Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced today that USDA is making $5.6 million in grants to 220 producers across the nation to support the production of advanced biofuels, and is awarding more than $4 million in additional grants that will advance the bioeconomy and reduce the nation’s dependence on foreign oil.
“Producing advanced biofuel is a major component of the drive to take control of America’s energy future by developing domestic, renewable energy sources,” Vilsack said. “These resources represent the Obama Administration’s commitment to support an ‘all-of-the-above’ energy strategy that seeks to build a robust bio-based economy. Investments in biofuels will also help create jobs and further diversify the economy in our rural communities.”
Michigan’s recipients are:
· Brook View Dairy, LLC, in Kent County received $521 to support its anaerobic digester.
· Fremont Community Digester, LLC, in Newago County received $895 to support its anaerobic digester.
· Kirtland Products, LLC, in Charlevoix County received $761 to support its wood pellet production.
· Michigan Wood Fuels, LLC, in Allegan County received $1,913 to support its wood pellet production.
The funding for producers announced today is being provided through USDA’s Advanced Biofuel Payment Program, which was established in the 2008 Farm Bill. Under this program, payments are made to eligible producers based on the amount of advanced biofuel produced from renewable biomass, other than corn kernel starch. Examples of eligible feedstocks include but are not limited to: crop residue; animal, food and yard waste; vegetable oil; and animal fat.
“With our diverse agricultural base including our vast forestry, Michigan is uniquely suited to expanding our advanced biofuels industry and help secure our energy future,” said USDA Rural Development State Director for Michigan James J. Turner.
Through the Advanced Biofuel Payment Program, USDA supports the research, investment and infrastructure necessary to build a strong biofuel industry that creates jobs and broadens the range of feedstocks used to produce renewable fuel. USDA has made more than $280 million in payments to more than 350 producers (more than 3,100 total payments) in 47 states and territories since the program’s inception. These payments have supported the production of more than 5.8 billion gallons of advanced biofuel and the equivalent of more than 58 billion kilowatt hours of electric energy.
Also today, USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) announced the award of fiscal year 2014 grants through three other programs supporting bioenergy initiatives.
The National Biodiesel Board and Regents of the University of Idaho received $768,000 and $192,000 respectively, through the Biodiesel Fuel Education Program. The program was established to stimulate biodiesel consumption and the development of a biodiesel infrastructure. The funded education and outreach activities will raise awareness of biodiesel fuel use among governmental and private entities that operate vehicle fleets and the public. Funded projects also focus on educational programs supporting advances in infrastructure, technology transfer, fuel quality, fuel safety and increasing feedstock production.
View the list of producers receiving payments here. (Payments of $500 or less are not listed.)
President Obama’s historic investments in rural America have made our rural communities stronger. Under his leadership, these investments in housing, community facilities, businesses and infrastructure have empowered rural America to continue leading the way – strengthening America’s economy, small towns and rural communities.