Created as part of the 2008 the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) mandated Farm bill, the Biomass Crop Assistance Program (BCAP) provides incentives to American farmers, ranchers and forest landowners to grow biomass crops for the purpose of biofuels, heat and power.
In a joint effort with the Show Me Energy Cooperative of Centerview, Missouri, the USDA has launched the first BCAP Project Area. Spanning 39 counties in Missouri and Kansas the BCAP Project Area will enroll up to 50,000 acres for establishing native grass and herbaceous plant crops dedicated to energy feedstock.
The USDA hopes that the new project will spur collaboration between crop producers and bioenergy facilities. Crop producers who are selected as a BCAP project area will be eligible to:
- Receive up to 75% of the cost of establishing a bioenergy perennial crop.
- Receive up to five years of annual payments for grassy crops (annual or perennial).
- Receive up to 15 years of annual payments for woody crops (annual or perennial).
"Reducing our dependence on foreign oil and getting a handle on out of control gas prices will require investments in projects like we are announcing today,” said Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack.
He added, “By encouraging production of feedstocks that can be converted into next-generation biofuels we are boosting the rural economy, creating jobs, contributing to America’s energy security and protecting our planet. Investments like this spark creation of new industries and is a key part of our effort to keep America competitive and win the future.”
Image Credit: USDA
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