Department provides $15.5M for advanced biofuels, electricity projects

Source: Amanda Peterka, E&E reporter • Posted: Friday, September 13, 2013

The Agriculture Department announced the delivery today of $15.5 million to biofuel producers in the next-generation fuel sector.

Announced at a biofuels industry conference in Omaha, Neb., the awards are going to 188 advanced biofuel producers under the Advanced Biofuel Payment Program.

The program assists fuel producers using crop residue; animal, food and yard waste; vegetable oil; animal fats; and other similar feedstocks. One recipient, American Biodiesel Inc., will use its $47,186 grant to make fuel from canola, soybean oil and other materials.

Since its launch by the 2008 farm bill, the program has provided $211 million to 290 fuel producers.

USDA today also announced that it will provide $136 million in loan guarantees to projects in seven states that seek to improve electric service for rural customers. The announcement, made at a regional meeting of the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association in Minneapolis, includes more than $5 million for smart grid projects that provide information about electricity use and about $3 million for improving electric service for American Indians.

The Central Texas Electric Cooperative Inc. is receiving the largest loan, a $25 million grant to build 589 miles of electric distribution line and make other improvements. The cooperative will receive $865,500 for smart-grid projects.