WASHINGTON –The US Department of Agriculture announced on Oct. 31 $44.6 million in payments for 156 advanced biofuel producers throughout the US to support production and expansion of advanced biofuels. The announcement was made by Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack.

"This funding will help local producers increase the production and availability of renewable energy and thus help our nation begin to reduce its reliance on foreign oil," Vilsack said. "USDA's support will help to further develop the nation's growing biofuels industry and generate green jobs and economic growth."

The funding is being provided through USDA's Bioenergy Program for Advanced Biofuels program. Under this program, payments are made to eligible producers to support and ensure an expanding production of advanced biofuels. Payments are based on the amount of biofuels a recipient produces from renewable biomass, other than corn kernel starch. Eligible examples include biofuels derived from cellulose; crop residue; animal, food and yard waste material; biogas (landfill and sewage waste treatment gas); vegetable oil, and animal fat.