NEBRASKA LEGISLATURE

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Sen. Tim Gragert

Sen. Tim Gragert

District 40

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WASHINGTON, Feb. 28, 2020 – Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue today announced that the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) intends to make available up to $100 million in competitive grants for activities designed to expand the sale and use of renewable fuels.

The Department plans to publish application deadlines and other program information in the Federal Register this spring.

USDA will make the grant funds available under the Higher Blends Infrastructure Incentive Program (HBIIP). Its purpose is to increase significantly the sale and use of higher blends of ethanol and biodiesel by expanding the infrastructure for renewable fuels derived from U.S. agricultural products. The program is also intended to encourage a more comprehensive approach to marketing higher blends by sharing the costs related to building out biofuel-related infrastructure.

Grants will be available to help transportation fueling and biodiesel distribution facilities convert to higher-ethanol and biodiesel blends by sharing the costs related to installing, retrofitting and/or upgrading fuel storage, dispenser pumps, related equipment and infrastructure.

USDA plans to make available approximately $86 million for implementation activities related to higher blends of fuel ethanol, and approximately $14 million for implementation activities related to higher blends of biodiesel.

For additional information, see page 11946 of the Feb. 28, 2020, Federal Register.  In Nebraska, contact Energy Coordinator Jeff Carpenter at 402-437-5554 or jeff.carpenter@usda.gov.

USDA will encourage applications that will support recommendations made in the Report to the President of the United States from the Task Force on Agriculture and Rural Prosperity (PDF, 5.4 MB) to help improve the quality of life in rural America. Applicants are encouraged to consider projects that provide measurable results in helping rural communities build robust and sustainable economies through strategic investments in infrastructure, partnerships and innovation. Key strategies include:

  • Achieving e-Connectivity for Rural America
  • Developing the Rural Economy
  • Harnessing Technological Innovation
  • Supporting a Rural Workforce
  • Improving Quality of Life

In February 2020, Secretary Perdue unveiled the Agricultural Innovation Agenda, a department-wide initiative to align resources, programs and research to position American agriculture to better meet future global demands. Investing in the availability of innovative fuels for American consumers supports this vision while we fulfill our motto to “Do Right and Feed Everyone.”

Sen. Tim Gragert

District 40
Room #11th Floor
P.O. Box 94604
Lincoln, NE 68509
Phone: (402) 471-2801
Email: tgragert@leg.ne.gov
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