gersick and Associates, inquired whether the biodiesel industry has provided input into Senator Florez’s draft bill.  Chair Bowen discussed a non-profit foundation in Santa Monica sponsored by Julia Roberts that is focused on a state mandate that all school buses should run on biodiesel B20 and above.  It was stated that Senator Florez is interested in this organizations’ work and has introduced seven bills to address all aspects of biodiesel.  Assistance would be required from the industry to promote the bill. Chair Bowen stated that the California Biodiesel Alliance is currently drafting a paper on its position, and that the National Biodiesel Board would probably do so in the future.  Mr. Gersick asked if the industry is speaking through the California Biodiesel Alliance.  Chair Bowen stated that was the objective.


4.      INFORMATIONAL REPORT:  Environmental Protection Agency Biodiesel Activities as it Relates to Marine Applications.

SPEAKER:  Mr. Olof Hansen (tentative speaker)


This item was not heard at this time.  Continued to the Call of the Chair.


5.      DISCUSSION:  Marine Committee Goals and Milestones.

SPEAKER:  Eric Bowen, Chair


Member Ving recommended the following goals and milestones:


·         Establishing an access point and identifying two or three specific sites for installation of a fuel pump for the 2007 calendar year to present to the Board.

·         Identify what users would be able to access the sites in terms of capacity.

·         Provide more recognition to biodiesel users.

·         Involve the public and business community by supplying more information on the Marine Biodiesel webpage that citizens could access on what the City’s position is, what industries such as Red and White Fleet are doing to promote biodiesel, and to provide links to informational websites, e.g. the Boaters Handbook.

·         Identify marine application biodiesel issues/concerns and specifically address the issues.

·         Update the new Boater’s Handbook to distribute publicly and publish on the website.

·         Sponsor workshops that would combine San Francisco Biodiesel Cooperative and Berkeley Oasis’s experiences.

·         Outreach to fleet managers who are not using biodiesel.


Member Berman recommended that the Biodiesel Access Task Force work on the original goal of making biodiesel accessible to users and for the Marine Subcommittee to make biodiesel accessible to marine applications.  It was reported that the Port’s Environmental Coordinating Committee has compiled an annotated summary of the various Port mandates, ordinances, resolutions and proposals.  Member Berman indicated that the Committee has embraced biodiesel conceptually and would like to make biodiesel available at the waterfront by providing a marine fueling station whether at Pier 47 or elsewhere through a possible Request for Qualifications (RFQ) process.   Another goal suggested would be to tap into behavior change lessons that have been learned by agencies such as West Coast Diesel Collaborative and the Department of the Environment.




Chair Bowen added the following recommendations:


·         Make sure that at least one B20 or B100 pump is up and running in San Francisco by the end of the year. 

·         Identify dock, barge, and truck fueling and have all available in San Francisco so whatever distribution style the end user wants, the Committee has facilitated access.

·         Consider whether the Committee should recommend fueling stations out of San Francisco’s jurisdiction, e.g. Richmond.

·         Educate the marine community on options for fueling

·         Committee to research who is doing the barge fueling, offering biodiesel as an option, publicizing the availability, and to focus on other distribution methods other than pump.


Summary of goals and milestones:



                              Dock, truck, and barge fueling.  Encourage fueling out of jurisdiction?

                                          Truck fueling—gather information

                                          Barge fueling—who is doing barge fueling?

                                          Identify two or three sites for dock fueling


Continued to the next meeting to discuss further



                              Public Information on marine use of biodiesel – website.

                              Updated Boater’s Handbook.

                              Information on fuel access.

                              Sponsoring Workshops.

                              Highlighting possible examples of biodiesel use on the Bay.

Survey diesel users and identify concerns of fleet managers as to why they are not using biodiesel (Ving).

Marine engine manufacturers.

Utilize the opening day for boaters on the bay.


Public Comment:  Ms. Teri Shore, Friends of the Earth offered to assist with the Boater’s Handbook, the workshops, and would provide contacts for the Ferry companies.


Public Comment:  Mr. Joe Burgard, Red and White Fleet agreed that the basis for the Task Force is to provide access to biodiesel and stated that providing additional public information would be helpful.   Mr. Burgard identified access points for truck, barge, and dock fueling, small scale dock fueling and large commercial dock fueling.  A discussion was held on the locations of recreational boaters and their method of fueling.  Consumers of truck and barge fueling were identified. It was advised that Pier 47 serves the fishing fleet and some of the cruise and pilot boats and is the existing access point for most commercial usage.  Gashouse Marina Cove was identified as the main access point for recreational boaters.  Mr. Burgard recommended that additional information and education be disseminated to the public, that the Boater’s Handbook be updated and made more concise, and outreach should be done to marine engine manufacturers.


Public Comment:  Mr. Michael Gersick, Gersick and Associates agreed that biodiesel users who have made the investment and commitment and have encouraged the rest of the industry to emulate their behavior should be commended.  It was suggested that the Task Force outreach to industry leaders and offer workshops.  Mr. Gersick asked Member Berman if there are legal prohibitions or a precedent for the Port Authority to impose conditional use restrictions on leases so that all future fueling operations would be restricted to certain fuel classes.  Member Berman advised that it would require a sanction from the Port Commission, and the Port may not want to prohibit other fuel users from future leases.  Mr. Gersick stated that fuels may be going through a regulatory phase as a result of AB32 and it may be an opportunity for agencies to review their fueling priorities.


Public Comment:  Ms. Teri Shore reported that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency process has been delayed and is hoping that the rule making process will begin in Spring 2007.  It was stated that the state process has also been delayed and no workshops were held in the past two months.   Ms. Shore advised that Friends of the Earth would be introducing a new Clean Ferry Bill standard for new vessels, which is not a fuel standard, but an emissions standard.  It was stated that it is conceivable to add to that bill or introduce a separate bill addressing biodiesel.  Mr. Burgard recommended asking Senator Florez to work with the California Environmental Protection Agency to work through regulatory issues. 


6.      DISCUSSION:  Review of 2005 West Coast Diesel Emission Reductions Collaborate Grant for the Installation of Biodiesel Pump at Pier 47 and Discussion of New Grant Opportunities.   

SPEAKER:  Eric Bowen, Chair 


Chair Bowen discussed Blue Water’s grant to put in a biodiesel pump at Pier 47 that was not successful and expressed hope that the $25 million Air Resources Board New Alternative Fuel Incentive Grant Program published February 9 would provide an opportunity for funding.  It was stated that there is $7 million allocated to fuel infrastructure (generally for projects to install alternative fuel infrastructure for general public or fleet use), but they may not allow the installation of the pump as their point system is focused on E85.  Chair Bowen stated that he would follow up with the ARB, but that it would be difficult to do something other than a B20 project on the Bay given that the largest users want a B20 product, not B100.


Chair Bowen asked Ms. Shore if the Air Quality Management District (AQMD) or USEPA funding could be a possible grant source.  Ms. Shore advised that the USEPA West Coast Collaborative Grants may be possible, but the grants are not that big.  It was stated that EPA is looking for regional types of projects and are supportive of biodiesel.  Ms. Shore advised that a Request for Proposal (RFP) is supposed to be issued soon and agreed to set up a conference call meeting to discuss the grant process.  Member Berman recommended that the Port endorse the grant application before submittal.


Public Comment:  Mr. Gersick stated that his firm is interested in the adoption of biodiesel in the region and is talking with various local organizations, among them the Bay Area Council.  It was stated that the Bay Area Council has scheduled an Energy Committee meeting in which a discussion would be held on biodiesel on the Bay.   Mr. Gersick recommended that the Task Force integrate their work with the Bay Area Council’s work and asked for suggestions on who from the state level could attend to focus on the issue. 


7.      INFORMATION:  New Business.  Member Ving distributed a draft letter of recognition to the Red and White Fleet for their use of biodiesel on the Bay, and requested that the City seal be placed on the letter, that it be posted on the Biodiesel website, and that a linke to the Red and White Fleet be included. Ms. Fish, Task Force Secretary advised that the letter can be placed as an Action Item for the March agenda for the Committee to adopt.


Public Comment:  Ms. Shore recommended that the Mayor be included in the commendation.  Chair Bowen suggested that the letter be co-signed by the Mayor and Marine Committee.  Member Ving would present the draft letter to Biodiesel Access Task Force Member Mackin, Mayor’s Office of Community Development representative, at the next meeting during New Business.


Public Comment:  Mr. Burgard stated that Mr. Tom Escher would be pleased to see the letter to the Red and White Fleet.


8.      DISCUSSION:  Future Agenda Items.  Chair Bowen stated that appointment of vacant seats would be on the next meeting agenda and recommended Ms. Teri Shore and Mr. Joe Burgard as members.


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.  There was no public comment at this time.


10.  ADJOURNMENT.  The Marine Committee meeting adjourned at 12:40 p.m.


Respectfully submitted by,


Monica Fish, Task Force Secretary


** 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:  March 13, 2007


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