The Iowa Renewable Fuels Association on December 12 announced the first recipients of the newly-created Renewable Fuels Infrastructure Grant Program within the Iowa Values Fund Program.
The innovative program makes money available to gasoline retailers and biodiesel suppliers to help offset the infrastructure cost of bringing biodiesel and E85 (85% ethanol, 15% gasoline) to the public.
"The people of Iowa want the opportunity to choose a renewable fuel," says Lucy Norton, IRFA's managing director who oversees the program. "With the help of the Iowa Values Fund, the petroleum industry is beginning to respond. The nine grant recipients will help bring biodiesel and E85 to thousands of Iowans."
"It's no surprise some people are already talking about expanding the program," she adds. "At the first meeting we awarded over half the funds available for the entire year. Other entities hoping to participate in the program should submit their applications soon."
Ethanol, biodiesel grants awarded
Governor Tom Vilsack commented on the first round of awards: "The success and need of this program is readily apparent from the strong demand. We are proud to help expand Iowa's economy while at the same time creating jobs and lowering gasoline prices. Every gallon of renewable fuel purchased keeps more money working in Iowa instead of flowing out of state."
Forgivable loans, up to 50% of total project cost, are awarded in three categories:
- Category I - Financial assistance is available for equipment purchases to upgrade fueling sites to dispense E85 fuel, not to exceed $7,500 per location.
- Category II - Financial assistance is available for equipment purchases for new E85 fueling sites, not to exceed $20,000 per location.
- Category III â€“ Financial assistance is available for equipment purchases for biodiesel on-site or off-site storage facilities, not to exceed a maximum of $50,000 per location.
"Increased sales of E85 show Iowans want renewable fuels and prefer to use them where available," says Norton. "E85 sales for September were 81,600 gallons compared to just 15,160 gallons in September 2004."
A total of $325,000 has been allocated annually for three years to expand availability of E85 and biodiesel in Iowa. For an application or information, contact Lucy Norton at (515) 225-9242 at info@IowaRFA.org or go to www.IowaRFA.org.
Iowa Values Fund Renewable Fuels Grant recipients
- West Central Cooperative, biodiesel blending, Clear Lake $25,000
- Mulgrew Oil Co., biodiesel blending, Dubuque $25,000
- Ampride Truck Plaza, new E85 pump, Denison $20,000
- County Line Mart, new E85 pump, Keota $20,000
- Kum & Go, new E85 pump, Ankeny $20,000
- Linn Coop Oil Co., new E85 pump, Marion $20,000
- Petro Express, new E85 pump, Cedar Falls $20,000
- Price Oil Co., upgrade to E85, Durant $7,500
- New Alliance FS, upgrade to E85, Oskaloosa $7,500
The Iowa Renewable Fuels Association was formed in 2002 to represent the state's liquid renewable fuels industry. The trade group fosters development and growth of the renewable fuels industry in Iowa through education, promotion, legislation and infrastructure development.