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USDA releases money to support bio-based production

Bioenergy and bio-based product sectors received a $10 million (€7.5 million) boost from the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) this month.

The announcement was made by agriculture secretary Tom Vilsack, who also highlighted the growth potential in the automobile industry of bio-based products via research conducted by the Iowa State University

USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture awarded the grants through its research initiative. Projects were awarded across four key areas: policy options for and impacts on regional biofuels production systems; impacts of regional bioenergy feedstock production systems on wildlife and pollinators; environmental implications of direct and indirect land use change and socioeconomic impacts of biofuels on rural communities.

‘The USDA and President Obama are committed to producing clean energy right here at home, to not only break our dependence on foreign oil, but also boost rural economies,’ Vilsack was quoted as saying.

’These projects will give us the scientific information needed to support biofuel production and create co-products that will enhance the overall value of a biobased economy. Today, with a strong and diversified US agricultural sector, the American automobile industry has a greater incentive for expanding use of biobased products while supporting good-paying jobs here in the United States.’