Health Canada recently released a risk assessment finding that the production, distribution, storage and use of biodiesel fuels poses no greater environmental or human health risk than conventional ultralow-sulfur diesel (ULS D) fuels. Published in the July 14, 2012, edition of the Canada Gazette, the assessment considered a range of scenarios for the use of ULS D fuel blends containing 5 or 20 percent biodiesel, concluding that their use “is expected to result in very minimal air quality and health benefits/risks” that diminish over time.

The assessment came after the government amended the Renewable Fuels Regulations to include a 2 percent renewable content requirement on diesel and heating oil. The regulations do not specify the use of biodiesel fuel but permit the use of any liquid renewable fuel produced from a designated feedstock.