Published by Jack Roscoe,
Editorial Assistant
World Fertilizer,
Tuesday, 02 April 2024 10:44

USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack has announced that USDA is investing US$124 million in renewable energy and fertilizer production projects in 44 states to lower energy costs, generate new income and create jobs for US farmers, ranchers, agricultural producers and rural small businesses.

The Secretary made the announcement during a visit to University of Nebraska Omaha, where he discussed USDA’s efforts under the Biden-Harris Administration to invest in rural communities nationwide. Most of the projects announced are being funded by President Biden’s Inflation Reduction Act, the nation’s largest-ever investment in combating the climate crisis, through the Rural Energy for America Program. An additional project is funded by the Fertilizer Production Expansion Program. In total, this funding advances the President’s Investing in America agenda to grow the nation’s economy from the middle out and bottom up by increasing competition in agricultural markets, lowering costs and expanding clean energy.

“Under the Biden-Harris Administration, USDA is committed to ensuring farmers, ranchers and small businesses are directly benefitting from both a clean energy economy and a strong US supply chain,” Secretary Vilsack said. “The investments announced today will expand access to renewable energy systems and domestic fertilizer, all while creating good-paying jobs and saving people money that they can then invest back into their businesses and communities.”

This visit comes just weeks after USDA selected Midwest Electric Cooperative, located in Grant, NE, and the Village of Emerson, NE as two of its first applicants to move forward in the awards process through the Powering Affordable Clean Energy program. Midwest Electric Cooperative will build solar renewable energy resource facilities and energy storage systems for the communities in Wallace, Grant, Paxton and Lakeview. The Village of Emerson plans to use the funds to finance a solar facility that will distribute clean energy to the Winnebago Tribe.

Since the start of the Biden-Harris Administration, USDA has invested more than US$174 million through the Fertilizer Production Expansion Program (FPEP) to support 42 projects nationwide to boost domestic fertilizer production.

Today, USDA is providing nearly US$4 million in FPEP funding to Bluestem Systems to build facilities and purchase equipment at three locations in Iowa and Nebraska. The facilities will help the company make advancements in its innovative process to remove water and pathogens to create a dry fertilizer mix. The project is expected to yield 3800 tpy of dry fertilizer and 11400 tpy across all three facilities, which will be made available to 1500 producers.

Through FPEP, USDA provides grants to independent farmers and agricultural business owners to help them produce fertilizer. Funds can be used to modernise equipment, adopt new technologies, build fertilizer production plants and more. This programme helps boost domestic fertilizer production while lowering costs and creating new income streams for US farmers.

Tuesday 02 April 2024 10:51

The loan will enable Indorama to increase its fertilizer production and develop a port terminal for exports, supporting food production and food security across regional and international markets, while fostering job creation in Nigeria.



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