USDA Offers Biomass and Bioenergy Funding

Cindy Zimmerman

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today announced that Fiscal Year 2009 funding is once again available again for three USDA Farm Bill programs to promote increased production of biomass and bioenergy. Applications for the Biorefinery Assistance Program, which uses loan guarantees to develop, construct, and retrofit commercial-scale biorefineries, must be received by June 1, 2010. Applications are also being accepted for …

Audio, bioenergy, biofuels, biomass, Ethanol, Ethanol News, USDA

Biofuels and Conservation Achievable with Biomass

John Davis

Getting energy from the land and practicing good conservation are not mutually exclusive. A federal ag deartment researcher says we can have both through using biomass. USDA researcher Doug Karlen, who works at the Agricultural Research Service’s National Soil Tilth Lab in Ames, Iowa, told attendees of the recent USDA Outlook Forum that conservation and energy from biomass can be …

biomass, Government, USDA

USDA Guarantees Loan for GA Wood Ethanol Plant

Cindy Zimmerman

A Colorado-based firm with a planned biorefinery located near Soperton, Georgia is the recipient of a loan guaranteed by USDA Rural Development to make cellulosic biofuel from wood chips, according to a USDA announcement. The finalized deal with Range Fuels was first announced last year and represents the first ever loan guarantee by USDA to a commercial-scale cellulosic biofuel plant. …

Cellulosic, Ethanol, Ethanol News, USDA

USDA & EPA Called to Update Climate Change Analysis

John Davis

Questions by the Secretary of Agriculture himself about the USDA’s and EPA’s climate change analysis has prompted the two ranking members of the U.S. Senate and House Ag Committees to ask questions as well. U.S. Senator Saxby Chambliss (R-Ga.) and U.S. Representative Frank Lucas (R-Okla.) have sent a letter to Secretary Tom Vilsack, asking him about his apparent lack of …

Government, USDA

Energy From Cows Could Reduce Emissions

Cindy Zimmerman

Producing more energy from cow manure could help reduce greenhouse gas emissions. At the climate summit in Copenhagen, U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced an agreement with U.S. dairy producers to accelerate adoption of innovative manure to energy projects on American dairy farms. “This historic agreement, the first of its kind, will help us achieve the ambitious goal of drastically …

biogas, Environment, USDA

USDA Responds To EPA’s Postponement of E15 Waiver

Joanna Schroeder

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack has responded to the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) postponement of the E15 Waiver request. In a statement issued by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), Vilsack said, “We are very encouraged that the results of the tests of E15 in newer model cars have been positive. The Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) movement towards developing an …

Ethanol, Ethanol News, Government, USDA

Corn Crop Still Strong and Good for Ethanol

Cindy Zimmerman

Even though USDA lowered its forecast for 2009 corn production in the latest report out today due to lower yields, farmers are still expected to see record yields and production is still expected to be the second highest on record. Corn production is forecast at 12.9 billion bushels, down 1 percent from last month but 7 percent higher than 2008. …

corn, Ethanol, Ethanol News, Farming, USDA

Soybean-based Biodiesel Back in the Black

John Davis

It looks like soybean-based biodiesel is returning to profitability. This article from Biodiesel Magazine says the USDA-funded Agricultural Marketing Resource Center model shows that a hypothetical, soy biodiesel plant has reversed a six-month trend of losses and would now be operating in the black. The overwhelming impact of soybean oil prices, which amount to close to 90 percent of the …

Biodiesel, USDA

USDA Official Will Tour Iowa Biofuels Industry

Cindy Zimmerman

USDA Deputy Secretary Dr. Kathleen Merrigan will get some first hand knowledge of Iowa’s ethanol industry during a tour scheduled for October 20. During her visit, Dr. Merrigan will learn about ethanol production, utilization of co-products and biodiesel research. Merrigan will first visit Lincolnway Energy, a 50-million gallon per year ethanol plant with a corn oil extraction process. Next, she …

Biodiesel, Distillers Grains, Ethanol, Ethanol News, USDA

USDA Loan to Help Green Rebuilding Greensburg, KS

John Davis

Greensburg, Kansas, literally destroyed by a tornado in May, 2007, is getting some help from the government to have a green energy source supply the power for the town as it continues to rebuild. The USDA has announced a $17.4 million loan to Greensburg Wind Farm, LLC, to provide financing for the 10 wind turbine project that will supply power …

USDA, Wind