US Agriculture Dept to back rural renewables with USD 68m
Sep 19, 2014 - The US Department of Agriculture (USDA) will provide USD 68 million (EUR 52.6m) in loan guarantees and grants to support the development of 540 renewable energy and energy efficiency schemes in rural areas.
In a statement on Thursday, USDA explained the funds will be available to agricultural producers and rural small businesses willing to make energy efficiency improvements or build renewable energy facilities. Financing for the schemes will be provided through USDA Rural Development's Rural Energy for America Programme (REAP).
Of the total USD 68 million, some USD 5.2 million in grants and USD 55.3 million in loans will be allocated for 240 solar projects, USDA secretary Tom Vilsack said.
Since the start of Barack Obama’s presidency in 2009, USDA has backed over 8,800 renewable energy schemes. Earlier this month, the department provided a USD-105-million loan guarantee to US firm Fulcrum Sierra Biofuels to build a refinery for renewable jet fuel in Nevada.
Veselina Petrova is one of Renewables Now's most experienced green energy writers. For several years she has been keeping track of game-changing events both large and small projects and across the globe.