The U.S. Department of Agriculture unveiled the Agriculture Innovation Agenda on Thursday, a new initiative to help meet the demands of the future for American agriculture, which includes strong support for renewable fuels, including ethanol. As part of this commitment, USDA is calling for expanding the use of higher biofuel blends like ethanol, with the goal of increasing the blend rate of E15 by 2030 and E30 in 2050 in our nation’s transportation fuels.
Growth Energy CEO Emily Skor praised USDA’s initiative and its recognition of the role that homegrown biofuels have in achieving the department’s goals:
“We applaud USDA for setting these clear goals for E15 and E30, and Growth Energy’s members are ready to deliver ahead of their timetable,” said Skor. “Biofuels are a critical piece of meeting the demands of our future transportation needs while lowering our carbon footprint. Today’s recognition by USDA and Secretary Perdue’s unwavering support will help drive biofuel innovation in the coming years and decades. We look forward to continuing our longstanding working relationship with USDA to ensure that Americans across the country have expanded access to cleaner fuels like E15 and E30 at the pump.”
“We know we have a challenge facing us: to meet future food, fiber, fuel, and feed demands with finite resources. USDA’s Agriculture Innovation Agenda is our opportunity define American agriculture’s role to feed everyone and do right as a key player in the solution to this challenge,” said Secretary Perdue. “This agenda is a strategic, department-wide effort to better align USDA’s resources, programs, and research to provide farmers with the tools they need to be successful. We are also continually mindful of the need for America’s agriculture industry to be environmentally, socially, and economically sustainable to maintain our position as a leader in the global effort to meet demand. We are committed as ever to the environmental sustainability and continued success, of America’s farmers, ranchers, foresters, and producers.”
Other benchmarks of the Agriculture Innovation Initiative include:
- Food loss and waste: Advance work toward the United States’ goal to reduce food loss and waste by 50 percent in the United States by the year 2030.
- Carbon Sequestration and Greenhouse Gas: Enhance carbon sequestration through soil health and forestry, leverage the agricultural sector’s renewable energy benefits for the economy, and capitalize on innovative technologies and practices to achieve net reduction of the agricultural sector’s current carbon footprint by 2050 without regulatory overreach.
- Water Quality: Reduce nutrient loss by 30 percent nationally by 2050.
Sources: Growth Energy and USDA