JEFFERSON CITY, MO. -- State and local lung association groups are recommending biodiesel use in response to findings in the State of the Air Report 2009 produced by their national organization. During the American Lung Association of the District of Columbia's recent (ALADC) news conference, Professor of Environmental and Occupational Medicine at the Howard University College of Medicine and Vice Chairman-Elect of ALADC Dr. Bailus Walker Jr. stressed the extensive research that supports biodiesel's benefits for human health.

"Give your support to any effort to advance technology that emit lower levels of pollution like biodiesel," said Dr. Walker. He also showed attendees the Journal of Inhalation and Toxicology published issue on biodiesel that resulted from a summit the ALADC and the American Lung Association of the Upper Midwest convened in 2006.

National Biodiesel Board member Ben Wootton of Keystone Biodiesel attended the ALADC news conference. The company will be supplying fuel for the District of Columbia, which is preparing to switch to a biodiesel blend. Wootton, an asthma sufferer, became interested in working in the biodiesel industry after learning about biodiesel's air quality benefits.

Biodiesel is a sustainable, renewable alternative to diesel fuel that reduces most regulated emissions substantially, including carbon monoxide, particulate matter and unburned hydrocarbons.

"With biodiesel, America can produce its own cleaner-burning diesel alternative that helps clean up the air with existing vehicles," said Joe Jobe, National Biodiesel Board CEO. "Biodiesel is a natural solution to help achieve lung associations' goals to reduce air pollution and safeguard our health. We are grateful for their support and applaud their vision for a cleaner future."

Biodiesel reduces air toxins by 90 percent, and significantly reduces the compounds linked to cancer. Breathing the smoke from diesel exhaust can trigger an asthma attack. The use of biodiesel reduces particulate matter up to 40 percent.

Biodiesel contains no petroleum, but it can be blended at any level with petroleum diesel. Biodiesel is the only alternative fuel to have fully completed the health effects testing requirements of the Clean Air Act.

The American Lung Association in Minnesota described the State of the Air report as a "wake up" call to further embrace fuels like biodiesel and is also participating in May 1 activities to kick off Minnesota's increase to a B5 biodiesel blend. The report named Fargo, North Dakota as the cleanest city in the nation, and the lung association there gave credit to steps like biodiesel use.

The National Biodiesel Board cooperates with lung associations to ensure that they are aware of biodiesel's health benefits to the communities they serve.

SOURCE: National Biodiesel Board.