Seargent Bluff, Iowa, Mar 30, 2011 -- Ag Processing Inc. of Omaha, Nebraska was recognized today in Sergeant Bluff, Iowa with a plaque from USDA Rural Development officials for its production of advanced biodiesel fuels. Making the presentation was USDA Rural Development State Directors Maxine Moul of Nebraska and Elsie Meeks of South Dakota and Area Director Theresa Jordison of Iowa.
“We are pleased to recognize Ag Processing Inc. for its contribution in producing more fuel from rural resources that will benefit the area in job creation, provide a new source of income for ag producers and bring dollars to the area that may be spent locally,” said Moul.
In January 2011, Ag Processing, Inc. in Omaha, Nebraska received payment of $492,319 based on eligible production of advanced biodiesel from soybean oil produced in its Sergeant Bluff, Iowa and St. Joseph, Missouri facilities.
Authorized under Section 9005 of the Farm Bill, the Bioenergy Program for Advanced Biofuels authorizes payments to eligible producers to expand production of advanced biofuels. Payments are based on the amount of advanced biofuels a recipient produces from renewable biomass, other than corn kernel starch. Eligible examples include biofuels derived from cellulose, crop residue, animal, food and yard waste material, biogas (landfill and sewage waste treatment gas), vegetable oil and animal fat. To find out more about the program click here. The producer payments are intended to provide a financial incentive to biorefineries – a necessary step towards meeting the nation's renewable energy needs.
Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced last week that USDA is seeking applications to increase the production and use of renewable energy sources. Funding is available from three USDA Rural Development renewable energy programs authorized by the Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 2008 (Farm Bill).
"This funding will create green jobs and help America become more energy self-sufficient." Vilsack said. “These investments will help spur new technologies that will enable us to reduce reliance on fossil fuels and build a strong renewable energy industry in rural America that will enable our nation to ‘out-innovate’ its competitors."
USDA is accepting applications for loan guarantees in the Biorefinery Assistance Program, Repowering Assistance Program, and the Bioenergy Program for Advanced Biofuels. Details on how to apply are available in the March 11, 2011 Federal Register, page 13351.
USDA's Biorefinery Assistance Program provides loan guarantees to develop and construct commercial-scale biorefineries or to retrofit existing facilities using eligible technology for the development of advanced biofuels.
The Repowering Assistance Program is designed to encourage the use of renewable biomass as a replacement fuel source for fossil fuels used to process heat or power in the operation of eligible biorefineries (those biorefineries in existence on June 18, 2008 -- the date the 2008 Farm Bill was enacted). Eligible project costs will be only for project related construction costs for repowering improvements associated with the equipment, installation, engineering, design, site plans, associated professional fees, permits and financing fees.
For more information on the programs and application process in Nebraska, contact Deb Yocum (402) 437-5554. In Iowa, Shannon Chase at (515) 284-4663 and in South Dakota, contact Ken Lynch at (605) 352-1100.
USDA, through its Rural Development mission area, administers and manages more than 40 housing, business and community infrastructure and facility programs through a network of national state and local offices. Agency programs are designed to improve the economic stability of rural communities, businesses, residents, farmers and ranchers and improve the quality of life in rural America. Rural Development has an existing portfolio of more than $146 billion in loans and loan guarantees.