Pennsylvania Governor Announces $10 M to Develop Homegrown Fuels

Pennsylvania Governor Edward G. Rendell this week said Pennsylvania is reducing its dependence on fossil fuels by supporting 24 new projects that will replace nearly 95 million gallons of conventional diesel fuel with homegrown biodiesel, expand Pennsylvania’s infrastructure, and spur innovation in renewable fuel technologies.

The Governor announced $10 million in grants through the Alternative Fuels Incentive Grant (AFIG) program that will leverage another $108 million in private investment to expand the production and use of homegrown biofuels. The investments will support research into new potential fuel sources that will help the state meet its energy demands using domestic alternatives.

“This year, Pennsylvania will spend nearly $30 billion to purchase gas and liquid fuels from beyond our borders,” the Governor said. “Rather than sending that money abroad, we’re making a commitment to work toward energy independence and invest that money here. That means supporting the farmers who grow the crops that create ethanol and biodiesel, the manufacturers who turn those crops into fuel and the trucking companies and railroads that ship the final product to the retailer.

The grants announced today will help Pennsylvania meet the goal Governor Rendell established under his PennSecurity Fuels Initiative—producing and consuming nearly 1 billion gallons of biofuel by 2017.

In addition to supporting technology advancements, the alternative fuel grants announced today also expand the market for homegrown fuels by providing financial incentives to producers. The program awards 5-cents-per-gallon to Pennsylvania biodiesel and ethanol producers, up to 12.5 million gallons in 12-month periods.

The grants also provide $1.6 million in incentives for early adopters of homegrown fuels. AFIG grants reimburse municipal and nonprofit fleet operators for the added cost of purchasing biofuels.

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