October 19, 2018

USDA Awards $10 Million In Bio-Based Grants

The US Department of Agriculture (USDA) has awarded $10 million in bio-based grants with the hope that breakthroughs in the development of bio-fuels and bio-based products produced domestically will create sustainable regional systems, help create jobs and lead to energy independence. The goal of the projects is to help meet the Energy Independence and Security Act goal of 36 billion gallons per year of biofuels by 2022.

usdaart-tb “USDA and President Obama are committed to producing clean energy right here at home, to not only break our dependence on foreign oil, but also boost rural economies,” said USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack. “These projects will give us the scientific information needed to support biofuel production and create co-products that will enhance the overall value of a biobased economy. Today, with a strong and diversified U.S. agricultural sector, the American automobile industry has a greater incentive for expanding use of biobased products while supporting good-paying jobs here in the United States.”

The agency awarded the grants through its Agriculture and Food Research Initiative (AFRI). AFRI’s targeted areas bio-fuels and bio-products are those that can help reduce dependence on foreign oil, are compatible with existing agricultural systems and have a positive impact on the environment and rural areas.

Grants were awarded to projects in four areas: policy options for and impacts on regional biofuels production systems; impacts of regional bioenergy feedstock production systems on wildlife and pollinators; socioeconomic impacts of biofuels on rural communities; and environmental implications of direct and indirect changes in land use.


  1. Since I’m allergic to corn, and so are a lot of other people, I hope that the bio products will be made from something besides corn. We react to the corn ethanol, plastics, foods and additives, and everything else that is made from corn. The number of people allergic to corn is increasing at an alarming rate. Many babies and small childrent, as well as adults, are severely allergic to corn. Unfortunately, corn allergy is claimed to be rare to nonexistant, because the corn industry is very powerful, and the food companies don’t want to have to label corn ingredients and additives in their products.

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