Farm Bill energy programs are helping revitalize rural America and build new agricultural markets. The Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) today thanked Senate Agriculture Committee Chairwoman Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich.) and Ranking Member Pat Roberts (R-Kansas) for reauthorizing key Farm Bill energy title programs, but expressed disappointment that the Committee's mark eliminates or drastically cuts mandatory funding for these programs.
Brent Erickson, executive vice president of BIO's Industrial & Environmental Section, said, "Since their inception in 2002, the Farm Bill's energy programs have had a tremendous positive impact in revitalizing rural America, helping new agricultural markets emerge, and reducing the need for direct payments to farmers. These programs have unlocked private capital for construction of biorefineries, put more than 150,000 acres of underutilized farmland into production of next-generation energy crops, and ignited an explosion of biomanufacturing innovation, demonstration and early commercialization.
"In the short time that these programs have operated, they've achieved a high rate of return in supporting the start up of renewable chemical, advanced biofuel and biomanufacturing companies, as a timeline of the programs demonstrates. We thank the Committee for recognizing the importance of energy title programs in their Farm Bill proposal, but without meaningful funding for these programs, progress in renewable energy projects that are creating good, permanent jobs in rural America would come to a halt. We look forward to working with the Committee to ensure mandatory funding is made available for valuable energy programs."
BIO represents more than 1,100 biotechnology companies, academic institutions, state biotechnology centers and related organizations across the United States and in more than 30 other nations. BIO members are involved in the research and development of innovative healthcare, agricultural, industrial and environmental biotechnology products. BIO also produces the BIO International Convention, the world's largest gathering of the biotechnology industry, along with industry-leading investor and partnering meetings held around the world. BIO produces BIOtech NOW, an online portal and monthly newsletter chronicling "innovations transforming our world." Subscribe to BIOtech NOW.
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Congress on Industrial Biotechnology & Bioprocessing
April 29-May 2, 2012
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June 18-21, 2012
June 18 – 21, 2012
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