The USDA Rural Development's Renewable Energy Systems and Energy Efficiency Improvements Program announced on Tuesday that it is making $6.9 million in grants and loans available to 27 individuals and businesses in seven states. The money is to be used for increasing energy efficiency of farms or businesses and developing renewable energy systems.
"The Bush administration is committed to providing more energy from within our nation's borders, and these loan and grant combinations announced today will help accomplish this important goal," Secretary of Agriculture Ed Schafer said.
The Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency loan and grant program was established under Section 9006 of the 2002 Farm Bill to encourage agricultural producers and rural small businesses to install renewable energy systems and energy efficient improvements. The program's funding can support a wide range of technologies encompassing biomass (including anaerobic digesters), geothermal, hydrogen, solar, and wind energy, as well as energy efficiency improvements. The funding is contingent on recipients meeting conditions of the award agreement.