Vergara to retire as Clean Fuels’ director of state governmental affairs by end of September
Clean Fuels Alliance America announced Sept. 8 that Floyd Vergara, Clean Fuels’ director of state governmental affairs, plans to retire at the end of September.
Vergara has an accomplished career in the clean-fuels industry with nearly four decades of experience.
He currently manages the West Coast office in Sacramento, California, and leads the team responsible for government affairs in all 50 states.
Prior to joining Clean Fuels in 2019, Vergara served as chief and assistant chief in the industrial strategies and research divisions at California Air Resources Board.
During his career at CARB, he oversaw key climate-change and air-quality programs, including the state’s Low Carbon Fuel Standard.
He continued that decarbonization strategy with Clean Fuels both as director of state regulatory affairs and then director of state governmental affairs.
Throughout Vergara’s tenure, the state-affairs team helped establish and strengthen policies such as California’s LCFS, Oregon’s similar Clean Fuels Program and Washington’s new Clean Fuel Standard.
In California, the biodiesel and renewable diesel market has grown from 855 million gallons in 2020 to 1.67 billion gallons in 2022 (on track to reach nearly 1.9 billion gallons in 2023), a 95 percent increase; in Oregon, clean fuels have experienced a 30 percent growth in the same span
After years of hard work, the state-affairs team assisted in establishing the Clean Fuel Standard in Washington state in 2021, which is expected to grow the market for alternative fuels like biodiesel and renewable diesel similar to California and Oregon
There has been tremendous growth in all feedstocks used to produce clean fuels. For example, soy-based biodiesel and renewable diesel grew in California from 3 million gallons in 2020 to 247 million gallons in 2022 (on track to reach 324 million gallons in 2023)
Fuels made from used cooking oil, tallow and inedible corn oil have experienced similar growth
“The talented state-affairs team at Clean Fuels continues to work hard to establish similar programs in New York, New Jersey, New Mexico, Colorado and other states pursuing transportation-decarbonization strategies,” Vergara said. “But it’s not just about low-carbon fuel programs—our efforts are multipronged, and we continue working hard to deploy and expand Bioheat® fuel use in the Northeast and incentive programs for our fuels in the Midwest.”
Under the direction of Vergara, Trinity Consultants conducted the landmark Health Benefits Study.
The research quantified health impacts associated with switching to B100, or 100 percent biodiesel, from petroleum diesel and confirmed what this industry has known for years—biodiesel has proven positive health benefits.
“Floyd’s leadership and experience has made a tremendous impact on the acceptance and growth of our fuels,” said Clean Fuels CEO Donnell Rehagen. “We are fortunate to have had Floyd’s level of commitment to helping states pursue aggressive decarbonization goals and are pleased that he will continue to contribute to our efforts going forward in a senior-advisory capacity.”
Vergara said the clean-fuels industry has a positive narrative that is unmatched by any other fuel.
“I’m proud of and very thankful to Clean Fuels, its members and partner soy associations for what we’ve been able to accomplish with their support at the state level to further that narrative,” he said. “I look forward to seeing even more success as I head into retirement after a long career in the low-carbon fuels space.”
Upon Vergara’s departure, Jeff Earl, director of state regulatory affairs with Clean Fuels, will assume the position of director of state governmental affairs for the organization.
Earl will continue to serve the industry from Clean Fuels Alliance America’s headquarters in Jefferson City, Missouri.