USDA announces application periods for loan guarantee program

By Erin Voegele | July 26, 2016

The USDA is accepting applications for the Biorefinery, Renewable Chemical and Biobased Product Manufacturing Assistance Program. Formerly known as the Biorefinery Assistance Program and expanded under the 2014 Farm Bill, the program provides loan guarantees of up to $250 million to develop, construct and retrofit commercial-scale biorefineries and to develop renewable chemicals and biobased product manufacturing facilities.

"The bioeconomy is a catalyst for economic development in rural America, creating new jobs and providing new markets for farmers and ranchers," Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack. "Investing in the businesses and technologies that support the production of biofuels and biobased products is not only good for farm incomes. The whole economy benefits from a more balanced, diversified and consumer-friendly energy portfolio, less dependence on foreign oil and reduced carbon emissions."

According to the USDA, it has provided $844 million in loan commitments to 10 businesses under the program since the start of the Obama administration. Companies receiving these commitments are projected to produce 159 million gallons of advanced biofuels.

For the current announcement, the USDA will seek applications in two cycles. Applications for the first funding cycle are due Oct. 3. Applications for the second cycle are due April 3, 2017.

Additional information is available on the Federal Register website.