Key Farm Bill Energy Title programs received a series of much-needed endorsements yesterday, offering hope as congressional negotiators continue work on FY2018 USDA funding and the next Farm Bill re-authorization.
Senators Al Franken (D-MN), Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Tammy Baldwin (D-WI) yesterday introduced the Agricultural Energy Programs Reauthorization Act of 2017 which will reauthorize key rural energy and manufacturing programs in Title IX of the Farm Bill and provide robust funding through 2023. In addition to renewed funding, the proposal includes several ABO energy title policy priorities, including eligibility under the Sec. 9002 Biopreferred program for products from algae and other biomass produced using captured carbon.
The bill’s introduction followed a new report from the Ag Energy Coalition yesterday on the importance of Farm Bill Energy Title programs and an Op-Ed from AEC Director, Lloyd Ritter, on the need for sustained funding. ABO is an AEC member.
We still have our work cut out for us as Farm Bill energy programs continue to face opposition from some quarters, but these new developments offer our efforts a real boost. A tip of the cap to Lloyd and his team at AEC.