Temple, Texas, Sep 30, 2011 -- Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack recently announced that USDA will make payments to more than 160 energy producers in 41 states to support and ensure the production and expansion of advanced biofuels.
"Renewable energy production will create tens of thousands of direct, American jobs; thousands more indirect jobs, and clean electricity to power millions of homes. The payments I am announcing represent the continuing commitment of the Obama administration to work with producers to provide the biofuel necessary to reduce our nation's dependence on foreign energy sources," Vilsack said. "The payments support America's growing advanced biofuel industry."
“As we continue to find ways to make America more energy independent, the projects this program supports will become more and more important,” said Paco Valentin, USDA Texas State Director. “Rural Development is pleased to offer assistance to the Texas producers who continue the advancement of biodiesel research and use.”
The payments are authorized under the Bioenergy Program for Advanced Biofuels (Section 9005 of the 2008 Farm Bill) and are made to eligible producers to support and ensure an expanding production of advanced biofuels. Payments are based on the amount of 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.
In Texas, nine recipients were chosen to receive $8.5 million in funding through the Bioenergy Program for Advanced Biofuels. Each recipient will use the funding to provide payments to producers to support and ensure an expanding production of Advanced Biofuel. The awarded plants convert animal fats, cottonseed, vegetable, and soybean oils, milo, and wheat starch to produce biodiesel or ethanol. Those awarded in Texas are Agribiofuels of Liberty County, Beacon Energy Corporation of Johnson County, Double Diamond Energy of Castro County, Green Earth Fuels of Harris County, Insight Equity in Tarrant County, Levelland/Hockley of Hockley County, Pacific Biodiesel Texas from Hill County, Port Neches in Jefferson County and White Energy to benefit Deaf Smith and Hale Counties.
USDA, through its Rural Development mission area, administers and manages housing, business and community infrastructure and facility programs through a national network of state and local offices. Rural Development has an existing portfolio of more than $155 billion in loans and loan guarantees. These 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.