The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is offering up to $100 million in grants to support and expand biofuel infrastructure, the agency announced.
Under its Biofuels Infrastructure Partnership, the USDA will award competitive grants, matched by state and private contributions, to expand infrastructure for the distribution of higher blends of renewable fuel. States that offer funding equal to or greater than the amount provided will receive higher consideration for grant funds.
The partnership funding aims to double the number of fuel pumps capable of supplying higher blends of renewable fuel to consumers, such as E-15 and E-85. This is intended to expand markets for farmers and help them diversify their rural energy portfolios, support rural economic growth and the jobs that come with it, and ultimately give consumers more affordable options at the pump, according to the USDA.
A typical gasoline pump delivers fuel that contains a maximum of 10 percent ethanol, which limits the amount of renewable energy most consumers can purchase at the pump.
The agency will fund the grants through the USDA's Commodity Credit Corporation, which was created to stabilize, support, and protect farm income and prices.