Obama Announces $510M for Drop-In Aviation, Marine Biofuels

President Obama on Tuesday announced the U.S. Departments of Agriculture, Energy and Navy will invest up to $510 million over the next three years in partnership with the private sector to produce advanced drop-in aviation and marine biofuels.

Ramping up the use of advanced biofuels is a key component of the Administration’s energy security agenda, but the US lacks a manufacturing infrastructure to deliver it.

To accelerate production of bio-based jet and diesel fuels for military and commercial purposes, Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack, Secretary of Energy Steven Chu, and Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus developed a plan to jointly construct or retrofit several drop-in biofuel plants and refineries.

The investments by the three Departments will require cost sharing from private industry of at least a one-to-one match.

The partnership aims to reduce U.S. reliance on foreign oil and create jobs while positioning American companies and farmers to be global leaders in advanced biofuels production.

"These pioneer plants will demonstrate advanced technologies to produce infrastructure-compatible, drop-in renewable fuels from America’s abundant biomass resources," says Energy Secretary Chu. "It will support development of a new, rural-focused industry that will replace imported crude oil with secure, renewable fuels made here in the U.S."

The biofuels initiative is being steered by the White House Biofuels Interagency Work Group and Rural Council.

The Rural Council was created by President Obama in June to focus on building a robust economic strategy for rural America.

“By building a national biofuels industry, we are creating construction jobs, refinery jobs and economic opportunity in rural communities throughout the country,” says Agriculture Secretary Vilsack. “As importantly, every gallon of biofuel consumed near where it is produced cuts transportation costs and, for the military, improves energy security.”

Read the joint plan:

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