Last month, USDA Rural Development in Ohio hosted another event in the “Flexible Fuels Roadshow” aimed at broadening awareness of Secretary Vilsack’s objective of deploying 10,000 flexible fuel pumps into the nation’s motor fuel delivery system by 2015. As part of USDA’s Rural Energy for America Program (REAP), eligible applicants can now apply for funding for flex-fuel pumps, in addition to other energy producing and saving projects. For the first time, gas station and convenience store operators across the country can qualify for a package of REAP funding to support the purchase and installation of flex-fuel pumps and related infrastructure.
According to Rural Business-Cooperative Administrator Judith Canales, grants are available to provide fuel station owners with incentives to install flexible fuel pumps that offer Americans more renewable energy options. She wanted to make certain that everyone is aware of the variety of assistance USDA Rural Development provides to help businesses create jobs and become more energy efficient. This assistance builds on the Obama Administration’s commitment to win the future by ensuring the nation develops innovative ways to meet our future energy needs.
Canales was in Ohio to promote the Rural Energy for America Program (REAP) which can provide grant and loan guarantee assistance to rural small for-profit businesses and agricultural producers to install renewable energy systems and energy efficiency improvements. Specifically, in Liberty Center, Ohio, America Freedom Energy is considering this assistance to help them install flexible fuel pumps at the gas station and convenience store they are developing. Installing these flexible fuel pumps at their location will provide them the opportunity to meet the growing demand for alternative fuels which are manufactured locally.
According to Tony Logan, Rural Development state director for Ohio, the biggest obstacle to the sale of home-grown, renewable biofuels is the unavailability of biofuel pumps at the corner gas station. Biofuels like ethanol and soy diesel are made locally from renewable inputs and burn cleaner than imported fossil fuels. With this new program, USDA will work with motor fuel retailers to give Ohio motorists a choice when they fill up. Today’s event shows there is tremendous interest and opportunity for the distribution of Flex-Fuels. Rural Development has committed its resources to make this happen and we are looking forward to the inevitable success of biofuels in our economy.
The application deadline for funding under the Rural Energy for America Program is approaching. For more information, click here.