Henry Auer wrote an opinion editorial on Feb. 28, 2022, regarding Bioheat® Fuel that needs clarification.

The author’s misunderstanding of where biodiesel comes from misled readers to think that manufactures of Bioheat® Fuel –which turns things like bacon grease, animal fat, and soy bean oil into renewable fuel to heat your home– were also in the business of being farmers, which increases carbon emission and impacts the environment.

We are here to tell you that we are not farmers but rather forward-thinkers who are recycling and reusing products that would have otherwise ended up in landfills.

The oil that we use for our green, renewable, liquid fuel is a by-product of grown crops and cooking grease.

We are not growing crops for fuel. We are not raising animals for oil.

The soybean is used to feed livestock like cattle and chicken, which ultimately provide people with food. Eighty percent of the American soybean is the meal that goes to the raise livestock. The other 20 percent is oil that used to be thrown away into landfills before we started making it into fuels.

We now have found a use for that discarded by-product that produces heat for someone’s home in a renewable, clean way. Auer comments made it look like we were growing soybeans for fuel but we are not! We are actually using something that was a waste product and keeping it out of landfills.

He also implied that we were raising more animals so that we could turn the animal fat into biofuel. Again, this goes back to our first point that we are not farmers but rather recyclers. We only use fat from animals that would have been thrown away either at the butcher shop or in the kitchen. We are not raising animals, which Auer claimed, was adding methane gas to the atmosphere and creating global warming.

We use 500 million gallons of heating oil annually, and our industry supported a new law that will replace 250 million of those gallons with this renewable, green biodiesel fuel.

Homeowners will not need to pay tens of thousands of dollars to switch to electric heat pumps because with Bioheat® fuel, they will get all the carbon reductions that the law requires without any cost of updating and buying new equipment. Bioheat® works with what a majority of homeowners in Connecticut already have.

We hope to set the record straight so that people can make the right decision about the fuels they use and the economic and environmental costs associates with them.

Chris Herb is President and CEO of the Connecticut Energy Marketers Association.