USDA providing $800M for Biofuel R&D and production

Dec. 13, 2021
A total of $100 million will go to refueling and distribution facilities for the development of related infrastructure

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) will provide $800 million to biofuel producers and for infrastructure development. This will include $700 million as economic relief for biofuel producers impacted by the pandemic and $100 million in grants for biofuels infrastructure, like blender pumps.

The USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack said, “As we continue to rebuild the nation’s economy, USDA is targeting resources and investments to improve the strength and resiliency of America’s sustainable fuel markets. The relief we’re announcing today will pave the way to economic recovery for America’s biofuel producers, stimulate a critical market for U.S. farmers and ranchers and move the country closer to President Biden’s goal of net-zero carbon emissions by 2050.”

 The USDA will make the $700 million available through its new Biofuel Producer Program authorized by the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act). The payments will help agricultural producers maintain and create viable markets for products used in biofuel production, like soybeans, corn and biomass. The payments given to the producers will depend on their market loss volume in 2020. This volume will be calculated by the amount of fuel produced in 2020 compared to the 2019 volumes.

 The USDA will provide $100 million to refueling and distribution facilities for the cost of retrofitting, installation or upgrading of biofuels infrastructure to ensure the availability of environmentally safe fuel containing bioethanol blends of E-15 and greater or biodiesel blends B-20 and greater.

 The grants announcement was made after the Environmental Protection Agency proposed actions setting biofuel volumes for years until 2022 and introducing regulatory changes to enhance the program objectives.