May 5, 2009
President Obama Announces Steps to Support Sustainable Energy Options,
Departments of Agriculture and Energy, Environmental Protection Agency to Lead Efforts
Announcement Includes Biofuels Interagency Working Group, Recovery Act Funds for Biofuels Research and Commercialization, and Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on the Renewable Fuel Standard
- Develop the nation’s first comprehensive biofuel market development program, which shall use existing authorities and identify new policies to support the development of next-generation biofuels, increase flexible fuel vehicle use , and assist in retail marketing efforts;
- Coordinate infrastructure policies impacting the supply, secure transport, and distribution of biofuels; and
- Identify new policy options to promote the environmental sustainability of biofuels feedstock production, taking into consideration land use, habitat conservation, crop management practices, water efficiency and water quality, as well as lifecycle assessments of greenhouse gas emissions.
- In his directive, the President called on Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack to:
- Immediately begin restructuring existing investments in renewable fuels as needed to preserve industry employment; and
- Develop a comprehensive approach to accelerating the investment in and production of American biofuels and reducing our dependence on fossil fuels.
- $480 million solicitation for integrated pilot- and demonstration-scale biorefineries;
- $176.5 million for commercial-scale biorefinery projects;
- $110 million for fundamental research in key program areas; and
- $20 million for ethanol research
- Cellulosic biofuels;
- Biomass-based diesel;
- Advanced biofuels; and
- Total renewable fuel.