Energy, Ag Departments Announce $18 mill in Biofuels Grants

John Davis

Eighteen million dollars in government grants are up for grabs as the U.S. Departments of Agriculture and Energy announce solicitations for biomass research and development.

This press release from USDA’s web site says the money will go to researching and developing biomass-based products, biofuels, bioenergy and related processes:

Samuel Bodman“Making these funds available represents this Administration’s ongoing commitment to promoting clean energy technologies to help diversify our nation’s energy mix in an environmentally sensitive way,” Energy Secretary Samuel Bodman said. “I am hopeful that these projects will play a critical role in furthering our knowledge of how we can cost effectively produce more homegrown, bio-based products to help reduce our reliance on imported sources of energy.”

Sec. Mike Johanns“These grants are one of many steps we are taking to meet the President’s goals of reducing petroleum dependency,” Agriculture Secretary Mike Johanns said from South Dakota, where he was addressing the Western Governor’s Association. “They will fund essential research that not only will lead to the creation of new, sustainable energy sources, but also will create new uses and markets for agricultural products.”

The grants will go to four main areas: the development of technologies to convert cellulosic biomass into intermediaries for biobased fuels getting 45% of the money; product diversification receiving 30% percent) feedstock production, 20%; and analysis for strategic guidance getting 5%.

Each award won’t exceed $1 million. State and federal research agencies, national laboratories, private-sector groups and nonprofit organizations are eligible to submit their grant applications by July 11, 2007.

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