Assemblyman Lopez To Hold Tour Of Biodiesel Facilities

Aims to explore benefits and potential of biodiesel production and use
November 13, 2007
Assemblyman Pete Lopez (R,C,I – Schoharie) will be touring biodiesel facilities across the 127th Assembly District on Friday, November 16. The “self-drive” tour will include seven stops and will cross four counties. Those wishing to participate are welcome to attend all or a portion of the scheduled stops.

“This trip demonstrates my continued commitment to advancing opportunities for alternative energy in the region,” said Lopez. “I see the potential for reducing reliance on foreign oil and strengthening our local economy. All of us need to be engaged on this critical issue.”

The goal of the tour is to gain a stronger understanding of biodiesel production and usage. Individuals on the tour will visit a variety of locations to gain greater insights on the potentials of biodiesel as an alternative fuel source. Special emphasis will be given to discussing the financial and regulatory challenges facing biodiesel as an emerging industry. Anyone who wishes to attend is free to follow for the entire tour or at any stops along the way.

“Advancing alternate forms of energy is imperative to our future,” said Lopez. “We must do everything we can to increase awareness and usage of reliable, renewable energy sources.”

“With the help of legislators like Assemblyman Pete Lopez we plan to create a complete energy package locally produced from agriculture which will reduce energy costs while stimulating the local economy,” said Bradd Vickers, President of the Chenango County Farm Bureau. “To become less dependent on foreign oil, this will require a commitment from local producers, retailers and government.”

Assemblyman Lopez has supported legislation to encourage use of alternative fuels, including the New York State Emerging Biofuel Productions Act, which would have provided tax credits and incentives for the production of biofuel. He also helped sponsor a bill that would have extended the allowance of credits related to the cost associated with replacement or renovation of a home heating system and clean heating fuel. However, the Assemblyman noted that the bill was vetoed due to a lack of a cohesive statewide focus on alternate energy. “If we are serious about this issue, we need to put our money where our mouths are. We need to create tax incentives, subsidies and regulatory flexibility in order to encourage more widespread use of these emerging technologies.”

A number of public and private organizations will be supporting the tour including producers and distributors of biodiesel. Members of the agricultural community will also be actively involved in the day’s activities.

“Biodiesel shows great potential for helping farmers and solving problems,” said Lee Pratt an Agricultural Marketing Specialist from the Schoharie County Planning and Development board.

The itinerary of the tour will be as follows (please note that the tour will be starting at 9:30 a.m., earlier than previously planned):

  • 9:30 a.m. – 9:50: Maple Hill Farm– at 107 C. Crasper Road in Cobleskill. There they will tour biodiesel production plant.
  • 10:15 – 10:50: SUNY Cobleskill, Knapp Hall, Room 202,where they will meet with Ken Ray from John Ray and Sons, Anne Meyers, President of SUNY Cobleskill and Lee Pratt of Schoharie County Planning and Development.
  • 11:30 – 11:45: Mirabito Station located at 10 Carbon St. in Oneonta. There attendees will have the opportunity to fill their cars up with biodiesel fuel.
  • Lunch at Brooks House of BBQ, located at 5560 State Highway 7, in Oneonta, until 1 p.m. (each participant will cover the cost of their own meal).
  • 1:30 p.m. – 1:45: Mirabito bulk facility at the industrial park located at 20 Winkler Rd. in Sidney.
  • 2:00 – 2:15: Creative Energy Group Biodiesel Processing Plant located at 5-7 Scott Street in Bainbridge.
  • 2:45 – 3:15: Chenango County Farm Bureau located at 6083 St. Highway 12N, Norwich. They will meet with Bradd Vickers, the president of the Chenango County Farm Bureau.
  • Finally, they will arrive at Giff Foster farm and biodiesel micro plant located at 1349 Center Road in Plymouth at 3:30. The tour will conclude at 4 p.m.

“I am looking forward to learning more about and promoting alternate energy in the 127th Assembly District,” Lopez stated. “The emerging fuel industry holds a world of potential. We must act now and work to spread knowledge of these energy sources.”

Again, individuals are welcome to attend all, or a portion, of the scheduled stops. Please call Tatiana in Assemblyman Lopez’ Schoharie Office at (518) 295-7250 to confirm attendance and for directions.