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Obama’s $510-million biofuel push [VIDEO]

U.S. agriculture agency and its Navy partner to produce biofuel-friendly military vehicles and commercial transports


August 17, 2011
by Canadian Manufacturing Daily Staff

WASHINGTON—President Obama has announced the U.S. Departments of Agriculture, Energy and the Navy will invest up to $510 million over three to produce advanced “drop-in” aviation and marine biofuels to power military and commercial transportation.

The initiative responds to a directive from President Obama as part of his administration’s framework for reducing dependence on foreign oil.

“Biofuels are an important part of reducing America’s dependence on foreign oil and creating jobs here at home,” says President Obama. “But supporting biofuels cannot be the role of government alone. That’s why we’re partnering with the private sector to speed development of next-generation biofuels that will help us continue to take steps towards energy independence and strengthen communities across our country.”

The U.S. has suggested biofuels are a key component to its energy agenda, but it is suffering from lacking biofuel manufacturing capacity. To accelerate production, it has proposed the use of bio-based jet and diesel fuel for military and commercial purposes.

The joint plan calls for the three Departments to invest up to $510 million and will require the private sector to match that amount.  The partnership aims create jobs and position U.S. companies and farmers as global leaders in advanced biofuels production, which would reduce the U.S.’s annual $300 billion crude oil bill from foreign producers.