Grants for rural energy and climate-smart agriculture
The USDA says it is making huge investments in rural infrastructure programs and climate-smart adaptability.
Secretary Tom Vilsack:
Vilsack: We are announcing the investment of $633 million in 793 projects affecting all 50 states and Puerto Rico.
Vilsack told reporters that the investments will go to 5 key programs focusing on energy efficiency, resilience and biofuels infrastructure. $38 million will be given in the form of grants and another $595 million will be sent in the form of loans. And projects vary greatly in size and scope.
Vilsack: “For example, there is a hydroponic lettuce farm in Florida that receives a $35,000 grant to invest in a solar system. But there’s also an $85.7 million loan for a large-scale solar voltaic farm in Illinois that will provide wholesale power to 23 distribution co-ops in Illinois, Indiana and Missouri. .
In Alabama, Headland Peanut Warehouse Coop received a $250,000 grant while Murphree Seed Farm received $41,000. In Florida, Valdes Poultry received 3 grants totaling nearly $180,000. In Georgia, the Southern Valley Fruit & Vegetable received a grant of more than $230,000.
More than half of the money went to projects offered under the Rural Energy for America (REAP) program, which helps farmers and small businesses install renewable energy systems or improve energy efficiency.