Measures To Accelerate
Production Of Renewable Aviation Fuels
October 25, 2010 –
The Air Transport Association of America (ATA), the industry trade
organization for the leading
“ATA and its member airlines, in close collaboration with USDA, the Boeing Company, the Department of Defense and the Federal Aviation Administration are working hard to procure and deploy environmentally preferred, economically viable, domestically produced jet fuel; this includes through long-term purchase agreements,” said ATA President James C. May.
“These new and
enhanced USDA programs will accelerate production of renewable aviation
members and their affiliates transport more than 90 percent of all
ATA also is a
co-founder and sponsor of the Commercial Aviation Alternative Fuels
Initiative® (CAAFI), which seeks to enhance energy security and
environmental sustainability for aviation through alternative jet fuels.
As a coalition of
Today, it is clear
that this Administration is engaged in job creation and opportunities
for economic growth across this entire nation – from
Across the hall
this morning, the President's Director of his Domestic Policy Council,
Melody Barnes, along with Secretary Donovan of HUD, Secretary LaHood of
the Department of Transportation; and EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson,
will be discussing the Obama Administration's Partnership for
Sustainable Communities initiative and how it will work to support more
livable and sustainable communities across America. USDA is part of this
Partnership, and we wholeheartedly support their work.
Today, however, I
am here, rather than across the hall, to unveil a series of USDA
announcements, also supported by this Administration, that support the
development of a renewable fuels industry. An industry that will create
jobs and economic growth, primarily in rural
Our country needs
a strong, vibrant rural economy. Unfortunately, over the past several
decades there have been times when it was neither strong nor vibrant.
Persistent high unemployment and poverty encouraged many to leave their
rural communities. A majority of rural counties lost population, and
with it came a loss of political representation.
refuses to accept the notion that Rural America's past predicts its
future. He recognizes that the source of
We've gone to work
immediately. USDA announced assistance under the Recovery Act for 334
broadband expansions designed to reach more than 6 million people and
250,000 businesses in rural and remote areas.
By launching the
USDA led effort "Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food" we began to promote
better linkage between local producers and local consumers through
investments in processing, storage, and warehouse facilities. All of
which helps producer's bottom lines and creates new job opportunities.
approach at the heart of the President's vision - which combines new
technologies, new markets, and better use of our natural resources - is
our nation's capacity to reduce its dependence on imported oil and
fossil fuels through the increased production and use of biofuels and
Thirty years ago
28% of the oil consumed in the
The Renewable Fuel
Standard, known as RFS2, reaffirmed the goal of producing by 2022: 36
billion gallons of biofuels to include 21 billion gallons of advanced
Today, we produce
around 12 billion gallons of ethanol biofuels and around 800 million
gallons of biodiesel. Very little of which is considered an advanced
biofuel. While, under the RFS2, the biodiesel is an advanced biofuel, we
are pushing the limits of technology and surging towards the production
of advanced cellulosic ethanol, biobutenol, drop-in fuels and other
The benefits to
the economy and to consumers are outlined in a new Economic Research
Service study released today entitled Effects of Increased Biofuels in
the US Economy in 2022.
Bottom line – this
industry needs more time to mature and more investments to grow. To meet
the 36 billion gallon goal, we will need to work harder and faster.
We have already
seen what happens when incentives are ended too quickly. The recent
lapse of the biodiesel tax credit cost that industry jobs – nearly
12,000 jobs were lost as production was cut in half– these are jobs we
simply cannot afford to lose.
Biofuels Interagency Working Group report, Growing America's Fuel,
called for the establishment of five USDA regional Biomass Research
Centers for the development of non food biomass feed stocks. These
Regional Centers, involving a collaboration between the Agricultural
Research Service (ARS) and the U.S. Forest Service (FS), will focus,
accelerate, and coordinate the science and technology needed to
incorporate feed stock production into existing agricultural and forest
The Centers will
also assist Rural Development officials in the development and
construction of biorefineries. The lead personnel at the Centers will
draw on the expertise of our entire USDA team including but not limited
to our Rural Development coordinators, Farm Service personnel, Natural
Resources Conservation Service officials, Forest Service experts, and
extension service specialists.
1. The Northeast center will be located in Madison, Wisconsin, led
by the Forest Service.
1. The Northeast center will be located in Madison, Wisconsin, led
by the Forest Service.
Production of 36
billion gallons of biodiesel will require that biorefineries dot the
rural landscape. The Farm Bill of 2008 authorized investments to assist
in the construction of new biorefineries. Today, I am directing the
Rural Development mission area of USDA within 60 days to announce
support and funding under the current Biorefinery Assistance Program for
the construction (to commence in 2011) of a specific biorefinery or
bioenergy plant in each of the regions serviced by the regional centers.
In doing so, the entire country can begin to see the economic benefit to
producers and the job creation potential of the biofuel/bioenergy
I know that the
Department of Energy will also provide leadership in this effort.
Already the effort of the DOE is encouraging the construction of a
biomass facility that converts woody biomass into crude oil in the state
The final BCAP
Rule will be announced in the Federal Register tomorrow. Under the rule,
producers will receive financial help to defray the cost of producing,
storing and transporting alternative fuel stock.
biomass to a renewable energy or biofuel facilities will generate
matching payments to help reduce the costs that come from the logistical
challenges facing this new industry. In crafting the final rule we paid
attention to the concerns of industry and environmentalists,
particularly with respect to woody biomass. Assistance for woody biomass
will only be provided for materials removed from a forest for ecosystem
restoration and forest health purposes.
As these new
materials arrive at the biorefinery additional costs may be incurred by
processors. To relieve that risk for advanced biofuels production, USDA,
under section 9005 of the Farm Bill of 2008, will make payments to
impacted processors. Up to $281.5 million remains for this purpose. I
have directed that work on the final rule be completed by the end of
this year making these funds available.
Over time, a key
missing link in the effort to meet the RFS2 goal has been and will
continue to be the lack of convenient locations to obtain higher blends
Our effort to
expand the biofuel industry will also include opportunities we control
within our own vehicle fleet at USDA. We are committed to make E 85 and
other blends of biofuels, including biodiesel mixes, more conveniently
located. We'll encourage more use of biofuels in our fleet of almost
43,000 vehicles. The impact can be significant. The Department reported
42,882 light, medium, and heavy duty vehicles in the motor vehicle
inventory in FY 2009. The approximate total fuel consumption was
19,500,000 gallons. The miles traveled by the USDA Motor Vehicle Fleet
were approximately 342,500,000 with approximately $41,000,000 in fuel
costs reported. We hope to provide the model for other federal
departments with large vehicle fleets.
The USDA is
already partnering with the Department of the Navy as it embraces a
biofuel future. Today, USDA announces another partnership with the
signing of a Memorandum of Understanding with the Federal Aviation
Administration (FAA). The FAA and commercial airline industry also see
the potential of biofuel as jet fuel. Under the MOU, the USDA and FAA
will work together with the airline industry over the next 5 years to
develop appropriate feed stocks that can be most efficiently processed
into jet fuel. Doing so will decrease the industry's current dependence
on foreign oil and help stabilize fuel costs in the long run.
I recognize that
some may doubt our capacity to meet the challenge of expanding the
biofuels industry. I do not under estimate the challenges, but I have
seen Rural America rise again and again to continually meet the large
challenge of providing food, feed, and fiber for the country and the
|Other News Stories
|©AvStop Online Magazine Contact Us Return To News|