USDA Energy Grant & Loan Programs

The  Renewable  Energy  for America  Program (REAP),  offered  through  USDA Rural Development, offers grants, guaranteed loans, and combination grant/guaranteed  loans to help agricultural producers and rural small businesses purchase and install renewable energy systems and make energy efficiency improvements in rural areas.

Renewable  energy  is  defined  as  energy  derived  from  a wind,  solar,  biomass,  or  geothermal source; or hydrogen  derived from biomass  or water using wind, solar, biomass,  or geothermal energy sources.

Southwest Energy & Feed, Seminole, TX — 2006  was  the  first  year  that  the  USDA  accepted  applications  for  a  combination  grant  and guaranteed loan application. Southwest Energy & Feed, a Westar Trade Resources client, was successful in obtaining a $500,000 grant and a $1.1 million loan guarantee for  a  1.6  million  gallon  per  year  biodiesel  plant  located  adjacent  to  the  Ocho  Gin.  This combination award was one of 7 awards by the USDA throughout the nation.  In 2007, Southwest Energy & Feed Inc. also received a USDA Value-Added Producer Grant for $300,000.

Zurix  Biodiesel,  Thomaston,  GA   Received  a $500,000  grant  for a $5  million  biodiesel project through this program in 2008.

Mississippi Moonshine, Clarksville, MO  Received a $20,000 grant for an ethanol fueling station.