Vilsack announces aid to biofuels producers

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today announced that USDA will make up to $800 million available to support biofuel producers and infrastructure.

That includes $700 million to provide economic relief to biofuel producers and restore renewable fuel markets affected by the pandemic and $100 million to increase the sales and use of higher blends of bioethanol and biodiesel by expanding the infrastructure for renewable fuels derived from U.S. agricultural products.

“Under the leadership of President Biden and Vice President Harris, USDA is providing direct relief to the people of rural America who are still reeling from the economic impacts of the pandemic,” Vilsack said. “As we continue to rebuild the nation’s economy, USDA is targeting resources and investments to improve the strength and resiliency of America’s sustainable fuel markets. The relief we’re announcing today will pave the way to economic recovery for America’s biofuel producers, stimulate a critical market for U.S. farmers and ranchers and move the country closer to President Biden’s goal of net-zero carbon emissions by 2050.”

The Renewable Fuels Association thanked USDA for the aid.

“Ethanol producers are still struggling to recover from COVID-related market losses after what has been the most difficult and trying time in the industry’s history,” said RFA President and CEO Geoff Cooper. “At the peak of the pandemic, more than half of our nation’s ethanol capacity was idled. To this day, many plants remain offline or are operating at reduced output rates, and the pandemic has cost the industry well over $5 billion in lost revenue. We are grateful to USDA Secretary Vilsack and the Biden administration for finalizing this relief package to help our industry recover, as well as the additional infrastructure funding.”


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