Maine Biomass Plant Gets $500K USDA Grant

John Davis

A Maine-based power plant is getting $556,520 in U.S. Department of Agriculture grants. This article from BDN Maine says Athens Energy is getting the money to build a new biomass-fueled power generator that runs on wood waste from logging and timberland thinning operations. The USDA said the proposed Athens biomass plant would produce enough electricity to power about 5,409 homes. …

biomass, Solar, USDA

USDA Announces Funding for Biofuel Infrastructure

Cindy Zimmerman

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today announced that 21 states will receive grants through the Biofuel Infrastructure Partnership (BIP) to help provide access to more renewable fuels for America’s drivers. “The Biofuel Infrastructure Partnership is one approach USDA is using to aggressively pursue investments in American-grown renewable energy to create new markets for U.S. farmers and ranchers, help Americans save money …

Audio, Ethanol, Ethanol News, Retailers, USDA

USDA Report Shows Importance of Int’l Biofuel Trade

John Davis

A new government report says that while the U.S. is a major exporter of biofuels, it still imports biofuels in order to meet government mandates. The study from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Economic Research Service says some other countries are major exporters and domestic users, thanks to laws there that allow greater blending amounts. The ethanol blend wall in …

Biodiesel, biofuels, Ethanol, Ethanol News, Government, RFA, USDA

USDA Offers Incentives for Biomass for Energy

John Davis

Enrollment is underway for farmers and forest landowners to get financial assistance for growing new sources of biomass for energy or biobased products. This U.S.Department of Agriculture (USDA) news release says the money comes from the Biomass Crop Assistance Program (BCAP). Biomass energy facilities or groups of producers may submit proposals for new BCAP project areas. Proposals will be accepted …

bioenergy, biomass, USDA

USDA Predicts Big Corn and Soybean Crops

Cindy Zimmerman

USDA is forecasting the third largest corn crop on record and the second largest soybean crop in a new planted acreage update released today. U.S. growers are forecast to produce 13.7 billion bushels of corn this year, according to the report from USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS). That is actually a four percent decrease from last year’s production, but …

Audio, Biodiesel, biofuels, corn, Ethanol, Ethanol News, Soybeans, USDA

USDA Builds Rural Energy with Loans & Grants

John Davis

The U.S. Department of Agriculture is helping build renewable energy in rural areas. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced $63 million in loans and grants for 264 renewable energy and energy efficiency projects nationwide that USDA is supporting through its Rural Energy for America Program (REAP). “This funding will have far-reaching economic and environmental impacts nationwide, particularly in rural communities,” Vilsack …

Agribusiness, USDA

Despite Fewer Acres, Plenty of Corn for Ethanol

John Davis

The number of acres corn planted is down this year. But the National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) says there’s plenty of the crop for ethanol and all the other uses from the grain. Citing the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Acreage report, NCGA says total corn planting in the United States totals 88.9 million acres, the lowest planted acreage since …

Ag group, Agribusiness, corn, Ethanol, Ethanol News, Government, NCGA, USDA

Better Switchgrass Makes for Better Biofuel

John Davis

While switchgrass is seen as a good candidate for biofuels, the challenge has been producing it in the quantities of biomass yield to make it worth the effort. But this story from the American Society of Agronomy says researchers with the U.S. Department of Agriculture are looking at ways to make the plant more biofuel friendly. [Michael Casler, a research …

biofuels, Ethanol, Ethanol News, USDA

USDA Taking Apps for Biofuels Infrastructure Funding

Cindy Zimmerman

USDA’s Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC) is now accepting applications in 50 states, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico and Washington, D.C. for up to $100 million in grants under the Biofuels Infrastructure Partnership (BIP). The funding is to support the infrastructure needed to make more renewable fuel options available to American consumers. The Farm Service Agency will administer BIP. Through BIP, …

biofuels, blends, Ethanol, Ethanol News, USDA

USDA Funds 544 REAP Projects

Joanna Schroeder

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has awarded 544 renewable energy and energy efficiency projects more than $6.7 million as part of the Rural Energy for America Program (REAP). USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack made the announcement at the Snake River Brewing Company, in Jackson, Wyoming. The company received a $13,810 REAP grant to install a solar panel to generate energy …

biofuels, biomass, energy efficiency, Geothermal, Hydrogen, Renewable Energy, Solar, USDA, Wind